Meet Diego Medina, LOOM Indigenous Art Gallery’s November artist:

“on san pedro street in las cruces there is an old house built by my great grandfather. it was one of the first houses in the old indian neighborhood, now known as the mesquite district. a neighborhood that once held dances with smoky feet that lifted that good dirt up to be briefly caught and talked to by light. our family home is one of the few original homes left in that area, and on the porch there are these big arches that face west, letting sunset feelings in, and the shadows those arches create move across the porch like a type of old clock throughout the day… that house on the corner of san pedro street tells it’s story with those gentle shadows. a story kept hidden by any other history. where i’m from in southern new mexico, native identity is a little different. there are fewer federally recognized tribes in southern new mexico than in northern new mexico. and el paso del norte, a city just south of las cruces, was exactly that: a passing where people coming through swept through like a broom, tossing culture up into the air like dust and then letting it settle wherever it fell. after the pueblo revolt many native people from the tiwa and piro pueblos moved down to that area and created new pueblo communities, which intertwined with the tribes already living in that area… my family are descendants of native rarámuri slaves that worked in the silver mines in parral. we ended up in that area before new mexico was even a state and built our family

home in that old neighborhood among the pueblo people and people from various other tribes. the originals to that area were knows as tortugeños. my name is diego medina, and as an artist currently living in santa fe, i make art that tells the story of the good love that happened in the shadows of native slavery. the good love that i came from, that put good love in me. i make art to show that as much beauty can be seen in shadow as can be seen in light.”