38 … A fanciful garden in Alamos, where art, humans and flora-fauna coexist as one …
Welcome to Casa Obregon 18, now known as Casa Roberto. It is mid-morning on a cloud free summer day. I will meet the owner, Roberto Bloor, for a cup of coffee, and then photograph his yard. The air is sweet smelling. The streets are quiet.
I did not know much about Roberto. I was told he came to Alamos as a Canadian with a back pack and stayed to become hotel Casa de los Tesoros’ cook. While serving as chef and co-owner Roberto published, around 1969 with co-owner Darley Gordon, a book called Culinary Treasures from the Casa de Los Tesoros. After many years at the hotel Roberto took ownership of Casa Obregon 18 and began another creative adventure.
As we sat talking in the sala we were surrounded by Roberto’s mosaic paintings. Our conversation was interrupted by a couple of phone calls. It sounded like they were October room reservations. And then he was gone to oversee work taking place in one of his two garages.
Welcome to Galeria Roberto Bloor. Roberto seemed to have time only for things that would benefit Roberto, time management is an excellent small business tool. It is also necessary for an artist to find the time to create. I was left alone to wander through the courtyards.
Casa Obregon, a colonial mansion on hotel row, was built in 1800, and written about in Ida Luis Franklin’s book, Ghosts of Alamos.
The Inn is 4,000 square feet with four bedrooms and four baths. And then there are the yards. Everywhere you look the unexpected appears, lurking or jumping out at you. The checkerboard lawn, with squares made of brick and alternating grass, is a page from Roberto in Wonderland.
This was the third day of no water to central downtown east of the Church. It would be another two days before service was be restored. Today, 2011, Casa Roberto is for sale. The gardens, colors, sculptures and eccentric design can be yours for $550,000 USD. Ghosts are included – free of charge.
It was easy for Roberto to take a moment and flash a big smile for my camera and then go on his way, managing another day, talking to himself under his breath.
Roberto’s mosaic art and sculptures are everywhere on the property – indoors and outdoors. Casa Obregon 18 is a statement to an individuals creative drive. Here is balance, statement and projection. Here is life as art and art as life. Here was Roberto Bloor.
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