Albuquerque is an artistic city that has more outdoor art pieces than you might expect. Whether you want to go for a drive or take a walk about the town, these art pieces will satisfy your appetite for adventure and exploration.
Grab a pair of shoes, a water bottle and your mask! Here are the Daily Lobo’s top five hidden sculptural gems in Albuquerque.
1. “Cube” — Robert Wilson
Tucked away in a back corner of the Rio Grande bosque, “Cube” by Robert Wilson is a land art piece made out of a cottonwood trunk surrounded by small cubes formed out of metal wire. This sculpture was created in 2009 to represent the bosque’s preservation amid rapid urbanization in Albuquerque. “Cube” is just a short walk from the Open Space Visitor Center, which has trail maps at the front desk and information about future exhibits.
2. “The Flyway Project” — Robert Wilson
If inclement weather ruins any chances of a dry walk down in the bosque, view this second installation by Robert Wilson from the comfort of your car. Inspired by the migration pattern of cranes native to the bosque, “The Flyway Project” consists of rows of metal jetty jacks, creating a runway that guides cranes from north to south. With its location next to a busy freeway, “Flyway Project” evokes similar themes to “Cube” in the intersection of nature and metropolis.
This project is on the east side of Coors Boulevard in between Montaño Road and Paseo Del Norte and is located in front of the Open Space Visitor Center. For specific coordinates, click here.
3. “Variacion Nuevo México” — Sebastian
Take a break and cool down from the Albuquerque summer heat with a trip to “Big Blue,” a large-scale work within the sculpture garden outside the Albuquerque Art Museum in Old Town. “Variacion Nuevo México” was created by Sebastian in 1984, is made entirely out of steel and nicknamed “Big Blue” after its rich blue color. This sculpture toys with depth, perspective and texture. Next to “Big Blue” are other pieces to peruse in the sculpture garden that surrounds the museum.
This art is located on the north side of the Albuquerque Art Museum. For specific coordinates, click here.
4. “Highground” — Lloyd Hamrol
Just as the title describes, “Highground” provides a platform to rest, read or have a picnic with friends (while socially distanced, of course). This land art piece was created by Lloyd Hamrol in 1980 and is constructed out of sod and concrete. This small section of titled landscape is a symbolic representation of “the scales of justice,” Hamrol said. “Highground” actively encourages you to step inside and become part of the work.
Located on the University of New Mexico’s north campus, on the north side of Bratton Hall (accessible through the north golf course.) For specific coordinates, click here.
5. “Dreams and Nightmares: Journey of A Broken Weave” — Dennis Oppenheim
Right across the street from the University of New Mexico Hospital resides the playful arrangement “Dreams and Nightmares: Journey of A Broken Weave” by Dennis Oppenheim. Built in 1987, Oppenheim uses a mix of corten steel, metal mesh and aluminum displayed in a variety of shapes and textures. With its location just a few minutes from Dane Smith Hall, it's easy to visit in between classes or on a day off.
Located on the north side of UNM’s main campus, on the southwest corner of Lomas Boulevard and Stanford Drive. For specific coordinates, click here.
Alex McCausland is the editor-in-chief of the Daily Lobo. He can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @alexkmccausland
Joseph McKee is the design director and multimedia editor at the Daily Lobo. He can be contacted at email@example.com or on Twitter @josephdmckee