The Harwood Museum of Art, the Second Oldest Art Museum in New Mexico

Harwood Museum of Art

Image courtesy of Nuestro Stories.

Did you know that the Harwood Museum of Art is the second oldest art museum in New Mexico?

The museum was founded by the Harwood Foundation, a non-profit organization headquartered where the museum is located today, in 1923. The foundation’s mission was to serve as a bookstore and cultural and artistic center.

A few years after its founding, in 1929, the Harwood Foundation and the University of New Mexico developed a partnership that existed until 1937, when ownership was transferred to the University of New Mexico.

The Harwood Museum is the ideal place to begin an artist’s adventure and discover works from the Spanish Colonial era, the Taos Society of Artists, and Taos Moderns, as well as contemporary avant-garde and Native American art.

Among the works of Hispanic heritage in the Harwood Museum are sculptures of saints and retablos. The earliest pieces from New Mexico date from the late 18th century and 19th century, and contemporary works are also on display.

You can also find works of carpentry and furniture made at the beginning of the Spanish colonization, traditional New Mexico tinwork, and many other pieces.

Things You Should Know Before You Go:

  • The Harwood Museum of Art is located just two blocks from Taos Plaza.
  • The museum is known as the “crown jewel” of northern New Mexico.
  •  Most of the saints in the Harwood collection were donated by art patron and writer Mabel Dodge Luhan.
  • In the carpentry and furniture collection, there are late 18th and early 19th-century boxes, flour mills, and lumber rooms. 
  • The tradition of New Mexico tinsmithing, which developed later, was an integral part of the Hispanic religious culture during the 19th century.
  • Some Hispanic artists that can be admired in the museum are Patrociño Barela, Antonio Molleno, and José Rafel Aragón.

Address: 238 Ledoux St, Taos.

Experience it here


By Isaac Vallenilla

Isaac Vallenilla is a cinema enthusiast with a Major in Modern languages from La Universidad de los Andes, Venezuela. He has been working as a proofreader, translator and educator for 6 years. He currently lives in Buenos Aires, Argentina.

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