Chimayo and Ghost Ranch

April 12th, 2019

Be sure to visit with me at these two Meet and Greet events:

Book Signing –  April 12th from 2:00 – 3:30 PM
Op Cit Books
157 Paseo de Peralta
Santa Fe, New Mexico
In the De Varges Center

Meet and Greet – April 12th from 5:30 – 8:00 PM
Las Vegas, NM Arts Council Gallery
140 Bridge Street
Las Vegas, New Mexico

North and west of old Santa Fe, there are two places that for me, were must see destinations. The first, El Santuario de Chimayo, The Chimayo Sanctuary was a small chapel built on pasture land (El Portrero Chimayo) in the early 1800s. By 1816, the current structure, a Roman Catholic church, had been built. It has since become a pilgrimage site.  Don Bernardo Abeyta owned the land where the original chapel was located and where the church stands today. He was a member of a penitent society and devoted to the Christ of Esquipulas, a pilgrimage site in Guatemala where the soil is said to have healing powers.  It was reported that the soil in the vicinity of the Chimayo sanctuary was reputed to have healing powers as well. That is the reason that the sanctuary has become a contemporary pilgrimage destination. The old church most certainly has aesthetic healing powers in it’s simplistic beauty.

Chimayo Gate

Georgia O’Keeffe is legendary as an artist and through her associations with other great artists. Her presence in this part of New Mexico is present in both the buildings where she lived and worked and in the landscape that figures in so many of her paintings. That being said, Abiquiu and Ghost Ranch were not accessible in ways I would have preferred. There is, of course, a museum dedicated to her in Abiquiu, but Ghost Ranch, where she lived and worked for so long, is a retreat center today. The operators do not allow the public near her home without being part of an organized tour. I hate organized tours. As a consequence, I never saw her home. What I did see was the land that she shaped into her art in so many ways. I felt the inspiration from where she walked and what she also saw and was inspired by. For me, that was enough.

Ghost Ranch Drapery
Ghost Ranch Wagon

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