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Artswrap, our monthly electronic newsletter, has all the information you’ll need about upcoming classes, gallery exhibits, call for artists, and everything happening at the Dona Ana Arts Council.

If you’d like to receive the Arts Council’s e-newsletter each month, please scroll to the bottom of the Homepage and click “Subscribe to Newsletter”.   Click below to read the September 2020 issue.  Happy reading!

September 2020


Artist Relief Fund Announced

News of the ill effects of the pandemic have quite rightfully focused mostly on the threats to life and physical health.  However, we know that personal finances have also been threatened for a number of people.  Across the country, perhaps the world, arts organizations have started artist relief funds because too many of our artists have limited resources, even in the best of times, and many artists have been especially impacted by this health crisis.


Toward that end, an anonymous local patron of the arts has made a very generous offer, and the Doña Ana Arts Council has accepted it.  Each month until the end of 2020, this patron will invest in our community through the arts by giving at least $200 to be distributed as artist relief.  Other patrons are challenged to match that $200.  If the total of additional contributions to the fund exceed $200 in any one month, the original patron is willing to match those additional contributions up to $500.  Thus, at a minimum, the Arts Council will have $1,000 to distribute as relief grants to artists between now and January 1, 2021.


However, due to the matching challenge, DAAC could have as much as $5,000 or more to distribute during that time.  We will, of course, be monitoring how this works for us and for the artists who benefit; so, even without the ongoing matching provision, if it seems to be working and there is Board of Directors approval, we may choose to continue the fund into 2021.


Artists who would like to benefit will need to be listed in our Arts Directory to qualify, and they will need to fill out an application.  Then, depending on the status of the fund, two or more $100 grants will be made to those who apply each month.  We will keep anonymous the names of the applicants and recipients, but we do hope that there will be affirmations of the benefits that can be made public.


If in any month there are more applicants than there are funds available, the DAAC staff will determine, based on the applications submitted, which artists will receive the available funds that month.  New applications will be required each month, and recipients will be asked to refrain from applying again once they have received one relief grant.


In order to ensure the funds are directed to the Artist Relief Fund, we ask that patrons make that clear in the memo section on checks or in communication with us.  Any checks or other investments made without that communication will be assumed to be intended for the Doña Ana Arts Council general operating funds.


We extend our sincere gratitude to the original patron donor, and we hope others will be similarly inspired.


Promoting Art Series Returns via Zoom on Friday 8/28/20

Promoting Art Series – Returns  Correction:  August 28th  (not the 27th as earlier stated)
The Promoting Art Series returns on August 28, 2020, at noon. The topic of discussion will be the Arts Directory, a new initiative at DAAC, and a follow-up to last year’s Focus Group.  We are looking forward to valuable feedback from the artist community on what expectations they have of DAAC and how we can work together to promote art in the Mesilla Valley.
We are also looking for topics and artists or individuals that work in the arts to be speakers over the next 12 months.
This event will be conducted through ZOOM until the state revises the current restrictions on gatherings. If you plan on attending, RSVP to Karen Conley at or call (575) 523-6403. We will provide you the meeting ID and password. We can accommodate 100 people per ZOOM session.  If there is enough interest, we will schedule several sessions.  The Promoting Arts Series talks are free and open to the public.
Pictured here is Noel Sandino, DAAC’s August 2020 Artist of the Month


Prospectus #260
Acclaimed Artist Series
Purchase Initiative
Calling all Southwest Artists and Galleries located in Arizona, Utah, Colorado, Oklahoma, Texas, and New Mexico.
The objective of the 2020 Acclaimed Artist Purchase Initiative is to diversify the state’s public art collection by purchasing artwork from artists in all stages of their careers. All media in all genres, suitable for both interior and exterior display, will be considered for purchase. Artwork must be durable, permanent, low-maintenance and in compliance with ADA guidelines upon installation.
Seeking artwork ready for purchase in the $20,000 – $40,000 price range, all-inclusive.
DEADLINE: September 30, 2020
Prospectus #254
US Native American and Indigenous Artists Purchase Initiative
New Mexico Arts has extended the deadline for the US Native American and Indigenous Artists Initiative. The Project is open to Native American, Native Hawaiian, and Alaska Native artists who reside in the United States as well as galleries in the United States, who sell the work of Native Artists. Galleries may submit qualifications on behalf of any artist represented by the gallery, regardless of the artist’s residency, so long as the artist identifies as a member of a Native American, Native Hawaiian, or Alaska Native tribe or community.
All visual arts media in all genres, suitable for interior or exterior display, will be considered for purchase. Project amounts are $1,000-$50,000 all-inclusive.
DEADLINE: August 31, 2020.
Due to the Covid-19 crisis we would like to ensure that as many artists as possible are able to submit to this call for artists
Josie Valdez
Mesalands Community College
Prospectus #259
Devasthali Hall
New Mexico State University
Las Cruces, NM
Commission Project
New Mexico Arts and the Local Selection Committee at New Mexico State University (NMSU) seek an artist or artist team to create a site-specific commission project for an exterior landscaped location near the new Art Building Devasthali Hall on the main campus of NMSU in Las Cruces.
The space invites the opportunity to create a connection point and unifying location for multiple university disciplines through an environment where students, faculty, staff, and visitors to NMSU may gather. Projects that engage the natural environment, the exterior architecture, and use the grounds to create a sense of place are encouraged.
Professional artists working in the United States and demonstrating a level of experience that is commensurate with the project scope and budget will be invited to submit qualifications to this opportunity.
Artists are encouraged to explore conceptual designs inspired by the landscape, landscape architecture, environmental art, placemaking and monumental art. A total of $190,500 is available for the project inclusive of all costs, taxes and fees.
DEADLINE: August 3, 2020.
Devasthali Hall
New Mexico State University
Las Cruces, NM
The Art in Public Places program enriches New Mexico’s public spaces through an innovative and diverse public art collection.
To preserve, enhance, and develop the arts in New Mexico through partnerships, public awareness, and education, and to enrich the quality
of life for present and future generations.
DCA Logo
New M

