New Mexico Studio Tours

One of the best things about autumn in New Mexico is the chance to wander to the artists’ studio tours that occur throughout the fall months. Not only is the weather truly superb, one can meet the artists, see their studios AND buy art direct from the artist without gallery fees…a real win-win! The month of October is prime time for weekend art touring and golden aspen viewing both.

Autumn Gold

The arts touring season starts the weekend of October 1-2, in the beautiful New Mexico village of El Rito, easily one of the prettiest spots up north. With 25 years under their belts, this bunch of artisans has it down. From weaving to santeros, painting to pottery, you’ll find much to admire from the 26 participating artists.   Two venues are also stops on the new, state-wide New Mexico Fiber Arts Trail, those of Julie Wagner (#3) and Northern New Mexico Community College (#5), which boasts a fiber arts program. Yes, this pristine little village does have a college….and let’s not forget that El Rito Library promises “Death by Chocolate” desserts!

House Facade: Photo by Larry Sparks, El Rito

El Rito Studio of Michael Hennerty

October 8-10 (since Monday is Columbus Day, this tour has an extra!) welcomes art lovers to the village of Abiquiu, long renowned as Georgia O’Keeffe’s choice for the best New Mexico real estate. With 34 stops along the way, the Abiquiu Studio Tour is always well-attended, not only for the art but also for the natural beauty of the region. One can easily spend hours up north, what with O’Keeffe’s residence and Ghost Ranch both in the area. While reservations must be made in advance to tour the O’Keeffe home, the glories of  Ghost Ranch are evident for all who care to go there.

Mujeres del Campo by Armando Adrian-Lopez, Abiquiu

Ruina del Santuario, Abiquiu: Photo by Armando Adrian-Lopez

The Galisteo Studio Tour claims the following weekend, October 15-16. Just a short drive from downtown Santa Fe, the tour is celebrating its 24th year. 31 stops guarantee a variety of works, and the close-in location means you can ruminate on a piece of sculpture or a painting and then return the next day after you’ve dreamt about how it will look when you bring it home. Four food stops mean snacking is possible. And while the art doyenne of Galisteo, Priscilla Hoback, is not participating in the tour this year (since her studio time this summer was spent instead in a restaurant kitchen, bringing the venerable Pink Adobe back to life), you may see her chatting with visitors from the swing on the front porch of her studio!

The Hoback Studio in Galisteo

Sculpture by Candyce Garrett, Galisteo

The Dixon Studio Tour hunkers down and waits until November 5-6 to have the weekend to itself. If you’re taking a day trip to Taos, stopping in Dixon for a spot of art is definitely worth the short detour. 30 years is a long time to perfect the occasion, and the Dixon artists open their tour with a reception on Friday, November 4 at 7:00p.m. just to get the creative juices flowing. 35 studio stops, roving musicians, food, and believe it or not, there’s even a winery for tastings!

Art and nature…it’s easy to see why the light and the landscape have drawn so many creative souls to northern New Mexico…take time to enjoy an autumn drive and discover for yourself!

Autumn at the Inn: Photograph by Eric Swanson (all rights reserved)

The Santa Fe Show Pulls into the Railyard Santa Fe

The Santa Fe Show takes place August 12-15 and August 18-21 at El Museo Cultural, 555 Camino de la Familia, Santa Fe, NM, 505-660-4701

Such a simple title for what is surely a much more complex endeavor! Adding another major art show to the summer, in a town already full of art, is a brave and worthy endeavor. We salute producers Kim Martindale and John Morris, the organizers of the The Santa Fe Show, Objects of Art, for mixing up another color on the palette of art oppportunities for Santa Fe art lovers to enjoy! A group of prestigious partners also deserves commendation for their vision and support, especially in times when wallets are so tight. And best of all, for those suffering a bit from a surfeit of visual stimulation over the last few artistic weeks, this show sticks around for two weekends rather than just one, so there’s no need to fret about the possibility of missing the experience!

