A collaborative exploration of land-based art in New Mexico


Steve Peters, The Very Rich Hours, recording session with Anne Cooper, Los Poblanos Fields

516 ARTS

Summer/Fall 2009


left: Anne Cooper, Anitya, 2009, clay installation, photo courtesy of Basia Irland; right: Jaune Quick-to-See Smith & Neal Ambrose-Smith, Lost and Found, digital photograph

Site-specific projects by: Anne Cooper (Anderson Field in Los Poblanos Open Space); Bill Gilbert (Cerrillos, Albuquerque and the 50-mile path in between); Steve Peters (Old San Ysidro Church, Corrales); and collaborating artists Jaune Quick-To-See Smith and Neal Ambrose-Smith (Corrales). Organized by Kathleen Shields Contemporary Art Projects. (off-site) More details for SiteWorks

Here & There: Seeing New Ground
June 2 – July 11, 2009
First Friday Reception: Friday, June 5, 5-8pm


images: left, Shelley Niro, still from Tree, 2006; right, Laurie Anderson, Hidden Inside Mountains, 2005, film still

An exhibition for LAND/ART featuring contemporary artists examining the landscape from perspectives that are both visual and cultural, including explorations of Native American film, as well as Native and non-Native artists who subvert landscape perspective to examine issues of the environment and human beings' relationship with nature. Through photography, painting, drawing, sculpture, print, film and installation, these artists offer interpretations of the land and landscape both within and without human interaction. Artists include Norman Akers, Laurie Anderson, Leticia Bajuyo, Alfred Clah, Cheryl Dietz, Katie Holten, Timothy Horn, David Nakabayashi, Rachael Nez, Pipo Nguyen-duy, Shelley Niro, Lordy Rodriguez, Peter Seward, Leah Siegel and John Wenger. The exhibition is curated by 516 ARTS with experimental film artist Marcella Ernest and Nancy Marie Mithlo, Assistant Professor of Art History and American Indian Studies, University of Wisconsin-Madison. The exhibition catalog features an essay by Nancy Marie Mithlo inspired by the film Intrepid Shadows by Alfred Clah (1966), on view throughout the exhibition.

Here & There exhibition catalog.


Timothy Horn: Medusa
July 10 & 11
Reception Friday, July 10, 6-8pm open Saturday, July 11, 12-5pm
at 1711 Painted Sky Rd., Santa Fe, 87507


Australian artist Timothy Horn’s Medusa is a 9-foot wide chandelier-like structure, made of transparent silicone rubber. Medusa is based on engraved images of jellyfish by 19th-century German zoologist Ernst Haeckel, who created drawings of microscopic lifeforms and marine creatures. Haeckel’s attempts at rendering these ephemeral organisms were flavored by his imagination, at a time when technology didn’t allow for them to be recorded more accurately. Timothy Horn has been intrigued with the invented rules and role of subjectivity in Haeckel’s scientific study of the natural world. Horn’s 800-pound Medusa was temporarily installed in Santa Fe in conjunction with Here & There: Seeing New Ground for LAND/ART. Horn’s work was also included in the exhibition at 516 ARTS.

516 WORDS Poetry Reading with Native Poets:
George Ann Gregory, Orlando White & Nora Yazzie
Saturday, June 27, 8pm

This reading in the gallery featured indigenous voices celebrating the sacred relationship between language and the surrounding natural environment. Focusing on poetry anchored in the perspective of the original inhabitants of this land, the reading included contemporary works written in the English language and traditional poems sung and recited in the indigenous languages of the tribes. George Ann Gregory, Ph.D. (Choctaw/Cherokee), a Senior Fulbright Scholar, is a language revitalization and American Indian Studies specialist. Her performance included her own poetry and songs in Choctaw and Cherokee from the removal of these two groups from their ancestral homes. Orlando White (Diné) is from Tólikan, Arizona and teaches poetry in Santa Fe. He holds a B.F.A. degree in creative writing from the Institute of American Indian Arts and an M.F.A. degree from Brown University. Nora Yazzie (Diné) is originally from the Four Corners region of the Navajo reservation. She has directed a play and published short stories and poems in numerous anthologies.This event was organized by Lisa Gill and Richard Vargas, presented in partnership with the UNM M.F.A. in Creative Writing program.


Download the LAND/ART exhibition catalog and guide to site projects for Equations: a balanced state? and Second Site at 516 ARTS

Download the press release for August 2009.

