Native New Mexico: The Art of Collette Marie

Jul 31, 2015

From the earliest pre-historic cave paintings and rock art to the present, artists have long found inspiration for their work in animals. For Las Cruces artist Collette Marie, the animals and plants of New Mexico not only provide inspiration – but they carry a spiritual meaning as well.

Collette Marie’s deeply cherished connection with nature is strongly reflected through the collection of screen prints and paintings that make up the exhibit, “Native New Mexico: The Art of Collette Marie,” at the New Mexico Farm & Ranch Heritage Museum in Las Cruces. The exhibit opens with a free reception with refreshments from 5:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. on Aug. 13. The show will remain in the museum’s Arts Corridor through Nov. 29 and regular admission is required to see the exhibit beginning Aug. 14.

“My work is an invitation to experience the natural world with reverence and joy," she said. “A lot of people like animals and people gravitate towards animal imagery. I feel like I can express myself through animals. I have a connection with animals.”

Collette Marie embraces the narrative power of the Chihuahuan desert in her paintings. A graphic designer by trade and desert rat by nature, her art is characterized by vibrant colors and strong graphic elements which reflect her training. She first attended New Mexico State University to study psychology and computer science, but after taking a class in photography, she found her true calling in art.

Some of Collette’s artwork is applied to wood. “I love the way the grain looks,” she said. “It gives a softer look to the eye” and it’s more “durable” than canvas or paper.

When not creating art, she does freelance marketing, advertising and graphic design work, with a particular emphasis on producing integrated “identity packages” for businesses seeking to create a unique brand.

The Museum is open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Monday through Saturday and from noon to 5 p.m. on Sunday. Admission is $5 for adults, $4 for senior citizens, $3 for children 4 to 17, and $2 for active U.S. military and veterans. Children 3 and under and Museum Friends Members receive free admission.

For more information, please call (575) 522-4100.

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For information contact Craig Massey at craig.massey@state.nm.us.