Alpine artistry

Third annual Taos Ski Valley Arts Festival shows a variety of works from area artists


Taos Ski Valley is hosting its third annual arts festival this year with 10 confirmed artists showing off a nice mix of textile, wool work and paintings.The event is sponsored by Taos Ski Valley Resort, where visitors can bask in the fresh mountain air of the southern Sangre de Cristos.

The show will be on view Saturday and Sunday (July 21-22) from 11:30 a.m. until 4:30 p.m. outside next to the Children's Center at the Resort Plaza on the front side of the mountain. In addition, 192 at The Blake will be open as well as other eateries in the resort.

According to Director of Marketing Dash Hegeman, there are a few changes to the festival this year. The past two years, they have had the event up at The Bavarian Lodge. But this season, because of construction in the area, it is in the village at the Resort Plaza.

Hegeman said this art festival is different from many in Northern New Mexico because "Taos Ski Valley is one of the most eclectic ski resorts you can go to." He added, "The history of artists from this region is intertwined with what the Taos Ski Valley is all about. Having the ability to come up to the Ski Valley and not only check out great artwork by local artists but also tour the art collection at The Blake, is a fantastic way to spend the day."

Hegeman began working at TSV this month. Before coming to Taos he was the marketing director at a small ski area in western New York for just over five years. He has been a snowboard instructor, ski instructor, assistant junior college basketball coach, and ran his own public relations business for several years. He also oversaw a grant program for the New York State Department of Health.

He said he "moved here for the job (and the mountain). "There are so few independent ski resorts investing the resources into infrastructures and facilities that Taos Ski Valley is doing, it was just too great of an opportunity to pass up. Between the mountain, the culture and the people of this area, it all just came together and seemed like a fantastic adventure."

Last year in an interview with Tempo, Kaela Gillum, TSV events director, said she was delighted with the opportunity to expand the resort's horizons.

"Here was the chance to bring two worlds together," Gillum recalled of her skiing-into-art transition. "I loved the 'Paint For Peaks' event and taking it on. So I came up with what I think will be successful ideas. It's beautiful here," she continued "Fiber arts, photography, painting, jewelry, dreamcatchers, you name it, we'll have it again," Gillum said about the artisan booths this year. "There will be a children's arts and crafts booth again too. We're doing live music each day and because it's all inside the special-alcohol premises, people can browse the show with their beer and wine in hand."

Hegeman said he hopes the festival will continue to grow. "This is the third year of the event. This region has an incredible history with arts and culture so the event was a natural one for us to do and one we can grow."

There are cabins, condos and hotel rooms in the area available for weekend accommodations. For reservations call (888) 569-1756. For resort information, call (575) 776-2291 or visit