Cochiti Pueblo artist Virgil Ortiz releases a new book—and gets named a Living Treasure
When asked what it feels like to release a new book and attain the 2022 Living Treasure award from the Museum of Indian Arts and Culture back-to-back, Cochiti Pueblo artist Virgil Ortiz says, “I was kind of shy at first because I’m an introvert, but to be able to have the honor and a little bit of a stage to talk about our history and educate the world about the 1680 Pueblo Revolt—to explain to people exactly what my art means—means a lot.”
Ortiz’s new book, Virgil Ortiz: reVOlution is a stunning piece designed by Ortiz himself in conjunction with the Museum of New Mexico Press and author and pottery collector/expert Charles S. King. Throughout the tome, Ortiz’s commitment to mastering myriad mediums—from the pottery and ceramics for which he’s known, to fashion, film, digital design and much more—shines in full force through gorgeous photography, charming prose and page after page of material. Ortiz’s glass work was also featured during MIAC’s Clearly Indigenous show, and he’ll be at Collected Works Bookstore and Coffeehouse this week signing the newly released reVOlution and talkin’ art.
“My mission is to both make sure the world knows about the Revolt and making sure the methods, materials and traditional artworks from Cochiti stay alive,” Ortiz tells SFR. “I’ve done it since I was a kid. I was taught to make work as a storyteller. I know this is what I was meant to do.”
Ortiz cites a trip to famed collector Robert Gallegos’ Albuquerque showroom in his teens that showed him he was on the right track.
“When I was 16 or 17, my style changed a lot, and my family knew I was experimenting and supported me; Robert asked me to bring some of my work down,” Ortiz recalls. “I had never visited before, but the second I walked in I just about flipped out—he had one of the largest collections of Cochiti pottery, some of it very old, and what I was experimenting on looked exactly like them without my ever studying it. My parents said, ‘The clay is speaking to you.’” (Alex De Vore)
Virgil Ortiz Book Signing: 6 pm Tuesday, Nov. 30. Free. Collected Works Bookstore and Coffeehouse, 202 Galisteo St., (505) 988-4226
All the Pretty Lights
Even the most Grinched-out among us has to admit there’s something really nice about the Plaza at Christmastime. This year, the city lights up the twinkling bonanza the very day after Thanksgiving—obviously—and the gathering to celebrate the next however-many-months of luminous colors includes a hot cocoa, live music and a visit from freaking Santa Claus (at 5 pm). Look, we all know Christmas can be a gross consumerist wasteland, but after the way the world’s gone since last year, doesn’t it sound nice to stand 6 feet away from people, drink something hot and whisper something to your loved one(s) about how it’s just a nice way to spend an evening? Yes it does. Yes it does. Lights go live at 6:15 pm. (ADV)
Plaza Holiday Lightning: 3:30 pm Friday, Nov. 26. Free. Santa Fe Plaza, 100 Old Santa Fe Trail
Thump With It
Somebody once told us the real secret to electronic music is less in the specific music itself, and more in how the rhythmic beats can transport listeners to a more spiritual plane of existence. We can get with that (plus, this isn’t 2005 when cracking wise about house, techno or drum & bass was funny) and it’s a good chunk of why we’re recommending the upcoming Sound Therapy event at the Leaf & Hive Brew Lab. Find DJs 1042, Matt Sensi, Nothing, Cody Jay and Madmoun coming together to usher in that winter-based transportation to the aforementioned spiritual plane. Plus, find those delicious honey-based alcoholic bevvies on tap. (ADV)
Sound Therapy: 8 pm Saturday, Nov. 27. $10. Leaf & Hive Brew Lab, 1208 Mercantile Road Ste. A, (505) 699-3055
Come On Already
You don’t have to be a sports fan to know the US Women’s National Soccer Team is better than the men’s, with a record-setting four World Cup wins compared to zero. But, naturally, they’re paid less—even two years after players filed a lawsuit alleging gender discrimination. The Lensic hosts a free screening of LFG (short for “Let’s fucking go!”), a documentary released in June by HBO Max that explores the team’s fight for equal pay, followed by a panel discussion about gender equity and policies. Scheduled speakers include state Rep. Christine Chandler, D—Los Alamos, who sponsored a paid family and medical leave bill during the last legislative session. (Bella Davis)
LFG Screening and Panel Discussion: 7 pm Wednesday, Dec. 1. Free. Lensic Performing Arts Center, 211 W San Francisco St., (505) 988-1234