Wood Carvings by Patrocino Barela
February 14 – March 16, 1942
Taso, New Mexico
Born: 1908- Bisbee, Arizona
Occupational record: Laborer, Federal Art Project- Numerous small sculptures.
Important exhibitions: FAP Exhibitions at State Art Museum, Sante Fe.
History: Patrocino Barela was born in Bisbee, Arizona. His mother died in his infancy and his earliest recollections include impressions of a variety of boarding homes where he was placed for care by his father. As soon as he could go with the father on all occasions, he accompanied him to lumber and sheep camps and farms where the father worked as a laborer. They came to New Mexico when Pat was a small boy and where Mr. Barela remarried. At the age of eleven Pat went to Denver, Colorado to seek work on his own account and has supported himself since.
When the ERA opened its office, Pat had long been without steady employment, although willing to do any kind of work. He had a team and wagon, so was employed by the ERA doing odd jobs. On weekends to meet his wife's demands for money, he worked on his carving with his pocket knife and a pair of pincers. He brought one of his carvings to the house of the ERA social worker, and she and her family encouraged him in every way, and promised to recommend him for work on the artists project then functioning. Several pieces of his work were obtained to he shown to Miss Blossom Ferry and Vernen Bantur of the IPA. He was accepted for work on Federal Art Projects.