Artist Blando Bland brings works to life using acrylics, oil and spray paint - Albuquerque Journal

Artist Blando Bland brings works to life using acrylics, oil and spray paint

Albuquerque-based artist Blando Bland with some of his art. (Courtesy of Blando Bland)

Blando Bland works hard to remain focused.

Whether it’s working at a Santa Fe restaurant or working in his Albuquerque home studio, the Albuquerque native doesn’t really like to stop.

“Sometimes it overwhelms me,” he says. “I have to make sure that I don’t burn out. This is why I’m always trying different things.”

Though Bland, born Roberto Lara, spends a good chunk of his time working in the restaurant industry, it’s important for him to keep creating.

“Art is my true north and always my main focus,” he says. “I also don’t like to take it too serious because that would get really boring.”

Blando Bland usually works in acrylics, oil and spray paint.

He’s often inspired by his daily life – which is life in New Mexico.

“Francis Bacon, Frida Kahlo and Georgia O’Keeffe, I’m inspired by their work,” he says. “In New Mexico, we have a 360 view of everything. Driving from Albuquerque to Santa Fe is my favorite drive. New Mexico is an inspiring place.”

Blando Bland moved to Kansas City during the beginning of the pandemic, but found himself longing for the New Mexico skies.

Returning home, he wanted to split time between Albuquerque and Santa Fe.

On his social media, he will let those who follow his pages know that he is giving away free art.

“I’ve probably given away 300 pieces,” he says. “I put one in Grand Central Station in New York City and nearly got arrested. There are some places where you just can’t put free art. Luckily, when I post the free pieces, the people who find it are giving it a good home.”

On a usual week, Blando Bland paints on his days off while at home in Albuquerque. During his work week, he stays in Santa Fe and finds himself drawing during his breaks.

“I can get lost in ink and paper drawing,” he says. “That’s what keeps me at bay when I’m not painting.”

Blando Bland has also tried his hand at art classes – many of which he failed at Central New Mexico Community College.

“I would learn the material and show up every day,” he says. “But I didn’t turn in the assignments. I failed three times. Who knows, maybe one day I’ll go back to school and get more training.”

While Blando Bland balances his art and job at the restaurant, here are a few things you didn’t know about him:

1 “I’m left handed. When I was a kid I could never remember which hand I was told to use. So I stuck with my left.”

2 “I’m a chef at a deli in Santa Fe.”

3 “Most of my paintings start off by doing one liners, and those are when you draw without lifting your pen.”

4 “I failed art class three times and never finished school.”

5 “I love skateboarding.”

Editor’s note: Venue Plus continues “In Case You Didn’t Know,” a weekly feature with fun tidbits about New Mexicans and their projects.

Home » Entertainment » Artist Blando Bland brings works to life using acrylics, oil and spray paint


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