Welcome to
Collectors Corner!

 Ed Sandoval Gallery's Newsletter

102-B Paseo Del Pueblo Norte, Taos, NM 87571
(575) 770-6360
Adventures on a Horse of Course: Mountains, Bears & Dogs...Oh My!
I love horses. I’ve been riding since I was a kid and have bonded with many horses over the years - all of them like family to me. I’ve written about how my beloved Cinco de Mayo saved two lives (read that story here ), but I have many more equine adventures to share!
My Godfather Juaquin (middle) at his 50th Wedding Anniversary (September 1970)
I credit my godfather, Juaquin, for starting my love affair with horses. We were very close, and as a boy, I’d always scamper over to his house. He had this old, slow plow horse named Nellie that he would let me ride through the village of Nambe. That darn horse…she would plod down the dirt roads, and at every driveway she would turn and head up the drive. I had a devil of a time getting her turned around and back on the road. Maybe she thought there was some yummy grass to eat at the houses. Maybe she was just lazy and thought one house was as good as another to stop, get the crazy boy off her back and take a rest. Whatever the case, I'd finally coax Nellie out of the driveway and we'd plod down the road again…until the next driveway. 
When I wasn’t “riding” Nellie (which isn't the right word because it implies control...which I did not have…), Juaquin and I would bring her into the yard to help us make adobe bricks. We dug a big pit, filled it with dirt and straw, and poured buckets of water all over it. Next, we led the reluctant Nellie into the pit, who slowly stomp, stomp, stomped the straw into the mud. I can’t be certain…but I thought I saw accusatory glances coming from her big, brown eyes during this laborious task, as if to say “you gotta be kidding me!” Next, we harnessed Nellie to a big metal scoop (more glances), and she grudgingly pulled the mud out of the pit that we then poured into forms to make the adobe bricks.  
Riding Nellie was never what I would call “exciting," but as an adult, I had many thrilling encounters on other horses (often not in a good way). I rode way up in the mountains, and one time, we were winding our way on a very narrow dirt/rock ledge sort of carved into the side of the mountain. On one side was a steep, steep drop, and as a rider you have to trust that your horse won’t lose his footing…otherwise you’ll both tumble down the mountain. I was on Cinco, weaving among the trees on this narrow ledge, when all of a sudden a bear popped up ahead of us on his hind legs and roared!

Cinco freaked, and I do mean freaked! That horse was so startled that he literally jumped in the air with me on top of him. When he came down, his feet didn't hit the ledge, and he slid almost vertically down the mountain. I was a split second right behind him, zooming down and getting my clothes snagged on brush and tree limbs. Time stopped as we both shot down, down, down toward the bottom.

Luckily, there was another ledge/pathway about 10-20 yards down. Cinco hit that feet first, and I landed right on top of him in the saddle! Cinco got up (with me in the saddle), and we both just stood there in shock. Cinco was shaking, and I waited a long time for him to calm down before I got off the saddle and started walking him down the mountain. His poor knees were all skinned up and bleeding. He was traumatized. 
After that encounter, I was always a bit nervous during elk hunting trips. You have to get up really early, like 3:00 or 4:00 am, saddle the horses in total darkness and take off through the pitch-black woods. Man it's dark! You have to trust your horse’s instinct and night vision…that they know where they’re going. I do (trust them) and they do (know where they’re going), but there’s always the wilderness wild card….a startled raccoon…a deer darting out from the trees in front of you…perhaps another bear lurking about...you get the idea. The horses, their ears are ALL perked UP and moving back and forth, keenly trying to hear and anticipate any danger. 
But you don’t have to be in the wilderness to have an unexpected and unwelcome bout of excitement. The roads of Taos can be just as challenging. Once I was riding Patron, and we went walking up Paseo and into the plaza. Patron is used to traffic and people, so he's pretty good even with all of the noise and distractions around.

However, on this particular day, we went past a parked pickup, and in a flash a big dog jumped out of the back! He launched at Patron's legs and started biting his heels! Here is the truly amazing part - just at the very moment when the dog jumped, barked and nipped, Patron startled, and my saddle slid underneath him! I was hanging upside down in the saddle underneath Patron's belly as this crazy dog was still barking and biting! Patron knew I was in trouble, so he just stood there not moving until I could get myself untangled from that saddle. That’s a wonderful horse right there – bad, bad dog, but wonderful horse. 
Horses are so protective of their owners. They are true and loyal, and there have been many times when I would have been in serious trouble if my horse hadn't helped out. They will rear up, for example, and get between you and a threat. They will instinctively know if something is wrong and do what they can to make it right. As friends go, they have been my best friends for many, many years. I remember fondly each and every one of them.
Becoming an Artist: The Early Years
Me in Truchas (circa 1987)
People are curious about my life's journey and how I ended up being an artist. When I’m painting, they ask questions: How long have you painted? When did you come to Taos? What galleries have you shown in? When did you open your own gallery?

I have to think really hard to respond! Even then, I’m not sure if I’m being 100% accurate. That’s not good… I’m dreadful (even abysmal) with dates and the passing of time, so I decided to go back through old photos, papers and interviews to figure out my timeline once and for all.

After high school (class of 1964), I worked in Los Angeles for a while before returning to get a Bachelor’s in fine arts from Eastern New Mexico University (1970). Degree in hand, I moved to Salt Lake City to teach high school art classes, counsel the kids and get a Master’s in Psychology from the University of Utah. I taught and studied there for years but eventually got homesick and returned to teach art at Pueblo Junior High and Los Alamos High (1972-79), and to build an adobe home in Nambe.
I painted the whole time, but I wasn't an established artist and made a living with my construction company. It wasn’t until I moved to Truchas (around 1986) that I started to dedicate real time to my art. I still had to pay the bills, so I continued to build adobe houses, but I started looking at galleries. It was a thrilling day when the Truchas Hand-Artes Gallery said they'd represent me!

