Bockley Gallery and Cara Romero are pleased to present Through-line, a group exhibition at Cara Romero Photography during Santa Fe Indian Market that brings together Indigenous artists from across Turtle Island. Works by Eric-Paul Riege, Tyrrell Tapaha, Maggie Thompson, Nico Williams, Matthew Kirk, and Frank Big Bear tell stories through material or reference to textiles’ encoded technologies.
The loom-inspired, fiber-based practices of both Riege and Tapaha uniquely conjure generational knowledge and symbolism with expressions of lived experience. Exhibiting drawing for the first time, Riege’s Pillow Drawings series (2023) transforms sketches for future sculptures and regalia into intimately scaled soft-sculptures of their own. Tapaha’s Diné-style tapestries in vegetal-dyed Navajo churro combine graphic pattern and symbolism into personalized stories of past, present and future.
The spider’s web—an encompassing symbol of weaving that has complex meaning across cultures—is imaged as a luring, hypnotic space in Frank Big Bear’s vibrant drawing, Anishinabe Man Trapped in a Trickster’s Web (2023). The exhibition’s other figurative work, an evocative photographic self-portrait by Maggie Thompson is a high-relief, structural tapestry woven with colored ribbon.
Nico Williams’s work transforms a monochromatic plastic tarpaulin through hand-scored and machine-sewn surfaces into a star quilt, a textile known to gift economies that signals generosity and honor during life transitions. Matthew Kirk also reworks raw manufacturing materials; his featured work brings together bespoke floor tiles with bright, graphic, archetypal mark making to read as a gridded, patchwork quilt.
Woven into Through-line are new photographs by Cara Romero. From extroverted energies of play and collaboration to introverted and quietly powerful portraits and landscapes, Romero’s work encompasses a range of energies based on her intuitive engagement with lived experience.
Cara Romero Photography is located at 333 Montezuma Ave., #5, Santa Fe, New Mexico.