Following outcry, Judy Chicago gallery to open in Belen
July 18, 2019 06:32 PM
BELEN, N.M. - Judy Chicago, a world-renowned artist, will open her new gallery in Belen on Saturday, her birthday.
Through the Flower art space features changing exhibitions, a learning center and a small store.
The showcase and building transformation have been months in the making.
“Were excited about it, really excited,” Chicago said. “The thing that’s most thrilling has to do with the community support.”
Chicago and her husband settled down in Belen more than 20 years ago after hearing a simple advertisement from the lieutenant governor at the time.
“He used to say, ‘Come to Belen, cheap dirt,'” Chicago said.
Chicago’s new art space wasn’t always met with community support.
Some people felt her artwork, which features female genitalia, doesn’t belong in Belen.
The city had initially proposed to chip in $13,000 to go toward the space, but the idea was eventually scrapped.
“When it became a dust up in the public, we decided to just go it alone,” said Belen Mayor Jerah Cordova.
Instead of money from the city, Chicago launched a crowdsourcing campaign. Cordova also dedicated $10,000 of his salary to the project.
They eventually raised $80,000.
Saturday’s festivities are open to the public from 3 p.m.-8 p.m.
Updated: July 18, 2019 06:32 PM
Created: July 18, 2019 07:06 AM
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