Wednesday, June 6, 2012

May 23, 2012. Scenes In Taos, New Mexico.

The Hawthornes arrived in Taos
and decided to remain for a second night.
The accommodations at the Comfort Inn
 were passable by our lowered standards,
and we were both exhausted.

Comfort Inns, and other hotels, across America -
Here's a heads up:
When you have guests staying for 2 nights in
Room X,
you don't hand out keys for Room X
the second day to two little old ladies
who happened to walk into our suite unannounced
and uninvited.
We did offer them the sofa bed,
but they declined.

Then I had the pleasure of  watching
the desk clerk squirm over that one.

Good times.

Glad nobody was nekkid.
That would have been awkward.

Spanish, American Indian, and Anglo influences
mingle, yet remain distinct in Taos,
which is actually three villages:

  • Taos proper is legally Don Fernando de Taos.It is the original Spanish town that is now a center of art and tourism. 
  •  Pueblo de Taos, home of the Taos Indians, remains much as it was before the Spanish conquest.  The Hawthornes will be visiting Pueble de Taos later.  

  • Ranchos de Taos was a former farming community.

This cultural mix and a dramatic setting on a plateau
between the Rio Grande
and the western foot of the Sangre de Cristo Range
have lured artists since the 1800s.
The first to come were adventurous sketch and watercolor artists
who arrived with railroad survey teams in search of inspiration.

Painters Ernest Blumenschein and Bert Phillips
are credited with putting Taos on the artistic map
when they were forced to stop in Taos in 1898
to repair a broken wagon wheel.
They became enamored with New Mexico's rugged beauty
and eventually settled here permanently.
Soon, dozens of artists were heeding
Taos' siren song.

Blumenschein and Phillips, with a few other artists,
were instrumental in forming
 the Taos Society of Artists in 1915,
a group noteworthy for the distinctive mark
it has made on art in the United States.

Taos' fame as an artists' colony
 was established decades ago.
Artists, artisans,
musicians, and writers,
continue to come here,
upholding Taos' reputatation
as a center of creativity.

Coincidentally, two of Taos' most ardent proponents
and influential promoters were transplanted
New York City socialites
who fell in love with this area.

Mabel Dodge, an art connoisseur,
arrived in 1918.
Shortly thereafter, she married Taos Indian Tony Luhan.

 Sounds like Mabel was a hoot:
(From Wiki)
Mabel Dodge Sterne, her husband Maurice, and Elsie Clews Parsons moved to Taos, New Mexico and started a literary colony there. On the advice of Tony Luhan, a Native American whom she would marry in 1923, she bought a 12-acre (49,000 m2) property. Tony set up a teepee in front of the small house and drummed there each night until Mabel came to him. Maurice bought a shotgun with the intention of chasing Tony off the property, but he was unable to use it, and simply took to insulting Mabel. Mabel sent Maurice away, and supported him with monthly payments until their divorce four years later.

 D. H. Lawrence, the English author, accepted an invitation from her to stay in Taos and he arrived, with Frieda his wife, in early September 1922. He had a fraught relationship with his hostess and wrote about this in his fiction. Mabel later published a memoir about his visit entitled, Lorenzo in Taos (1932).

 She was actively bisexual during her early life and frankly details her passionate physical encounters with young women in her autobiography Intimate Memories (1933)

She took it upon herself to share the local Indian culture,
which she had come to admire,
with the luminaries of her day.
Her persistent efforts resulted in enticing
such notables as D.H. Lawrence, Ansel Adams,
and Georgia O'Keeffe to the area.

Millicent Rogers, a glamorous Standard Oil heiress,
was the second socialite to adopt Taos as her home.
Rogers, a fashion designer and collector
of traditional Pueblo and Navajo art,
moved to Taos in 1947.

Her work popularized American Indian fabrics and patterns
along with turquoise and silver jewelry,
associated with the "Santa Fe style."

In the sixties, Taos opened up to a relatively new group
entering into the Taos scene.
An influx of young, anti-establishment,
counterculture idealists
earned the town the reputation as a "Hippie Haven."

This societal slice was depicted in the 1969 movie,
Easy Rider, part of which was filmed in Taos.

Many of the new arrivals stayed,
contributing to the city's unconventional mystique.

The second day,
we explored the environs.

                                                Local cemetery.

New graves.

Huge red poppies and daisies.

 This painting was in our hotel room.
I liked it because the dog reminded me
 of Daughter Hawthorne's Giada.
The artist is Robert Arnold.

 I liked these colorful pots on the ledge.

I can't decide which pot photograph I like best.

Stay tuned for Taos Pueblo.

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