Meet the team of our 2019 Art & Social Justice Apprenticeship!

Ryan Henel

Lead Artist
Ryan Henel is the Field Coordinator for the University of New Mexico’s Land Arts of the American West program (2012-present). He has a BAFA, University of New Mexico, in Studio Art – Sculpture (2004), and an MFA, University of New Mexico, in Art + Ecology (2014). He is a practicing artist who develops site-specific public artworks and temporary installations that use perspective, patterns and scale to prompt the viewer to experience a different understanding of their place in an environment.

Helen Atkins

Assisting Artist 
Helen Atkins is an interdisciplinary artist from Albuquerque, New Mexico. She received her BA in Studio Arts from the University of New Mexico in 2016. Atkins is a 2018 recipient of the inaugural Women & Creativity “Shine” Awards, honoring creative women and their work in their community. She was a featured artist for Burque Noir’s 2018 “Making Africa” opening event at the Albuquerque Museum. Atkins was the inaugural Mentoring Artist in Residence for ArtStreet a Program of Albuquerque Healthcare for the Homeless from 2017-18. She is a co-founder of Plates Against Patriarchy, a community engagement visual arts and storytelling project that challenges patriarchal systems of power. Atkins currently serves on the Albuquerque Museum Board of Trustees.

Adriana Fuentes

Adriana Fuentes was born and raised in Albuquerque, New Mexico, alongside her parents and siblings. As the youngest child out of five, she spent most of her time alone. While this gave her a sense of dependence, she also discovered a newfound fondness in the many sounds of nature and what they have to offer. Naturally, this bleeds through her work.

Adriana recently graduated from Atrisco Heritage Academy, where she left behind footsteps of her artistic abilities. She works with a multitude of mediums including acrylic paint, lead, colored pencils, and markers. Adriana’s work has been exhibited and has won state and merit awards. Her time spent in nature gave her an overwhelming urge to give back as much as possible. This lead her to join and organize groups where she and her classmates can display multiple pieces of public art around her high school. Adriana also shows qualities of activism and social justice, which often bleeds through her work.

Adriana tries to stay active and serve her community, not only through art but through community service. She is constantly working alongside Valle de Oro in expanding their wildlife refuge and keeping her community clean. 

Elliot Pending

Elliot Pending was born in Farmington, New Mexico but as a child, he moved around quite a lot and had to change schools just as much. This has shaped Pending’s work ethic in that he has learned to adjust quickly. The detail he puts into his art is attributed to this, as well as dealing with the different circumstances of life. He has attended Media Arts Collaborative Charter School from 8th grade to 9th grade before transferring to nex+ Gen Academy where he will be going into his second year as a Junior. Most of his professional experience in art has come from these schools as both are tech and media-based, and teach professional and college-preparatory skills.

Elliot Pending has been creating art for most of his life with influence from many artists in his family. He has an eclectic style of art and art medium ranging from pencil drawing, painting, collage, photography, cinematography, digital art, and singing. Out of these, his focus has been on painting and drawing, and he plans on gaining skills and experience to begin a career as a music artist in the near future. In addition to this, Pending would like to do activist work combined with art. As an Indigenous person, from the Navajo tribe, he has experienced the hardships that many Indigenous people face. He hopes to bring attention to afflictions such as poverty, food disparity, and the Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women’s movement.

Eric Molina

Eric Molina is a 16-year-old artist who grew up in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Eric found his passion of art towards the beginning of middle school, he began drawing architectural drawings and skylines. As times progressed, Eric got inspired to draw characters from comic books. Eric has submitted a couple of drawings in art competitions, one of them was to create a stamp of a duck for the U.S. wildlife foundation, and the second one was for the Rio Metro Express Magazine competition to create a drawing of the Road Runner Metro for the cover of the magazine. Although he did not win, he put time and effort into the drawing and that strengthen his passion for art. Eric is Interested in Art and Social Justice because he wanted to create work that involves understanding what issues are most important to our community and beginning to work towards change. He joined Harwood program to be a living example of social justice as it allows young people from a variety of backgrounds opportunities to work in a field of their interest.

