Commitment to Alamogordo’s Fine Arts: Local Coach & Artist Rene Sepulveda Releases “Angelica” at Roadrunner Emporium and Fine Arts Gallery, New York Avenue (Reprint from Alamogordo Town News)

Award Winning retired NCAA Track & Field Coach turned Author, Fitness Coach and Artist, Rene Sepulveda has released “Angelica” A sculpture dedicated to his aunt as part of the 3rd phase of his Valley of the Fires Collection, along with 13 other new and original creations. These among other original creations are on exhibition and for sale at 2nd Life, Fine Arts Boutique, at the Roadrunner Emporium and Fine Art Gallery, 928 New York Avenue, Alamogordo, New Mexico.

Artist Rene Sepulveda and his business partners are committed to the revitalization of the New York Avenue business district. As sports, business and cultural arts leaders they believe revitalization begins with a personal commitment to the business zone. As such they bringing attention to the district via the arts. This release is a part of a multi-pronged approach to build awareness of the New York Avenue, its historical significance and to build an interest in investment and reinvention of the zone into a culturally diverse business zone that serves locals, attracts tourism and increases tax revenues to the benefit of the broader community.

This commitment began with the publishing of books of historical significance to Alamogordo created by Executive Coach, Publicist and Author Chris Edwards, such as Coach Bob Sepulveda The Early Days Book 1 which tells the history of Alamogordo interscholastic sports from 1912 to present. The second in the series covering sports records from 1977 to 1996 will soon be released with significant coverage of football, the Coach Hveem years and his influence and more.

The second phase of this awareness building within the New York Avenue enterprise zone is to create works of art that are interesting and unique and to  market them as showcased on New York avenue and then highlighting the many artists and cultural opportunities within the zone and the stories behind the small business owners located at Roadrunner Emporium and other locations within the district thought to enhance the longer term vision. This phase includes the release of the interesting art creations showcased in this article.

The third phase of their goal to assist in revitalization is to partner with the Alamogordo Main Street, Alamogordo Chamber of Commerce, Alamogordo City, County and State Government and with potential investors to invest dollars, time and commitment to the district. The duo has crafted a  policy position paper soon to be released to local leaders and to a group of significant investors they have been in conversations with as a starting point of “real dialog” to rebuild stronger and better the core business district with a sensitivity to the changing demographics, tourism trends and ecology of which we will live in the next 50 years of economic transition as a nation.

The key to the plan has been a commitment this past year during Covid-19 to explore the business climate of Alamogordo, to see which small business leaders believe in progress and which will fight for the status quo and to see if businesses in the arts could grow in Alamogordo. The conclusion is yes they can and are needed to grow tourism in the city core. 

With each release of new artwork by artist Rene Sepulveda and with each exhibition, photo on the web and sale from around the country and internationally, more awareness of the artistic talents of Southern New Mexico come to bare to the public. As such the next release of his artistic creations are now released for public viewing and purchase.

One of significant importance to the artist is entitle “Angelina” and is dedicated to his 80 year old aunt, Bertha Angelina Sepulveda Rommel. The story dedicated to the crafting of this unique sculpture and it’s significance follows…

“Angelina” Flowing Ivy, Abstract Wooden Basket and Lava Rock Natural Native American Inspired Sculpture by Artist Rene Sepulveda

The historic symbolism of ivy, central to the sculpture by Rene Sepulveda as it reaches out of the wooden basket deals with connections of family, because of its propensity to interweave in growth. Ever furrowing and intertwining, the ivy is an example of the twists and turns our relationships and family connections take – but also a testimony to the long-lasting connections and bonds we form that last over the years. Ivy is further considered a symbol of survival and determination for the same reasons. It seems to be virtually indestructible and will often return after it has suffered damage or has been severely cut back symbolic of the indestructability of family.

This is an example of the human spirit and the strength we all have, to carry on regardless of how harrowing our setbacks may have been.

The basket is one of humankind’s oldest art forms, and it is certainly an ethnic and cultural icon filled with myth and motif, religion and symbolism, and decoration as well as usefulness. Taping in the artist Native American heritage of his ancestors he felt a wooden pieced basket was an essential part of this sculpture due to its symbolism and history as a not to his family roots. The Native Americans may well have left the greatest legacy to the world of baskets. The Indians of Arizona and New Mexico made basket-molded pottery from 5000 to 1000 B.C. as part of the earliest basket heritage. Their baskets (many of which have survived in gravesites) are heralded as a pure art form and one that was created not only by a primitive people but also by women. Basketry extended into the making of many other materials the Indians used daily including fishing nets, animal and fish snares, cooking utensils that were so finely woven that they were waterproof, ceremonial costumes and baskets, and even plaques. The Hopi, Apache, and other Pueblo tribes made coiled baskets with bold decorations and geometric patterns of both dyed and natural fibers. Thus, the bold geometric coloring and shape of the basket crafted into this artistic sculptured work by Rene Sepulveda.