Abundance, Image courtesy El Museo Cultural

Taking place at El Museo Cultural de Santa Fe, the rambling space that over the years has welcomed a panoply of local and regional arts organizations to the City Different, The Santa Fe Show brings a thoughtfully curated group of more than 60 vendors presenting unique arts and antiques, and in the process, serves as a handsome and informative complement to the City Different’s traditional Ethnographic Art and Indian Market weekends. This is truly an embarrassment of riches for us to enjoy!  By casting a wide net to capture outstanding examples of work in a variety of media and eras, the show highlights the union of aesthetic importance and design significance of the participating galleries, artists and designers. And as befits a two-weekend show, there will be two opening events as well. The first is a preview party, taking place on Friday, August 12 from 6-9pm, and it benefits the Santa Fe Animal Shelter and Humane Society, a cause dear to pet-lovers, be they local or out-of state. A special event for the second weekend will take place on Thursday, August 18, also from 6-9pm, benefitting El Museo Cultural itself, an institution venerated by local patrons for its support of art, theater and community events, all accomplished on a veritable shoestring budget.

Cowboys & Indians Booth

Theodore Casey Gallery Booth

Sissoko Tribal Arts Booth

Exhibitors at The Santa Fe Show have been vetted as specialists in their fields and encompass a broad swath of the USA, ranging from the urban coasts of  New York and Florida to our Texas neighbors and out to the sunny western shores of California. Huber Primitive Art, specialists in pre-Columbian works will be on hand for those who like to look way back to a more primitive era, as will local favorite, Economos Works of Art, one of America’s most noted Native American galleries.  The eyes can feast on museum-quality works from ancient civilizations presented by Cassera Premieres, and respected expert, Robert L. Parsons Fine Art will be showing antiques, textiles and jewelry, and furnishings and decorative arts from around the globe. And those are just a taste of the treats to be savored by or sold to discerning collectors!

Acoma Jar, Westside Trading Post

Bracelet: Antonio Pineda, Maestros de Taxco

Admission to The Santa Fe Show is $12 per person or $16 for the run of the show (a bargain for those who like to ruminate and return), with children under 16 admitted free. Visitors to downtown Santa Fe can ride the free “Santa Fe Pick-Up” shuttle service to The Santa Fe Show, and the New Mexico Rail Runner Express train’s Santa Fe Depot stop is just a block from the venue. Ample parking is available at the Railyard’s nearby underground garage, and refreshments will be available at The Santa Fe Show’s Café. The location of El Museo also offers a choice of many Santa Fe restaurant options scattered throughout the Railyard area for those who want to turn the images they’ve just seen into a lively discussion over a leisurely dinner. Need a hint? Just contact the Inn’s concierge and let us help you decide where to dine!

Riding the Railyard

You Know It by the Water-Tower!

Railyard Walkers

The appreciation of art is not a luxury, not in any economy…it feeds our souls and our imaginations and makes this world a better place. So make your Santa Fe vacation a better memory – and maybe even go home with an actual memento – by taking time to enrich your sensibilities at The Santa Fe Show.
Images courtesy of The Santa Fe Show and the Railyard Corporation, and all usage rights are reserved.

SOFA Santa Fe

SOFA West Santa Fe 2010 takes place at the Santa Fe Community Convention Center located on the northeast corner of West Marcy and Grant Avenue from August 4-7.

No, no, not a seating arrangement…it’s an acronym for Sculptural Objects and Functional Art! And this exciting art fair returns this year to Santa Fe in August to add to the rich panoply of art that summer brings to us every year.

SOFA West returns to Santa Fe!

Taking place at our spacious Community Convention Center from August 4 through 7, SOFA West: Santa Fe is an opportunity for westerners and their art-loving visitors to see what other large art markets (read Chicago in November 2011 and New York in April 2012) deem as praise-worthy representations of the new and unusual in three-dimensional art objects. Last year’s outing was obviously a hit, since the show is up in dealer participation from last year’s 28 to this year’s 35 exhibitors.

