Monday, September 22, 2008

New Mexico 1

I arrived in Albuquerque yesterday afternoon and was picked up and driven to Santa Fe where we (other journalists and I) toured the New Mexico Museum of Art. It is in a beautiful pueblo-styled building with a picturesque courtyard. Their current exhibit, How the West Was One, is brilliant. The museum started as a studio and gallery where artists could create, show and sell their work and was open to any artists working in New Mexico. The exhibit includes works from the time of the railroad's arrival to the present and includes an amazing variety from Native American and Hispanic artists to Easterners who came here (like John Sloan, Marsden Harley and Georgia O'Keeffe) to work. Some of the contemporary pieces are real stunners. Upstairs, the curator has paired works. I don't have my notes, but trust me, the exhibit is top-notch.
Today we started with a 7 a.m. architectural walk, breakfast at the La Fonda (where I am staying) then visits to two museums (I'll get the names wrong so I'll put them in later) on Museum Hill -- one featuring Native American art and heritage and the other Spanish Colonial. Then the most spectacular lunch at the Georgia O'Keeffe Museum. We got to tour the museum which is currently closed while they install a new exhibition which opens Friday. Oh my, the fabulous O'Keeffes. And the curator went around with us and gave us great background material.
The weather is the most gorgeous New Mexican weather -- a sky so blue it's beyond belief, warm sun, cool breeze -- absolutely perfect. The 7000-foot altitude is telling on me -- hopefully by tomorrow I will be more used to it and not so short of breath. (Couldn't be those extra pounds from the great food we're having?)
Must go -- I leave in 50 minutes to eat again!!!!!

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