The wood of which the basket hangs is of fallen branches that were gathered near the Apache Mescalero tribal basin and symbolize the strength of eternity. This strength lives on and transcends life and death representing the timeless strength of family.

The 5000-year-old lava rock of which is the sculptures base is composed of rock from the Valley of the Fire lava flow originating at Little Black Peak in Southern New Mexico. The selection of this material as the base was to signify the strength of the earth from deep within, as lava flows deep within the earth and periodically erupts, so do the emotional ties of a family. Those ties and emotional connections are buried deep and carry from one generation to the next, and on occasion erupt to show their true inner strength and strong bonds as the foundation of family.

Finally, the piece is capped with a metal Zia symbol. Given that this artistic creation was conceptualized, crafted and created with natural elements of New Mexico, Artist Rene Sepulveda found it only fitting to cap the piece with the Zia symbol which is sacred to the original people of New Mexico, from the Zia Pueblo and who regard the sun as sacred. Four is a sacred number of the Zia and can be found repeated in the points radiating from the circle.


The number four is embodied in:
The compass (north, south, east, and west)
The seasons of the year (spring, summer, autumn and winter)
The periods of each day (morning, noon, evening and night)
The stages of life (childhood, youth, middle years and elderhood)
The sacred aspects one must develop (a strong body, a clear mind, a pure spirit, and a devotion to the well-being of others)

That final aspect in symbolism of the Zia is what ties this artistic creation of Rene Sepulveda, entitled Angeline, together in each of those characteristics that speak of his aunt. She has always been one from youth to age 80 of strong body, clear mind, pure spirit and devotion to her family as well as the well-being of others.

Each component of this work of art independently is of beauty, but when combined into a sculptured work named “Angelina,” from the heart and mind of the Artist, Rene Sepulveda; one sees it spiritual relevance and reverence to family, presented as a visual piece of artistic beauty.”

To learn more about the artist and the other 39 small business cultural partners, pop into Roadrunner Emporium and Fine Art Gallery at 928 New York Avenue, Alamogordo 10 to 5 daily.

Rene Sepulveda art creations are priced for any lover of art. Prices are discounted significantly to local purchasers at the gallery 928 New York Avenue and sell online from $25.00 to $25,000.00 depending upon the detail and demand of the piece. Mr. Sepulveda has sold selections locally and recently to London, Mexico and Canada and is recognized as the preeminent artist using Cholla Cactus, Tree Trunks and Lava as his canvas of creation.

One art critic recently said of his works that they are “incisive meditations of colorishis designs, shapes and composition complimenting natures wonders using lava rocks, tree roots, tree trunks, bark, cholla desert cactus as components of his canvas.”

To learn more about Artist Rene Sepulveda himself visit his online sites such as:

https://artistrenesepulveda.com/

https://www.etsy.com/shop/2ndLifeBoutiqueStore

Some interesting facts around arts and their impact on business:

America’s nonprofit arts industry generates $135 billion in economic activity every year – $61 billion in spending by arts organizations and an additional $84 billion in event-related spending by arts audiences. The Fitness Community generates roughly $24 Billion in economic activity in the US. Together the economic impact of fitness and the arts is $159 Billion annually on the conservative side. The arts and fitness communities together generated over $34 Billion for local state and federal tax coffers in 2019. 

Including full and part time positions, arts and fitness related businesses employ 5.2 million full time equivalent jobs. The arts and fitness account for about 8.2% of the U.S. gross national product. Annually the arts and fitness community generate $108 Billion in household incomes nationwide.

New Mexico has a vibrant art, cultural, movie, entertainment and fitness community in Northern New Mexico. Southern New Mexico towns such as Alamogordo have an opportunity to tap into that wealth for 21st Century livable wage job creation.

As close as Las Cruces, a focus on the arts has an impact. In fiscal year 2015 the Las Cruces Arts Community generated $19.1 Million in revenues, paid $10.6 Million in wages to Las Cruces citizens and generated $1.9 Million in state and local tax revenue and fees paid to the city, county and state. 

