Quick Draw Art in Taos

Richard Nichols was focused on his job when I passed by his location in the 10th annual Quick Draw Art event that benefits the Taos Center for the Arts. He has a studio over on Ledoux that you can reach through the Blumenschein courtyard.

Leigh Gusterson was making great progress on her painting here around 2:00 PM. This year there were about 40 artists, in a diversity of media, invited to participate. I understand this year’s Quick Draw was well attended and raised a good amount of money for the TCA. The work, begun at noon, is auctioned around 4:00 in the afternoon to the highest bidder.

Ed Sandoval was working on a larger canvas and I noticed his painting style was very active. I believe his painting turned out to sell for a nice high price, benefitting everyone.

Honestly by the time I arrived at the Quick Draw I had been taking my time through the Saturday Farm Market, the Taos Fall Arts Festival painting exhibit (lots to see there) and had looked up a friend selling wares at the Arts & Crafts festival at Kit Carson Park. I was running out of steam. Next year I will make this event more of a priority. I really would have appreciated the opportunity to put faces to the names of well-known Taos painters and other artists.

This photo taken at the farm market says it all about the time of year. Nature’s ability to come up with colors and forms for the humble squash seems infinite. My own garden is still producing tomatoes, zucchini and lemon cucumbers at the front of the house. The salad greens I keep fenced in the back are perking up at the cooler weather. And there are lots of last minute annuals in both locations trying to make some seeds before it’s too late. The birds are enjoying the sunflower seeds while they’re abundant.

This aging sunflower plant is my first photo of fall colors in the landscape around my home in Talpa. I’ve heard there are lower-elevation areas that have already had frosty nights, but so far not where I live above the Rio Chiquita River. I’ve checked the 10-day forecast for temperatures at night and it looks like our warm weather will continue on.

I just looked at the clock and it says 2:10 PM. Normally I’d be thinking I just have time to make it to Cafe Loka for an afternoon break, but sadly that business, my heart’s favorite, closed last Friday. I will really miss that place and I’m sure I’m in good company.

I am in love with this sign that greeted me on the way to the parking lot at the Hanuman Temple Sunday. Great wisdom, at least for a Sunday.

Ledoux Street

Ledoux Street fulfills a promise for those coming to Taos with a longing for old adobes along a street that offers a sense of a neighborhood in some sweet and slower moving past era. The one-way street is so narrow cars must move slowly. Art is the theme on Ledoux St. for the most part. Some artists have studio/galleries there. It reminds me of Canyon Rd. in Santa Fe, just much shorter. Once a month Ledoux St. has an open house/gallery walk from 3 – 6. There was one last Saturday. I showed up to say hello to my artist friend, Sheila O’Malley, who has the studio in the photo above, located in the courtyard of the old Blumenshein home.

Sheila wasn’t there, but things were hopping at the Rane Gallery nearby. So far this is my favorite Taos art gallery. When you walk in the front door to your right sits Judith Rane at her desk. Her artist husband, Bill Rane, passed away a few years ago and she handles the sale of his remaining work, and prints, along with a couple of beautiful books about him and his work. I have had a few chats with Judith and have found her engaging and always ready to talk about Bill’s work in a way that is intelligent and joyful.

The small gallery space with Bill Rane’s paintings has a door leading to a lovely courtyard and beyond it is another, even larger, space. When I first arrived in Taos last spring, and visited the Rane Gallery, this space was also full of Bill’s paintings. Now Judith Rane has joined up with two other women to form a group called The Three Muses, and their goal is to offer this space to individuals and groups. Last Saturday a group of crafts people were having a 2-day show of work. All the work was beautifully and skillfully made. One could present a class in the space or have a galley show of ones own art. I think the Three Muses would assist you with the promotion of a gallery show. In any case this is a new use of the space and I’m sure they would welcome inquiries or discussions.

Meet the founder of Rickshaw Runners. You don’t have to be in Taos long to see him sailing by with a passenger in the historic part of Taos. Sadly, I didn’t get his name, but he did give me a brochure full of rates and hours and contact info and such. The greatest, if not the most exotic, thing about a rickshaw (also called a pedicab) is that this mode of transportation is GREEN. Imagine a world of bicycle-transportation-only-zones in historic districts of cities (that have such, like Taos and Santa Fe and Albuquerque). Well, anyway, here he was on Ledoux St. that same Saturday, so part of my tour. If you see him stopped somewhere ask for his nice brochure.