By Provincial Minister Gino Correa, OFM
Her work is familiar to most of the friars. Her larger than life pastels of Francis and Clare have hung at many of our assemblies and Chapters. She has also given us the beautiful paintings of the San Damiano Cross and Our Lady of Guadalupe.
The chapel at Casa Guadalupe house four of her oil paintings: St. Francis, St. Clare, San Juan Diego, Our Lady of Guadalupe, and a representation of the Portiuncula which serves beautifully and uniquely as the tabernacle.
Dottie Mueller is from Joliet, Illinois and a member of the Secular Franciscans and the Parish of St. John the Baptist which is staffed by the Franciscans of the Sacred Heart Province. Dottie is married to Rich who is an American Airlines pilot. She has three grown children, Mitch who is 23, Zack who is 20, and Maggie who at 18 is the last of the three to leave home and go off to college.
During the past several years Dottie has been in great demand, receiving commissions to do paintings, murals and other pieces of art for parishes and religious communities throughout the country. Several of her works will be evident in the new San Juan Diego Friary. The large 8 foot San Damiano Cross is complete and waiting to be installed. She is also staining and painting some sculptures executed by Ivan Dimitrov from Santa Fe. Dottie will spend several weeks in Albuquerque working on these art pieces.
Ivan Dimitrov’s wooden sculptures are classical works that reflect the training he received in his native Bulgaria, and in Italy and Paris. Ivan has lived in the United States for 15 years with his wife Celina and his son Tiho who all became US Citizens. Ivan has worked closely with Bro. Bart Wolf, OFM in Franciscan Studios doing the carving on many of his liturgical pieces.
Ivan’s work will be a prominent feature of the new San Diego Friary. His statues of Francis and Clare will be placed in the new chapel and his triptych of Our Lady of Guadalupe flanked by San Juan Diego on one side and Juan Diego’s infirm uncle on the other side will be the pieces anyone will see when they first come through the main doors of the new friary.
The art work of Dimitri Adiev has graced the Padres’ Trail in previous editions. With the painting of Maria Jesus de Agreda or popularly known as the Blue Nun, Dimitri completes the 14 nichos in the garden at Casa Guadalupe. These 14 nichos hold pictures of people who play a significant part in who we are as Franciscans in the Southwest.
View their work: FRANCISCAN STUDIO