Since Nani Chacon (Diné and Xicana) completed her stunning mural, You can’t take it with you… so give it all away on the exterior of the Coe’s new Project Space, we have been quietly sharing our wealth of space with members of our creative community. We feel honored to be able to open our doors to artists who are in need of a temporary space in which to work on larger-scale projects.
Throughout the fall and winter, Erica Lord (Athabaskan/Iñupiaq) has occupied what was once warehouse space at 1590 Pacheco Street. Using this area as her studio has helped her cover a gap in workspace while she works on completing several projects for major museum exhibitions. Her current project continues her Digital DNA art series. These pieces render RNA/DNA microarray analyses or tests of diseases that disproportionately affect Native individuals and communities into unsettlingly beautiful beadwork.
Working with a crew of dedicated assistants from the Institute of American Indian Arts–Chelsea Bighorn (Assiniboine Sioux/Shoshone Paiute), Aubs Staats, and Joseph Arnoux (Piikani [Blackfeet]/Sp’q’n’i? [Spokane])–Erica has focused on transcribing the visual pattern of the microarray used to test for diphtheria into fully beaded sled dog blankets, or tuppies. These works are of particular resonance in the face of our current and ongoing pandemic.
Eliza Naranjo Morse, a collaborating artist in the Coe’s 2018 exhibition IMPRINT, needed a space to work on larger-scale paintings that could not easily fit in her home studio. She has also been working in the Project Space for the past few months. Her vibrant acrylic on canvas paintings are meditations on place, symmetry, pattern, and perspective. Eliza mentioned that it has been so meaningful to step into scale and color again and have the space and freedom to work from the heart without parameters or deadlines. From the Coe’s perspective, it is so powerful to be able to witness an artist’s process unfold.
Lastly, we were so pleased to extend our time with Nani Chacon by giving much-needed space to prep monumental surfaces for her upcoming exhibition at SITE Santa Fe. This exhibit is an opportunity for Nani to share her art with a new audience in Santa Fe. The act of opening our Project Space for such a crucial step in her artmaking, streamlining her prep, and easing her timeline is part of the simple, but the meaningful impact we hope to share with our community.
As we work in stages to expand our capacity in the Project Space, we are so pleased to share our wealth of space. If you are interested in proposing a project for the space, click here for more information.