Jose Vives-Atsara was born April 13, 1919 (1919-2004), a native Spaniard, developed a love of painting at an early age. The Spanish Civil interrupted his idyllic young life, when he was forced to serve in the Communist Army. Soon after the war he married, and moved with his wife, to the United States. Unfortunately, immigration quotas did not allow him to move directly to the United States. He and his family lived, first, in Caracas, Venezuela, then, Mexico City, Mexico. After several years in Mexico Vives-Atsara, and his family obtained temporary visas to the United States. He moved to San Antonio, Texas, where he had made friends on a previous visit. He, and his wife and children gained citizenship in time for their first Christmas in the United States.
Vives-Atsara made many friends in Texas, most of whom helped to push his renown to higher levels. Vives-Atsara developed a close relationship with the Incarnate Word College, becoming, over the years, both a professor of art, and Artist in Residence.
His paintings were commissioned for Frost Bank, hung by the San Antonio chamber of commerce, and collected individually around the country. Vives-Atsara’s vibrant oil paintings have been described as both realistic and impressionistic. He uses only nine colors, mixing his paints with incredible skill. Vives-Atsara believes that art is a reflection of the artist’s soul, if this is true; his paintings reflect a beautiful, bright spirit.