ARTISTS BIO

1995–2002 New Mexico Watercolor Society – Juried Shows

2001 – Watercolor Society Masterworks Show – 2nd Place Award

2008 – 2012 – represented by the Northern New Mexico Art Gallery, Santa Fe

2014 – 2019 – New Mexico State Fair Fine Art Juried Shows

2015 – Group Show and Grand Opening – FaraHNHeight Fine Art Gallery, Taos, NM

2017 – One Man Show – FaraHNHeight Fine Art Gallery, Taos, NM

2017 – Works presented on Arches Paper Online Gallery: www.arches-papers.com

2017 – Project Manager Santa Fe Artists’ Medical Fund Annual Show

2018 – Taos Ski Valley Artist in Residence Show

2018 – Taos Ski Valley Artist in Residence Show

2018 – Taos Fall Arts Show Selected Works

2018 – Old Martina’s Hall, Ranchos de Taos, NM – Featured Artist

2018 – Fall Show – Romancing the Stone Fine Art Gallery, Canyon Road, Santa Fe, NM 

2018 – Holiday and Christmas Eve Show – Romancing the Stone Gallery, Canyon Road, Santa Fe, NM

2019 – Represented by Heritage Fine Art Gallery, Taos, NM

2019 – November 1 – 16, 2019 Early Winter Show collaboration between Faust Art Gallery and FaraHNHeight Fine Art Gallery, Santa Fe, NM

2020 – Two Person Show – A Counting of Crows –  with Betsy Kuhn at Art on Barcelona, Unitarian Universalist Church, Santa Fe, New Mexico

2020 – New Artist Video Launched in April, 2020

2020 – Two New Avanyu Paintings and Several New Paintings from the Spirits of Chaco Canyon Series Debut in the Spring of 2020

2020 – The coronavirus, the pandemic and quarantine.  I led the Santa Fe Artists’  Medical Fund project FLOWERS FOR SANTA FE, and helped organize more than 85 artists to paint more than 500 flower paintings given to the residents and patients of hospitals, nursing homes and assisted living facilities.

2020 – I began a new style of watercolor abstraction, beginning with “Journeys to the Land of Mystery” and the “Tesuque Garden” series.

2021 – FaraHNHeight Fine Gallery of Santa Fe shows my work in several venues, including FaraHNHeight Fine Art Gallery Santa Fe, FaraHNHeight Fine Art Denver, Capitan New Mexico Library, La Fonda Hotel on the Plaza, Santa Fe and Don Fernando Hotel ,Taos.  For more information, contact Gregory Farah, Gallery Director. 575-751-4278. Farahnheight@gmail.com.  www.farahnheight.com.

2021 – Author of an article about the Santa Fe Artists’ Medical Fund FLOWERS FOR SANTA FE PROJECT in the February/March issue of the SANTA FEAN MAGAZINE.

2021 – New representation by the Taos Artist Collective, Taos, New Mexico.  For more information, contact Lois Fernandez at tactaos@gmail.com or 575-770-9950.   www.taosartistcollective.com

ARTISTS STATEMENT

My artwork takes a contemporary look at the American West from a realistic, unromantic perspective.

© Joseph Riggs Fine Art

The Spirit of Taos Mountain, 2017. 40″ x 60″. ©Joseph Riggs

My journey as an artist has taken a multitude of paths.  After 40 years as a criminal defense attorney in New Mexico, I began a new life and career as an artist.  I had always painted, and much of my earlier artistic career focused on rodeos and rodeo cowboys.  I retired from the practice of law in 2014, and moved from Albuquerque to Santa Fe, New Mexico.  In 2015, I had the good fortune to have an artistic life-changing experience.  I spent six weeks in Paris, France experiencing life as a Frenchman.  I walked the streets of Picasso, Cezanne, Monet, Van Gogh, and so many others of the Impressionism and Post-Impressionism period.  And I learned one of the important lessons taught by these Masters. “Paint what inspires you, and, if luck smiles upon you, someone else might love it enough to buy it.”  I determined to follow that path.

I returned to New Mexico with a new perspective.  I wanted to experiment with new materials and new subjects.  I wanted to see where my inspirations led.  My new paintings began to focus on what I loved most about New Mexico and the Southwest.  The sky has always fascinated me, both the daytime sky and the nighttime sky with its millions of stars.  I began to paint Native American subjects which had been a mystery to me since my childhood in Texas. And, I began to feel the spirit of Picasso, Paul Cezanne, Juan Gris, Georges Braque and Albert Gleizes – whose spirit had guided me in Paris.  I had always loved Cubism, and its roots with Cezanne.  And it was fitting that it is now the 100th anniversary of this 20th Century art movement. Could I find the mystery of the Southwest in my paintings? Could I combine these spiritual influences, and make them my own, and like what I was painting?  Could I follow the storied Southwest Modernism movement of Georgia O’Keeffe, Marsden Hartley, Raymond Jonson, Andrew Dasburg, John Marin, and Cady Wells?  Could I put all of these influences together, and carve a new artistic path?  I determined to try.

“The Spirit of Taos Mountain”, pictured above demonstrates both my process and my subjects.  I combine the land of Taos Mountain,  the Southwestern sky, and a Kachina Mask with the concepts of  Cubism.

Click here to add your own text