Out of the aftermath of the New Mexico Cuarto Centenario (the four hundredth anniversary of the Spanish explorer Don Juan de Oñate's 1598 settlement in present-day New Mexico) came a pledge to create a memorial for the conquistador. The memorial was envisioned as a tri-cultural endeavor, with Reynaldo "Sonny" Rivera, Betty Sabo, and Nora Naranjo-Morse collaborating. Because of his complex legacy, the three artists could not agree on how to represent Oñate. Rivera and Sabo ultimately crafted a series of bronze statues of Oñate and his entourage titled "La Jornada," while Naranjo-Morse created an earthwork titled "Numbe Whageh." These two approaches give physical form to a contested history, and present very different modes of remembering New Mexico's colonial past.
University California Press
trauma studies, historical memory, public art, New Mexico history, Native American art
The Public Historian, Vol. 33, No. 1 (Winter 2011), pp. 44-72