930 Baca Street, Suite C
July 23-September 10
Second Annual Baca Street Bash
Saturday, July 23, 5-9 pm
Santa Fe, NM— It’s the Santa Fe art market, as seen from the outside in. Local art groups SCUBA and Strangers Collective challenged 96 New Mexico artists to create representations of Santa Fe art spaces on 3 x 6 inch tiles. The grid of visual “dispatches” will fill ART.i.factory Gallery, forming a monumental map of the art establishment by artists who often work outside its boundaries. The exhibition will bring two poles of Santa Fe’s art world together for new conversations. DISPATCH opens Saturday, July 23 from 5-9 pm at Art.i.fact, in conjunction with the second annual Baca Street Bash.
“Each tile on this giant tabletop will represent a unique viewpoint on the art world,” says Sandra Wang of SCUBA. “It’s a platform for artists to examine and discuss art spaces—and their role in the larger community—in a very direct way.” Throughout the exhibition, running from July 23 through September 10, visitors to the show will be encouraged to mail their own "dispatches" to the featured art spaces in pre-postmarked envelopes. As mysterious letters appear in mailboxes all over town, disparate members of the art world will join the discussion. “The featured artists often work in close proximity to the spaces they’re depicting in this show, but don’t necessarily have much contact with them,” says Kyle Farrell, cofounder of Strangers Collective. “What will happen when we literally bring them to the same table?” An audio guide of the show and a series of to-be-announced gatherings will help stimulate the dialogue as well.
The idea for DISPATCH took shape after ART.i.factory Gallery co-directors Jennifer Rowland and Michael Gullberg encouraged SCUBA and Strangers Collective to collaborate. “ART.i.factory is a launchpad for artists who have new and exciting things to say,” says Rowland. “SCUBA and Strangers share our philosophy, and we knew they would dream up something spectacular and challenging. In terms of participating artists, DISPATCH is by far our biggest show ever.”
SCUBA is a two-person art collaborative comprising Wang and Crockett Bodelson. The duo has mounted exhibitions at Center for Contemporary Arts and James Kelly Contemporary, and curates the alternative art space Caldera on Water Street. They also operate Caldera Ceramics at Meow Wolf. Strangers Collective is an alliance of 37 local, emerging artists and writers, directed by Farrell and Jordan Eddy. The group throws seasonal pop-up shows, with past exhibitions at Santa Fe Community Gallery and Wheelhouse Art. DISPATCH is a return to Baca Street for both groups: SCUBA operated an art space not far from ART.i.factory Gallery from 2011-2012, and Strangers mounted its inaugural public exhibition at ART.i.factory Gallery at last year’s Baca Street Bash.
A second manifestation of DISPATCH appears this fall and winter at New Mexico Highlands University. It features additional contributions from NMHU faculty members, expanding our New Mexico art map to encompass both Santa Fe and Las Vegas. See it now at Trolley Barn, 1183 San Francisco Ave, Las Vegas, NM. Click here to see an image of the exhibition and learn more.