The Gift of Wonder and The Proud Little Burro – ARTIST INFORMATION

Patrice Schooley

After receiving a Fine Arts Degree from the University of New Mexico, Patrice Schooley began doing juried shows with her watercolors, acrylics and pencil art. Eventually she found her true passion in painting animals and children and has done commissioned work throughout the United States. Patrice believes in the importance of art for children and has taught many classes both in the schools and in private lessons. She also devotes much of her time to animal rescue work and always donates a portion of her sales to various animal charities. She recently was accepted as a member of Art Helping Animals, an international group of artists whose mission it is to help animals through their art. Patrice believes that all animals have many wonderful and magical things to teach humans if we take the time to listen. She was delighted to have been able to work with a real donkey as her model and muse for the illustrations for this book.


Amado M. Peña, Jr.

Amado Maurilio Peña, Jr. was born in Laredo, Texas in 1943. He studied art and education at Texas A & I (now Texas A & M Kingsville), where he received his Bachelor’s and Master’s Degrees. He was a teacher in his hometown of Laredo as well as in Crystal City and Austin, Texas. He continues to teach as part of the Studio Art program at Alexander High School in Laredo and is also an adjunct professor in the College of Education at the University of Texas. He has been a presenter at many national education conferences. Of course, Amado’s first love is art, and he has been a successful professional artist for more than 30 years.

Amado is a Mestizo or Mexican and Yaqui ancestry. His artwork is inspired by places such as Canyon de Chelly, Spider Rock, Monument Valley, Enchanted Mesa, Acoma, and Black Mesa. These sites are part of an enduring landscape that speaks of the ancient heritage of a region that is now known as Arizona and New Mexico. Abstractions of the landscape merge with exaggerated human forms; blankets and pottery patterns. Amado’s artwork is defined by its bold color and form and dynamic composition. Through his art, Amado pays tribute to the people of the Southwest, rich with culture and beauty.

Selected Collections: The Heard Museum, National Museum of American Art, New Mexico Museum of Art, The Whitney Museum, The People’s Republic of China; University of Texas, College of Education, Mabee-Gerrer Museum of Art.

Amado Peña is recognized as an Artisan of the Pascua Yaqui Tribe of Arizona. This is a particularly high honor and one that he cherishes. He is dedicated to furthering the public’s knowledge and interest in the Tribe, its art, its history, and its culture.

Amado & his wife, J.B. Peña, established the Art Has Heart foundation in 1994. It was incorporated in Texas and received its 501©3 recognition from the IRS in 1995. The Foundation is governed by a nine member Board of Directors with Dr. Mike R. DeVault serving as Executive Director. The Peñas value the arts and have a deep interest in helping students further their education in a field which is generally under-funded. Art Has Heart has been an avenue for both Amado and J.B. to help talented students continue their education and realize their dream.

Peña Studio Gallery
235 Don Gaspar – Santa Fe, NM 87501