Customer Profile: Stephanie Vega

Meet Buffalo Exchange Customer Stephanie Vega!

By Savy Kroop, Photography by Vanessa Vega (@vanessavegaphotos)

We recently had the chance to chat with Stephanie Vega, a social media influencer who loves sharing everything from her thrift shopping adventures and exciting theme park visits to her everyday routines. Stephanie’s addictive positivity and flawless style are just a few reasons why we can’t stop watching her videos and obsessing over her perfectly curated Instagram feed! Read ahead for a Q+A about Stephanie’s personal style, her love for Buffalo and a little bit of fashion advice.

Stephanie with pink sweater and jeans

How would you describe your personal style?

Cheerful, quirky and fun with a dash of retro.

What is your favorite trend for right now?

Fanny packs! They’re such a game-changer and so convenient to have.Full Story


Buffalo Exchange, HQ. Arts Award, Arts Award Honorees

Celebrating 25 Years of the Buffalo Exchange Arts Award!

Happy awards season, everyone! While we certainly love watching our favorite celebs strut the red carpet, there’s another important accolade that comes to mind: the 2019 Buffalo Exchange Arts Award! According to Buffalo Exchange co-founder Spencer Block, art is not “the cherry on top” of life — rather, it is “essential to the well-being of society”. For the past two and a half decades, Buffalo Exchange has supported the creative spirit of Southern Arizona by honoring local artists, and performers with the Arts Award. Read ahead to learn more about the history of the Award and some of our past honorees. 

How the Arts Awards Came to Be

In 1994, Kerstin and Spencer Block founded The Buffalo Exchange Arts Award in partnership with the Community Foundation for Southern Arizona (CFSA). Since that time, the Fund has awarded $10,000 a year to one deserving local artist. This has allowed artists to continue their work in the local community.  We are absolutely thrilled to celebrate 25 years of the Arts Award by honoring not just one, but two Southern Arizonans who’ve made a significant impact in the lives of fellow Arizonans through their work. This year’s dual award will go to Allison Miller for Visual Arts and Bryan Falcón for Performing Arts. They’ll both receive $10,000 to continue their excellent work in the community during a ceremony on January 30th, 2020 at the Community Foundation Campus.

Buffalo Exchange Arts Awards Honorees

Buffalo Exchange, Arts Award, Dante Celeiro

Dante Celeiro, Community Leader and 2018 Arts Award Recipient

Dante Celeiro is a leader in the LGBTQIA+ community of Tucson. After moving from NYC to the desert over 25 years ago, Dante has worked with the Southern Arizona Aids Foundation and now manages Boys R Us, Arizona’s first gender performance group. Dante also created Fluxx, a non-profit organization that advocates for an open dialogue around queer culture and works to increase visibility of queer arts and culture through exhibitions, performance art and workshops.

Buffalo Exchange, HQ, Arts Award, Interpretive Dance, Performing Arts Buffalo Exchange, HQ, Arts Award, Nathanael Meyers, Performing Arts

Nathanael Gregory Myers, Multi-Discipline Performing Artist and 2017 Arts Award Recipient 

As a multidisciplinary artist, Nathanael has showcased his art throughout a wide array of Tucson venues – most notably through his work with the Museum of Contemporary Art and through performances at Artifact Dance Project and The Rogue Theatre (you can also find some of his paintings hung in galleries across town!). A painter, dancer and musician, Nathanael works to combine romanticism, biology and elements of nature as he explores the mediums of visual and performing arts.

Buffalo Exchange, HQ, Arts Award, Painter, Rachael Rios

Rachael Rios, Visual Artist and 2016 Arts Award Recipient

The 2016 Buffalo Exchange Emerging Artist in Visual Arts Award went to artist Racheal Rios. Rachael is a native Tucsonan who describes her drawings as a reflection of her relationship with the desert and the things that inhabit it — common elements of her artwork include cactus flowers and various Arizona wildlife such as coyotes, javelinas and jaguars.

Buffalo Exchange, HQ, Arts Award, Rick Wamer, Performing ArtistBuffalo Exchange, HQ. Arts Award, Rick Wamer, Performing Artist

Rick Wamer, Visual & Performing Artist and 2015 Arts Award Recipient 

Rick Wamer has been described by Tucson Weekly as “part dancer, part actor, part comedian”. Mentored by the famed French actor and mime Marcel Marceau, Rick is a globally recognized performing artist who inspires and touches the lives of thousands each year. Rick is the co-founder of Embody Learning in Tucson.

Buffalo Exchange, HQ, Arts Award, Musician, Chris Black

Chris Black, Performing Artist and 2014 Arts Award Recipient

Chris Black is a composer and performer from Tucson. Currently playing primarily as a solo double bassist, he is the founder of the alt-classical chamber music concert series ChamberLab.

Buffalo Exchange, HQ, Arts Award, Artist, Heather Green Heather Green, Visual Artist and 2010 Arts Award Recipient

The 2010 Arts Award was bestowed upon visual artist Heather Green. In Green’s own words, her work examines the “historical and ecological narratives of the Northern Gulf of California and Sonoran Desert.” A Tucson native, Heather currently works in Tempe as Assistant Professor of Book Arts at Arizona State University.

Since its creation in 1994, Buffalo Exchange has awarded over $214,000 to artists in Southern Arizona. As we look forward to the next decade, we’re reminded of a quote from Spencer Block: “Artists are the visionaries. They go where no one has gone and show us the way.” In 2020 and the years beyond, we can count on Buffalo Exchange and the Community Foundation for Southern Arizona to continue to celebrate artists in our community so they may continue their work, and in turn, continue to show us the way into the future.


Local Artist Alex Coronel’s Mural At Buffalo Exchange Austin

Art in ATX: Local Artist Alex Coronel’s Mural At Buffalo Exchange Austin

By Marcella Willden, Photography and Artwork by Alex Coronel 

It’s been said that a picture is worth 1,000 words, but we think this new mural at Buffalo Exchange Austin, painted by local artist Alex Coronel, is easily worth 1 million! To learn more about his incredible mural, we caught up with Alex to chat about his creative process, passion for art and love for Buffalo Exchange.

Alex Coronel and his dog

When did your passion for art begin?

I’ve always considered myself an artist and I’ve been painting for as long as I can remember! When I worked for a friend’s theater company after college, I started creating murals without even knowing it — they needed an artist, so I signed on and painted a few backdrops. That experience came in handy when I applied to do my first mural and I felt more prepared than I initially thought I would!

 Alex Coronel’s paintings

How would you describe your artistic style?

I’d say that my style is ever-changing and unlimited. I would never want to snuff the light of an idea just because it wouldn’t fit into a certain style of mine. So, a lot of the time, I try a medium or style I’m not too familiar with. I quite enjoy it!

Alex Coronel’s paintings

What advice do you have for aspiring artists?

Take chances! Instead of limited yourself to an 8×11 canvas, paint on something that’s 6 feet tall. Fill that space with something big— it doesn’t literally have to be a 6ft canvas, it can be anything that intimidates you. It might not be what you initially had in mind, but you may surprise yourself. I want to encourage aspiring artists to explore the art world with confidence and tenacity.

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