The Scrapbook

Artist Reception: Armond Lara
August 18, 2023
Folding screen amongst abstract paintings
Installation View of Armond Lara's Retrospective

Friends, family, collectors, journalists, and curious art enthusiasts gathered at form & concept on August 18th to celebrate the return of local legend and internationally renowned artist Armond Lara. Relive the magic with these event shots by Byron Flesher.


Armond Lara speaks with a journalist

The serious art critics showed up early. A local journalist talks motivations, inspirations, and reflections with the man of the hour, Armond Lara. Check out "Art on a string" for more information on Lara's decades-long career.


Two elderly people shaking hands

Everyone wanted to meet the artist. Armond shakes hands with an old friend.


armond lara on FaceTime

Not in town? No problem. Lara's former classmate reminisces about the past with the artist from hundreds of miles away.


woman stares at flying blue buffalo

"How did they hang these?"


Man on tall ladder

A really tall ladder-Before the reception Operations Director Brad Hart goes where no preparator has dared go before while Gallery Director Jordan Eddy directs.


Two women read wall text

In the gallery shop a beadwork showcase curated by our very own Tiana Japp captivated a couple of fashionistas.


Handbags embroidered with Indigenous beadwork

These handbags by Carmen Selam, originally a part of an MFA thesis show, were a major impetus for the showcase.


A little girl points at a large pastel

Back in the atrium, Lara's family and friends started to show up. The youngest family member, Lara's great-granddaughter, picks out her favorite: "I like that one!"


Armond Lara dressed in all black talking to his niece

In between signing catalogues of his work, Armond Lara reconnected with his extended family.


Armond Lara autographing a book

You know the family wanted an autograph too!


Armond Lara family portrait

One of many heartwarming Lara family reunions from the reception.


Woman examines marionettes

Local artist and friend of the gallery Melinda Hoffman admires Lara's handiwork. I wonder how Billy the Kid and Mona Lisa would have gotten along?


People walking up glass staircase

Works by Jaune Quick-To-See Smith and Venice Biennale American Pavilion artist Jeffrey Gibson adorned the catwalk, but the glass staircase proved more captivating to some.


View from catwalk

The view from the second floor. Hey! Where are those buffalo headed?


Woman examines a sculpture

At the end of the Flying Blue Buffalo trail was Lara's hardest hitting figurative works. A patron admires one star of the show, Billy the Kid Marionette, 2001.


Carved wooden sculpture

Outlaw living ain't easy.


woman with eyes closed in front of artwork

Between the plentiful art and sentimental reunions, the reception was a lot to take in.


Woman behind desk talking to guests

Back on the ground floor, collectors were closing fast. Gallery Owner Sandy Zane talks patrons through the catalogue and pricing.


Silver van converted into art galleryAs the party wound down inside, Axle Contemporary kept the energy high with a mobile showcase of 6 New Mexico-Based fiber artists.


But one more heartwarming embrace before we call it. Those smiles are what it is all about.


A huge thank you to everyone who came out for the reception. For everyone that missed the reception, be sure to check out the exhibit: Armond Lara: A Shifting Retrospective on view until September 16th.

About the author

Spencer Linford

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