Spanish Colonial Art and History of New Mexico

Other Dates

Museum of Spanish Colonial Art

750 Camino Lejo on Museum Hill, Santa Fe NM 87505


admission | $8
| members free


Phone | 505-982-2226 ext 126

2017 Winter Lecture Series

Spanish Colonial Art and History of New Mexico

Wednesdays at 12:00PM at the Museum of Spanish Colonial Art

750 Camino Lejo on Museum Hill

505-982-2226 Reservations recommended

By Museum admission ($8); members free

CONTACT: ROBIN GAVIN / 505-982-2226 ext 126

January 25

Marie Romero Cash, Spanish Market artist and author

Santos and Churches of Northern New Mexico

Marie Cash portrait - photo by Laura Ware

Marie Romero Cash is a santera whose works are in many northern New Mexico churches and in the Vatican, the Smithsonian, and other major collections including that of the Spanish Colonial Arts Society. She has won many major awards, including the Master's Award for Lifetime Achievement given by the Society, and has written books on santos, churches, and home altars.

This slide lecture will familiarize audiences with santos-what they are, who makes them and why. It will also map out colonial churches from the oldest U.S. Church, San Miguel Mission in Santa Fe, moving north to the much-photographed church at Ranchos de Taos.

 Sponsored by:

February 1

Robin Farwell Gavin, Curator, MoSCA

Behind Closed Doors: Domestic Architecture and Art of Colonial New Mexico

Early Anglo-American accounts of homes in New Mexico were typically derogatory and critical, citing poverty as the reason for the building materials and the lack of furniture and furnishings. However, colonial scholars have shown that what these visitors were commenting upon were cultural differences rather than economic ones. This presentation will give an overview of domestic architecture in colonial New Mexico and will discuss the interior furnishings of a colonial home as well as the reasons and sources for the choices of furnishings.

February 15

Maurice Dixon, tinsmith and author

The Enduring Legacy of José María Apodaca and Higenio V. Gonzales: Innovative Masters of Hojalateria in the 19th Century

This presentation will be an overview of

 the original and innovative character of tinworks created by José María Apodaca and Higenio Gonzales with a discussion of their influence on tinsmithing and decorative design in the 20th c as their legacy continues to influence the present generation of tinsmiths.

Maurice Dixon is a studio artist, former tinsmith, antiquarian, collector and consultant with a specialized interest in New Mexican art and architecture of the 18th and 19th centuries. He was co-author of the seminal study on New Mexican tinwork, Tinwork in New Mexico, 1840-1940, and more recently authored an in-depth study of a single New Mexican tinsmith: The Artistic Odyssey of Higinio V. Gonzales, A Poet and Tinsmith in Territorial New Mexico. The book was deemed the 2016 Best New Mexico Book by the Arizona-New Mexico book awards and was also the recipient of the Cultural Preservation award from the City of Santa Fe Division of Hisotric Preservation. He served as Guest Curator for the Albuquerque Museum exhibit, The Artistic Odyssey of Higinio V. Gonzales, in 2015-2016.

March 1

Rob Martínez, Assistant State Historian

Sacramental Lives of Indios, Castas, and Españoles in the Indies

In this presentation, Assistant State Historian Rob Martínez will show what Catholic priests looked for when administering sacraments in colonies such as New Mexico in the 1700s, such as baptism and marriage, as well as the types of obstacles faced in such places. What those rituals looked like will be examined, along with descriptions of what a priest should do when encountering esoteric behaviors, such as love magic and sorcery.

March 15

Peter E. López, Master Santero and author

The Life and Mural Art of Edward O'Brien

Spanish Market artist Peter López will present a slide lecture about the mural art of Edward O'Brien who worked in New Mexico from 1960-1975.   A native of Pittsburgh, O'Brien began painting murals on public buildings in the 1930s. O'Brien's work was profoundly influenced by a 1959 visit to Mexico and the Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe where he viewed the Virgin's image on the tilma of San Juan Diego. Thereafter, religion and spirituality were present in many of his murals, including those at St. Catherine's Indian School and Loretto Academy in Santa Fe. In the early 1970s, he was invited by Yogi Bhajan, head of the western Sikh community, to paint a mural for the Golden Temple in Amritsar, India. This lecture will focus on six of his murals and the influences on their creation. 

Peter López was born in the rural town of Las Vegas, New Mexico in 1940.  He has a BA in art education from the University of New Mexico.  López has been an artist at the Spanish Colonial Arts Society Spanish Market for more than two decades.  He is the author of Edward O'Brien Mural Artist 1910-1975 (Sunstone Press, 2013).  Peter lives in Montezuma in San Miguel County in the Sangre de Cristo Mountains.