Jewel Castro

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detail, Walking With My Grandmother, 2010 Acrylics On Canvas © Jewel Castro
view of SAIL! at Appalachian State University, 2011 Mixed © Jewel Castro
detail, The Pastor's Wife, 2011 Acrylics On Canvas © Jewel Castro
Legend Of The Leech, 1997 Acrylics On Canvas 96"H X 72"W © Jewel Castro
detail, Fishing Lesson No. 1: Patience, 2011 Acrylic Ink On Mulberry Paper © Jewel Castro
Fishing Lesson No. 7: Bite to Kill, 2011 Acrylic Ink On Mulberry Paper. © Jewel Castro
detail of "Tales of a Fisherman" Acrylics On Canvas. 48"W X 60"H © Jewel Castro
detail of "The Pastor's Widow", 2011 Acrylics On Canvas 36"W X 48"H © Jewel Castro
detail of Day of the Malu, 2010 Acrylics On Canvas 36"W X 48"H © Jewel Castro
courtesy of CSUN Art Galleries, view of Red House/the Daughters of Salamasina, as seen in 2006 Installation © Jewel Castro/CSUN Art Galleries Northridge
Quick Facts
Lives in
Bi-border, California and Washington
Works in
San Diego
San Diego State University, 1995, BA Art
Grossmont College, 1991, AA
University of California San Diego
mixed-media, installation, figurative, sculpture


Contact: Jody Servon


Catherine J. Smith Gallery at Appalachian State University Presents

Sail!, by Jewel Castro

BOONE, NC—August 19, 2011—Catherine J. Smith Gallery (CSG) at Appalachian State University presents Sail!, by multimedia artist Jewel Castro. The exhibited work draws on the main themes in Castro's artistic practice—Samoan history and identity, Samoan women's art production, and Castro's relationships with her ancestors—while also highlighting her technical expertise. The exhibition is on view from September 15 – November 17, 2011 and opens with a reception on Wednesday, September 14 from 5:30 – 7 PM. These and other corresponding events are free and open to the public. Sail! is curated by Heather Waldroup, Associate Professor of art history at Appalachian State University. Waldroup has also organized a companion exhibit of books on Pacific Art and Pacific Studies from the Belk Library collection that will be on view at the library throughout the duration of Castro’s exhibition.

 Although Castro works in a variety of media, the pieces selected for this show are two-dimensional paintings and drawings.  These include works on mulberry paper, selected for its resemblance to siapo, a form of barkcloth made by Samoan women. For Castro, materials are ways to honor her heritage as much as they are surfaces on which to create her work. “Castro's exhibition makes a significant contribution to this area by bringing the work of an Oceanic artist to our community for the first time,” states Heather Waldroup. “Through her work, visitors will gain valuable insight into Samoan history and culture, as visualized by a contemporary Pacific artist.” Furthering her influence, Castro will be meeting with a number of ASU students in studio art, art history, public history, and general education throughout her time on campus.


All programs are free and open to the public, and take place on the campus of Appalachian State University.

 September 7

Visiting Artist Talk by Jewel Castro

Belk Library Room 114, 6:30 PM


September 8

The Street Where We Live

Artmaking with Jewel Castro

Plemmons Student Union Solarium, 4 – 6 PM


September 14

Opening reception for Sail!

CSG, 5:30 – 7 PM



Jewel Castro was born in Chicago and grew up in San Diego. Her maternal grandparents established the First Samoan Congregational Christian Church of San Diego, and the family’s activities revolved around their house on the church grounds and extended family events. Castro's early career in art was in graphic design and illustration and culminated in a position in television programming administration for public broadcasting. Castro received a B.A. in Art with an emphasis in Painting and Drawing from San Diego State University in 1995 and an M.F.A. in Visual Arts with a Studio emphasis in 1998. Since then, Castro has been adamantly working as a multimedia artist, curator, part-time teacher of studio art, writer, and public speaker.

 Castro is interested in bringing national attention to contemporary Oceanic art, having already curated two exhibitions that have received international exposure, including Island Affinities, Contemporary Art of Oceania at California State University Northridge (2007) with Dr. Peri Klemm and Turning Tides: Gender in Oceania Art at the University of California San Diego (2006) with Dr. Pamela Rosi. Her work is published in several journals, including Pacific Studies, The Contemporary Pacific, and Pacific Arts: The Journal of the Pacific Art Association, as well as a few books, including Samoan Art and Artists: O Measina a Samoa, edited by Sean Mallon, Moon Over the Pacific by Kay Flavell, and Pacific Island Artists Navigating the Global Art World, edited by Karen Stevenson.


Castro’s exhibition and residency is organized by the Catherine J. Smith Gallery with additional support from the Office of General Education and Program in Public History. Her lecture is featured in the Library’s Doorways series.

 Images from the exhibition and of the artist available upon request.

 The Gallery is located in Farthing Auditorium at 733 Rivers Street, Boone, NC. Hours are Monday through Friday from 9 AM to 5 PM. Admission is free for all events. For information please call 828-262-7338 or visit

(Taken from the gallery's announcement.) .


Exhibited at these venues
Jewel Castro has Exhibited at these venues: