New Year’s launch: 2016 at Mabel’s

by Elizabeth Cunningham

Reviewing the launch of 2016 at Mabel’s, happenings from 2015 inform the New Year–it’s chock full of Mabel news and events. We’re excited. 2016 will feature the long-planned Mabel and Company exhibition opening in Taos. Partnering with the Harwood Museum of Art, the Mabel Dodge Luhan House is offering lodging for two special weekends. More on that follows.


Julie Keefe _blog

Julie Keefe in her office with Tony Lujan looking over her shoulder




Last year presaged a new era at the Mabel Dodge Luhan House. We have a new general manager. In April Julie Keefe relocated from her lifelong home of Cincinnati, Ohio to assume the role. She serves as steward for the House, its mission and rich history. Julie is grateful for the guidance and support she received throughout 2015 from long-time and well-loved managers, Maria Fortin and the late Karen Young.

Excited about opportunities unfolding in 2016, Julie cites new and returning workshops and retreats. And another new development: she’ll oversee the unveiling of the newly constructed yoga and meditation center. Julie will also Ijoin me in contributing to this blog. She’ll report news on events at the House. Watch for her piece next month on workshop offerings.


MDL & Co ad - MDL striped blanket blog

Ad in August issue, Art in America






Julie also supports efforts around Mabel & Company. This exhibition will be the first to explore the impact Mabel Dodge Luhan had on the art, writings and activism of 20th century American Modernism.

Late summer into winter 2015 the show began making news. A full-page ad appeared in the August issue of Art in America. A press release, “The Harwood Museum of Art Announces New Traveling Exhibition Mabel Dodge Luhan & Company: American Moderns and the West Opening in Taos,” went out in December.


The press release opens with a one-paragraph overview:


An exploration of the life of Mabel Dodge Luhan, the exhibition features works by renowned artists Marsden Hartley, John Marin, Georgia O’Keeffe, Ansel Adams, Rebecca Strand, and other luminaries in dialogue with the Pueblo and Hispano art that inspired and strongly influenced their modernist styles.


The overview expands on Mabel’s reach. The exhibition focuses on the life and times of Mabel Dodge Luhan (1879–1962), “one of the early 20th century’s most significant, yet under-recognized cultural figures.” She brought modern art to northern New Mexico From 1918 to 1947, Mabel influenced legions of European and American “movers and shakers.” Mabel created a “Paris West.” She put Taos on the national and international maps of the avant-garde.


Mabel Co Harwood flyer -crop_blog


Mabel & Co. news expanded this year. In January the Harwood Museum of Art created a website dedicated to launch of the exhibition. Information includes a short profile on Mabel and paragraphs on co-curators MaLin Wilson-Powell and Dr. Lois Rudnick.

Lodging is another category on the Harwood Museum’s Mabel Dodge Luhan & Company website. Special lodging packages have been arranged in tandem with exhibition.

The Mabel Dodge Luhan House is holding a select number of rooms over two weekends. The first is for the exhibition opening weekend, May 20, 21, & 22. The second is for the Mabel & Co. symposium weekend June 17, 18, & 19. (See symposium details under “Calendar” at

As rooms are limited and already beginning to fill up, Julie and I suggest booking now.

We at the Mabel Dodge Luhan House hope to welcome you for these two special weekends.