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Some New Views of The Mysterious World of a Remarkable Talent

by Bonnie Carroll

During my visit to the Georgia O’Keeffe Museum I was so pleased to learn from Jennifer Marshall, Director of Marketing & Public Relations for the museum, that their holdings had recently increased dramatically from 271 to 1102 works that would be showcased in the exhibition “A Celebration of New Works: Recent Gifts, Promised Gifts, and Extended Loans,” which runs through June 4, 2006.

“New Works” highlights many of the works on paper that are among the 831 works (drawings, paintings, and sculpture dating from 1901 to 1984) by Georgia O’Keeffe, that have rarely or never been exhibited, such as “Morning Sky with Houses,” 1916, completed shortly after O’Keeffe’s arrival in the fall of 1916 in Canyon, Texas, where she lived and taught until early in 1918.

Examples of works in pastel from this remarkable collection include “Abstraction Seaweed and Water – Maine,” 1920, which was inspired by one of O’Keeffe’s brief sojourns on the Maine coast from upstate New York in the 1920s. Also included is the charcoal “East River,” 1932, depicting aspects of what O’keeffe saw from a window of her apartment at the Shelton Hotel in New York (now the Marriott East), where she lived from 1925 to 1936.

There is also an exhibition of eight paintings by artists who have captured the essence of the state of New Mexico from 1912 through 1925. “Such works by O’Keeffe’s contemporaries,” says Museum Curator Buhler Lynes, “enhance our ability to fulfill one of our fundamental objectives: to continue to organize exhibitions of O’Keeffe’s contemporaries that shed light on the history of American Modernism, a phenomenon that began in America in the 1890s and continues into the present.”

The museum itself is a true credit to this amazing lady; filled with light and open spaces, where O’keeffe’s incredible works of art briefly become the center of our world, as we thoughtfully move from one piece to another. The collection of art here is a majestic visual tale of the artistic talent and the passionate life journey of the daring “Miss O’Keeffe.” You will be happy to experience this great collection located at 217 Johnson Street, Sante Fe, New Mexico. Visit: www.okeeffemuseum.org.

A Visit to the Beginning of Time

by Bonnie Carroll

The two main structures of the Pueblo are called Hlaauma/North House and Hlaukkwima/South House, and are believed to be over 1000 years old. The buildings are made up of numerous individual homes built side by side, and in layers with common walls and no connecting doorways. The Pueblo looks as it did when the conquistadors first arrived, with the exception of the introduction of doorways. Originally, one could only enter the homes by a ladder through an opening in the roof. The openings not only provided light, but protected against intruders if the ladders were lifted and pulled on the roof when an enemy was approaching.

Earth, straw and water that is poured into forms has been the method of creating building blocks that form the Taos Pueblo since the earliest days of mankind in New Mexico. There is no running water or electricity within the sacred village. Some families cook in their fireplaces, while some have adopted wood stoves to their way of life.

An adobe wall surrounds the Pueblo. The ten foot walls originally served as a boundary for safety, but today a smaller wall represents the separation between Traditional Culture beliefs and foreign beliefs. It also provides privacy for dances and practices.

The San Geronimo Church was built in 1850, and is registered as a National Historic Landmark. The church is charming, and filled with handmade art and was built by the natives. The central alter figure is the Blessed Virgin Mary, which was brought by the early Spanish missionaries. The Virgin Mary represents the parallel of Mother Nature. Today ¾ of the population shares in some of the Catholic practices, while the native rituals are preserved 100% in daily life.

My visit to the Pueblo was on a very cold and windy day. Even the sun did not keep us warm, but the natives were extremely welcoming, offering fresh home-made pie, and our tour guide freely shared a very moving depiction of the history of his tribe. The natives to the “Place of the Red Willows” have welcomed visitors for thousands of years. “The River” The Red Willow Creek, is the source of pure water for the Taos Pueblo, and divides the Pueblo; a bridge over the creek separates the north and south sides. This water runs from the Blue Lake and is considered sacred. There are some charming shops that sell hand-made jewelry items and art, along with their famous oven bread, which is plain but filling.

There is a schedule of annual feasts and events celebrated at the Pueblo, and there are printed rules of etiquette given to guests who are touring the area which must be adhered to. This is a spiritual experience of our history not easily forgotten For information visit www.taospueblo.com.

The Hills are Alive With the Sound of Music
by Bonnie Carroll

Well, I don’t think I have been more intrigued by an opera house since I first saw a photo of the Sydney Opera House in Australia. Sitting high on top of a hill with exquisite mountains as a backdrop, this is one fantastic fete in architectural and acoustic design. It has to be the ultimate thrill to sit in those seats and merge with nature while listening to some of the greatest musical talents of our time.

On August 12th the Sante Fe Opera will celebrate its 50th anniversary with a special gala concert, where the light will shine on members of the company’s acclaimed Apprentice Program for Singers, many of whom currently enjoy important careers in major opera houses in this country and abroad.

Frederica von Stade will serve as host for the 50th Anniversary Arias Gala Concert, and many artists including Beth Clayton, Joyce DiDonato and Susanna Phillips will sing arias from Carmen, Cinderella and The Magic Flute. Also appearing are Karen Stack and Barbara Quintiliani. Mark Doss, William Burden, Kurt Streit, Patrick Carfezzi and Hyung Yun will also perform. Alan Gilbert, Kenneth Montgomery, and John Fiore will share podium duties during the performances.

The Gala will raise funds for The Sante Fe Opera Endowment for Apprentice Singers. Gold Tickets at $1,000 include admission to a pre-concert seated dinner, premium seating at the concert and the cast party following the performance. $500 Silver Tickets include preferred seating and the cast party. All other tickets $50 each will be filled on a first come, first served basis. Ticket sales at 505-986-5950 or on-line: www.santafeopera.org.

Single pass now offered for State museums and monuments

The New Mexico Department of Cultural Affairs is now offering a one-ticket pass - The New Mexico Culture Pass - for entry into all of the state's 14 museums and historic monuments.The pass is $20 annually and is available to both New Mexico residents and tourists.

Museums included in the New Mexico CulturePass:
Palace of the Governors (Santa Fe)
Museum of Fine Arts (Santa Fe)
Museum of International Folk Art (Santa Fe)
Museum of Indian Arts and Culture (Santa Fe)
Museum of Natural History and Science (Albuquerque)
National Hispanic Cultural Center (Albuquerque)
New Mexico Museum of Space History (Alamogordo)
Farm and Ranch Heritage Museum in Las Cruces (Las Cruces)

State Monuments included:

Lincoln (town of Lincoln)
Coronado (Bernalillo)
Jemez (Jemez Springs)
Fort Selden (Radium Springs, near Las Cruces)
Bosque Redondo Memorial (Fort Sumner)
El Camino Real International Heritage Center (south of Socorro)

Established by the New Mexico Legislature in 1978, the Department of Cultural Affairs also includes the Office of Archaeological Studies, Museum Services Division, State Library, Historic Preservation Division and New Mexico Arts. The department's museums and monuments welcome nearly a million visitors each year.

The CulturePass is being sold at all state museums and monuments, on the department's website - http://www.newmexicoculture.org and beginning in March at the Tourism Department's visitor centers located statewide.


Make an active contribution!

Cultivate your musical enthusiasm by supporting the Teatro del Maggio Musicale Fiorentino Foundation for 2006. For program information or support details visit: www.maggiofiorentino.com


JUNE 16 - 17, 10:00 AM - 5:00 PM


© 2008 Bonnie Carroll, All Rights Reserved