NLR Parks and RecreationAbout the Artist

About the Artist

Senòr Dionico Rodriguez, a descendent of the artistic Aztec race, was born on April 11, 1891 in Toluca, Mexico, a town about 60 miles from Mexico City. At the age of 16 he had his first experience with what was to become his life's work while employed by an Italian artist, Robles Hill, who specialized in creating imitation rocks, caverns, ruins and ancient buildings.

Apparently as a result of the political situation in Mexico, Rodriguez came to Texas in 1925. In 1932, he was hired to do works of sculpture in several parks including the Old Mill.  Rodriguez was secretive about the process by which he produced his work. He would mix products in the trunk of his car, slamming it shut if anyone approached or break the jars and peel the labels so no one could copy his work. Not even his assistants knew all of his secrets.

On December 16, 1955 Rodriguez died in San Antonio and was buried there in the San Fernando Cemetery #2. Among other locations, pieces of his sculptures can be found in the Memorial Gardens in Memphis as well as in seven states.