Oklahoma artist Corazon Watkins was born in the Philippines and became a naturalized U.S. citizen in 1976. Watkins received her undergraduate degree from Northeastern State University in Tahlequah, and her Master of Fine Art from the University of Oklahoma. Ever since then, she poured herself into the artist community in Oklahoma, becoming involved in many different arts initiatives in Norman and Oklahoma City. She was an active member of the Oklahoma Visual Artist Coalition’s think tank, was a member of the Firehouse Art Center’s board of directors in Norman for numerous years and also spent some time as a professor of art at the University of Oklahoma. She is passionate about the success of others and is always willing to help other artists. “Most of my work deals with either political, social, or religious subjects” and manifests in large abstract painting, ceramic sculptures and mixed media assemblages.
Corazon Watkins’ paintings have been featured in Oklahoma exhibitions at spaces such as the City Arts Center in Oklahoma City (now Oklahoma Contemporary), Philbrook Museum of Art in Tulsa and the Leslie Powell Gallery in Lawton. She has exhibited nationally and internationally, receiving several awards and fellowships for her sculptures and paintings, including a residency in painting at the Fundación Valparaíso en Almeria, Spain. She has also exhibited works in places such as Mozambique, Africa; Abu-Dhabi, United Arab Emirates; and Mojacar, Spain. As part of the Art For Embassies program, four of her works are part of the United States Department of State’s permanent art collection and have been exhibited in U.S. embassies in Europe, Africa and the Philippines. Watkins cites her numerous national and international residencies as being some of her most rewarding experiences. With the connections she made abroad, she also curated international exhibitions that were held in Norman and Oklahoma City, featuring artists from China, Russia, Italy, the Phillippines and France. Watkins would cultivate a prolific career as a practicing studio artist in Norman, Oklahoma where she maintains her studio to this day.