The apartment before renovation…
The apartment AFTER renovation.
The new house
The new home and studio!
Douglas Simonson and ArtVallarta were a good fit for quite a few years. But over time, the artist began dreaming of a bigger, more private studio. And although he loved living in the Zona Romantica, he wanted to see what it would be like to live in a more Mexican neighborhood.
Then in 2020 the building where he’d lived since first moving to PV in 2014 sold to a new owner, who decided to renovate the entire building. This entailed a few months of inconvenience, but the improvements promised to make it worth it. That wasn’t quite true for Simonson, however. Although the new version of his apartment was beautiful, he missed the rustic Mexican flavor of its previous incarnation.
Which was actually perfect. The changes in his apartment were exactly the impetus he needed to really move forward on making his vision real. In the summer of 2021 he began the search for a new home with a big studio space.
Because he had such a clear vision of what he wanted, it only took the artist about 3 weeks of searching and putting the word out to find what he wanted: a rustic, Mexican-style house in Puerto Vallarta’s Cinco de Diciembre neighborhood, with lots of space for a painting studio. Then it was time to make the other part of his vision real: he began the hunt for a studio assistant.
What was needed was someone who could catalog new works, scan them, update the website, and so on—all the things that take so much time away from just creating art. That part of the vision also became reality quickly with the appearance of Roberto, an artist and printmaker from Mexico City.
Roberto is smart, capable and easy to work with, and has helped make the Simonson studio a more efficient operation, and Simonson a happier artist.
Currently Simonson is still in love with Mexico and has no immediate plans to leave. He’s thoroughly enjoying his new house, studio and assistant, and after 42 years of drawing and painting, he’s turning out some of his best work ever. If you’re planning to be in the Puerto Vallarta area, contact the artist to see about the possibility of a studio visit.