About

Contemporary Art for Everyone

516 ARTS is a nonprofit, contemporary art museum in the center of Downtown Albuquerque that celebrates thought-provoking art in the here and now. Our mission is to connect contemporary artists and diverse audiences. 516 ARTS presents relevant exhibitions and public programs, which feature a mix of local, national, and international artists and inspire curiosity, risk-taking and creative experimentation.

Founded in 2006, 516 ARTS engages with timely themes such as the environment, immigration, and the north/south axis of cultural exchange with a focus on Latin America. Our public programs include collaborations with museums and organizations around the region and beyond, public art projects, guest speakers, public forums, the 516 WORDS literary series, workshops, performances and special events. Education programs include exhibition tours for schools and community groups with curriculum support materials for teachers, youth activities, and hands-on workshops with guest artists.

In 2016, 516 ARTS was selected as a partner in the Regional Regranting Program of The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts. 516 ARTS launched the Fulcrum Fund, an annual, competitive grant program providing funding directly to artists for artist-organized activities in our region.

516 ARTS is committed to providing a dynamic, creative and inspiring space where individuals can gather to discuss, explore and learn about contemporary art and relevant issues and topics of our day. We foster inclusivity in core aspects of our exhibitions and public programming, as well as in our staffing and work environment. We strive to create experiences that are welcoming, relevant and accessible to people of diverse backgrounds. We seek to be active participants in celebrating the diversity in our community, while exploring topics such as socio-economic class, education, the environment and immigration. We continually evaluate our programming, exhibitions and staffing in relation to our goals of enhanced audience engagement and the reflection of diverse perspectives. We do not discriminate on the basis of sex, race, age, gender identity, religious affiliation or national origin and believe that our unique differences, ideas, preferences and perspectives contribute to a rich, vibrant and meaningful fabric that unites us all.

Board of Directors

GOVERNING BOARD:

  • Danny Lopez, Chair
    Arts & Culture Consultant

  • Suzanne Sbarge, President
    Founder/Executive Director, 516 ARTS

  • Mark Rohde, FAIA, Vice President,
    RMKM Architecture PC

  • Rebecca Black, Treasurer/Secretary
    Former FSO, US Government

  • Pamela Cheek
    Associate Provost for Curriculum & Assessment, University of New Mexico

  • Larry Gernon
    MD, Physician, VA Hospital & Former FSO, US Government

  • Kathleen Metzger
    Vice President, Southwest Neurosurgical Associates

  • Tim Price
    PNM Foundation

  • Lauren Tresp
    Publisher, The Magazine

  • Tonya Turner Carroll
    Co-owner, Turner Carroll Gallery

  • Dora Wang
    Author, Psychiatrist, Historian

    Scroll down for bios


ADVISORY BOARD:

  • Juan Abeyta, Education Director, Center of Southwest Culture
  • Michael Berman, Artist, Environmental Activist
  • David Campbell, Director, City of Albuquerque Planning Department
  • Mark Chavez, CEO, Lens
  • Andrew Connors, Director, Albuquerque Museum
  • Ray Dewey, Arts Supporter
  • Melinda Frame, Filmmaker, FRAME+WORK, LLC
  • Idris Goodwin, Playwright, Drector, Orator & Educator / Artistic Director, Stage One Family Theater, Louisville, KY
  • Tom Guralnick, Executive Director, Outpost Performance Space
  • Deborah Jojola, Artist
  • Jane Kennedy, Fundraising Consultant
  • Arif Khan, Director, UNM Art Museum
  • Diana K. McDonald, PhD, Art Historian
  • Brian McMath, Assistant Attorney General, NM Office of the Attorney General
  • Jenny McMath, Chief Operating Officer, Contract Associates
  • Elsa Menéndez, Performing Arts, National Hispanic Cultural Center, Executive Artistic Core, Tricklock Company
  • Marla Painter, Community Organizer
  • Andrea Polli, Artist, Professor, UNM College of Fine Arts & School of Engineering
  • Henry Rael, Program Officer, McCune Charitable Foundation
  • Mary Anne Redding, Curator, Turchin Center for Visual Arts, NC
  • Rick Rennie, Historic District Improvement Company
  • Augustine Romero, Artist, City of Albuquerque, KiMo Theatre & South Broadway Cultural Center
  • Sommer Smith, MediaDesk, Co-founder & Creative Director
  • Claire Stasiewicz, Adjunct Professor of International Management, UNM
  • Arturo Sandoval, President, VOCES, Inc. & Center of Southwest Culture
  • Rob Strell, Strell Design

​Governing Board Bios

Danny López, Board Chair
Arts & Culture Consultant
Danny López is an accomplished and passionate leader in the field of arts, culture and Hispanic Heritage. Danny is a New Mexico native who recently returned home after serving as Program and Marketing Manager for the Smithsonian Latino Center in Washington, DC. His work there included directing a national Latino graduate program for museum scholars, administering the Smithsonian’s Latino Initiatives Pool, which supported pan-institutional Latino programs and managing and directing Latino Center marketing initiatives. He previously served as Marketing Director at the National Hispanic Cultural Center until 2010 and prior to that worked as a community-based volunteer in the US Peace Corps on the Caribbean coast of Nicaragua. Danny holds a degree in International Business and Management from New Mexico State University.

