During the last week of May, I stayed a week with my uncle Karl and Aunt Jeanie in the beautiful city of Santa Fe. As I got off the plane, I realized the city was not like anything I had ever seen. The airport only had room for one plane. It was such a tiny airport, it felt like a large prop for a movie set, not to mention the structure of the building styled to look adobe. Emily, my fabulous cousin picked me up and we headed to the house. I was amazed at the sprawling desert and adobe style buildings everywhere! I adored the home of my uncle and aunt, along with the winding and cozy neighborhood. It was great to see them since it had been a year after visiting them in New Jersey.
I have known about the gallery, shop, and studio space Santa Fe Clay for many years, so it was a destination at the top of my list. It was in proximity to our house, and it was great to show my family around an eccentric clay place. I met and talked to one of the owners, Mark, who is a pretty cool dude. He and his partner had recently gained ownership within the last two years and are doing a great job with the place. It was nicely organized and laid out. I ended up buying two pieces of pottery, a Birdie Boon plate and a Wesley Harvey cup with saucer. I’m excited to use them once I return to the south, after my journeys this summer.
I rode my uncle’s bike all around the city. I went to Meow Wolf, a fun and trippy little adventure. It was certainly like an interactive art exhibit playland, but once the end came, a great sense of commercialism came over me when I entered the gift shop. It was great seeing roadrunners and prairie dogs around the bike trails on the way there.
I attempted to visit the galleries on Canyon Hill, but after going to a few, it didn’t seem to pique my interest. Quite frankly the most interesting art I saw was at the Spanish Colonial museum on Museum Hill and the all the work at the Folk-Art museum. It made me question how I am creating in clay and why I choose to use clay specifically all the time. There was an enormous amount of sculptural work made from wood there, and I enjoy working in wood. Why I don’t do it more often is a mystery to me. After pondering about it more, I had realizations that I have been admiring wooden artwork since childhood, stemming from my recently deceased grandfather who used to whittle miniature statues and set them on a shelf less cabinet built into the wall that had a mirror in it, above and behind the couch. I loved admiring the little pieces, picking them up and asking questions about them. I remember a little shoe that had fabric laces, a tiny and oddly shaped puppy, and a horse. I know he created others, but my memory fails me on those.
It is amazing how objects and art can trigger childhood moments and take us back to direct locations where we used to sit, play, and wonder with our little brains.
I did a lot of other things in Santa Fe, but the trip itself ended up being more adventurous and eye opening than I had imagined.