|Posted on August 14, 2019 at 8:20 PM|
I just made my first trip to Santa Fe and it was eye opening. As an artist my primary goal was to be at the Annual International Contemporary Art Show and visit the city.
I arrived the day before the show, roamed around the historical part of the city, fell in love with the warm architecture, human size buildings with a lot of covered pathways where people can walk, and shop in the shade.
In the historical district the walls are made out of sun-dried earth and straw, painted with warm earthy colors. The houses are built in the Spanish Pueblo and territorial style developed and used in the New Mexico Territory from the time of the American occupation in 1846. Many constructions are one story and originally displayed around a courtyard.
You won’t see many gutters but scuppers coming from the flat roofs, jutting out from of the walls from above your head.
The wooden beans which are the structure of the buildings are exposed and stick out of the outside walls or serve as columns for the pathways.
The soft lines of the remarkable ubiquitous architecture, soft brown concrete is in harmony with the urban design and provides a welcome relief from the busy large metropolitan cities.
At first I saw a lot of touristic artifacts but then discovered the high-end art galleries and beautiful clothes shops around the plaza. My first question was: who are the clients here?
I knew Santa Fe was an artistic city, but it is also a secondary home for people from all over the States and particularly for Californians.
The number and quality of art galleries and sculpture gardens all around the city of Santa Fe itself is very impressive. The most amazing spot is undoubtedly Canyon Road and its dozens and dozens of galleries, right next to each other. Santa Fe Railyard district also has great galleries and museums. One of my favorites was the Fritz gallery, where the Carlos Estrada-Vega and Lea Anderson installations are astonishing.
I have been told the high season in Santa Fe begins Mid-October but the city in July seemed like a permanent art exhibition. People there see, eat, drink and breath art. It is the center of the city economy and its raison d'être. From the architecture to the shopping and diverse population, everything resonates art. Everywhere, be it indoors or outdoors, original private and public art abound.
Santa Fe, this small city nestled in the Sangre de Cristo Mountains (7200 feet) is the third largest contemporary art center in the United States, after New York and Los Angeles. Indeed, many of my artist friends are represented in Santa Fe.
I will definitely be back soon. Strongly recommended!
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