“The City Different”
As the cultural, political, and spiritual capital of the American Southwest since 1610, Santa Fe continues to fulfill its destiny as the meeting ground of diverse peoples and several universes of ideas.
Today, the appeal of Santa Fe for the postmodern global citizen is complex, a combination of various forces that have developed over a long period of time. For many, Santa Fe’s status as a Native American cultural mecca is at the core of the city’s mystique. Native Americans in New Mexico and the Southwest trace their mythical origins to subterranean worlds from which their ancestors emerged into this, the Fourth World. They have always been here and have maintained their ancestral way of life through centuries of change. Since its founding, Santa Fe has provided a stage for the encounter of the European cultures of Spain and Old Mexico and the powerful culture of the Native American peoples of the western frontier. With the blazing of the Santa Fe Trail in 1821, the relentless colonization of New Mexico and the Southwest by the United States commenced.
By 1900, Santa Fe had already achieved a unique character and appearance, a blend of Spanish, Mexican, Indian, and North American influences. New Mexico’s Hispanic culture still boasts European qualities that many people find fascinating. Beginning shortly after Cortes’s conquest of Mexico in 1521- 1522, and drawn by the astonishing legend of the Seven Cities of Gold, Spanish colonists settled in the region. New Mexico’s Hispanic culture is unlike any other in the world. Devout Catholicism, unique folk art forms, and well preserved cultural traditions, such as special types of architecture and cuisine, endow New Mexico with haunting echoes of sixteenth century Spain. For many years during the Spanish colonial period, the “imagined” treasures of Santa Fe produced powerful fantasies in the minds of many Missouri traders. The Santa Fe Trail enabled scores of clever businessmen to create vast fortunes not from gold but by exploiting the lucrative trade between the New Mexican and American frontiers, of which Santa Fe was the commercial hub.
Santa Fe still boasts of its status as one of the world’s great shopping and trading cities, a place where one of a kind treasures are regularly bought and sold. In the twentieth century, the discovery of Santa Fe by a score of talented artists and writers produced a series of cultural rebirths, which have firmly established the City of the Holy Faith as one of the leading art centers in North America. Some of the legendary artists who spent time in northern New Mexico, including as D. H. Lawrence, Ansel Adams, and Georgia O’Keeffe, have ascribed almost mystical qualities to the creative spirit. Just a young man of twenty five in 1927, Ansel Adams described the “sky city” of Acoma as “the most remarkable spot I ever expect to see. . . . An Indian village of great antiquity set on a lofty mesa in a wild desert landscape . . . impossible to tell of the beauty of the place and the effect of the color the cream rocks and earth the green blue desert and the brilliant reds and yellows and blacks of the Indian costumes.”
Today, New Mexico continues to produce superb, visionary artists whose works interpret the vast and profound themes of the Southwest. The long and sustained building tradition of adobe architecture in New Mexico has blessed Santa Fe with remarkable structures, giving the city a distinctive and storybook quality. As the adobe mecca in the high desert of the southwestern United States, Santa Fe continues to provide a romantic vision of the western frontier, a vision perpetuated by Hollywood movies, television advertising, and Madison Avenue fashion campaigns. It’s legendary ethereal qualities of pure light and air, coupled with the mysticism and mystery of Indian ceremonies still practiced, produce a subtle, hypnotic attraction.
Although seemingly a recent development, Santa Fe’s unquestioned reputation as a New Age spiritual center has deep historical roots in centuries of religious ceremonies and faith. For some, the land itself harbors great sacred power and healing properties. Clearly, many people are drawn to Santa Fe for transcendental reasons. Here, perhaps, is a bridge from the modern Fourth World of the southwestern Native American cosmos to dimensions beyond. And so in many ways, on many levels, Santa Fe is a golden city, perhaps the modern day Quivira the fabled golden empire that Francisco Vasquez de Coronado and his conquistadores vainly sought in Kansas four and a half centuries ago.
Now the ancient adobe capital is a manifestation of the dreams of countless explorers and adventurers, capitalists and visionaries, dancers and poets, buckaroos and urban exiles, each with his or her own Santa Fe reality.
For additional information on the city different please visit Tourism Santa Fe Santa Fe Media Network is a huge site with many facets; that is slowly emerging to provide an interactive multi-media platform for Santa Fe. The best entry into the site is through www.santafemedianetwork.com a social media site to identify and communicate authentic sources, happenings and information about Santa Fe. Some of the features we will be adding over the coming months are virtual; Tours, Virtual Galleries, and live programming about Santa Fe.
The jewel of the network is www.sfnm1.com a broadcast network that can be viewed on any device, cell phone reader pad, PC or television. The broadcast day starts at 7:00 am with a Sunrise Ceremony to thank the creator and ends with Santa Fe music mixes into the wee hours. You can view our program guide by clicking the “guide” button next to the logo. Last but not least, is our e-commerce site www.santafebookcoop.com with a selection of over 600 Santa Fe books to enhance your visit to Santa Fe with facts, and fiction.
We will soon be able to post and download content generated by our audience. If you would like to participate in our programming, have content that you would like to publish or have programs that you would like to produce, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org