Courtesy Bareiss Gallery

'Double Arc' by Michelle Cooke. Opening Reception is Saturday (June 12), from 1 to 5 p.m. at Bareiss Gallery, located at 15 State Road 150 in El Prado.

Venues may have COVID-safety practices in place.

White Light

Artists have always sought to exploit light as a powerful element in their works. "White Lifht," a new show by Taos artist Michelle Cooke, absolutely focuses on light.

"Think of Vermeer's windows or Rembrandt's Danaë, visited by Zeus as a shower of golden light," Cooke says in a press release. Or the Impressionists' broken brushwork, meant to simulate the way sunlight can dapple a meadow or pass across the façade of a cathedral at different times a day. But it's only in recent years that artists have harnessed artificial means to their purposes in the form of neon tubes (Keith Sonnier) or fluorescent bulbs (Dan Flavin), or carved out an entire volcano for the quiet contemplation of natural light (James Turrell)."

Michelle Cooke belongs to both older and newer traditions of working with light as a medium, she says, but in her own way she is a more questing spirit than the three modern masters mentioned above. She has worked with glass, aluminum, feathers, brass, gemstones and barbed wire, as well as the traditional mediums of graphite and oil paint.

The current exhibition at Bareiss Gallery offers a mini-overview of this artist's restless pursuit to exploit the potential of light. Her "relief" sculptures composed of glass slides transform this humble staple of science labs everywhere into magical, ethereal compositions in which cast shadows account for much of the impact. Using nothing more than ink or graphite pencils - and though rigorously abstract - her drawings nonetheless "conjure with the play of light and shadow in the natural world. And Kimono, only one of a series of fanciful and impractical garments Cooke has made over the years, is constructed of steel, plaster and copper but when suspended in space appears to be nearly weightless, capturing the light across its lacelike surface."

Meet the artist at an opening reception Saturday (June 12), from 1 to 5 p.m. at Bareiss Gallery, located at 15 State Road 150 in El Prado. For more information, call 575-776-2284.

Southwest Modernism

Contemporary paintings and Cubist-inspired watercolors of Southwest landscapes, Kachina traditions and night skies by is a new series by artist Joseph Riggs. The sky always fascinated Riggs, he notes online, "both the daytime sky and the nighttime sky with its millions of stars." He began to paint Native American subjects, which had been a mystery to him since his childhood in Texas. He feels the spirit of Picasso, Paul Cezanne, Juan Gris, Georges Braque and Albert Gleizes - whose spirit guided him in Paris. His paintings have evolved to include pure abstraction and explorations into color, shape, texture and design. All grouped under the broad category - Southwest Modernism.

"I had always loved Cubism, and its roots with Cezanne," press materials state. "Could I follow the storied Southwest Modernism movement of Georgia O'Keeffe, Marsden Hartley, Raymond Jonson, Andrew Dasburg, John Marin, and Cady Wells? Could I put all of these influences together, and carve a new artistic path? I was determined to try."

Riggs is represented at Taos Artist Collective. To see more, contact gallery director Lois Fernandez, 575-770-9950, tactaos@gmail.com or taosartistcollective.com.


Taos Artist Collective, a highly visible and successful gallery is presently interviewing Artists to become members and join in their worthy goals and vision for an inclusive Taos art community. Their future vision will include workshops, demos, internships, art therapy and fundraising events to provide scholarships to students pursuing a career in the fine and performing arts. Contact Lois Fernandez, 575-770-9950 loisintaos@yahoo.com

STEMarts Lab + KERNEL X Light Festival invites New Mexico students ages 9-14 to join Italian students in Monza, Italy, in creating a futuristic drawing as part of an audiovisual 3D mapping onto the architecture of Residenza Ponte dei Leoni. Teachers register to receive 11 X 17-inch printed templates for each student to color + an easy lesson guide. Deadline: Thursday (June 10). See stemarts.com/kernelfestivaldesignchallenge.

Taos Artist Organization (TAO) invites artists of any medium to join this nonprofit. TAO promotes not just artists, but the whole community, through art, activities and events including art shows, art competitions, student sponsorships, masquerade balls, holiday celebrations and public service involvement. Come check them out, the second Tuesday of the month, 6 p.m. at Sagebrush Inn. Vaccinated or masked artists only. Website: taosartistorg.org for application and additional information.

Ammann Gallery in the John Dunn Shops off Bent Street in Taos has availability for one new member artist. All mediums considered. Commitment includes working one day a week in the gallery. Visit Fridays 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. with images to meet with Susan, the owner. Next to Bent Street Deli. For more information, call 575-758-7450.

Artes de Descartes XXI calls artists working in all recycled mediums: cloth, paper, wood, metal, glass, plastic etc. for the 21st annual juried, recycled art show. Entry deadline Aug. 2, 5 p.m. View prospectus at whollyrags.org or send SASE to: Wholly Rags PO Box 1051 Ranchos de Taos, NM 87557, or stop by Wholly Rags, 1337 Gusdorf Road, Suite L in Taos. For more information, call Melissa 575-751-9862.


Immel²: New Perspectives exhibits Taos artists Peggy Immel's paintings and Steve Immel's photography, through June 20 at Wilder Nightingale Fine Art, at 119 Kit Carson Road. See wildernightingale.com or call 575-758-3255.

'Emergence, Cultivation, Growth' is TCA Exhibits: Members Open, showing now through June 27 in Encore Gallery, 145 Paseo del Pueblo Norte and online. Open Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays from 2-5 p.m., this show features TCA members 2-D and 3-D works, revealing how the artists "find meaning in hardship and imagine the possibilities the future holds," according to TCA press. Email info@tcataos.org or visit tcataos.org.

Taos Watercolor Society's new exhibit at the Taos Country Club continues through December 2021. Come view the talented artists' work, dine on delicious food and marvel at the beautiful vistas from the Sunset Ballroom and the Country Club patio, off County Road 110. For information, contact Diana Smith 575-224-0062.

Harwood Museum First Fridays FREE After Five. Enjoy FREE admission to the Harwood Museum of Art the first Friday of each month this summer from 5-7 p.m. Harwood exhibits include "Santo Lowride: Norteño Car Culture and the Santo Tradition"(special curator tours featuring exhibit artists June 18, July 9 and Aug. 20, 5:30-7 p.m.; special low 'n' slow events by Seco Live TBA; and Taos Plaza Takeover Cruise, Sept. 25); 'In the Sliver of the Sun,' featuring Bosnian-Herzgovinian artist Maja Ruznic's paintings through Sept. 26. Harwood Museum, 238 Ledoux Street. Contact 575-758-9826 or museumfoundation.org.

Millicent Rogers Museum artist/Vista Grande art teacher Dawning Pollen Shorty's MRM students get materials and guest speakers series, including MRM Board of Trustees member and goldsmith, David Anderson. Hours are Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Admission free for members and children under 10; $1 (one dollar) for SNAP cardholders up to 5 guests; $10 for non-member adults. Contact 575-758-2462 or millicentrogers.org.

Taos Art Museum at Fechin House hours are Tuesday-Sunday, noon to 4 p.m. Current exhibit is "Through the Eyes of Fechin." To make donations, become a member or make a purchase, see taosartmuseum.org.

TAOSFOLK pop-up store is Nov. 19-Dec. 24, 2021, at Stables Gallery and showcases handmade art/gift items by Taos-area artists and authors. For info, contact Cathleen Lambridis, 773-595-8065 at taosfolk.com.

- Compiled by Virginia Clark

Recommended for you

(0) comments

Welcome to the discussion.

All comment authors MUST use their real names. Posts that cannot be ascribed to a real person
will not be moderated.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.