Getting into an artist mindset gave me insights and focus. I saw village life with new eyes and wanted to preserve the integrity and spirit of the Hispanic culture, to paint the hard-working, spiritual people who had such a deep connection to the land.
The Arts: Albuquerque Journal, January 11, 1991. I'm quoted as saying, "It seems like whenever I do landscapes….I always have to put people in them and they tend to be people working – working the land, working at their crafts.”
"Morning Devotion"
That’s when I realized the importance of the way life was – the simple village life of my boyhood, of the way it used to be when my grandparents were alive. I gave myself a mission: capture these vibrant people interacting with the land, animals, their faith and one another.

My early work was primarily of people. Of course, when Robert Redford showed up to film The Milagro Beanfield War (released in 1988), I was inspired to start painting “El Viejito.” Slowly, I started to find my "voice."

I went to Taos a lot, and one day I thought to myself, "I can make it here." I moved in 1990...still doing construction work but also focusing on my art. Around 1991, another gallery said they'd represent me (Burke Armstrong Galleries in Taos) and the Millicent Rogers Museum did a one-man show for me. I will always be grateful for that one-man show. It was the pivotal event that boosted my career. Incredibly, all of my works sold - I sold out!
"Indian Corn"
"Pablo Trujillo" (1990). Pablo Came to the Set of The Milagro Beanfield War and Played His Guitar for the Cast
Around 1992-1993, I was picked up by another gallery: Two Feathers International Gallery of Fine Arts in Santa Fe. I thought, "Man oh man I should open MY OWN gallery." I began to plan, and on June 11, 1993, I held the opening reception for my first gallery: Studio De Colores. At first, I thought it would be fun to make the gallery a cooperative space, so I invited two Hispanic artists, Pola Lopez de Jaramillo and Anita Rodriguez, to show their work with me. Over time, it was clear that it wasn't going to work out, so Pola and Anita went on to other opportunities, and I started to show my work exclusively in the gallery.
“Trio of dynamic Hispanic artists opens new gallery” – Tempo, June 10, 1993, page B5
The rest is history. I know many aspiring artists out there, so I tell this story to show you that it's not impossible to become a full-time artist, but you have to love what you do, work at it for years while holding a second and maybe third job, take chances but most of all be flexible and never forget that it's art that gives your life joy and purpose.
Featured Paintings

To inquire or to request a high-resolution photograph, please contact Ed at 575-770-6360 or  edsandovalart@gmail.com .
NEW: "Unveiling of Spring" (15" x 30")
NEW: "Silence in the Forest" (24" x 48")
NEW: "Trail to Hondo" (24" x 36")
NEW: "Autumn Forest" (20" x 20")
Sting in Taos!
Thanks for Voting!
The whole town is abuzz with excitement: World-renowned Sting is performing in Taos on September 2 in Kit Carson Park!
We've got our tickets! The event Facebook page says "Sting: My Songs" will feature many of the 17-time Grammy Award winner's most celebrated hits, both with The Police and as a solo artist.

We are bouncing with anticipation and hope to see you there! Click here for more details on this one-in-a-lifetime show!
THANK YOU to everyone who voted in this year's annual "Best of Taos" contest!
I'm very grateful and humbled to have won the People's Choice award for "Best Local Artisan," and for receiving second place for "Best Art Gallery." Thank you very much.

I don't know if the results are published yet, but each year the Taos News produces a special publication showing all the winners. I hope you check out some of our fabulous businesses on your next trip to Taos!
Lunch, Happy Hour or Room? Try The Eklund!
The Eklund Historic Hotel and Restaurant
Dining Room: Velvet Wallpaper and the Seat-backs are Original Velvet Headboards from the Hotel
Ed at the Bar!
Beautiful Glass Window Sign Hanging in the Bar
Road Trip Gem in Clayton, NM

On a recent trip to the panhandle of Texas, we stopped at the Eklund Historic Hotel and Restaurant for lunch in Clayton, New Mexico. Oh my goodness! We were like kids in a candy store, running around taking photos of everything. Truly authentic history here.

The original part of the structure was built in 1892 and operated as a saloon and gambling hall - it's currently still a saloon. When the property was bought by Carl Eklund in 1894, he expanded it to include a hotel and dining rooms. We ate a tasty lunch, bought items in the gift shop and considered ourselves lucky to have stopped at this charming property. And the staff are delightful - they will tell you ALL about ghostly residents and spooky occurrences...

If you are looking for a bit of the old west, this would be it. Historical trivia: There has been only ONE hanging in Clayton, and it got...well...botched. It's the story of "Black Jack" Ketchum, whose head came completely off during his hanging in 1901 , and they had to sew it back on for the funeral. If you order a beer, you can have it "with or without a head." Ha ha! True story. You can read about the hanging here !

For more Eklund info, click here .
"Black Jack" Ketchum's Hanging in 1901
Portrait of Carl Eklund's Wife
Would you like to be a featured collector?
If so, please send your personal story and photo(s) to edsandovalart@gmail.com.
Ed Sandoval Gallery  
 102-B Paseo Del Pueblo, Taos, NM 87571
www.edsandovalgallery.com | (575) 770-6360 | edsandovalart@gmail.com