Sante Fe is the capital of New Mexico and it is the oldest capital city in the United States. When you look around the city you notice how the buildings blend into nature.
|Loretto Chapel Staircase|
The influence of the Roman Catholic religion which the Spanish brought to Sante Fe is visible throughout the city. There are many lovely churches and the interiors are spectacular. I admired their stained glass windows, altars, and statues. The Loretto Chapel was formerly know as Chapel of Our Lady of Light has an amazing staircase. Its spiral staircase has no visible or central support. Imagine it without the banister. The sisters had the banister added later.
|Saint Francis Cathedral |
The Saint Francis Cathedral has fourteen life-size sculptures by Gib Singleton which
represent stages during the events in the hours leading up to Jesus'
crucifixion as developed by St. Francis of Assisi. The sculptures are located outside in the Prayer Garden of the cathedral.
|Saint Francis Cathedral |
The city of Santa Fe was originally occupied by a number of Pueblo
villages with founding dates between 1050 to 1150. One of the earliest
known settlements in what today is downtown Santa Fe came sometime after
900. A Native American group built a cluster of homes that centered
around the site of today’s Plaza and spread for half a mile to the south
and west. The Spanish style of using a radiating grid of streets
centering from the central Plaza was implemented in laying out the city.
The city created the idea of imposing a unified building style – the
Spanish Pueblo Revival look, which was based on work done restoring the
Palace of the Governors.
There are about 75 spots outside the Palace where Indians sell there handmade jewelry and other crafts. They can be purchased there free of tax. I enjoyed looking at the handmade jewelry. Lots of the jewelry has beautiful silver work.
Palace of the Governors and Indian Merchants
Palace of the Governors has many defining features of local architecture. It has vigas
(rough, exposed beams that extrude through supporting walls, and are thus visible outside as well as inside the building) and canales
(rain spouts cut into short parapet walls around flat roofs). Its features
borrowed from many old adobe homes and churches built many years before
and found in the Pueblos, along with the earth-toned look (reproduced in
) of the old adobe exteriors.
Rosary and Jewelry of Spaniards
New Mexico History Museum
was opened adjacent to the Palace. I couldn't help but admire the jewelry and rosaries which are displayed here. If you have ever tried to make chainmall, you will be amazed at the work of the Spaniards on display.
Sante Fe is clearly a center for the arts. It attracts writers and artists. It has a high concentration of art galleries and museums. Georgia O'Keefe Museum Largest collection of her work in the world. I will have to go back to Sante Fe some time. One day was not enough. Plus, I discovered an amazing bead shop in the center of town. The owner told me she has imported beads from all over the world for over 40 years. Jewelry designers from all over the world come there. I could see why!
When I got back to my campsite, I discovered that I had an email from a customer requesting that I show her a specific pair of earrings in my shop on my ears. She was interested my my brass filigree earrings
that I apply patina to. The sunlight in New Mexico was perfect for a late afternoon photo shoot.
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