The exhibit actually opens on the evening of Wednesday, August 3, 2011, with a frisson of exclusivity, an invitation-only “First Look” private preview for supporters of the Museum of New Mexico Foundation from 5-6:30 pm and SOFA VIPs beginning at 6:30 pm. The invite-only reception will be followed by a new Opening Night Public Preview which begins at 7 pm. Tickets are $50 and will be available on or at the door, and the Opening Night festivities continue until 9 pm. General admission to the fair begins on Thursday, August 4 and runs through Sunday, August 7, 2011, from 12 noon to 6pm daily. Tickets are $15 for a single day pass and, for those who just can’t get enough of a good thing, die-hard art aficionados can pay only $25 for the four-day run of the show.

Carol Naylor: Te Mata Peak, ZeST Contemporary Gallery

Jimin Kim: Tracks, Charon Kransen Arts

This year, the Art Fair Company also hosts an exciting addition to SOFA West, by welcoming the Intuit Show of Folk and Outsider Art, which partnered with SOFA Chicago last fall. Outsider art continues to grow audiences with each exposure, and in a town like Santa Fe, with a historic folk art tradition, this show is sure to be of interest to viewers and collectors alike. The Museum of International Folk Art had a stunning outside art show several years ago, which included the work of Martin Ramirez and was a big local hit. The presence of  Intuit brings the leading dealers and galleries of self-taught art and outsider art, non-traditional folk art and visionary art to the exciting artistic mix that SOFA visitors already appreciate.

Martin Ramirez: Caballero on Horseback, Carl Hammer Gallery

Deborah Barrett: Stitched Portrait, The Ames Gallery

In conjunction with the exhibit, SOFA continues its tradition of informative lectures and artists’ demonstrations. There are also a number of special public events that sound quite inviting! On Tuesday, August 2, 2011, at an all-day affair from 8:30 am to 6:30 pm, Dr. Bruce Bernstein, the Executive Director of SWAIA (the Southwestern Association for Indian Arts, host organization of the annual Santa Fe Indian Market) will be leading a tour of the gorgeous Acoma Pueblo, 1 and 1/2 hours southwest of Santa Fe. While the $300 per person cost of the day trip may seem a bit pricey, combining the beauty and rich cultural history of Acoma with a erudite guide like Dr. Bernstein makes this a truly one-of-a-kind experience. For more information or to register, contact Recursos/Royal Road Tours at 505.577.9659.

Acoma, the Sky City

On Friday morning, August 5, 2011, a there will be a private  backstage tour of one of Santa Fe’s cultural mainstays, the Santa Fe Opera. You’ll visit the busy costume shop and props shop, and peer into the inner workings of the talented Opera staff first-hand. The tour begins with a 9:15 am coffee klatsch at SOFA West: Santa Fe, in the lobby of the Convention Center, and transportation to the Opera grounds is provided. This private event is limited to just 40 people, and tickets are $25 per person, obtained by contacting Julie Oimoen at

The Crosby Theatre, Santa Fe Opera: Photo Robert Reck

Also on Friday, August 5 at 2pm, gallery clients who have been fortunate enough to receive VIP cards can drop in to the VIP Lounge, where SOFA West welcomes Victoria Price, designer and art historian, for a lively talk about the adventures of collecting art. The daughter of actor Vincent Price and long-term resident of Santa Fe, Ms. Price’s past includes a stint appraising and selling art from various estates and collections, so she has a wealth of entertaining information to share.

SO, now that you know…get off your sofa or out of your hotel room and head to the SOFA West Santa Fe Expo, where your mind and your eyes will be treated to some cutting-edge art that can easily hang above your sofa, adorning your home and showing your art cred, when you get back home.

Gallery photos of artists’ works courtesy of the Press Room page of SOFA West: Santa Fe

Spanish Market = Timeless Santa Fe Travel

Summer in Santa Fe is the time of year when we celebrate the deep Hispanic roots of La Ciudad Diferente. It’s a satisfying experience to encounter a place that honors its traditional arts and, at the same time, celebrates the ingenuity of those artistic descendants who are drawn to more contemporary expressions of the heritage.

