Marc Chagall said that no matter what other influences an artist might turn to, "a certain essence - an aroma of his birthplace clings to his work."  My work bridges my unique life experience and my interior world, yet it is grounded in my family and place of origin.  As a child, I was steeped in the vastness, sunlight, brilliant color and rich cultural diversity of the Rio Grande Valley, elements that shaped my artistic vocabulary.

I grew up in a house of my father's design, a house with exposed joists, sleek lines, bursts of color and windows connecting interior and exterior spaces.  Structural elements are likewise left revealed in my paintings as I strive for simplicity, seeking a feeling or idea's essence.  In the process, the paintings evolve in layers pierced by "windows" through which recognizable objects float and symbolic images emerge to become personal icons.

My approach to painting is improvisational, like modern dance or jazz or dreaming and I prefer the fluidity and unpredictability of oils because they continually surprise me and lead me in unexpected directions.  As a result, the paintings are meditative, inviting the viewer to enter into deep, intimate spaces where layers of meaning are revealed slowly, upon reflection.  Like the breath in yoga, they open with close attention, illuminating small revelations we only dimly perceive with our everyday eyes.

  BFA 1982 University of Houston, Houston, TX
2017 York & York:  Midcentury Transitions, Harlingen Arts and Heritage Museum, Harlingen, TX (Curator:  Nydia Tapia Gonzales)

trueorfalse, Nau-haus, Dan Mitchell Allison, Houston, TX
Finding Her Feet, The Jung Center, Houston, TX


Buchanan Gallery, Galveston, TX
Tacia Retablos
, South Arkansas Arts Center, El Dorado, AK


Tacia Retablos,  UT Medical School Houston Art Wall, Houston, TX


Buchanan Gallery, Galveston Island, TX


Oxymoron:  Open Letter to the Pope, Firehouse Gallery, Houston, TX   


2019 Then and Now, Art Car Museum, Houston, TX, (Curator:  Noah Edmundson)
2014 Southern Exposure, Watson MacRae Gallery, Sanibel, FL
2014 Concealed / Revealed, Hunter Gather Project, Houston, TX
2013 A Tender Place, Williams Tower, Houston, TX (Curator:  Sally Sprout)
2012 God, Art Car Museum, Houston, TX
2010 Women's Stories, Watson MacRae Gallery, Sanibel, FL


Spirited Women, Audley Society, Houston, TX (curator: Keith Hollingsworth)

2007 10 Women Perspectives,  The Arts Alliance Center at Clear Lake, Clear Lake TX (curator: Debra Kendrick)

Assistance League of Houston Celebrates Texas Art 2000, The Williams Tower Gallery, Houston, TX  (curator: Bruce Guenther)


Outrageous AARP Salon, Diverse Works, Houston, TX (curator: Harvey Bott)
The Presence of the Absence of the Presence,
Davis Gallery/Pennzoil Place, Houston, TX (curator: Lynn Randolph)


Lawndale Live! A Retrospective 1979-1990, Lawndale Art & Performance Center, Houston, TX 
Conventional Forms/Insidious Visions, Glassell School of Art, Houston, TX (curator: Elizabeth McBride)


Improvisational Spirit, Transco Gallery, Houston, TX (curator: Doug Blake)
Group Exhibition,
Graham Gallery, Houston TX


Common Ground: Beyond Boundaries, Dallas City Hall, Dallas, TX (juror: Marilyn Zeitlin)
Visual Arts

Alliance 6th, Annual Juried Fine Art Exhibition,
Republic Bank Center, Houston, TX (juror: Michael Peranteau)


Houston Area Exhibition, Blaffer Gallery, Houston, TX (jurors: Alison de Lima Greene, Edward & Nancy Kienholz, Richard Koshalek)


Austin Annual 1987, Arts Warehouse, Austin, TX (curator: Pio Pulido)  3 to 5, Diverse Works, Houston, TX


Austin Annual 1986,  Arts Warehouse, Austin, TX (curator: Pio Pulido)


The East End Show, Lawndale Alternative, Houston, TX     



Art and Illness Panel, Art League, Houston, TX

Art and Illness,
KPFT Radio Living Art (Michael Woodson and Melissa Nobel), Houston, TX


Tacia Retablos, The Women’s Home Lecture Series, Houston, TX
Interwoven:  Coping Through Art,
South Arkansas Center on Aging, South Central
Center on Aging, Life Touch Hospice, El Dorado, Arkansas


Interwoven:  Dying, Memory and Healing Through Art,  Presented by the John P. McGovern, M.D. Center for Health, Humanities and the Human Spirit and the UT Art Wall Committee, UT Medical School,  Houston, TX.


End of Life: Coping Through Creativity Panel,  Blaffer Gallery, Houston, TX


2012 Artist Internship for Ava Morton, Art student UC Santa Barbara


Women’s Drum Corp, Houston, TX


Treasurer  Houston Women’s Caucus for Art


Treasurer Houston Women’s Caucus for Art
Women in Prison Collaborative Workshop, Gatesville State Prison Women’s Unit


"Spoken", Houston Chronicle, December 15, 2013

Sandra York "true or false" Nau-haus Art Catalogue 2011

“Artist Mother’s battle with Alzheimer’s Disease behind ‘Tacia Retablos’.”  El Dorado News Times, El Dorado, Arkansas, March 2008

“Tacia Retablos take to the Art Wall”,  Scoop, The University of TX Medical School of  Houston, February 2007

Jean West Rudnicki, "10 Women, 10 Perspectives Unveiled," Change Magazine, October, 2007

Heather Diamond, “Healing Art: TheTacia Retablos,” The New Crisis, November, 1998

Johannes Birringer, “Freedom of Expression,” Public News, June 1990

Anne H. Roberts, “Alternative Art Spaces Are Alive & Well,” Public News, May, 1990

Jana Vanderlee, “While The Jury’s Out,” The Houston Arts, October, 1988.

Donna Tennant, “Houston Galleries,” No Bluebonnets, No Yellow Roses: Essays on Texas

Sylvia Moore, “Women in the Arts, Ed, Midmarch Arts Press, New York, 1988

Patricia C. Johnson, “Sensual Enough in Appearance To Intrigue the Viewer” Houston Chronicle, July 12, 1986.

Frank Kalmykov, Sandra York”, The Inquirer, ed., Houston, TX Sept-Oct. 1986