Fantastic Visions in Albuquerque

Dreams That You Dream Really Do Come True by Joshua Franco

Santa Fe often grabs the spotlight in the national press as a major art center behind New York City and Los Angeles. And when collectors come to New Mexico, that’s where they head to feather their nests back home. Friends of mine who live in Albuquerque always grouse that their fair city is unfairly overlooked by the visiting art crowds. Indeed, when it comes to a thriving art scene, the Duke City has plenty going on. (Though it could use a new nickname.)

A few days ago, an intriguing show opened at Albuquerque’s South Broadway Cultural Center. “Days of Future Past, Surrealistic Paintings + Installations” features works by Los Fantasticos, a group of artists who have come together to display their takes on imagination and reality. From haunting portraits to humorous narratives, their paintings offer up a world where magical realism meets pop surrealism. Flying dogs, cartoon characters and Day of the Dead skulls coalesce to create some highly original and fantastico visions.

Organized by Santiago Perez, the band of visual brothers also includes Joshua Franco, Chris Perez and Brandon Maldonado. I think we’ll be hearing a lot more about Los Fantasticos in the future. The show runs through July 27.

—Bonnie Gangelhoff

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