Spanish Town, Spanish Names!

Spanish Market means many things to many people. For some, it’s enough to enjoy the festive appearance of the Plaza, dressed up to remind us of the enduring legacy of the conquistadors and settlers who braved the ardors of the New World. For others, it may be the food, rich and spicy, tantalizing the taste buds with the thought of fresh green chile yet to come. For most, however, especially steadfast Santa Fe visitors who return annually at this time, it’s the opportunity to see how the artistic heritage of the past lives on today through the hands and the talents of over 200 artists. Delicate straw applique and colcha embroidery are crafts may have waxed and waned through the years, but thanks to a number of dedicated artisans, one can still encounter these humble traditional art-forms today. Painstakingly painted retablos and hand-carved bultos never go out of style, as befits an aesthetic so thoroughly entwined with its religious roots. And the weavers will be there to remind us that the heat of summer will soon enough be followed by the appeal of soft, warm wool.

Intricate Colcha Embroidery: Museum of New Mexico Collection

Presented by the Spanish Colonial Arts Society, Spanish Market is making its 60th anniversary appearance on the Santa Fe Plaza over the weekend of July 30-31.  Market hours on Saturday are 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.; on Sunday, the Market runs from 9:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. In conjunction with the Arts Market itself, chock-a-block with both familiar and new faces, a special Market Mass will be celebrated at our gorgeously renovated St. Francis Cathedral Basilica at 8:00 a.m. on Sunday morning, July 31, at which time the public is invited to the join in the blessing of the Spanish Market art and its artisans.  After the blessing, a procession begins at the Cathedral and winds around the Plaza, led by a cheerful Mariachi band.

The Beautiful Reredo at St. Francis Cathedral

There are a few informative events celebrating the Spanish heritage that will also take place over the weekend. On Thursday, July 28 at 5:30 p.m., a free “Layman’s Lecture About the Saints” will take place at the historic Santuario de Guadalupe, located at 100 South Guadalupe Street.  Lecturer Marina Ochoa, curator and archivist for the Office of Historic-Artistic Patrimony, Archives, and Museum of the Archdiocese of Santa Fe will discourse on the particularly meaningful saints depicted in many of the retablos and bultos one is likely to encounter at the Market.

Santa Fe’s purveyor of  “todas cosas Espanolas,” The Spanish Table, located at 109 North Guadalupe Street, complements the weekend with two flavorful themed events to honor the Market. On Friday, July 29 at 12 noon, a Spanish sausage sampling complete with a lecture on how to make and cure your own Spanish-style sausages will be presented by Robert Fettig, with Flamenco guitarist Joaquin Gallegos on hand to provide an appropriate musical background. On Saturday, July 30, also at 12 noon, the staff at the Table will cook a gigantic Paella in front of the store.  This is a great time to learn how to make this signature Spanish dish, and you can receive a recipe, ask questions and enjoy!  Best of all, these events are also free to the public!

Paella? Muy Sabrosa!

Spicy Chorizo!

To enhance this rewarding arts weekend, Santa Fe also welcomes the 25th appearance of the Contemporary Hispanic Market, held adjacent to the Plaza on Lincoln Avenue and mirroring the hours of the Traditional Market. With 134 different booths, each featuring a different twist on the Hispanic arts, this is a multitude of riches in and of itself! Those who are drawn to use their talents in newer art forms appreciate this opportunity to exhibit, and both casual and serious collectors enjoy the chance to converse with some of New Mexico’s well-respected Hispanic artists. This display of contemporary Hispanic works showcases individual expression in the mediums of painting, printmaking, sculpture, photography, furniture, jewelry, ceramics, weaving and much, much more. In other words, this weekend is an artistic two-fer!!

Glorieta: Painting by Robb Rael

As with all of the summer Santa Fe Plaza events, the sun will likely be a constant visitor, so pay attention to our summer weather and dress accordingly. That’s the only caveat though, the rest of the weekend is yours to enjoy…or as we say aqui, bienvenidos y disfrutele mucho!

