Did you see the Santa Fe New Mexican this Thursday, October 14? We were thrilled to see Nanibah (Nani) Chacon’s mural on the Coe Center’s project space on the front page! Nani (Diné and Xicana) has been working on this vibrant mural for the past months, filling our formerly blank wall with a powerful image of generational continuity and creation.

As the first stage of her process, Nani spent time in the Coe collection. She was particularly inspired by the broad collection of baskets from across time and place and the profound continuity and connections that were found within their warps and wefts.

Out of a large handful of baskets that Nani pulled from the collection to spend time with, she honed in on two in particular. A Fancy Basket (Seneca, attrib.) from the late 19th C. [NA0905] made of ash splints and natural pigments and a Corn Basket by Elsie Stone Holiday (Diné), c. 2006, made of reed with commercial dye [NA1239] are the pieces that resonated the most with Nani’s vision for the mural.

It has been inspiring to see Nani work, literally in sun and rain, and watch the image coming to life. Nani’s conversation between the baskets from the Coe and the very surface of the wall connects past, present, and future—of the Coe and of our communities at large. Come by the Coe to see as the process continues!




Below is a slideshow showing the work come to life…and it is still on its journey! Check back soon to see the final piece.




This mural was generously supported by Gerald G. Stiebel, Coe/Wixom Family,  Blue Rain Gallery, Manitou Gallery, Elmore Art Appraisals, and Kenneth Johnson Studio.