Reopening of the university’s art museum: “beautiful and moving”

By Mike Cook

“The opening was heartbreakingly beautiful and emotional,” University Art Museum (UAM) director Marisa Sage said of UAM’s reopening on Friday evening, January 21, after a long interruption induced by the pandemic.

Visitors enjoyed works of art in a variety of media in two exhibits: “Four Sites of Return: Ritual, Remembrance, Repair and Recovery” and “Commemorated Landscapes: The Sacred Space of Home.” Exhibits continue through March 5 at UAM, Devasthali Hall, 1308 University Ave. (where University meets Solano Drive).

“Both installations feature Black, Indigenous, and artists of color from New Mexico who engage in real and imagined searches for ancestral lands and Black futures through the creation of projects that include acts of research, resilience, collecting resistance and rituals,” Sage said. .

“I was so flattered that even though fear of the Covid numbers was looming ahead of the opening, so many in the community recognized how important the work of Nikesha Breeze and Jackie Mitchell Edwards is in uncovering hidden stories in this region and so they gave their support despite the pandemic to attend this magnificent ceremony and the celebration of these two artists (and all their collaborators),” said Sage.

“We had over 200 people throughout the night and I’ve never had such strong reactions to a show,” she said. “A woman was on the verge of tears when she told me that Nikesha had helped her see a story here in New Mexico, a place where her family has lived for three generations, a story of black New Mexicans that she was born into. never knew anything. It’s hard to say how special it was,” Sage said.


Mildred D. Field