New Tech, New Medium

Santa Fe artist uses 3-D printing to create unique, lively landscapes

Paint and canvas have been the preeminent painters’ mediums for millennia. But after relatively recent developments in 3-D printing tech, which uses machines and plastics (robots, basically) to create just about anything we can imagine, a new way to make and create is making an impact on the art world. Tom McGee, a New Mexico-based experimental landscape artist, has embraced this technology to create vivid, textured depictions of the landscapes of the Southwest, some of which he shows this month at 7 Arts Gallery.
“I’m working back and forth between more abstraction and more representation,” he tells SFR. “I’m trying to communicate the wonderful dance between light and life that we experience in New Mexico. The movement that life itself creates is what I play with in all my work.”
The impact of 3-D printing on his paintings is both obvious and profound. McGee uses layers of acrylic and color composition to transform paintings into works that are abstract in color but semi-realistic in dimension and representation. Familiar Southwestern landscapes such as Chimney Rock in Abiquiú or San Miguel Chapel here in town come to life with depth through innovative incorporation of technology. Other works, like the “Light Behind the Sun,” use movement to illustrate the way light and landscape affect the famously brilliant sunsets in New Mexico. While not strict depictions, they convey the meaning and power of the New Mexican landscapes and iconic landmarks.
“It was the next layer of experimentation,” McGee explains. “What happens if I make it solid once again? I have [a] background in architecture. I follow 3-D printing and didn’t see anywhere that painters are messing with it. I thought it would be fun to see what could be done. Is this a different way of approaching it?”

For one to truly understand and experience this innovative type of art, a visit to 7 Arts Gallery is warranted. A picture simply can’t do McGee’s works justice, so. Attendees can don 3-D glasses  at the opening to fully bring out the depth of the pieces. In addition, other artists, many of whom McGee says inspired him, are on display in the gallery. (Layne Radlauer)

Tom McGee: Landscapes Reimagined: 
5 pm Friday April 5. Free. Through April 30.
7 Arts Gallery,
125 Lincoln Ave.,

Something Fishy

Courtesy IAIA

If there's one thing you can count on fly-fisher-folk for, it's painstaking levels of patience. But it goes deeper, too, because when it comes to the artistry of tying the flies used for attracting them little fishies, they're not messing around. Master fisherman Norman Maktima, meanwhile, is the best of the best, and you'll find him at the IAIA Museum of Contemporary Arts this week, imparting skillz, dropping knowledge and opening up everyone's idea of how fun it can be to stand motionlessly in a river wearing rubber pants. We kid, we kid—Maktima's flies are gorgeous, and anyone who's hoping to up their game can learn a lot. Space is limited, so register ahead of time at (Alex De Vore)

Norman Maktima: The Art and Aesthetics of Flies: 
1-2:30 pm Thursday April 4. $5.
IAIA Museum of Contemporary Native Arts,
108 Cathedral Place,

If You Can Hack it, They Can Tack it

SFR File Photo

Full disclosure: I worked as the desk guy at Four Star Tattoo about a million years ago, just so I could be ensconced in that world. And the things I learned about owner/tattooer Mark Vigil's talent, work ethic and drive have been things I carry to this day. These qualities speak volumes about how Four Star has managed to stay open so long, how it's won SFR's Best of Santa Fe poll more years than not and how almost anytime anyone asks a local where that killer piece was done, the answer is Four Star. Saturday April 6 is the celebration of the 20-year mark, and Vigil and company plan to celebrate with special $20 flash pieces all day, the proceeds from which go to benefit The Food Depot. To seasoned vets and newcomers and all points in between, we offer this advice: Go get cut. (Alex De Vore)

Four Star Tattoo 20th Anniversary: 
Noon-6 pm Saturday April 6. Free.
825 Topeka St.,

She Shreds

Courtesy Sheverb

Ummm … why didn't anyone tell us about Austin, Texas-based band Sheverb? The twangy guitars, the surfy and punky elements that bubble up from the country-rock foundation? Nothing? Alright, word, well we'll just tell you—and you'e gotta believe us when we say they're killer. We're reminded of Dead Milkmen, maybe a little bit of Quasi, a pinch of recently departed Dick Dale (or maybe we're thinking of Link Wray?) and, weirdly in places, Nirvana—at least so far as the burning passion goes. Seriously, though, look 'em up on YouTube, become a superfan, find yourself in Madrid come Monday and have yourself a reverb-heavy good time. (ADV)

7 pm Monday April 8. Free.
Mine Shaft Tavern,
284 Hwy. 14, Madrid,