El Otro Lado: The Other Side in Santa Fe & Albuquerque

Chrissie Orr, from El Otro Lado: The Stories That Connect Us

El Otro Lado: The Other Side was a community-based public art project in both Albuquerque and Santa Fe developed by artist Chrissie Orr, focusing on the themes of migration, boundaries and sense of place. In Santa Fe, the project was piloted by the Academy for the Love of Learning. For LAND/ART, the project explored the land where people in our communities come from, touching on issues relating to agriculture, wilderness, community, the environment and sustainability.

July 6 – August 31, 2009
In Albuquerque during July and August, 516 ARTS presented a public art installation of El Otro Lado: The Other Side - Albuquerque on the free D-Ride buses which loop around Downtown. During the spring, 516 ARTS, in partnership with the Academy for the Love of Learning, offered intergenerational workshops in Bernalillo County Community Centers with writer Michelle Otero and artist Chrissie Orr in collaboration with the organization Connecting Community Voices. The participants and guest artists developed symbolic maps/cartograms, visual representations and audio recordings of their stories, journeys, landmarks, boundaries and their sense of place and home in the land. These images were displayed on the interior of ABQ Ride’s D-Ride buses along with an audio component so bus riders can listen to participants telling their stories via cell phone. The D-Ride travels a loop around Downtown and can be picked up at many locations including the Alvarado Transportation Center at 1st & Gold and at 5th & Central near 516 ARTS. It runs 6:30am to 7pm, and arrives every 7 minutes.
For information, call 505-243-RIDE.

In Santa Fe, the public art installation was on view in various locations June 28 through October. Brochures, map of locations and info are available for download at www.aloveoflearning.org, or call 505-995-1860. El Otro Lado: The Other Side is a project of the Academy for the Love of Learning and was supported by the Santa Fe Art Institute and the City of Santa Fe Public Art Loan Program. In Albuquerque, it was supported by 516 ARTS, the Bernalillo County Art Program, ABQ Ride and Connecting Community Voices.More details

516 WORDS: August date cancelled

The Center For Land Use Interpretation
August 1 September 19

CLUI Archive photo

CLUI Display Facility:
The CLUI Display Facility
was an off-site project located at a site that draws people into a part of the city that is not often visited, containing information about the Albuquerque region and an exhibit about the New Mexico landscape. The Center for Land Use Interpretation (CLUI) is a Los Angeles based research organization involved in exploring, examining and understanding land and landscape issues. CLUI in New Mexico was presented by 516 ARTS. Special thanks to The FUNd at Albuquerque Community Foundation.

Viewing dates were Saturdays & Sundays, 12-5pm through September 19
3615 Los Picaros Rd. SE, Albuquerque, NM, 87105
Map to CLUI Display Facility

For more information about the Center for Land Use Interpretation visit www.clui.org

Artisode 2.1, The Center for Land Use Interpretation. This Artisode video joins Matthew Coolidge, CLUI director, on a bus tour of New Mexico for the LAND/ART Symposium Weekend. Originally broadcast on New Mexico PBS station KNME.

Second Site
August 1 – September 19, 2009

An exhibition and reference site for LAND/ART, featuring related gallery installations and art works, information and maps for many of the site-specific projects including artists Anne Cooper, Bill Gilbert, Steve Peters, Jaune Quick-To-See Smith and Neal Ambrose Smith, the Center for Land Use Interpretation, Patrick Dougherty, Basia Irland, Nina Dubois and Jeanette Hart-Mann, Nan Masland Erickson, Marc Schmitz, Robert Wilson and the model of the selected piece for the City of Albuquerque's major land-based public art project launched for LAND/ART. SiteWorks artist Anne Cooper presented documentation of the process of creating Anitya, from harvesting of the clay to the dissolution of the bowls and the growth cycles of the crops. Nina DuBois and Jeanette Hart-Mann's collaborative photographic installation related to the outdoor installation created on the UNM campus a passive-solar composting laboratory. Bill Gilbert's Walk to Work project culminated in a large floor sculpture and a video piece, and Steve Peters' sound piece was represented with excerpts for listening in the gallery setting.

