Programs & Services

Lowriders, Hoppers, and Hot Rods: Car Culture of Northern New Mexico

On display through March 5, 2017 at the New Mexico History Museum

1963 Chevrolet Impala, Owner Lee Cordova of Alcalde, NM, 1998. Jack Parsons, photographer.

After decades of cruising the streets and back roads of northern New Mexico, lowrider cars have come into their own as a symbol of Hispanic cultural identity. They’re as evocative as red and green chile, rural adobe architecture, and the distinctive dialect of New Mexican Spanish. These cars have been celebrated in books and movies, and their creators congregate by the hundreds in car shows throughout the region to show off their works to an admiring public. That phenomenon is only one part of a broad car culture.

Lowriders, Hoppers, and Hot Rods: Car Culture of Northern New Mexico  focuses on mobile works of art and their makers—home-grown Nuevomexicanos who customize, detail, paint and upholster these favorite symbols of Hispanic culture.

Photo Curator Daniel Kosharek has pulled together an extensive collection of images by Don Usner, Annie Sahlin, Jack Parsons, Sam Adams, Norman Mauskopf, Dottie Lopez, Gabriela Campos, Meridel Rubinstein and others. In addition, the exhibit features a chromed and touchable engine, miniature-scale model-car collections, trophies, memorabilia and other ephemera. Throughout the exhibition, the museum lobby will host a rotating selection of cherry examples.

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