New Arts Directory!

Great news!  the new on-line Arts Directory is live and in “test mode”.  Please bear with us as we complete the database of over 500 names.

If you would like to be listed in the directory, or would like to correct/update information that is already there, please email and put “Arts Directory” in the title of your email.

It is free to have a basic listing, however, artists who are members of the Doña Ana Arts Council receive enhanced listing options.  To find out more, please visit Join/Renew.

You may access the Arts Directory from the homepage of this website, or directly at


New extended gallery hours on “Second Saturdays”

DAAC Announces New “Second Saturday” Extended Gallery Hours from 12 noon to 7 pm starting on Saturday, July 11, 2020.

In July, the featured artist is Daphne Wirthlin. Ms. Wirthlin’s work will be available for viewing during regular gallery hours, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, in addition to 12 noon to 7 p.m. on Saturday, July 11.

DAAC asks all visitors to the gallery to maintain 6’ social distance between each other, wear a mask, and use provided hand sanitizer.

The Doña Ana Arts Council is a non-profit organization dedicated to creating a community where the arts thrive throughout the greater Las Cruces area. The DAAC offices and adjacent Arts & Cultural Center are located at 1740 Calle de Mercado in Mesilla, New Mexico. The mailing address is PO Box 1721, Las Cruces, NM 88004. For more information, go to or call the DAAC office at (575) 523-6403.



The Doña Ana Arts Council (DAAC) is conducting a call for artists residing in southern New Mexico and El Paso to submit work for a juried online exhibit titled Metaphor for a Virus, Response to the Current Global Pandemic.  We will start accepting and jurying submissions on May 15, 2020, and will continue accepting entries until the end of the year.  The online gallery will be hosted throughout 2020 on the DAAC web page; to see the Metaphor for a Virus gallery, click HERE

Submission details:  For an entry fee of $5, artists may submit up to three digital images between May 15 and December 31, 2020. The entry fee may be paid to DAAC via check (mail to PO Box 1721, Las Cruces, NM 88004) or credit card (pay the entry fee as a “donation” HERE  .

Digital submissions may be sent via email to  All images must reflect original work, and the artist must own the copyright. Please include, title, dimensions, medium, and a short bio or statement (1 paragraph). Work may be listed for sale, with all sales transactions exclusively between the artist and buyer.  Artists are asked to please consider a 20% donation to DAAC on all exhibition sales.

Digital Image Requirements: JPEG, 72 DPI, 1200 pixels on the long side.  Max size is 1MB.

For additional information, call Karen Conley at 314-704-9445 or e-mail her at


DAAC Executive Director, Gregory Z. Smith, summarized the inspiration for this exhibit with the following statement: “Sometimes the changes we see in our lives are clearest with 20/20 hindsight. This year, coincidentally the year 2020, includes changes that we are painfully conscious of as they occur. Certainly, we will see more when we look back on this time from some point in the future; still, the experience now is quite profound.”

Smith continued, “Metaphor for a Virus is one of the ways Doña Ana Arts Council is seeking to make the arts a positive part of what we are experiencing.  Let us find knowledge, growth, and art with which to share what we are seeing.  Let us be more for what we have seen and what we have survived.”

According to DAAC Program Manager and exhibit organizer, Karen Conley, “At some point, we hope to organize a live show. As you can imagine, there are other galleries and art organizations across the nation and the world wrestling with how to keep moving forward with shows and promoting artists.”


Review of Begin-Hanssen Workshop

February 16, 2020

I just finished three stimulating days taking a class by Nancy Begin and her sister Susan Hanssen, called “The Art of Simplification: Eliminating the Unnecessary to Let the Necessary Speak”.   It was outstanding!   They were a wonderful team and both were extremely well-prepared.  The classes were informative, fun and challenging to your artistic nature.  I finished the class with a song in my heart, and many, many new ideas to express myself in my paintings.   If you want to grow in your art skills and enjoy every minute, you have to experience their classes.


Vi Pupp Scroggins

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