Jesus "Jessie" Montes


Jessie Montes grew up in Mexico in a large family living in poverty.  He says that making his own toys was the beginning of his creativity, however, that creativity did not flourish until 1990, just before he retired.  In the interim, Jessie had immigrated to the United States, worked a variety of jobs, primarily custodian of a high school, raised a family and become a naturalized citizen.  Wishing to free his mind from concern about two children involved in the first Gulf War, he sought out an activity.  It became his new career in art.

Jessie began creating his art by recycling waste corrugated boxes and bulletin board paper.  It was plentiful and cost nothing.  He began to make frames for photographs and soon came to fill in the frames with objects and developed scenes.  Cutting the materials at three different angles yielded him different textures, effects and coloration. Then he tried  using acrylic paints for more variety of color.  Using ample quantities of glue for stability and a protective coating, he finished his art works.

 Jessie’s creations were little known until 1998 when he gained an agent who had purchased many of his works in a local show.  Since then he has gained widespread recognition and received rave reviews for numerous one person and group shows throughout the country.  He has been the subject of a PBS feature, and is being purchased by collectors and museums.

Whether wall hung plaques showing scenes from his life, portraits of famous people, or three dimensional message “sculptures”, the works are truly unique.  There is simply nothing like them in the art world today.  They are precisely crafted and beautifully artistic. 

Jessie suffers from emphysema and has now moved to Colorado.  Because of his health and since his process is tedious and slow, the number of works remains small.  However, the impact of each piece is big and emotion laden because as Jessie says, “it is indeed a unique, creative vision from God.” And he always adds, “I hope you like my work”