Donna Clair

Southwest Contemporary Artist

How I Came to New Mexico and learned about Art and Life



Taos, New Mezico – Sunday morning, 14 July 2019.  Have tried not to think too much about my departure from this place – this move was not planned – it was harsh and sudden.    Two months after my surgery, I was basically evicted.  AAAArgh!  Santistevan Lane has been my home for 25 years – 23 years at 313 and two at this little place just down the street. It is said, and I am a firm believer, that you create your own reality!  In my heart I knew this was not was not my forever place – it has been a half-way house where I could heal.  It has gently protected and contained me for the past two years and I will always be grateful for its safety and comfort.  However the clouds and the mountains have been hiding – I know they are there, but my view has literally been blocked.  So again, what appears to be another speed bump on the road of life, turns out to be a blessing in disguise!  

I need to see and feel open space in order to do my work. Still missing my kitchen window at 313 – looking across the backyard to the mountains leading into the Pecos Wilderness.  Many paintings were made from that view – all seasons and all times, it was ever changing…. morning light, sunset glow.  I still carry it with me….

Surrounded by moving boxes this morning….a wonderful cup of coffee.  Had a good night’s sleep.  Not really tired.  Wakened yesterday to a feeling of deep gratitude for just being alive. On that emergency plane ride to the hospital in Colorado, I totally surrendered to whatever my Art Gods were planning – the Big Easel in the Sky, or more time to make more paintings.  It is obvious now that I have more time – what a GIFT!!!

Another empty-handed leap into the void!  Moving into a real studio space -large, light, airy, open!  360 degree views of the sky – a few mountains in the distance, the rim road, below a valley of lush green fields – just waiting to be painted!   Excited to start using my new wide angle zoom lens.  The fall colors are fast approaching.  Gabe Abrums at Chimayo Trading is expanding his wall space by five rooms and wants some larger work!   Visions of clouds on canvas – just big floaty clouds, dark blowy storms, rosy sunsets!   Yes, it is so good to be alive!

Some of my best work has been done here on Santistevan Lane – touch the walls, say “thank you” for sheltering me – I am truly grateful.  In a few days life will move on for me one more time.  Planning to leave behind the “old me”.  Taking my paints and brushes to a whole New Beginning…. a delicious mystery!!  Never a dull moment….