‘Juntos’ to showcase sculptures by UNM art students
These days, what could be better than a free event in a historic place?
On Saturday, April 9 and Sunday, April 10, the University of New Mexico Sculpture Program and the Corrales Historical Society are collaborating to present “Juntos.”
The event is an exhibition of works created by UNM Sculpture students from Professor Randall Wilson’s Beginner and Advanced Sculpture Courses and will be displayed in the historic Old Town Church of San Ysidro in Corrales.
“Creative work exhibits both fine art canons and functional potential as identifiers of beauty and its role in art as design (and) design as art”, Wilson said. “A powerful foray into the value found in the community, doing with its presentation of the sculpture inside a gathering place – a historic building, the Old San Ysidro Church in Corrales.”
The students present sculptures made as part of a study program developing the potential for individual expression in three studio works which are figures, constructions and birdbaths. The works are made of wood, poured concrete, steel and papier-mâché.
“One of the projects is looking at the architecture itself, and we’ll be working with the idea of viga and crow in an abstract way,” Wilson said. “I have the advanced class in concrete pouring, so we’re working on birdbath design, but again, that’s also a bit of an architectural thing.”
Although not finished, the birdbaths are preparing for some interesting characters.
“They’re almost done, but what I see are some interesting shapes,” said Carol Rigmark, visual arts coordinator at the Corrales Historical Society. “They’re quite contemporary and interpretative and I think sculpture is a medium that can really lend itself to that.”
For Wilson, this exhibit is about educating the public.
“I think it’s about learning something about the people because they’re the sons and daughters of New Mexico,” Wilson said. “So the public has a responsibility to maybe look into the work and they find it interesting, that’s fine and if not, that’s OK, but there will be something for everyone, I believe, because figurative work.
Wilson has been a professor at UNM since 2012, having taught in California since the 1980s.
“One of the things I think I brought to school was the idea of art and function, coming together as a kind of fusion of disciplines instead of separation,” Wilson said. . “I moved here nine years ago from Los Angeles, and have taught both design and architecture for over 20 years, including at SCI-Arc in Southern California, and have taught at the Pasadena Art Center.”
“The Old Church is an incredible environment that illustrates the value of sculpture and its historical significance in New Mexico,” Wilson said.
The Corrales Historical Society is a non-profit organization that promotes a greater appreciation of the traditions and stories of the centuries-old community of Corrales and its inhabitants of today and the past. The mission also serves to support the CHS in the preservation, maintenance and promotion of the historic old church of San Ysidro.
The church is 154 years old and was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1980 and is also listed on the New Mexico Cultural Property Register.
“We are very fortunate to have the opportunity to exhibit in the old church in a few weeks time,” Wilson said.
Despite its age, it has remained in fairly good condition.
“It’s a beautiful building and you know it’s 154 years old now, but it’s just its simplicity and the feeling you get walking around or sitting in it,” Rigmark said. “It’s so representative, to me, of what New Mexico was and continues to be and it’s well maintained.”
Sun and Fire food vendors from Jemez Pueblo provide food with Native American roots during the two days of the show. Breakfast and lunch are served with Frito pies, burritos, chili stew with Pueblo bread, enchilada plates, and more.
“One of the reasons people will have a good time is because we provide food,” Rigmark said. “But it can also be a kind of social event, so we’ll be setting up tables for people to hang around and socialize as well.”