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Sixty Artists From Across New Mexico, California, and Texas Converge in Albuquerque for a Four-Venue Exhibition and Artist Exchange

Exhibition reveals the impact of place in shaping the identity and practice of artists working in landscapes with deeply shared histories.

July 29, 2022 - Four Albuquerque art galleries, including El Chante: Casa de Cultura, Exhibit/208, Tortuga Gallery, and South Broadway Cultural Center, will host Son de Allá y Son de Acá / They are from there, and they are from here, the second phase of a two-part artist exchange facilitated by local Albuquerque artist Vicente Telles.

The initial planning for the two-phase artist exhibition began in early 2021. The first exhibition opened at Presa House Gallery in April 2022 as a three-person exhibition featuring Ricardo Islas, Brandon Maldonado, and Vicente Telles, titled Crossing Borders: Tres de Oeste. The newest exhibit brings together 60 participating artists representing New Mexico, Texas, California, Arizona, and Colorado.

The opening receptions for the first three exhibitions will be held on First Friday, August 5, 2022, beginning at 4 p.m. at Tortuga Gallery and at 5 p.m. at El Chante: Casa de Cultura and South Broadway Cultural Center. A live performance by multidisciplinary artist Jose Villalobos will take place at 7 p.m. at South Broadway Cultural Center. The fourth and final exhibition will open on Friday, August 12, at Exhibit/208, beginning at 5 p.m.

Son de Allá y Son de Acá is organized and co-curated by Albuquerque artist Vicente Telles; San Diego, Calif. artist Ricardo Islas; and Rigoberto Luna, director and curator at Presa House Gallery in San Antonio, Texas.

The project aims to bridge art communities, create awareness of new voices, foster communication, increase opportunities, and expand the understanding socially, culturally, and historically between artists across state borders.

"This gathering of artists aims to bring awareness to the brown and POC creatives living and working in New Mexico that are often underrepresented and marginalized," said Telles. "There's a void of brown and POC contemporary art—a chasm in New Mexico. This exhibit highlights New Mexico artists in solidarity with makers from across the Southwest in communities that have experienced similar issues. The voices of these creative thinkers need to be shared, amplified, witnessed, and valued, and I feel very fortunate to be in a position to welcome these artists to my hometown."

Luna said, "I'm honored to help coordinate this cross-border exchange. The states of the southwestern US share many historical and socio-political ties predating the Spanish conquest to current complexities at the US-Mexico border. It's exciting to bring together artists who, in many ways, are reflecting on similar concerns, past traumas, and new ideologies to paint a fuller picture of themselves as individuals while educating us about who we are as a region and as a people."

Islas added, "I hope the exhibition will open up a dialogue between artists from different cities and states, potentially giving artists the ability to show out of their home states. We can make a more significant impact if we work together."

The artists participating are emerging and well-established artists in their respective states working in drawing, painting, photography, printmaking, fiber, action figures, sculpture, and performance. This exhibition reveals the impact of place in shaping the identity and practice of artists working in landscapes with deeply shared histories and, at the same time, uncovering the common threads and examining the similarities of parallel histories, cultures, heritage.

About the organizers & curators:

Ricardo Islas was born and raised in Calexico, Calif. which is 120 miles East of San Diego, on the border of Mexico. Islas moved to San Diego in 1991 where he has been painting for the last 22 years. His work deals with themes of Mexican and Chicano working-class cultures and social issues that span two countries.

Rigoberto Luna is a native of San Antonio, Texas and co-founder and director of Presa House Gallery. Luna has curated numerous exhibitions heavily focused and advocating for Latinx artists living and working in Central and South Texas. In 2021, Luna served as the curatorial assistant and exhibitions coordinator for the Texas Biennial and as a selection panelist for the 2022 Art League Houston Texas Artist of the Year.

Vicente Telles was born and raised in Albuquerque. He is a Santero (painter of saints) and cultural iconographer driven by the desire to honor the culture of his native New Mexico. To Telles, being a Santero and cultural iconographer means being a teacher, a student, an observer, and a maker of the contemporary doing his part to keep his heritage and centuries of tradition alive and thriving.

Host galleries:

Tortuga Gallery | 901 Edith Blvd. SE, Albuquerque, NM 87102
Opening reception: August 5, 2022 | 4-8 p.m. (on view August 5-27, 2022)

El Chante: Casa de Cultura | 804 Park Ave. SW, Albuquerque, NM 87102
Opening reception: August 5, 2022 | 5-8 p.m. (on view August 5-27, 2022)

South Broadway Cultural Center | 1025 Broadway Blvd. SE, Albuquerque, NM 87102
Opening reception: August 5, 2022 | 5-8 p.m. with live performance by Jose Villalobos at 7 p.m. (on view August 5-September 29, 2022)

Exhibit/208 | 208 Broadway Blvd. SE, Albuquerque, NM 87102
Opening Reception: August 12, 2022 | 5-8 p.m. (on view: August 12- September 3, 2022)

A version of Son de Allá y Son de Acá will travel to Hecho Gallery in Santa Fe from September 2-22, 2022 with an opening reception on September 2 from 5-7 p.m.