Sign on
gPowered byeMuseum

Contemporary Learn More

The line dividing one era from another often cannot be defined precisely. The decades of the sixties and seventies witnessed the death of people who had once been of great significance to the Taos art community and the arrival of new persons who would become so. Mabel Dodge Luhan died in 1962 and when Andrew Dasburg, Emil Bisttram, and Dorothy Brett died during the 1970s, the living connection to the earliest decades of the art community passed into history. Artists new to Taos would make strong artistic statements about the region or probe the contemporary barriers of the art world.

The catalysts for the early 1970s influx of artists was the arrival of Dennis Hopper in 1970. After shooting the movie Easy Rider, Hopper stayed in Taos and made the rough cut for the film. He eventually bought the Mabel Dodge Luhan house and has stated that his guest list rivaled that of Mabel's as many artists, musicians and Hollywood personalities made frequent visits to Taos. Contemporary artists such as Ken Price and Larry Bell, followed by Ron Cooper and Gus Foster, moved permanently from Los Angeles in the 1970s, while others such as Lee Mullican and Larry Calcagno spent part of each year in Taos.

Price, who had a rising reputation as a sculptor/ceramicist when he arrived in November of 1971, soon embarked on a monumental project that was eventually known as Happy's Curios. In the spring of 1978 the entire installation was shown at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. The Harwood Museum is indeed fortunate to have one of the larger pieces (Death Shrine 1) from Happy's Curios as a major work on extended loan to its contemporary collection.

The Harwood's contemporary collection also includes retrospective collections of 18-20 works by Larry Calcagno and R.C. Ellis, both of whom arrived in Taos through Wurlitzer Foundation grants.

In recent years, many artists from both the East and the West Coasts with well established art careers have chosen to spend part of each year working in Taos or the surrounding northern New Mexico area, thus continuing the strong connection in Taos with the national and international art worlds. The Harwood Museum has served a major role as a venue for exhibiting contemporary art and for focusing attention on many of the major artists who have worked or are working in northern New Mexico.

Sorted AscendingTitleDateArtistClassificationDimensions
Still Life of Fruitc 1980'sKevin Cannon
Kevin Cannon United States (b. 1948)
Originally from New York, the artist studied art and music at City College of New York before traveling in Europe, Spain and Morocco. He then worked with a group of craftsmen in New York where his continued exploration in leather as a material lead him to pursue harness-and-saddle in the early 1970’s and inspired him to head West.
It was in 1978 that Kevin Cannon found his way to Taos, New Mexico. There he developed an interest in ceramics while working as assistant to the renowned West Coast ceramist and printmaker, Ken Price. The hand-sewn leather objects he had been crafting became small box/objects beautifully made, with colored interiors and handles.
After moving to back New York City in 1983 the artist had several gallery shows of his small scale geometric "figures" made from molding wet leather around a wooden form. Finely crafted, the burnished and polished leather has the appearance of ceramics or wood, even bronze, and invites close scrutiny and wonder. During this time he was an NEA recipient and continued to exhibit the work in New York City, Los Angeles,
San Francisco, Atlanta, Chicago and Houston as the scale became larger and the surfaces more intriguing. In 1990 he returned to Taos where he now lives and works.
In 1996 independent curator Jan Adlmann included Kevin Cannon’s work in the show, "Contemporary Art In New Mexico", at SITE Santa Fe. Cannon’s work can be found in the permanent collections of the Brooklyn Museum, the Harwood Museum in Taos, and the Albuquerque Museum, to name a few.

Citation: http://www.
drawing 8 7/16 x 11"
The Larynx # 1511988Larry Bell
Larry Bell United States (b. 1939)

Larry Bell is a contemporary American artist and sculptor. He lives and works in Taos, New Mexico, and maintains a studio in Venice, California. From 1957 to 1959 he studied at the Chouinard Art Institute in Los Angeles as a student of Robert Irwin, Richards Ruben, Robert Chuey, and Emerson Woelffer. He is a grant recipient from, among others, the National Endowment for the Arts and the Guggenheim Foundation, and his artworks are found in the collections of many major cultural institutions. Bell’s work has been shown at museums and in public spaces in the United States and abroad over the course of his 40-year career.

Larry Bell on Wikipedia

painting 21"H x 30" W
Tlaloc 'Q' Doll 'A'1993Lynda Benglis
Lynda Benglis
Lynda Benglis is an American sculptor and visual artist known especially for her wax paintings and poured latex sculptures. She currently lives between New York City; Santa Fe; Kastelorizo, Greece; and Ahmedabad, India.
sculpture 24 13/16 x 15 7/16 x 11 5/8 in. (63 x 39.2 x 29.5 cm)
Uncle Ralph2006John Suazo
John Suazo (c. 1951)
sculpture Overall: 28 x 14 x 8 in. (71.1 x 35.6 x 20.3 cm)
untitled1994Vija Celmins
Vija Celmins Latvia (b. 1938)
Vija Celmins is an important[1][2] Latvian-American visual artist best known for photo-realistic paintings and drawings of natural environments and phenomena such as the ocean, spider webs, star fields, and rocks. Her earlier work included pop sculptures and monochromatic representational paintings. Based in New York City, she has been the subject of over forty solo exhibitions since 1965, and major retrospectives at the Museum of Modern Art, Whitney Museum of American Art, Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Institute of Contemporary Arts, London, and Centre Pompidou, Paris.
drawing Overall: 9 13/16 x 11 13/16 in. (25 x 30 cm)
Untitled1979Rick Dillingham
Rick Dillingham
sculpture Overall: 3/8 x 3/8 x 3/8 x 3/8 in. (1 x 1 x 1 x 1 cm) Framed: 3/8 x 3/8 x 3/8 x 3/8 in. (1 x 1 x 1 x 1 cm)
Untitled1990Agnes Martin
Agnes Martin (1912-2004)
print Overall: 11 3/4 x 11 3/4 in. (29.8 x 29.8 cm)
Untitled1990Agnes Martin
Agnes Martin (1912-2004)
print Overall: 11 3/4 x 11 3/4 in. (29.8 x 29.8 cm)
Untitled1990Agnes Martin
Agnes Martin (1912-2004)
print Overall: 11 3/4 x 11 3/4 in. (29.8 x 29.8 cm)
Untitled1990Agnes Martin
Agnes Martin (1912-2004)
print Overall: 11 3/4 x 11 3/4 in. (29.8 x 29.8 cm)