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Healing, Reconciliation, and the
Taylor Collection Santos Story

This multi-disciplinary collaboration imagines a cruelty-free future for the FAC Museum Santos collection. It aims to decolonize the preservation, curation, and the display (or non-display of) sacred objects, to dialogue democratically with the communities to whom said objects have religious significance, to propose concrete steps to reconcile past harms and imagine future exchanges, and to share these concepts with the public. This collaborative manifesto explores possibilities for simultaneously recontextualizing the past and reimagining future care for the Santos collection, centering its creators and their descendants as makers and negotiators of its meaning.

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Learn more about this project from this recorded community conversation. Panelists included 3×3 Project team: Miguel Gandert, Jessica Kahkoska and Anita Rodriguez with Fine Arts Center museum staff.

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Creative Team

Meet the Creative Team

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Anita Rodriguez

Anita Rodriguez (born 1941) is a Hispanic American artist and painter. Her work incorporates Native American ceremonialism, Mexican mysticism and Hispanic folk art as well as the Penitente art of New Mexico, Native American dances and ceremonies, and Catholic traditions. She has a work in the collection of the New Mexico Capitol Art Collection, Eteljorg Museum in Indianapolis, the Albuquerque Museum of Art and the Harwood Museum of Art in Taos. She is also considered to be a specialist in traditional adobe construction and has won awards for her work. She did the finishing on the permanent exhibit in the Taylor Museum of the Chapel of Nuestra Senora de Los Lagos at the Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center, and is also the the writer of an award-winning book (Coyota in The Kitchen, UNM Press).

Rodriguez was born in Taos, New Mexico. Her father’s side of the family were “native Hispanic Taoseños” and had been living in the area for many generations. Her mother was a painter from Austin, Texas who relocated to Taos in order to study art with Walter Ufer. Rodriguez was raised Catholic.

During Rodriguez’s teen years, she went to Mexico City where she spent time painting and learned the styles of Mexican artists such as Frida Kahlo.

Rodriguez took art at both Colorado College and at the University of Denver. Later, she gave birth to a daughter, Shemai, in 1965. She started her own construction company in Taos in order to support herself and her daughter. Her construction work focused on the use of adobe to create fireplaces and nichos. She later moved to Guanajuato, Mexico in 1996 and left to move back to Taos in 2010. anitarodriguez.com

Jessica Kahkoska

Jessica Kahkoska is a writer, dramaturg/researcher and performer, most interested in work driven by history, research, and community. In Colorado, she has worked at the Denver Center for the Performing Arts, Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center, Creede Repertory Theatre, Theatre Aspen, Lake Dillon Theatre Company, the Athena Project, North Fork Valley Creative Coalition and she is currently a co-Regional Vice President of the Mountain West Region for Literary Managers and Dramaturgs of America (LMDA). In 2019, she was Writer-in-Residence at Southern Colorado Repertory Theatre, a Marsico Visiting Scholar in the Arts and Humanities at Denver University, and she partnered with Notch Theatre Company to launch “Wild Home: An American Odyssey,” a community responsive project that uses theatre to document the struggles and hopes of Colorado’s North Fork Valley under threat from extractive industries. In February 2020, her research-driven play “In Her Bones” was featured in the Colorado New Play Summit at the Denver Center for the Performing Arts. Other projects include AGENT 355 (with Preston Max Allen, Chautauqua Theater Company),THE DEATH OF DESERT ROSE (with Elliah Heifetz, 2019-2020 Dramatists Guild Foundation Fellowship, Upcoming Rhinebeck Writers Retreat), NIA (dir. Sarah Wansley, Upcoming: Dark Room Series, New Light Theatre Company), and LETTERS TO THE PRESIDENT (dir. Michael Bello, upcoming: Berkshire Theatre Group). Additional development/presentations: Roundabout Theatre Company,The Cooper Union, New York Theatre Barn, Village Theatre, Bucks County Playhouse, the Drama League, Phoenix Theatre Company. Graduate of Northwestern University. jessicakahkoska.com

Miguel Gandert

Miguel Gandert is one of America’s leading documentary photographers, and has exhibited throughout the world. He was born in Española in 1956, a descendant of Spanish settlers of Mora, New Mexico and Antonito, Colorado. Raised in Santa Fe, he began photographing the people around him in 1968, earning an MA in photography at the University of New Mexico. For the last twenty years Gandert has photographed the social rituals, people, and landscape of his native New Mexico. Gandert’s many national and international exhibitions over the years include shows at the Whitney Museum of American Art and the National Museum of American History at the Smithsonian in 1990. His series Nuevo Mexico Profundo: Rituals of an Indo-Hispano Homeland was the subject of a book and a one-person exhibition for the National Hispanic Culture Center of New Mexico, and his work was selected for the 1993 Whitney Museum Biennial. He is a Distinguished Professor of Communication and Journalism at the University of New Mexico. americanart.si.edu

3×3 Projects: Creative Collaborations from Isolation

Artists collaborate all the time, but not always from a distance. In our present reality of isolation, artists must find different avenues for the creation and presentation of work. With this in mind, the Fine Arts Center and Performing Arts at Colorado College invited artists of the Rocky Mountain West and American Southwest to pitch collaborative, multidisciplinary projects to premiere in the online world in the coming months. This is one of only seven projects selected to receive $3,000 in funding.

Support for the 3×3 Projects provided by The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation Grant for Southwest Arts and Culture, Performing Arts at Colorado College, and the Colorado College Cultural Attractions Fund.