Santa Fe studio tours and more…

Local artists open their studios once a year to visitors. Here’s a calendar of Santa Fe studio tours as well as Northern New Mexico ones held each year. Check before you go as things can change. Our Tuesday feature, Tidbits, will provide current information when possible.

Artists have long been attracted to Santa Fe and Northern New Mexico for its magic, the light, the sunsets, the unusual landscape and more. Each artist has their own reason for choosing to live and work here.

Some areas that seem to attract artists and some of these have banded together to offer annual studio tours featuring the artists living and working in that locale. You’ll find a range of artistic and artisanal mediums represented in each show. Tours start in May and continue through June, followed by a summer hiatus. Santa Fe’s summer art calendar is full of shows, annual markets and fairs. That’s where many local artists focus their energies during that time of year. When things slow down a bit in September, the studio tours resume.

Northern New Mexico studio tours are held on weekends; each has a distinct flavor and they all offer rare opportunities to meet the artists in their creative environments. Some artists bring their work to others’ studios or central display locations. Most tours offer refreshments for sale at a specified location.

Here’s the schedule and a bit about each distinctive tour. Many of the tours have preview parties where artists mix with patrons, enjoying food and good conversation. Check each tour’s websites for the current dates, times and other information. Sometimes, websites haven’t been updated for the next studio tour. It that’s the case, call the presenting group for up-to-date information.

Northern New Mexico Studio Tour

“Our Lady of Light”, Sue Hayden Von Conta, photo/courtesy Eldorado Studio Tour

Northern New Mexico studio tours:
Eldorado Studio Tour is always on the weekend after Mother’s Day. This vibrant community southeast of Santa Fe attracts a lot of artists. Over 90 take part in the annual studio tour. Mediums represented include: painting, jewelry, photography, fiber arts, doll making, pottery, stained glass, sculpture, digital art, drawings, collage, glass and woodworking. Start your tour at the Preview Gallery at the Eldorado Elementary School. Eldorado artists also present a Fall Show, which recently moved into Santa Fe. Information for both events can be found on their website.

Santa Fe Studio Tour is held at the end of June. Over 40 artists open their studios for this event. Mediums include painting (oils, watercolor, and acrylics), photography, pottery and more.

Northern New Mexico Studio Tour

“Garden Swan”, Dave Robinson, photo/courtesy Santa Fe Studio Tour

Pilar Studio Tour calls itself the “jewel box of art tours.” It’s a small show compared to others in the area, but pair your day with some of the unique places this area, about a half-hour south of Taos, has to offer.

Pojoaque River Art Tour features studios along County Road 84 in the communities of Pojoaque, Jacona, Jaconita and El Rancho. The road ends at the San Ildefonso Pueblo where some of the Pueblo’s traditional potters open their studios and welcome visitors for this event. Besides the traditional Pueblo pottery, attendees will find paintings, photography, sculpture, furniture, ironwork, weaving, jewelry, pottery and retablos. The El Rancho Community Center has refreshments and some local artists displaying their work for the weekend.

High Road Artisans, a tour that follows the High Road the Taos, takes place the last two weekends of September when the leaves on the mountains are starting to turn yellow and temperatures are still balmy. Over 60 studios from Chimayó to Vadito, (where 518 turns west toward Taos) open their doors to visitors. Besides art, there’s a bounty of traditional fall foods offered along the way.

Pecos Studio Tour features about 20 artists showing paintings, ceramics, tinwork, jewelry, wearable art and more. While you’re in the area, check out the Pecos National Historical Site (home to the archeological remains of the Pecos Pueblo). On Sundays, by reservation only, the site offers a tour of Forked Lightening Ranch, former home of movie star Greet Garson and her husband, cattle rancher Buddy Fogelson. The house is one of the first designed by architect John Gaw Meem. You can also take a ride up to the Pecos Wilderness area. The scenery is beautiful with extensive hiking trails and good fishing.

Northern New Mexico Studio Tours

“The Nativity”, straw applique, Jean Anaya Moya, photo/courtesy Galisteo Studio Tour

Madrid Cerrillos Studio Tour, another two weekend tour, includes over 20 studios showing about 30 artists. Cerrillos is an old ghost town and Madrid, a former mining town, now an art destination. Mediums represented on the tour include painting, drawing, photography, sculpture (wood, steel, stone, clay, and mixed media) jewelry, ceramics, wearable fiber art, glass, encaustic, and more.

El Rito Studio Tour, southwest of Abiquiu (former home of Georgia O’Keefe) takes you through this small hamlet with its strong local art tradition, including the Fiber Arts Department of Northern New Mexico College. Some of the mediums on display at the over 25 participating studios include traditional Spanish Colonial Art (santos, retablos and furniture) photography, blacksmithing, weaving, painting, pottery, ironwork, musical instruments, quilting and more.

Abiquiu Studio Tour (always held over Columbus Day Weekend) takes you to the heart of Georgia O’Keeffe Country. Besides art studios, visitors can also stop at a local winery/B and B and lavender farm to visit. Art mediums include painting, drawing, prints, photography, pottery, sculpture, collage, mosaic, jewelry, stained glass, silk paintings, art quilts, wearable art, textiles, weaving, tinworks, candles, furniture, rattles, crosses, retablos, santos, angels, and children’s art.

Northern New Mexico Studio Tour

Rimini Shawl, photo/courtesy Pecos Studio Tour

Galisteo Studio Tour features over 30 artists working in mediums including painting, pottery, photography to jewelry, prints, and weaving. On your way back from this picturesque hamlet southeast of Santa Fe take a detour and discover the historic town of Lamy.

Dixon Studio Tour, one of the oldest in the state, is always held the first weekend in November. Over 50 artists open their studios for the tour. Mediums represented include painting, photography, jewelry, stoneware, wearable art, herbal bath and beauty products, handmade chocolates, local wines and more. . A few of the local farms also welcome visitors for the weekend. You can also stop at La Chirapada Winery or Vivac’s tasting room. On the way back to Santa Fe, check out the Classical Gas Museum and Sugar’s BBQ, both on NM Route 68 just south of Dixon.

Northern New Mexico Studio Tours

Oil painting by artist Paul Murray, photo/courtesy La Cienega Studio Tour

La Cienega Studio Tour, always held Thanksgiving Weekend, takes you to the studios of over 30 artists to see work in a variety of mediums including painting, photography, pottery, glass, weaving, jewelry and more. Don’t miss the art demonstrations and refreshments.

There is a wealth of annual studio tours in the towns around Northern New Mexico. Have you been to any? What’s your favorite?



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