Daniel Galvez (b.1953) is an Oakland-based painter, muralist, and public work artist. He was born in Calexico, California in 1953 and spent his childhood in Sacramento. After two years at Pacific University in Forest Grove, Oregon, he moved to Oakland in 1973 to attend the California College of Arts and Crafts now the California College of the Arts where he received a BFA (1975).

He cites as one of his early influences a Wayne Thiebaud exhibit he visited at the Crocker Museum in Sacramento in the 1960’s. When he began studying art in college he was introduced to the work of “Los Tres Grandes” the Mexican muralists Rivera, Siquieros and Orozco whose work awakened in him a desire to paint on a grand scale. Simultaneously, he became fascinated by the photorealist style of painting and later studied under Robert Bechtle and Richard McLean at San Francisco State University, MFA (1979).

He began his career as an exterior mural painter during the contemporary mural movement, which pioneered the process of collaborative public art. From the beginning he sought to combine the quality of photorealist painting with subject matter reflective of the individuals, cultures and histories of particular communities.

Two early Bay Area murals which are still in place are Carnaval (1983) at 24th Street and South Van Ness in San Francisco for which he was assisted by Dan Fontes, Jamie Morgan and Jan Shield, and the Grand Perfomance mural (1984) on Grand. Ave at the 580 underpass which was a collaboration with Keith Sklar with assistance from Dan Fontes, Brooke Fancher, Karen Sjoholm and community volunteers.

He has created more than 40 large scale public artworks throughout the United States. His work is located in schools, colleges, libraries, justice centers, museums, healthcare facilities, and other civic institutions.

During the 1990’s he began to work on interior murals on canvas which included the historical murals Homage to Malcolm X (1997) for the Audubon Ballroom in New York where Malcolm X was assassinated and a pair of murals Guardians of the Past and Stewards for the Future (2000) for the Department of the Interior in Washington, DC on the occasion of the 150th anniversary of their founding.

An interior canvas mural in Oakland is Journey of Promise (2003) which he created with quilt artist Patricia Montgomery for the African American Museum and Library at Oakland (AAMLO) at 14th Street and MLK. There is a video of him in the museum on the second floor.

Since 2006 he has collaborated with artist Jos Sances to create work in stainless steel and digital and ceramic tile for public commissions at Skyline College in San Bruno, the Richmond BART Station, and the Alameda County Juvenile Justice Center in San Leandro. In 2010 Galvez and Sances completed a mural on perforated aluminum panels for the East Oakland Sports Center.

In 2018, he installed “Mack Town Rising” - a 36 x 9.5 mural on canvas in the Library at McClymonds High School. The student body played a major part in determining the subject matter and also contributed dozens of aphorisms – each of which are six words-long that are woven across the face of the mural. The subjects include Huey Newton, Angela Davis, Mary Ann (“Mother”) Wright, and McClymonds' graduates Frank Robinson and Bill Russell. Lynette Gibson McElhaney and Keith K Dub Williams are also honored for their role in constructing West Oakland's Town Park Skatepark. 


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