330,000 people attended a cultural event or visited an art gallery, an additional 75k participated in a fitness related event and followed with a cultural event. In 2015 and the average visitor that was in the city of Las Cruces that visited a gallery, performance venue or participated in a hosted fitness event pumped or spent 3 times more dollars than locals spend on average, benefiting the business community and government coffers due to tax collection.

Cultural activities the arts and fitness attract tourists and spur the creation of additional facilities such as restaurants, hotels, and the services needed to support them. The Travel Industry of America estimates that “cultural tourists” spend one more day at their destinations and 50% more money than other tourists.

Available museums, Zoos, art Galleries and facilities of historic significance are factors 42% of the time on rather a traveler will stay in a community on their travels. Other cultural activities Americans enjoy while on trips away from home include live theater (23%), performance art galleries (21%), heritage or ethnic festivals (20%), and music concerts (19%).

Cultural facilities and events enhance property values, tax bases, and overall profitability. In doing so, the arts directly contribute to urban revitalization.

LOCAL ASSETS & OPPORTUNITY:

Alamogordo is a known tourist destination recognized around the world for the Space Hall of Fame, the beauty and proximity to White Sands and Lincoln National Forest and for its connection to White Sands Missile Range and the Military. Art, cultural activities and fitness focused business developments goes hand in hand in keeping tourist in our hotels, extending business growth and contributing to our local economic base.

Alamogordo has several amazing parks such as the Washington Avenue Corridor and the Briggs Park Complex. There are opportunities for more. As an example, the alleyway on McKinley Avenue, post McKinley Channel Construction completion, could be enhanced into a Fitness and Cultural Trail combining fitness, community art with bike and walking trails to enhance that neighborhood with approachable fitness and cultural access.

Numbers alone cannot tell the whole story of improved quality of life in urban neighborhoods resulting from arts, fitness and cultural activities and institutions: increased foot traffic brings safety resulting from “eyes on the street,” enrichment of community service options such as outreach programs to public schools and youth centers, and a greater sense of community identification and pride.

THE ROLE OF THE ARTS IN THE ECONOMIC AND CULTURAL VITALITY OF ALAMOGORDO

Impact numbers also cannot adequately conceptualize the “creative capital” that attracts a skilled workforce and new businesses thus jobs and tax payments. Cities that invest in urban centers focused on arts and fitness support diverse lifestyles and cultural amenities that enhance community value. A better educated and more financially sound community is a secondary benefit. Crime is traditionally lower in cities with a focus on art, fitness and community wellbeing. According to the Arts & Business Quarterly“the arts stimulate the economic revitalization of communities, develop skilled and motivated employees, foster a civil society, and can benefit businesses through increased brand-name recognition, product sales, community goodwill and positive visibility.”

The bottom line is that cities need an arts and fitness focus even more today than just a pure business focus. “Business thrives where a community is focused on arts and fitness, as communities with an art and fitness leaning; tend to be healthier physically, mentally and economically
“per the Carnegie Foundation.

As former Seattle mayor Paul Schell once said, “success in business and community growth lies in creating a community where the creative experience can flourish. When that occurs a community, can prosper.”

In order to support local art, fitness and cultural initiatives, we must build local support and nurture that support of the arts and fitness communities in partnership to fill our hotel rooms with guest that will stay in Alamogordo. We must give them a reason to stay and eat in our city restaurants, shop in our local stores and market to visitors to stay in the city of Alamogordo.

As business, arts, fitness and government leaders we must set deadlines and demand action from the political establishment to implement real support for a renaissance of New York Avenue into a lively, robust economic engine and creates livable wage jobs and fills the city and county coffers with tax revenue rather than the quiet, desolate zone of abandoned and unkempt buildings that exist today.

The arts community, new business interests and government partnering with compatible business interests such as Flickinger, Roadrunner Emporium and others can lead the charge to rebuild, rebrand and revitalize the New York Avenue business district and Alamogordo retail business, city wide. Small local artist and interested individuals such as Rene Sepulveda in partnership with others showing a commitment to the city, even during Covid-19 is what it takes

We each own the success of Alamogordo today, to ensure it is an economic engine tomorrow. Now let’s enjoy the arts, shop local and let’s get started today.

https://2ndlifemediaalamogordo.town.news/g/alamogordo-nm/n/30393/commitment-alamogordos-fine-arts-local-coach-artist-rene-sepulveda-releases

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