Belen-based photographer Robert Christensen has been capturing New Mexico’s vernacular architecture for more than four decades, seeking out the coffee houses, gas stations, and other structures that motorists often pass, but seldom stop to consider more closely. For him, these unassuming buildings resonate with meaning, becoming rich repositories for personal and regional histories. Photographed in black-and-white, his images invite us to contemplate not only the weathered beauty of American indigenous architecture, but also its uncertain future as these structures gradually disappear from our ever-changing cultural landscape.
This exhibit highlights thirty examples of Christensen’s striking architectural photography. For him, these works function primarily as portraits rather than as simple documentation, revealing the character and personalities of the people who embody the spirit and history of New Mexico.
Credit: Exhibition overview from museum website