New Mexico has sparked the creative impulse in landscape artists working in various mediums for hundreds of years. This November, local galleries are proving that the Land of Enchantment continues to inspire with exhibitions highlighting modern artists' takes on the desert.
Working with oil on canvas, artists Susan Winkler and Reid Bandeen present their impressionistic renderings of New Mexico through the month at Purple Sage Gallery (201 San Felipe NW) in Old Town. The artists have tramped throughout the state to create compelling images of the nature surrounding Santa Fe, Taos, Abiquiu and central New Mexico. Studies done en plein air, the works of these two artists are sure to impress with their exploration of light and color.
Creating desert-scapes that draw their inspiration from television, Google maps, personal photographs and memories, the mixed media work of Ren Adams creates images that are both foreign and familiar. Opening on November 6, Adams's exhibition at New Grounds Print Workshop & Gallery (3812 Central SE) titled Desert (Loss) explores themes of distance and deprivation through expansive yet fragmented desert landscapes.
In addition, the curators of Matrix Fine Art (3812 Central SE) place classic landscapes and contemporary still lifes side by side in Old Masters/ New Voices. Showcasing the archetypal works of New Mexican legend Ben Turner and the modern paintings of Susan Evans, this exhibition highlights the contrasts of the painters' styles and each one's unique use of composition and technique.
Celebrating First Friday in style on Nov. 6, Sumner & Dene (517 Central NW) will have a live Latin jazz band on hand for the opening of Dee Sanchez’s Painting the North: Landscapes from Taos & Beyond. In this selection of paintings, Sanchez explores her love of nature by depicting landmarks like the Rio Grande Gorge Bridge, and smaller, singular subjects like a single aspen tree. Employing the layered alla prima technique that requires a speedy hand, these works are a study in the application of great skill.
Itching to see somewhere beyond New Mexico? On display throughout the month, High Desert Art & Frame (12611 Montgomery NE) offers something for those with the travel bug. Images of the World is a collection of photographs by Alan Toepfer, who has traveled throughout the US, Europe, Russia, South America, Asia and Antarctica.
Whether you want to turn your artistic gaze to distant lands or to the epic vistas close to home, this month Albuquerque's local galleries provide a good place to start your explorations. Catch these shows throughout the month of November and find more local art happenings in our gallery guide.