The Cardona-Hine Gallery & Studios is nestled among trees and rocks just off the road in the mountain village of Truchas. Opened in 1988, the gallery has exhibited the art of many local and New Mexican artists; it now shows the work of owners and residents, Barbara McCauley and Alvaro Cardona-Hine, and sculptor, Marcia McEachron.
The gallery began in the first two small adobe rooms built sometime in the 1940's, rooms that were necessary to house the burgeoning Romero family. Later, they were turned into garages which Barbara and Alvaro renovated into the gallery in 1988. Another larger garage, further back on the property, became the artists' studio. In 1995, a new studio was built for Barbara and in 2001, a bright and gracious space of over a thousand square feet was added onto the smaller two gallery rooms, mainly to exhibit the artists' larger paintings. The artists live on site in the old double adobe house next to the gallery and it is the artists themselves whom visitors will meet.
Entering the space where artists live and work, where you can sometimes even see a work in progress, is an experience far different from that of a commercial art gallery. There is a personal touch; an authenticity that can be felt when visitors ask about the work, a powerful energy in both the exhibition space and the studios. The experience is different also for the artists who get to meet in person those who acquire their work.
"It is thrilling," Barbara says. "I get to see and hear what our paintings do for others, what meanings they attribute, how the work affects them. When someone loves a piece, even if they don't buy it, it completes the work somehow, as if the painting was waiting for that. We have met so many incredibly wonderful people over these years. We are blessed in being able to live this life here."