Theodore "Ted" Villa was born in Santa Barbara, California in 1936. He was raised by his maternal grandmother, of White Mountain Apache and Zapotec heritage. Her stories have provided inspiration for his work.
Villa attended the University of California, Santa Barbara, earning a BFA and an MFA.
During his career as an artist, Villa has also worked as a gallery director and has taught art at the University of California. His watercolor seminars are very popular in California and Idaho.
Ted Villa’s work has been exhibited throughout the United States and Europe, including at the Heard Museum, Phoenix, Arizona; Center of Contemporary Art, Seattle, Washington; Institute of American Indian Art, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Los Angeles, Palm Springs Museum of Art, Palm Springs, San Diego Museum of Art, San Diego, and the National Watercolor Society, Los Angeles, California; along with Palais de Nations, Geneva, Switzerland and Centro Washington Irving, Madrid, Spain.