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Flamenco: From Spain to New Mexico travels the state

January 23rd, 2018

 (Santa Fe, NM) -- The sensual dance of flamenco has traveled the world, yet within the United States only in New Mexico is it integral to our state’s culture. In November of 2015 the Museum of International Folk Art opened the most comprehensive exhibition on flamenco, celebrating this living tradition as an art form. This stunning exhibition is now traveling to museums throughout the New Mexico.

Flamenco premiered at the Silver City Museum on January 12, 2018 (through May 28, 2018). The Branigan Cultural Center in Las Cruces will be the second stop (June 21 to September 15, 2018). Next, the Carlsbad Museum and Art Center will host the traveling exhibition between November 9, 2018 and January 26, 2019. The final two exhibition locations and time slots are being negotiated.

Flamenco: From Spain to New Mexico provides an in-depth examination of the history and culture of flamenco dance and music. This festive and multi-dimensional traveling exhibition explores flamenco’s origins, influences, development and appreciation as a highly respected art form on the world stage.

The exhibition features approximately 80 objects from the 19th century to the present, including costumes, instruments and ephemera, as well as several audio/video stations where audiences can see and listen to flamenco over many generations. The exhibition is accompanied by the companion book, The Spirit of Flamenco: From Spain to New Mexico, by Nicolasa Chávez.

In 2010, UNESCO declared flamenco a “Masterpiece of the Intangible Heritage of Humanity.”

Exhibition curator Nicolasa Chávez said, “Flamenco is often considered an outward expression of one’s innermost emotions, whether happy or sad, and carries with it an air of freedom or abandon.”

Chávez noted that other exhibitions have only featured flamenco through photography and imagery while this exhibition explores flamenco as a multifaceted art form, a highly cherished performance art remaining true to its cultural roots and heritage. The exhibition is also the first ever to show the history and development of flamenco and its treasured role in the culture of New Mexico.

The statewide tour of Flamenco: From Spain to New Mexico has been organized and presented by the Museum of International Folk Art with generous funding from Heritage Hotels and Resorts and New Mexico Multi-Cultural Foundation enabling museums throughout New Mexico to bring this groundbreaking exhibition to their communities. 


About the Museum of International Folk Art: Founded in 1953 by Florence Dibell Bartlett, the Museum of International Folk Art’s mission is to foster understanding of the traditional arts to illuminate human creativity and shape a humane world. The museum holds the world’s largest international folk art collection of more than 150,000 objects from six continents and over 150 nations, representing a broad range of global artists whose artistic expressions make Santa Fe an international crossroads of culture. For many visitors, fascination with folk art begins upon seeing the whimsical toys and traditional objects within the Girard Collection. For others, the international textiles, ceramics, carvings and other cultural treasures in the Neutrogena Collection provide the allure.  The museum’s historic and contemporary Latino and Hispano folk art collections, spanning the Spanish Colonial period to modern-day New Mexico, reflect how artists respond to their time and place in ways both delightful and sobering. In 2010, the museum opened the Mark Naylor and Dale Gunn Gallery of Conscience, where exhibitions encourage visitors to exchange ideas on complex issues of human rights and social justice. A division of the New Mexico Department of Cultural Affairs. 706 Camino Lejo, on Museum Hill in Santa Fe, NM 87505. (505) 476-1200. Hours: 10 am to 5 pm daily, May through October; closed Mondays November through April, closed Easter Sunday, Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year’s Day. Events, news releases and images about activities at the Museum of International Folk Art and other divisions in the Department of Cultural Affairs can be accessed at 


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Pablo Rodarte, Costume sketch, mid-1990s. Courtesy of Lili del Castillo and Luís Campos.

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