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NMSU to showcase retablo collection in exhibit opening Sept. 30


The NMSU Art Museum (UAM) will open Contemporary Ex-Votos: Devotion Beyond Medium, the first exhibition to pair 19th- and 20th- century retablos from the NMSU permanent art collection with new works by contemporary Latinx artists, the museum said in a news release.

An opening reception is at 5:30 p.m. Sept. 30 at UAM, 1308 E. University Ave., in Devasthali Hall at the intersection of University Avenue and Solano Drive.

Admission to all programming is free and open to the public.

UAM houses the largest collection of Mexican retablos in the United States.

The exhibition “sheds light on the understudied iconographic and ideological aspects of ex-votos, a type of retablo (small devotional painting) depicting miracles painted on tin and found materials,” UAM said.

It “demonstrates the important place retablos hold in the history of the Americas; it recontextualizes studies of contemporary devotion in Latin America and the U.S. by commissioning artists to research the retablo collection.”

The exhibit is guest curated by Emmanuel Ortega, Ph.D., the Marilynn Thoma Scholar and assistant professor in art of the Spanish Americas at the University of Illinois at Chicago. Ortega will conduct a walk-through of the exhibition Saturday, Oct. 1.

Emergent Latinx artists selected by Ortega will “undertake a dialogue between historic and new works allowing us to make sense of ex-votos beyond ethnographic and artistic hierarchies.” Ortega said.

The exhibit will include an installation by Chicago-based artist Yvette Mayorga of a “Pink Chapel” using her signature sculptural ceramic piping method and “frosted” found objects resembling French Rococo votive offerings, UAM said.

Also in the show, Mexican-based artist Francisco Guevara will present 28 panels made with pre-Columbian pigments and colonial artistic techniques to form a large-scale installation.

Also featured will be Guadalupe Maravilla’s collaborative works with Mexico City-based ex-voto artist Daniel Vilchis. Four generations of the Vilchis family have been producing ex-votos for more than 50 years, UAM said.

The exhibit also includes educational videos and community programming: a virtual lecture by Guevara, a speaker’s panel titled “Curatorial Practices in the Borderlands” and a screening of the film Nazarín with Emmanuel Ramos-Barajas of Borderless Cultures. Youth programming will include a series of OutsmART programs with a local artist that explore physical and digital collage using ex-voto iconography. The exhibition will also include a commissioned video from Unsettling Journeys, an art historical educational YouTube channel dedicated to uncovering the histories that have shaped Mexican, Latin American and Latinx identities.

Visit uam.nmsu.edu.

‘Joey Fauerso: Wait for it” continues at NMSU Art Museum

These exhibitions continue through Sept. 2 at the NMSU Art Museum:

  • “Joey Fauerso: Wait for It,” a solo exhibition featuring the work of San Antonio-based artist Joey Fauerso. “Employing techniques that upend traditional modes of art-making, Fauerso’s work opens onto questions of identity, gender and representation,” UAM said. The exhibition includes recent artwork by Fauerso along with a poem and essay by 2017 Texas Poet Laureate Jenny Browne.
  • “(ir)regular evolution: New Works by Rachel Stevens.” The exhibition features all new works in clay by NMSU Department of Art emeritus professor Rachel Stevens. “These pieces mark a radical shift in Stevens’ practice from large-scale monochromatic metal installations to multicolored biomorphic ceramic sculptures,” the museum said.
  • “Carissa Samaniego: Pray for Rain,” featuring recent works by Carissa Samaniego, who will join the NMSU Department of Art as visiting professor of sculpture in the fall of 2022. The selections are from three of the artist’s ongoing projects: the Querencia textile series, Block Pattern Halo drawings and Americaña research. Through experimentation with varied materials and alternate methodologies, Samaniego explores the cultural histories and socio-political issues of life in the Rio Grande Valley, UAM said.

UAM, 1308 E. University Ave., is open 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Tuesday-Saturday.

Contact UAM at 575-646-2545 and artmuseum@nmsu.edu.

 Visit uam.nmsu.edu.

NMSU Art Museum