An Art Mecca is Born

© 2017, Contemporary Narrative Weavings by Bonnie Clark / Dakini Dreams, Adobe #1,  Magic in the Desert: Santa Fe Reflections

© 2017, Contemporary Narrative Weavings by Bonnie Clark / Dakini Dreams, Adobe #1,  Magic in the Desert: Santa Fe Reflections

In the early 1900s, Taos, NM had become an important outpost of American art. Scores of East coast painters traveled there each summer and their paintings, seen in traveling exhibitions, introduced the nation to the indigenous cultures and landscape of the southwest.

Santa Fe’s leaders watched in dismay as wealthy visitors passed through their dusty streets on their way north to Taos. The city had to develop its own mystique in order to capture its share of tourists. So, the city imposed a building code requiring all new structures be designed in the Pueblo Revival Style, incorporating the Indian pueblos’ use of vigas and sunbaked adobe. Soon Santa Fe started drawing its own "cultural tourists". And once those tourists discovered the mystery and allure of Santa Fe, they never stopped coming.

For almost a century, Santa Fe has been the center for the American visual arts. It’s home to the nation's third largest art market, and there are more than 200 art galleries dealing in every genre… Native American (historic pieces, paintings, ceramics, sculpture, weavings, jewelry), western art, contemporary abstract, realism, landscapes, and folk art, just to name a few. It’s also home to a community of hundreds of serious artists who are dedicated to their work. Artists drawn to the area because of the landscapes, the architecture, and the culture. And the light. You’ll never forget the light once you’ve experienced it.

The High Road to Taos

© 2017, Contemporary Narrative Weavings by Bonnie Clark / Dakini Dreams, Chimayó #1,  Magic in the Desert: Santa Fe Reflections

© 2017, Contemporary Narrative Weavings by Bonnie Clark / Dakini Dreams, Chimayó #1,  Magic in the Desert: Santa Fe Reflections

Winding through the Sangre de Christo Mountains between Santa Fe and Taos is the High Road to Taos. This scenic drive takes you through high desert, mountains, forests, small farms, and tiny Spanish Land Grant and Pueblo Indian villages. Some of the finest art in New Mexico can be seen in the galleries and artist studios scattered along the way including potters in Nambé, santeros in Córdova, and weavers in Chimayó. Savor the journey by spending a few hours visiting weaving studios where the Spanish Colonial weaving tradition is still being kept alive today by the Ortega and Trujillo families. Treat yourself to lunch at Rancho de Chimayó before hitting the road again for your final destination, San Francisco de Asis Mission Church in Rancho de Taos. Painted by Georgia O’Keeffe, photographed by Ansel Adams, the church is one of the most iconic and enduring images of the Southwest.

Morning Meditation

© 2017, Contemporary Narrative Weavings by Bonnie Clark / Dakini Dreams, High Desert Dawn #1,  Magic in the Desert: Santa Fe Reflections

© 2017, Contemporary Narrative Weavings by Bonnie Clark / Dakini Dreams, High Desert Dawn #1,  Magic in the Desert: Santa Fe Reflections

If you aren’t a morning person already, living in Santa Fe will turn you into one. There’s no better way to start the day than sitting on your porch, wrapped in a quilt, drinking your first cup of coffee while watching the sunrise. A morning meditation. A reminder that no matter what is going on in life and in the world, there’s always another opportunity to start fresh each morning.