Artist Katie Ruiz Transforms JWC Office into “The Pompom House”

Art, Power, Equity Partners with J. Walcher Communications for “Curator-in-Residence” Shows

First Show Features Chicana, Interdisciplinary Artist Katie Ruiz 

SAN DIEGO (May 20, 2024)Art, Power, Equity (APE) – an arts-based enterprise that supports underrepresented artists and promotes equity, access and opportunity in the creative economy – and long-time public relations and marketing firm, J. Walcher Communications (JWC) – have announced a series of three artist residencies this summer. This programming is the evolution of APE and JWC’s “Curator-in-Residence” partnership that began in 2021. JWC will provide a dedicated exhibition space within its historic offices in Sherman Heights, with the first show of San Diego-based interdisciplinary artist Katie Ruiz, known for her paintings and fiber sculpture. The first artist will select the next artist in the series.

APE’s first exhibition will open with an artist talk, reception and viewing with painter and multimedia artist Ruiz on Saturday, June 8, 6-9 p.m. The show is open to the public every Saturday from 1-4 p.m. from June 8 through June 29, and during the week by appointment only. Ruiz’ work is based on textiles from blankets to crochet, using painting and textile art as a metaphor for her identity as a mixed-race woman raised in two cultures. This show will feature Pompom installations as well as mixed media works she has coined as “Combinas,” mixing painting and fiber art.

Art, Power, Equity establishes relationships with BIPOC artists and art professionals to develop projects and exhibitions that cultivate, promote and showcase those who meet at the intersections of under-representation, economic vulnerability and community development.

“Artists have a wide range of needs and affordable spaces to create and exhibit work is essential. Additionally, the power to influence and determine who gains access to available spaces is another critical issue for artists and creators and we believe this program addresses both; empowering artists as a creative community to support their peers and gain access to new markets and networks,” said founder and curator Kamaal Martin. “JWC is powerfully demonstrating the role the business community can play in supporting San Diego’s creative economy.”

Ruiz is the creator of the Pompom Project, a community program that invites participants to make yarn pompoms for large installations made of pompoms. Building community is at the zenith of Ruiz’ work. She aims to connect folks through craft making and “craftivism.” Ruiz has a Bachelor’s Degree of Fine Art from  Northern Arizona University and a Master’s degree of Fine Art from The New York Studio School of Drawing, Painting & Sculpture in NYC.

“As long-time art supporters and enthusiasts, we love having the opportunity to use our office to support artists and curators, especially underrepresented BIPOC artists,” said Jean Walcher, president and founder of JWC.

Ruiz has selected Kelvin Lopez, a printmaker with a MFA from the Rhode Island School of Design, to be August’s featured artist.

For more information and reservations, please visit or call 619-373-2039.

About Art, Power, Equity (APE)

Art, Power, Equity (APE) is a socio-cultural enterprise that supports underrepresented artists, vulnerable communities and promotes equity, access and opportunity in the creative economy. As a platform for artistic and cultural activities and engagement with a focus on equitable community development; we provide creative, community-based solutions that transform people, place and things and bridge gaps within the region’s creative economy and ecosystem.

Learn more at and follow on Facebook, LinkedIn and Instagram.

About J. Walcher Communications (JWC)

Celebrating 23 years in business this year, J. Walcher Communications represents an array of local, regional and national clients in industries including real estate development, nonprofit and association, arts/culture, social justice, professional services and more. Services include media and community relations, social/digital media, branding and messaging, crisis communications, media training and content creation. The company was named by Forbes as one of the “Best PR Agencies in 2021.” For more information, visit or call 619-295-7140, or follow on Facebook, LinkedIn and Instagram.