Past Conferences

Keynote Speaker

Conference keynote speaker Thursday, October 13, 2016: Raúl Gonzalez III, Visual Artist

Raúl Gonzalez was born in El Paso, Texas and grew up going back and forth between El Paso and Ciudad Juárez, México. As a first generation Mexican American, Gonzalez creates art to tell stories about diversity and belonging. In his own words, “My work revolves around teaching, community and the making of artwork that shines a light and gives a voice to those who may not have it.”

Gonzalez is the illustrator of the critically acclaimed graphic novel Lowriders in Space by Cathy Camper which was published by Chronicle Books. Lowriders in Space was nominated for the prestigious Texas Bluebonnet award (2016-2017) by the Texas Library Association. Book two in the series, Lowriders to the Center of the Earth is slated for release on July 5, 2016. Camper and Gonzalez are currently working on a short story for the Guys Read anthology published by Walden Media. He is also a regular contributor to SpongeBob Squarepants Comics.

Gonzalez is committed to introducing youth to the visual arts and has taught in the education departments of the Institute of Contemporary Art, Boston, and the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. In 2015 he received a fellowship from the Brother Thomas Foundation. In 2011 Gonzalez collaborated with over 125 kids from all over the city of Boston to create a work titled “and their Families” for the Linde Family Wing of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. He was voted Boston’s best visual artist for 2010 by readers of The Boston Phoenix and in 2010 he worked on his first large scale mural sponsored by the Boston Arts Commission installed in the neighborhood of East Boston.