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Welcome to the Coe Arts Center
Art that Engages
With over 2,000 objects from around the world, we give you a hands-on experience, connecting with Indigenous peoples throughout history, through the objects they crafted.

“When you hold a thing you’re there in the moment, of how it was used and how it was made.” Student curator, Oscar Loya

Admission is always free!

Plan your own private tour. We’re open upon request. Let us know your plans and we can make it happen! OR drop by the First Friday of every month from 1-4 pm.

2019 IMPRINT Talks
January 11, 2019 at 5:30 pm

The Coe Center for the Arts presents an evening of community conversation led by the artists and curators of IMPRINT, a multi-layered collaborative exhibition that challenges our assumptions about how art engages with the public. To imprint is to forge a connection that leaves a lasting mark. This process is central to the making and sharing of art. The relationship of the imprint between artist and audience is emotional and transcends markets, sales, and high-stakes auctions.

On Friday, January 11 at 5:30 pm leading printmakers, Eliza Naranjo Morse, Jamison Chās Banks (Seneca-Cayuga, Cherokee), Jason Garcia (Santa Clara Pueblo Tewa), Terran Last Gun (Piikani), and Dakota Mace (Diné (Navajo)), along with Coe curators Bess Murphy and Nina Sanders (Apsáalooke), will gather to ask the public questions about the state of art making and sharing, and the public will be asked to question back.

The event is free and open to the public!

IMPRINT is a multi-layered collaborative exhibition that challenges our assumptions about how art engages with the public. On view through March 29, 2019.

“I revisit and bear constantly in mind the objects of my collection to gain new insights. They are not trophies but instruments of passion, with the power to unexpectedly reveal mysteries.” – Founder, Ralph T. Coe, 2003


Artist Unknown, c. 1850s

Gwaai Edenshaw visited the Coe on the Monday following Indian Market, where he received a first-place ribbon. Gwaai is from Masset on Haida Gwaii, a descendant of a prestigious Haida carving family. Gwaai and brother Jaalen recently studied and duplicated a large masterpiece mid-19th century carved box at the Pitt Rivers Museum at Oxford. The new Great Box then went home to the Haida Gwaii and was used in high school art classes, public discussions and a Haida Gwaii Museum exhibit. Community members said, we can see it in books, but to actually come up and see it and feel it and examine it – it can only benefit our community and our people.

Gwaai and I joyfully walked around the Coe, taking in one great Haida object after another. This was one of Ted’s favorite regions and art forms. A small carved face stopped Gwaai; he picked it up and turned it over and over in his hands, feeling its presence and age as well as its identity.

“This is an insert mask from a carved box,” he shared. “There is some box out there with a blank inset space that the mask was removed from…carving a separate mask gave the box greater depth and presence…The eyes and brow line make the piece Haida.”

Ted purchased the small carving in 1996, thinking it to be a Tlingit maskette perhaps from a Shaman’s kit.

Gwaai is both a carver and art historian; his comments and shared expertise are now part of our record.

CHEYENNE LEDGER BOOK ONLINE! Online at: Plains Ledger Art (PILA), you can see this amazing, but fragile Coe collection ledger drawing book. Created in the 1880's, the ledger book features striking images of courting scenes, soldiers, and Cheyenne warriors - many who are identified by name glyphs! Our sincerest gratitude goes out to the Plains Indian Art Project for making this possible. Thank you!

The Ralph T. Coe Center for the Arts is a private operating 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization. Contributions are tax deductible to the extent of the Internal Revenue Code. Please donate online now, or checks can be mailed to the Ralph T. Coe Center for the Arts 1590 B Pacheco Street, Santa Fe, NM 87505. We thank you very much for your support.

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