Sept. 23, 2017
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Courtesy Peters Projects

The Golden Age of Meadow Festivals

Rendezvous a-go-go

July 5, 2017, 12:00 am

The canvas is a magical place where reality and imagination meet to create worlds we wish we could walk right into. In the works of Kent Monkman, a realist painter whose works in the upcoming exhibit, The Rendezvous, at Peters Projects, represent Bacchae-like scenes from historical trading festivals that happened in the Rocky Mountains.

The 19th-century gatherings were utopian meetings where mountain men, fur trappers and Native people met to trade, drink, dance, make music and make love while reveling in the glory of a late-spring mountain bloom. “The paintings ended up having quite an exuberant and celebratory quality,” Monkman says.

There’s a lot of nudity and beauty in this fantastical realism: In one painting, a woman lays in a white-capped cowboy’s lap, arrows splaying out of her bare chest and surrounded by face-painted Indians in headdresses. The color palate is rich and classic, featuring a deep blue sky that compliments the woman’s billowing cerulean skirt—and even though the gal is obviously in a bad way, it’s a serene moment.

Inspiration to create these works hit Monkman when he saw drawings by artist Alfred Jacob Miller (1810-1874), who attended one of these debaucherous festivals. The series borrows stylistically from Baroque paintings by the likes of Nicolas Poussin, though displaying Western characters and settings through an artistically historic lens. “These gatherings were very much about living on the edge,” Monkman says. “People gathered, they traded, they drank whiskey, they coupled. … All kinds of things happened. They were kind of like these wild rebels.”

Monkman reinterprets the rebellious nature of this historic crowd in modern terms throughout these works. “I wanted to put the focus on gender. Gender, now, is kind of the new frontier, in terms of how society is struggling to come to terms with trans people,” Monkman says. “So, even though I am working with historic subject matter, there is kind of this theme of gender being the new frontier.” (Maria Egolf-Romero)

Kent Monkman: The Rendezvous Opening Reception
5 pm Friday July 7. Free.
Peters Projects,
1011 Paseo de Peralta,

How to Stick Out

Courtesy The Protruders

Recapture the magic of explosive lo-fi punk rock a la Dead Kennedys or The Stooges with Toronto’s The Protruders, a veritable time machine to a simpler time of fuzzed-out garage-pop punk riffs and throwback charm. Are they loud and angry and abrasive? You bet! But in this anger lies catharsis and, if we’re lucky, a subtle reminder that radio pop sucks huge and there’s still a lot to be said for fast-paced, poorly produced punk from a bunch of hotheads who may wear their influences on their collective sleeve, but still know how to innovate in just the right ways. (Alex De Vore)

The Protruders with Speck and Weedrat:
7 pm Wednesday July 5. $5-$10.
Zephyr Community Art Studio,
1502 Center Drive, Ste. 2

Stop and Smell the Flowers

Courtesy Purple Adobe Lavender Farm
Head out up to Abiquiú for the eighth annual Lavender in the Valley Festival at the Purple Adobe Lavender Farm. This two-day celebration of the fabled purple flower will include food from Cowgirl BBQ and the Lavender Tea House, live music and dancing. Artist showcases, farm tours, lavender hand treatments—there’s something here for everyone. This year’s festivities, which fall under the theme of Country and Western Down on the Lavender Farm, also include the brand-new u-pick field where guests can pick their own lavender. So don your finest 10-gallon hat and cowboy boots and bask in the beauty of Northern New Mexico, lavender-style. (Lauren Thompson)

8th Annual Lavender in the Valley Festival:
10 am-5 pm Saturday and Sunday, July 8 and 9. $5.
Purple Adobe Lavender Farm,
Private Road 1622 between mile markers 210 and 211,

Folk Activism

Luke Montalvo
Teen arts center Warehouse 21 enters the arts-as-activism sphere with a slew of impressive guests and artists, plus some pretty enticing workshops. Join creators like Rose B Simpson, Juan Carlos Cucalon, David Sloan and Hakim Bellamy for micro-events in poetry, photography, silkscreening, visual arts and much more, all while exploring the long-standing org’s physical space and reminding yourself why it’s important for the youth to have access to affordable cultural opportunities. The basic idea is to engage and raise awareness through art during difficult times, and we can all pretty much agree that’s worthwhile now in a pretty major way. (ADV)

Folk Arts and Activism:
Workshops: 10 am-4:30 pm; Public reception: 5 pm Tuesday July 11. Free.
Warehouse 21,
1614 Paseo de Peralta,


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