Santa Fe Art This Summer

Santa Fe richly deserves its artistic reputation, and summer is a season that brings many opportunities to learn why. Free Friday evenings at the museums, First Friday Artwalks at the Railyard and Last Friday Artwalks in the West Palace and GALA Arts District, right off the historic Santa Fe Plaza, may be at the end of the week, but they are just the beginning of an arts experience!

The Santa Fe Plaza: Green Heart of our Town

ART Santa Fe

Now in its eleventh year, ART Santa Fe brings contemporary artists from around the nation and the world to the attractive and welcoming Santa Fe Community Convention Center. At 72,000 square feet, with state-of-the-art amenities, what a change this venue has brought to this particular art scene! Taking place from July 7-10, the broad schedule of events includes a gala opening night Vernissage, as well as the informative and entertaining Art Santa Fe Presents lecture series that features noted art-world critics and cognoscenti.

Art Santa Fe Returns to the City Different

International Folk Art Market

Santa Fe is already renowned for the fantastic collection at the Museum of International Folk Art, and the weekend of July 9-10 brings the International Folk Art Market to the Milner Plaza on Museum Hill. The goals of economic stability and cultural sustainability for global folk arts combine to create a positive inter-cultural exchange that unites artisans and aficianados from around the world. During this festive two-day event, more than 120 select folk artists from more than 45 countries will travel to Santa Fe, where fortunate fans can peruse and purchase unique folk art direct from these diverse artisans.

Santa Fe International Folk Art Market from David Moore on Vimeo.

Spanish Market

No summer in La Ciudad Real de Santa Fe de San Francisco de Asis (Santa Fe’s official moniker) would be complete without this annual celebration of traditional and contemporary Spanish arts. Celebrating its 60th anniversary, the Spanish Market has grown to include far more than the beautiful retablos and straw applique of yester-year; today, collectors can encounter La Guadalupana rendered in computer circuitry or find a pair of far-out bottle-cap earrings. Held on July 30-31, this event is a consistent contributor to the lively Plaza scene.

Santa Fe’s Spanish Heritage


Many art-lovers are already aware of the annual SOFA (Scultpure Objects & Functional Art) shows that take place in New York and Chicago, and three years ago, SOFA arrived in Santa Fe seeking western exposure. Taking place from August 4-7, SOFA West brings international, gallery-curated exhibitions of work that present the very best in contemporary fine art and design. This year, the Intuit Show of Folk and Outsider Art will come along for the ride with SOFA West, adding the leading dealers of outsider and non-traditional folk art to this exciting artistic mix.

Indian Market

If you haven’t already made your reservations, attendance at the 89th annual Santa Fe Indian Market will require some timely effort on your part and could even necessitate a stay in Albuquerque, as Santa Fe hotels frequently sell out! There is nothing quite like seeing the diverse Native faces from around the nation, all gathered in one place to celebrate their arts and culture. Silver jewelry flashes, beads jingle, and lots and lots of wampum changes hands in a very short period of time. This year’s market takes place on the weekend of August 20-21, and if you already have all your travel plans in place, include making advance dinner reservations as part of your planning – we can help!

The Many Faces of Indian Market: Photo SWAIA

The Houser Compound

If you have a car, we encourage a visit to the Houser Compound, the home of the noted Apache artist, Allan Houser. Located about 20 minutes south of downtown Santa Fe, this pristine plot showcases a treasure trove of works by the late sculptor in a gorgeous landscape setting. And it can even be reserved for private events, such as weddings and birthdays!

We Sing the Praises of the Houser Compound


For sculpture closer to town, just seven miles north in Tesuque, you’ll find the Shidoni Sculpture Garden, which holds work by many local and national artists, all arrayed in a petite river valley just minutes from the Plaza. The Shidoni Foundry also invites visitors to observe bronze pourings, typically on Saturdays, although the schedule is not always firmed up until the Friday before.

We invite you to enjoy an artistically engaging stay in the City Different!