Exhibition Press Information»
The Wooden Menagerie: Made in New Mexico
In the Hispanic Heritage Wing April 6, 2014 to February 15, 2015
This exhibition celebrates the rich Hispano folk tradition of animal wood carving in New Mexico and the continued influence on the national and international scene. The exhibition highlights the historic roots of New Mexican woodcarvers, offering early twentieth century examples of whimsical animals including works by Jose Dolores Lopez and Celso Gallegos.
During the Work Progress Administration (WPA) period of the 1930's, the traditional arts of the region gained resurgence through federal programmed that trained and employed New Mexican folk artists, In 1936, Patrocino Barela's expressionistic woodcarvings created under the auspices of the Federal Arts Project were a part of New Horizons in American Art at the Museum of Modern Art in New York.
The wood carving tradition continued into the 1960's primarily for the tourist trade with classic carvings of burros and oxen drawn carts. During this time artists started experimenting with recycled materials and common household paint.
The decade of the 1970's was a dramatic period that fostered the powerful animistic forms of Felipe Archuleta and his workshop of carvers. By the 1980's Archuleta's animal sculptures were highly sought after by collectors and curators. His menagerie of domestic and exotic animals made their way to museum exhibits in New York, Paris and Tokyo.
The excitement around the workshops of the New Mexican animal carvers created an insatiable market that spurred on innovations by Alonso Jimenez, Jim D'Avila, David Alvarez and Leroy Ortega. This generation of carvers fostered the iconic images of friendly burros, howling coyotes, and Technicolor rattlesnakes, reaching deep into the popular culture of the Southwestern United States. These animal sculptures have become emblematic of Santa Fe's cultural character.
Work in Progress: Folk Artists on Immigration
In the Mark Naylor and Dale Gunn Gallery of Conscience
Opening Events Sunday July 6, 2014
The Gallery of Conscience is an experimental space where we invite the public to help us develop exhibitions on social issues. Presently in the gallery is an “exhibit lab” on the topic of immigration, home, and belonging. The exhibition development phase begins in March of 2014, celebrating the opening of the exhibition on Sunday July 6 to kick off international Folk Arts Week.
The public is invited to participate through interactive elements and facilitated dialogues, giving feedback and leaving their thoughts and stories in order to help shape the content and form of the exhibition. This Work in Progress includes handmade embroidery, carving, paintings, drawings, and beadwork about immigrant journeys made by traditional artists from the Americas, Africa and Asia.
This exhibit lab is made possible through the support of Mark Naylor and Dale Gunn, the International Folk Art Alliance, the International Folk Art Foundation, the Museum of New Mexico Foundation’s Exhibition Development Fund, the National Endowment for the Humanities, and the Institute of Museum and Library Sciences. Our dialogue series is part of the National Dialogues on Immigration Project of the International Coalition of Sites of Conscience. Image : Mozambique artist Camurdino Mustafá Jethá holds his sculpture Refugiados (Refugees), 2013. Photo courtesy of Laura Marcus Green.
Pottery of the U.S. South : A Living Tradition
Opening Friday October 24, 2014
In the Cotsen Gallery
Pottery of the U.S. South: A Living Tradition presents traditional stoneware from North Carolina and northern Georgia—current works characterized by earthy local clays and surprising effects of wood firing. Rooted in British and German ceramic traditions and once crucial to Southern agrarian life, Southern pottery today remains vital, a distinctive art form through which potters actively engage with their region in ways both old and new. As museum visitors explore these ways, they are invited to consider for themselves the dynamics of a living tradition.
The Red that Colored the World (working
In the Hispanic Heritage Wing & Cotsen galleries
Opening May 17, 2015
From Antiquity to today, as symbol and hue, red has risen
to the pinnacle of the color spectrum. Throughout art
history, a broad red brushstroke has colored the finest
art and expressions of daily life. Yet, while most people
know red, few know of its most prolific and enduring source:
American Cochineal, a tiny scaled insect that produces
carminic acid. Fewer still know the story behind its explosive
global spread after its first encounter by Spain in 16th
century Mexico. Cochineal can already be demonstrated
as a commonly used colorant in painting, sculpture, furniture
and textiles from the mid 16th through the mid-19th century,
when synthetic pigments were invented. The exhibition is not restricted
to folk art and will include manuscripts, paintings, sculpture,
textiles and furniture from pre-Columbian and Spanish
Colonial Mexico, Peru and New Mexico; European paintings,
textiles and clothing; and textiles from Asia, India and
the Middle East, along with selections from the collection
at the Museum of International Folk Art. Integrating a
variety of interactive, visitor friendly features and
didactic materials, visitors are invited to look through
the centuries to consider the central role of color in
art, history and culture- as well as in their own lives.