Gabriella Muniz

Gabriella is an Albuquerque native and was introduced to art as an expressive medium at a very young age, she enjoys acrylic painting, watercolor painting and traditional graphite and pen drawings as her most used mediums. She has also had experience in ceramics and has been involved in art classes, programs, and community projects since first grade, she has been deeply intrigued by art for as long as she can remember. As a person, Gabriella is sensitive and empathetic and does her best to be as friendly and welcoming to everyone as possible. She cares deeply for all of her friends and family and is often referred to as “a mom friend” due to her fostering nature. As a gifted and honors student, she has developed strong critical thinking and adaptation skills and takes her school life seriously, she has also recently been invited to be a member of the national high school scholars and hopes to take graphic design as a career path in the future while being adamant on studying art humanities in college. As an artist Gabriella is emotion driven and uses art as her expression and voice to the world, She hopes to communicate her understanding and views of life through her art.





Joursele Kchrezne Bang-as

Joursele Bang-As was born in Baguio City, Philippines, later moving to the U.S. at a young age. With the help of Harwood’s Creative Roots program, Joursele has maintained her passion for community service and involvement since her freshman year of high school. Since middle school, her involvement in the creation of several murals and participation in several projects has allowed her to engage with individuals of diverse social environments. Through the Art & Social Justice Apprenticeship, Joursele seeks to engage and mend issues within Albuquerque through creative expression and communication.

Kimberly Fuentes-Marmolejo

Kimberly Fuentes-Marmolejo is a 16 year old Mexican-American artist. She enjoys working with watercolors, clay, and black and white ISO 100 film. Kimberly’s ceramic work consists of hand-built pottery, which is mostly functional. Her paintings are usually made with watercolors. She likes photographing people as well as inanimate objects. Kimberly has taken 2 

years of ceramics, along with a year of  hotography. Three of her ceramic pieces have been displayed in the APS Metro Youth Art Exhibit, as well as a honeycomb ceramic teapot which has been displayed in the State Fair. Two of Kimberly’s ceramic pieces in the exhibit received merit awards. Kimberly likes creating; molding imaginative thoughts into physical creations, such as paintings or ceramic pieces. Which can be interpreted differently by people, who have unique ideas about her artwork. Kimberly is interested in Art and Social justice because it brings awareness to the viewer about problems facing today such as inclusivity and acceptance of diversity through art which can be viewed by old and young.

Lars Larsen

Lars Larsen grew up on the Westside of Albuquerque New Mexico with a family of six and the desert right outside his door. He is an active person and spends his time biking all over the city, skating every possible curb with friends, or climbing any lava rock boulder he can find. The rest of his time is spent in his sketchbook or working with wood to build and create any of his ideas. He has developed skills in digital design, drawing, painting and building. Lars comes from a creative background with a digital designer and an architect for parents. Ever since he was little he has been drawing what is on his mind. However now drawing and creating is what Lars wants to do for his profession. Lars is inspired by artists such as Alex Grey, Mike Giant and Salvador Dali. The art he creates is strange and surreal and really stands out. Lars loves to learn and explore new mediums. One of Lars’ favorite mediums is spray paint. He enjoys the satisfying large scale process of spray painting. Lars’s work all goes through a long process of design and creation and that is what he loves to show, especially when building things such as desks and guitars. Lars plans to continue working with art and design his whole life.

Lilian Estes

Lillie Estes is a second year apprentice at Harwood Art Center’s Apprenticeship for Art and Social Justice. She recently graduated from Albuquerque High School and will be attending Oberlin College. As a learning artist, she enjoys a variety of mediums including oil, film and digital photography and ceramic sculpture. Raised in Western Michigan, her family encouraged her to explore art and supported her outspokenness. Estes has deep-rooted beliefs in upholding social justice, humanitarian action, and creative expression, and as a former officer of her school’s National Art Honor society she reflected these values through community outreach. Throughout her high school experience she had photography featured in Outpost Art Center, the Albuquerque Museum’s Focus Show, and in the APS Metro Art show and has received merit awards in photography and watercolor.

Ragnar Seidel

Ragnar grew up in Albuquerque, New Mexico, he learned to share and cherish the small things, to hold onto the moments and feelings that have made him and allowed him to grow. He has one older sister, a twin brother, and one younger brother. Being a middle child he always had people to talk to and work around. He learned to talk things through and how to deal with conflict in a healthy way. He is a devoted creative who constantly looks where he can throw himself into and explore new art forms.

He is inspired by artists like Alex Grey. He takes the beauty of the natural world to create colorful and aesthetically pleasing work. His artwork also has design and psychedelic aspects witch creates diversity across his pieces. He is passionate about social justice, promotes love and equality in his actions and intentions. He is aspiring to become a self-employed artist, this is a long term goal which is starting with his plans to go to CNM in the fall to major in business and applied arts.

Ilyssa Gutierrez