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Artesia Arts Council chooses artists of the month

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Christina Stock Photo Jane Nevarez and Paul Nevarez are seen here at their booth at Roswell's Christmas Fantasy 2018, which is organized by the couple.

Roswell’s Paul and Jane Nevarez’s exhibit at Ocotillo Performing Arts Center

By Christina Stock

Vision Editor

Lindsay Waugh is a volunteer at the Ocotillo Performing Arts Center (OPAC), 310 W. Main St., Artesia. In an email, she said that its Artists of the Month for September will be Paul and Jane Nevarez who live in Roswell.

“They bring art up to the Ocotillo Performing Arts Center, and, Artesia Arts Council features them in our lobby gallery space for a month where they can sell if they wish. It helps us showcase area talent, although I believe we have had artists from other places, as well. However, the vast majority of the artists we feature are from southeast New Mexico,” Waugh said.

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“One thing we strive for is variety,” Waugh said. “Paul and Jane’s horseshoe, metal and rope art was something we hadn’t really had at the Ocotillo until they were featured back in January, and, we’re thrilled to have them back in September.

“Last year, we featured not just photography or paintings, we also had an artist who creates textile art through complicated quilting patterns and a lady who turns old cow skulls into works of art. We also have our gallery at 510 W. Main St. where we display artists, as well, at times. We post a biography on our social media pages, and, if the artist sells anything, they keep 80% while we keep 20% as a seller’s fee. For us, it’s more about giving artists a chance to show their talent,” Waugh said.

The Nevarez couple is well-known in the artist community, having lived in New Mexico for more than 60 years. Under their brand, Jus Rope’n Kreations, the Nevarezes have exhibited their art at shows and events for more than 20 years. Their art creations include material that any cowboy or cowgirl in New Mexico is familiar with: Ropes, used horseshoes, which they transform into frames, baskets, crosses and even functional art such as lamps.

The Nevarez art pieces are found in galleries throughout New Mexico, from Galleria West in Ruidoso, Three Rivers Trading Post in Three Rivers, Old Lincoln Gallery in Lincoln and Cloudcroft Gallery.

Art, however, isn’t the only passion of Jane and Paul Nevarez, it’s their family and for seven years, they had stepped up becoming the organizers of two well-established Roswell arts and crafts shows, Christmas Fantasy and Artfaire.

In a phone interview Jane Nevarez said, “We’re struggling a little bit, but we’re OK. The art sales have come to a screeching halt, without having any shows or anything. Artwork is a luxury.”

Asked about her reaction to hearing that she and her husband had been chosen the second time to be OPAC’s Artist of the Month, Nevarez said that they were happy to accept. “Since we didn’t have any art shows (due to the pandemic restrictions), we try to get as much of exposure as we can get,” she said.

The exhibit at OPAC will be in the lobby and represent a variety of the Nevarezes’ art, Jane Nevarez said. “We’ve got the rope artwork, the horseshoe artwork. Some of our crosses and our big rope basket,” she said.

For more information, visit artesiaartscouncil.com or jusropenkreations.com.