Listen here to Steve Peters' sound piece Site Specifics: Diablo Canyon for Second Site at 516 ARTS.

image: Nina Dubois, Untitled from the series Déchets digest(e)s, 2009, digital image

Equation: a balanced state?
August 1 – September 19, 2009
Reception: Saturday, August 1, 6-8pm
Gallery Talk: Saturday, September 12, 2pm


(left) David Niec, Stars, Eastern and Central Direction; (right) Ted Laredo, room

Curated by Thomas Cates of THE LAND/an art site, Equation: a balanced state? at 516 ARTS was a series of gallery installations exploring the virtual, built and natural environment, featuring artists Katherine E. Bash, Paula Castillo, Ted Laredo, David Niec and Mayumi Nishida. Each artist's installation was a small environment in itself, constructed to emphasize that in the present age of information and technology, our larger "natural" environment is inter-related with other types of environments we inhabit. The exhibition included digitally simulated waterfalls, built environments that glow in the dark and explorations of the division between day and night in the natural environment as observed in the night sky of New Mexico. Science, technology and the study of climate and land usage played an important role in the research and development of these art projects. The artists worked with two additional locations in the process of creating these works at 516 ARTS: the rural worksite and exhibition space at THE LAND/an art site near Mountainair, New Mexico; and THE LAND/gallery space in Downtown Albuquerque.
More details


October 3 – December 12, 2009
Reception Saturday, October 3, 6-8pm
Panel Discussion with Guggenheim Fellows: Saturday, October 3, 2pm

Michael Berman, from the Chihuahuan Desert series

Grasslands is a photographic series by Michael P. Berman about the Chihuahuan Desert grasslands in New Mexico, Texas and the northern border of Mexico, where he has wandered into the desert without a compass to, in his words, “live deliberately.” He believes that how you see the land comes down to what you value. “I believe art has a greater potential for meaning when it serves some purpose. People have started to recognize these lands as significant and this is something art can help along. If anything my work is to generate small symbols that reveal the greater complexity of things.” This exhibition was presented together with Separating Species, both curated by Mary Anne Redding, Curator of Photography, Photo Archives, New Mexico Palace of the Governors.

Separating Species
October 3 – December 12, 2009
Reception Saturday, October 3, 6-8pm
Panel Discussion with Guggenheim Fellows: Saturday, October 3, 2pm

Jo Whaley, Parnassius Apollo, 2006, archival pigment print

Concurrent with Grasslands, the Separating Species exhibition featured artists focusing on animals, humans, the biosphere and the U.S./Mexico border, including photography by Krista Elrick, Dana Fritz, David Taylor and Jo Whaley. Curator Mary Anne Redding recounts an essay by Terry Tempest Williams, In the Shadow of Extinction, about the destruction of prairie dogs on the Navajo Reservation. The Navajo elders objected, insisting that if you kill all the prairie dogs, there will be no one to cry for the rain. Redding says, “all things are intertwined: the rain, prairie dogs, folklorists, environmentalists, writers, academics, even those in the government.” Grasslands and Separating Species look at these disappearing desert grasslands and the animals that are affected when ecosystems, both in the desert and elsewhere, are destroyed: “no one is left to cry for the rain.”

Special Event during Grasslands and Separating Species:

Discourse of the Birds
a conversation with David Abram
Saturday, November 21, 7:30pm

Cultural ecologist and philosopher, David Abram is the director of the Alliance for Wild Ethics. He is author of The Spell of the Sensuous: Perception and Language in a More-than-Human World, for which he received the Lannan Literary Award for Nonfiction. An accomplished storyteller and sleight-of-hand magician who has lived and traded magic with indigenous sorcerers in Indonesia, Nepal and the Americas, Abram lectures and teaches widely on several continents. His work engages the ecological depths of the imagination, exploring the ways in which sensory experience, poetics and wonder inform our relation with the animate earth. Abram's essays on the cultural causes and consequences of environmental disarray appear often in such journals as Adbusters, Orion, Environmental Ethics, Tikkun, Parabola and The Ecologist. He was named by the Utne Reader as one of a hundred visionaries currently transforming the world. In 2005, he was invited to give the keynote address for the United Nations World Environment Week to 70 mayors from the largest cities around the world. He maintains a passionate interest in interspecies communication, and in the rejuvenation of oral culture. He is currently completing a book on the ecology of wonder.

For more information about 516 ARTS visit www.516arts.org

516 ARTS
516 Central Ave SW
Albuquerque, NM 87102
t. 505-242-1445



LAND/ART concluded November 2009. This site is in the process of being archived.
Web site produced by 516 ARTS.