Monday, February 23, 2009

Santa Fe Trip

Santa Fe El Rey Inn 2

This has been such a busy week that I just now have time to write a post on my blog while I sit at the airport departure lounge.  But I can't get on line here, so I will have to post this to my blog when I get home.


This photo is of the main lobby building of the El Rey Inn , the very cute motel, circa 1930, where I stayed.  It has been lovingly restored by the family that has owned it for many many years.  I certainly hope they weather this economic downturn as they provide a wonderful cozy home for all who stay here.  And talk about quite, the hotel is on the major street into Santa Fe, but the old adobe walls are so thick you can't here the street traffic or the neighbors.


Nancy Reyner is one of the best art instructors I have ever studied with and I highly recommend her workshops if you wish to learn to use acrylics, or want to take your acrylic painting skills into painting abstracts.  She knows exactly when to nurture and exactly when to give a push to each student.  And her critiques are top notch.


The Santa Fe Art Institute is in a wonderful modern facility on the campus of the private College of Santa Fe, which declared bankruptcy Thursday.  At least we got to finish our workshop on Friday.  I hope they can work things out as I would love to return to teach or take a workshop there in the future.


There are 250 galleries in Santa Fe, and although they have obviously hit a down turn in business, I still heard, French, Arabic, Italian, and of course Spanish spoken among the visitors to the galleries.  People come from all over the world to this art town, amazing when you realize the population is only 70,000.  I must have visited over 50 galleries in the day and a half I had to scope out the galleries.  I found a fantastic variety of art, every taste can find something they like here.  And unlike some galleries I have visited in larger cities, the people working in the galleries were very friendly, quick to answer questions, recommend their favorite restaurants, give directions, and in general make their visitors feel  very welcome.  And that was true of all the locals I met, they are clearly proud of their community and happy to share it with their guests.  Smart , since it is the visitors to this city that account for the living earned by a huge percentage of the population.


Anyway, time to board my flight for home, I'll post this when I get back to my desk.    

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Hello from Santa Fe

Hi everyone,

I am visiting Santa Fe for the first time this week. I am here to take a Nancy Reyner acrylic workshop at the Santa Fe Art Institute but arrived on Saturday so I could spend the day today exploring galleries. This small city has 250 art galleries. I parked the rental car at the bottom of Canyon Road this morning and walked the 1 mile or so road up and back until the last gallery closed at 5:00pm. I have no idea how many I visited but I must say it was a feast for the eyes!

The variety of work was wonderful. I have visited a few other gallery communities in the past (we won't name them here) and been disappointed as all the galleries seemed to be appealing to the same tastes, and not very sophisticated tastes at that! Not here. I found a wide variety of abstract and representational art in every style, and loads of sculpture. In most communities oil dominates, but here I found every medium even watercolor.

I found my friend Melissa Chandon's paintings in Selbyfleetwood Gallery and they looked wonderful and very luminous. My favorite was the VW bus. I also found work by other artists that I had seen in Southwest Art mag and American Art Collector Mag and was impressed that they looked so much more wonderful in real life than on the printed page. Creg Kosak was one artist who' work surprised me as the depth and complexity of his paintings just does not show up in a photo on the printed page. I saw some wonderful encaustics at GiacobbeFritz by an artist named MaryAyline Thomas. I may have spelled her middle name wrong.

Anyway my feet are tired and my brain is overloaded but it was a wonderful day and I wanted to share it with all of you.