1 Ride with the rodeo.
Charreada, a new exhibition opening Friday at Las Cruces’s Branigan Cultural Center, features 15 images by photographer Mel Stone. The 79-year-old worked for years as a television photographer before moving to Las Cruces, where he bought an old adobe home. When he heard there was a Mexican rodeo in nearby Canutillo, Texas, he had to make the trip.
Made in 2018 and 2019, the photographs capture the spirit of the tradition. “Mexican rodeo arenas are round,” Stone says. “They are so colorful. The women wear ornate dresses and ride sidesaddle to do their maneuvers. The men spend a lot of effort becoming fancy ropers, learning fancy loops.”
Some of the images included in the exhibit, which runs through April 23, were selected by LensWork Magazine for its book series Seeing in Sixes. During an artist talk on February 11, Stone will show more images from the series and talk about the sights and sounds of the Mexican rodeo.
2 Go to the movies.
Grab your popcorn and Jujubes. The 22nd annual Santa Fe Film Festival kicks off this weekend with a series of screenings, panels, and workshops. The 10-day festival selected 167 independent films from more than 500 submissions from 36 countries, and features appearances by filmmakers from Iran, Vietnam, and Mexico.
“Film festivals have always been a vehicle for bringing important cultural issues to the forefront,” says Stephanie Piché, director of the Santa Fe Film Festival. “Independent film is a way for filmmakers to create stories that are important to them. Showcasing them at festivals gives them access to audiences along with distribution agents to monetize their films.”
With the festival’s hybrid format, you can attend in person at Jean Cocteau Cinema, Center for Contemporary Arts, and Scottish Rite Theater or stream more than 150 films from home ($50). (In-person events require masks and proof of vaccination, including a booster.)
3 Take an artsy tour.
Lithography reigns at the Tamarind Institute, in Albuquerque, which has been dedicated to printmaking since its inception in 1960. After moving to New Mexico from Los Angeles in 1970 and becoming a part of the University of New Mexico’s College of Fine Arts, it now operates as a nonprofit which offers the only training of its kind and caliber in the world. The institute also houses incredible printmaking technology and exhibits its collaborations with an all-star lineup of contemporary artists in its gallery. Tour the Tamarind Institute Friday at 1:30 p.m. for a printing demonstration, guided walk-through of the facility, and a new exhibit, Migration of Spirits, featuring works by Maja Ruznic. Preregistration is required.
4 Warm up with wine.
A love of food, wine, and snow combine to create the Taos Winter Wine Festival, a four-day extravaganza held throughout Taos. With 30 wineries, including New Mexico’s Vara, Oregon’s Belle Pente, and California’s Flowers Vineyards & Winery, and local restaurants such as Love Apple and Aceq participating, the annual event includes wine dinners, seminars, tastings, chef’s luncheons, and après ski mixers at Taos Ski Valley. Try pinot noirs and chardonnays from California during an après ski event on Friday, or sip rosé, bubbly, and chilled red varieties on Saturday during an alfresco luncheon on the mountain. (Proof of vaccination or a negative Covid-19 test is required.)
5 Dance with an Indigenous duo.
The Albuquerque Museum hosts a special collaborative performance featuring composer and artist Raven Chacon (Diné) and New Mexico activist and artist Cannupa Hanska Luger (Mandan, Hidatsa, Arikara, Lakota) on Saturday at 2 p.m. The duo will perform an improvised live set beneath Hanska Luger’s Future Technologies, a tepee-inspired installation that hangs from the museum’s ceiling. Both will play handmade instruments and Hanska Luger will dance in time with the composition. The show is included in the price of admission to the museum, so pop around and visit Indelible Blue: Indigo Across the Globe while you’re there.