Spencer Beckwith On The Arts Spencer Beckwith covers the performing arts in Northern and Central New Mexico for KUNM.
Spencer Beckwith On The Arts

Spencer Beckwith On The Arts


Spencer Beckwith covers the performing arts in Northern and Central New Mexico for KUNM.

Most Recent Episodes

The Genesis Of The Psychedelic Rock Poster

In the early years, rock 'n' roll posters were pretty basic — large legible print, studio photos of the performers and one or two primary colors as accent. In the 1960s, responding to changes in music and society, there was an explosion of new ideas about what a rock poster could be. An outstanding collection of these posters, Dreams Unreal , is on display through April 12 at the Albuquerque Museum.

An Art Studio For Albuquerque's Homeless

Over 500 people crowded into Albuquerque's Harwood Art Center last year for the opening of Recycled Heart , an exhibit of artwork made from cast-off objects. The proceeds from that night's sales, over $3,000, went directly to the artists, many of whom lived on the streets. That annual exhibit is back this month, presented by ArtStreet, the community art studio of Albuquerque Health Care for the Homeless . Barbara Jensen, who runs ArtStreet, explains how this open studio provides AHCH with "a

A Basketball Season On The Navajo Nation

Covering Super Bowl XLIX in Phoenix a few years ago, New York Times journalist Michael Powell , disheartened by the commercialism of the big game, drove north into Navajo country to spend time with a community known for its love of basketball. He ultimately spent six months with the Chinle High School Wildcats as they pursued a state championship. The result is his book, Canyon Dreams: A Basketball Season on the Navajo Nation . "Basketball is a passion play there. In a town of 3,000, " Powell

Joining Forces To Preserve An Historic 18th Century Plaza

Towns in 18th Century New Mexico were built as enclosures. Outside adobe walls were windowless and doorless, facing inward were homes and a place of worship, and at the center was a plaza. New Mexico's last such remaining structure is the timeworn but largely intact Plaza Del Cerro in Chimayo. In 2017, hoping to save this historic place, the Chimayo Cultural Preservation Association teamed up the Santa Fe non-profit Cornerstones Community Partnerships . Cornerstones Director Jake Barrow spoke

Award-Winning Composer Premieres New Work At UNM's Robb Symposium

The Grawemeyer Award is the world's top honor for musical composition. Recipients include John Adams, Pierre Boulez, Esa-Pekka Salonen and John Corigliano. This year the Grawemeyer went to Chinese-born American composer Lei Liang for his orchestral work, A Thousand Mountains, A Million Streams . On February 3, Lei Liang will travel to Albuquerque to premiere a new chamber work as part of the 2020 John Donald Robb Composers' Symposium at the University of New Mexico.

UNM's Social Media Workshop Lights Up Downtown

Through December, and after sunset, the public can visit five locations in downtown Albuquerque where local artists have created light-based artworks. These temporary installations are sponsored by the City of Albuquerque's City Bright program. One of them, entitled The Game of Life and located at 114 Gold SW, was designed and built by the University of New Mexico's Social Media Workshop . This team of undergrad and grad students from a variety of departments is led by Andrea Polli , UNM

A Big New Book On Artist Gustave Baumann

Printmaking, said Gustave Baumann, "requires soul, imagination, deftness . . . and unlimited patience." A beautiful and deeply-detailed new book on Baumann reveals the painstaking process behind his sublime and seemingly evanescent views of the New Mexico landscape. In A Modern Rendering: The Color Woodcuts of Gustave Baumann is a complete record of Baumann's printed works . Author Gala Chamberlain put together this 600-page catalogue raisonné at the request of Ann Baumann, Gustave's daughter,

Los Lunas Educator and Santero Wins Governor's Award For The Arts

Nick Otero teaches art at Bosque Farms Elementary School south of Albuquerque. In his spare time he makes saints — New Mexico's traditional santos . Nick's retablos , bultos and altar screens are made using centuries-old methods of preparing pigment and carving wood panels by hand. He's been doing it since he was 16, and he's pretty good at it. This fall, at age 38, Nicolas Otero was one of six individual recipients of the prestigious New Mexico Governor's Awards for Excellence in the Arts . He

UNM Press Partners With Red Planet Books

Since its founding 90 years ago, the University of New Mexico Press has been telling stories of the American Southwest through fiction, history, poetry and scholarship. Many of those stories, of course, have dealt with Native and Indigenous cultures. UNM Press will soon start to tell those stories in a new and contemporary way, through graphic novels and non-fiction by and about Native Americans. The new series, Red Planet Books, is a collaboration with Albuquerque's Native-owned Red Planet

What My High School Friends Gifted Me

They called themselves The Chasers. Twelve young men, eleven Mexican-American, one Jewish. Tucson High School, Class of 1959. "More club than gang," they were inseparable — also cool, smart, and slightly dangerous. At a high school reunion 50 years later, the remaining Chasers spoke about what their adult lives owed to that youthful solidarity. And one of them, Renato Rosaldo , has created a poetic collage of those conversations, a new book titled The Chasers .

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