Artist Lab: Art Meets History in New Mexico is an educational program that 516 ARTS is doing behind the scenes. Presented as a collaboration between 516 ARTS, Kolaj Institute, and Albuquerque Museum Photo Archives, the Artist Lab looks at how our divergent histories of race, conflict, and colonialism inform how we imagine our futures. The program equips artists with tools and strategies for picking up the unfinished work of history and speaking to contemporary civic discourse around social, economic, and environmental issues. Using the photography archives of the Albuquerque Museum and other historical resources, this project focuses on the multiple histories of different peoples who have made what we now call New Mexico and the surrounding land their home.
Artists were selected from an international call for entries and includes: Inas Al-soqi, Raphael Begay, Hugo Crosthwaite, Jamison Edgar, Josh T. Franco, Mimi Frank, Moira Garcia, CoCo Harris, Gina Herrera, Megan Jacobs, nicholas b jacobsen, Joanna Keane Lopez, Duduetsang Lamola, Juanita J. Lavadie, Karen S. Mazur, Jackie Mitchell Edwards, Dorothea Osborn, Margarita Paz-Pedro, Jeanna Penn, Marlena Robbins, Michael Ryder, Taylor Spence, Drew Trujillo, Craig Upson, Leo Vicenti, Marcus Zúñiga.
Two of the lab sessions are open to the public: the online talk Where do we stand? Alicia Inez Guzmán on the History of New Mexico on Thursday, April 8, 6-7pm MST, and News. Document. Art: The Photography of L. Kasimu Harris on Thursday, April 22, 6-7pm MST. 26
The Artist Lab is comprised of interactive online sessions, collections research, and visits with historians, archivists, and curators, artists explore their process and practice; present a slideshow of their work; receive supportive, critical, curatorial feedback about their ideas; and discuss strategies for making art that speaks to the contemporary moment. The artists are working from their own people’s histories, to confront those histories, and to imagine a future that offers justice, fairness, and support for all people. Artists complete the Lab with a project proposal for a group exhibition at 516 ARTS in 2022, co-curated by L. Kasimu Harris, Alicia Inez Guzmán, and Ric Kasini Kadour. The exhibition will give audiences an opportunity to consider how our contemporary discourse is a product of multiple histories in a constant state of negotiation with one another.