In 1995, in its effort to sustain and promote the culture and traditions of this historic Northern New Mexico community, the Chimayó Cultural Preservation Association (CCPA) established the Chimayó Museum.
The museum is located on Plaza del Cerró, center of a Spanish Colonial settlement established in 1740. Plaza del Cerró is enclosed by contiguous adobe buildings. Its three entrances are only wide enough to admit people on foot and animals, making it easy to defend. It is one of the last fortified plazas in New Mexico.
The museum building is a classic adobe with viga ceilings and dirt floors--the traditional style that is the foundation of contemporary Southwestern architecture. It was originally home to Jose Ramon Ortega and Petra Mestas Ortega, ancestors of the world-renowned Ortega family of Rio Grandé weavers. The couple raised fourteen children in the building that is now home to exhibits honoring Chimayó's past and present.
The museum is dedicated to educating the public, particularly young New Mexicans, about the history and culture of Chimayó and its surrounding communities, and to supporting the work of established and emerging local artists.
Photographs on display now date back to the late 1800s and early 1900s and present images of the everyday lives, work, and faith of the people of Chimayó one hundred years ago.
The museum provides a venue for the display of contemporary work, including the Española Student Art Show and Los Maestros. It sponsors community celebrations focusing on local art, crafts, and music, and programs for children in area schools. In 2001, over 300 students visited the museum and toured the historic plaza.
Museum Hours: Wednesday-Saturday 11:00am-3:00pm
Admission is free (donations are needed and appreciated)
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Copyright © 2004 Chimayó Museum. All rights reserved.