The MNY Spotlight

Meet Patti Ruiz-Healy, Gallery Director at Ruiz-Healy Art.

Introduce yourself! 

My name is Patti Ruiz-Healy, and I am a gallery Director at Ruiz-Healy Art. Together with my mother we have galleries in in San Antonio, Texas, and New York City. Ruiz-Healy Art specializes in contemporary works of art with an emphasis on Latinx and Latin American artists, as well as prominent Texas-based artists. The gallery program centers on artists who are generally underrepresented and at times overlooked in the contemporary art world.

Patti Ruiz-Healy Gallery Director at Ruiz-Healy Art

Patti Ruiz-Healy wears the Adria Gown in Navy

Can you tell us a little bit more about your background in art and what motivated you to open your own gallery?

I am fortunate to have grown up around art, both of my parents are art collectors. As a child I probably spent more time at a museum than anywhere else. After working at an auction house for a couple of years I felt I wanted a change and for me it was a natural move to work with my mom. 

What drew you to art made by Latinx, Latin American, and Texas based artists?

Both of my parents were born and raised in Mexico but have called Texas home for many years. I grew up in San Antonio, Texas, which has a very rich Mexican American history, this made exhibiting Latinx, Latin American, and Texas based artists very natural.

What is your favorite part of owning an art gallery? Most challenging? Most rewarding?

Any business owner can tell you that owning your own business means that the workday is never over, both a pro and a con. I love being able to make my own schedule but of course you also need to know when to call it a day. 

Patti Ruiz-Healy

Follow along at @ruizhealyart

What exhibition is currently available at your gallery, and can you tell us a little bit more about it?

Our current exhibition is César A. Martínez: Mi Gente, which will be on view at our NYC gallery until January 21, 2022. César was a major figure in the Chicano Art Movement of the late 1970s and 1980s, his portraits are icons of Mexican American art history, and his work can be found in the collections of the Blanton Museum of Art, Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, TX and the Museum of Latin American Art, Long Beach, CA, to name a few. We are honored to have his work at the gallery and to exhibit his work to the NYC audience.

How is it navigating the art world as a woman, when it’s still a very white male dominated space?

Since the time I began working in the art world I have seen some inspiring changes that leads me to believe that there will be more and more opportunities for women. The more we empower each other the more opportunities there will be for women to be in the #1 spot. 

What’s it like working with your mother? What have you learned from her about running a business?

I feel blessed to work side by side with someone that I trust 100% and know will push me in the right direction. It takes a great leap of faith to be a business owner and knowing I have my mom working next to me gives me a lot of confidence. 

Why is it important for you to empower women?

So much of empowering women is about showing up in whatever way you can. It can be a phone call when you know they have had a bad day with work or family or attending an event they have organized. We need to show up for each other as often as we can, so we all know that we are not alone in this. We must be an example for the next generation of women leaders. 

What draws you to the Mestiza brand? How does your Mestiza piece make you feel? 

As a woman raised in Texas by Mexican parents, I personally connect with both founders’ bicultural backgrounds and commitment to giving back to the community. Alessandra and Louisa’s personal backgrounds help breathe a sense of ease, confidence, and tradition to all their garments which makes the wearer feel like they are they can do it all!

What’s the best advice you could give to someone who wants to follow in your footsteps?
Surround yourself with friends and family that support you and lift you up. There are going to be some bad days and some good days, no matter what career path you are on, and you want to make sure to share them with positive people who have your best interest at heart so you can stay on the right course. 

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