Suzanne Sbarge, President
Founder/Executive Director
Suzanne Sbarge is the Founder and Executive Director of 516 ARTS which she launched in 2006 in partnership with the McCune Charitable Foundation. In her approach to arts administration, she focuses on contemporary art and interdisciplinary projects in an educational context and with an emphasis on collaboration among artists and organizations. She previously directed Magnifico Arts, Inc. (in the same building as 516 ARTS) and the Harwood Art Center. She has led numerous collaborative arts projects which have garnered national and international attention, including HABITAT: Exploring Climate Change Through the Arts, Digital Latin America, ISEA2012 Albuquerque: Machine Wilderness, STREET ARTS: A Celebration of Hip Hop Culture & Free Expression, and LAND/ART. She holds a B.A. degree in Art History and Studio Arts from Barnard College in New York (1987) and an M.A. degree in Art Education from the University of New Mexico (1991). As a visual artist herself, she has brought her own particular creativity and passion for the arts to her leadership work in New Mexico for two and half decades. She was born and raised in Connecticut and has lived in Albuquerque since 1989.

Tim Price
Community Relations & Foundation Giving Analyst, PNM Foundation
Tim grew up in Artesia, NM and graduated from UNM in 1985. He lived between New York City and Los Angeles before coming home to Albuquerque 15 years ago. As a production designer in the film industry, he worked with several interesting celebrities and directors. He was also a functional artist with permanent pieces at the Gallery of Functional Art in Santa Monica. His love for art continued as he helped curate and hang Project Angel Art at the Pacific Design Center in 1990 and participated in Divine Design for several years. Tim was active with AIDS Project Los Angeles and Project Angel Food. In Albuquerque, he taught a semester of lighting at the Art Center Design College and has worked for PNM and PNM Resource Foundation for 15 years. He was the runner up in the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society’s Man of the Year contest in 2015, raising $55,000. He also ran the United Way Campaign for PNM last year raising $1.1 million. Fun fact about Tim: He’s been around the world and spent a month at an Ashram in India.

Lauren Tresp
Publisher, Southwest Contemporary
Lauren Tresp is the publisher of The Magazine of Southwest Contemporary, New Mexico’s leading contemporary arts magazine since 1992. In her time as publisher and owner of Southwest Contemporary, she launched the publication’s first comprehensive digital platform, oversaw the first total redesign of the magazine since its founding, and worked to increase transparency, diversity, and inclusion throughout the publication’s editorial coverage and team contributors. She has been writing professionally about contemporary art since 2013. She has a Master of Arts in Humanities from the University of Chicago, where she studied Medieval and Renaissance Art History, and a Bachelor of Arts in Art History and History from UCLA.

Tonya Turner Carroll
Co-Owner, Turner Carroll Gallery
A 1989 graduate of the Art History Department at Chapel Hill, Tonya was awarded the prestigious Morehead-Cain Scholarship for her studies at UNC. Along with her husband Michael, she was the co-founder of the Turner Carroll Gallery in 1991. Tonya previously worked at the Philadelphia Museum of Art and Sotheby’s London. She studied at Stanford’s Center for Classical Studies in Rome and at Hebrew University in Jerusalem. Currently, she curates exhibitions at the Four Seasons Resort Punta Mita, and at the St. Regis Punta Mita Resort. Via Tonya’s and Michael’s ArteMita project, donations are made to local schools in Sayulita and Punta de Mita, Mexico.

Dora Wang, MD
Psychiatrist, Author
Dora-Linda Wang, MD, is an author, psychiatrist and historian. She has been the recipient of a Lannan Foundation writers residency, a New Mexico-Arizona Book Award, and the Pfeiffer Visiting Scholar Award at Stanford University. Her memoir, “The Kitchen Shrink,” about working at the University of New Mexico Hospital, was published by Riverhead/Penguin Random House and nominated for the Pulitzer Prize. Her blogs have appeared in the Huffington Post and Psychology Today. Dr. Wang serves on the Executive Committee of the Yale Alumni in Medicine, and the Council of Friends for the Bancroft Library at the University of California, Berkeley.

Staff & Consultants

STAFF:

  • Suzanne Sbarge, Executive Director
  • Claude Smith, Exhibitions & Fulcrum Fund Manager
  • Mackensie Lewis, Development Coordinator
  • Viola Arduini, Education & Outreach Coordinator

CONSULTANTS:

  • Joni Thompson, Bookkeeper
  • Jane Kennedy, Development Associate
  • Ian Jones, Preparator
  • Mandy Funchess, Schlenker & Cantwell, Auditor
  • Caroline Blaker, Petroglyph Creative, Web Presence