Culture Shock: Art, More Art And A Little Bit About Books

Patricia Sauthoff
4 min read
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One of the coolest things about being me is the amount of stuff people tell me. Sometimes it’s off the record, even though it’s not juicy/verifiable/interesting enough to be on the record. Occasionally the gossip is so good the whole down-low thing makes me want to scream. Most of the time the information I get is somewhere in the middle of these two extremes and totally shareable. Generally, this kind of stuff is sent via e-mail with the words “for immediate release” in big, bold and sometimes italic letters at the top. It’s maybe not the most exciting, but some of those e-mails actually include the interesting stuff. Let’s open the vault.

Culture Shock: For He’s A Jolly Good Fellow For He’s A Jolly Good Fellow

Augustine Romero, art gallery curator at several Albuquerque institutions, went to Washington, D.C. earlier this month. He’s in the nation’s capital as part of the Latino Museum Studies Program at the Smithsonian Latino Center. Basically, Romero and 14 other curators are hanging out for a month with each other, scholars in their field and the Smithsonian’s collection. It sounds like fun, and with what Romero learns, his future curatorial adventures will be even more informed. So, even though we’re stuck here in Albuquerque while Romero rocks D.C., we’ll benefit from his little excursion when he returns.

Culture Shock: Pro Public Pro Public

Albuquerque’s Public Art Program and Urban Enhancement Trust Fund Programs now fall under the blanket of the Cultural Services Department. That’s a lot of capital letters! The skinny: When we chatted, Public Art Program Manager Sherri Brueggemann said, “We’re now housed closer to other professionals dealing with arts and culture.” That means sharing of resources (money and minds) as well as sharing the mission to “enhance the creative economy of Albuquerque.” The 32-year-old program has about 600 works of art, which can be seen on the city’s Flickr page, Flickr does include maps of where the art is located, which Brueggemann says isn’t perfect, but it’ll get ya in the right area.

Culture Shock: Bend It Like Byram Bend It Like Byram

OK, this little nugget didn’t actually come from the PR machine but instead from Publishers Weekly—you seriously don’t want to know how vast this news junkie’s reading habits are. Anyway, our own little local scholarly publishing house, UNM Press, is going through some changes at the top. Director Luther Wilson retired after a decade-long stint at the helm (he also ran it for five years back in the ’80s), and John W. Byram from University Press of Florida is coming in. Byram is excited about his move to Albuquerque because of the relationship the local community has with the publishing company. “Most people know what books they like but not who publishes them,” Byram told me, adding “a lot of people in New Mexico feel passionate about [UNM] Press and what it does.”
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