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REVIEW: 'Bend Skin' is a short, powerful labor of love

  Yomi Tafdor’s newly released poetry collection “Bend Skin” combines prose with beautifully complex traditional poetry and rhythm, and small, full-color abstract art by illustrator Nujhat Adrita. Much of Tadfor’s poetry is based around her identity and the way it has changed over time. Tafdor, a current student at the University of New Mexico, is originally from Cameroon. Much of her poetry is about the lived experience of marginalized people in the United States and the way her experiences have influenced her sense of individuality and personhood.

GALLERY: Renaissance Festival

NM Renaissance Celtic Festival celebrates a culture of history and fantasy

  The second annual New Mexico Renaissance Celtic Festival was held this past weekend, March 24 to 26, at Wildlife West Nature Park in Edgewood NM. The event, which also hosted a variety of Celtic, medieval, viking and pirate-themed celebrations, included vendors, performers, cosplayers and more. Eric Vigil, who also produces the annual Pirate and Viking Summer Bash, created this event in part to celebrate the Scottish clans of those who live in New Mexico. This year’s Celtic celebrations included local dance performances from the McTeggart Irish Dancers and Highland Dancers of Albuquerque, as well as music performances by Albuquerque-based artists.


REVIEW: Lana Del Rey’s latest album is an affectionate work from the complicated artist

  In Lana Del Rey’s new album, “Did you know that there’s a tunnel under Ocean Blvd,” released on March 24, she insists we are wrong about her. Del Rey embodies an attitude that succeeds in representing the violence and anxieties of girlhood, but fails to respond to her history of cultural appropriation. She fills 1 hour and 17 minutes with conflicted representations of family, memory and legacy. Her song “Grandfather please stand on the shoulders of my father while he’s deep-sea fishing,” the 11th song on the album, begins by confronting common claims about her manufactured identity into her lyricism: “I know they think that it took somebody else to make me beautiful … but they’re wrong.”

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5 and Why: 5 ways to relieve stress after midterms

  As midterms wrap up and the semester progresses, many students may find themselves burnt out or exhausted. David Hernandez, a third-year vocal performance and international studies student at the University of New Mexico, gave his tips on how he takes time to relax and be present as the second half of the semester starts. Yoga Yoga is a spiritual and physical practice that can be meditative and offer peace of mind, along with being a way to stretch and care for your body. Recently getting back into practicing yoga, Hernandez said it gives him a reason to wake up early and de-stress before the day.


Capturing an era through film photography

  The use of film photography has soared since 2015, according to The New York Times. Film photography has been matched with certain aesthetics that overwhelm social media feeds with grainy, lower quality “photo dumps.” Curating posts that strive for perfection have become “cringe,” according to an article from Vogue that explains how photo dumps have answered “overly-manicured” aesthetics with the “moodiness of Tumblr-era emo sensibilities.” Social media platform Tumblr could have had an effect on the resurgence of film, according to Emma Ressel, a first year photography graduate student at the University of New Mexico.

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REVIEW: Fall Out Boy makes heartbreak feel good on ‘So Much (For) Stardust’

  The newest album by Fall Out Boy, titled “So Much (For) Stardust,” proves it was never just a phase, mom. The eighth album sees the band going back to their earlier work in more ways than one without feeling played out. The album feels like a reaffirmation by the band of what made them great with the intent to move forward. This album balances long ballads with shorter pieces of spoken poetry and monologues. This album is longer than the band's previous three albums with 13 tracks coming in at a total of 44 minutes and 20 seconds. Fall Out Boy makes good use of the time, repeating themes of moving on — but still holding on — throughout the album.

GALLERY: Fusion Theatre Company presents "Life X 3"

Fusion Theatre Company production mixes up life 3 times

 Oscar Wilde famously said, “Life imitates art far more than art imitates life.” Yet, “Life x 3,” the latest show to be put on by the Fusion Theatre Company in Albuquerque, takes inspiration from the nature of the universe itself, according to Jacqueline Reid, the director of Fusion’s expansive production of the show. Written by Yasmina Reza, “Life x 3” presents the same raucous dinner party from three different possible universes, which the press release describes as “a time/space continuum of repetition, redundancy, and revelation within the most intimate of relationships and their elemental ties to the universe.”


Lobo Gardens cultivate community and sustainability on campus

  For 12 years, the University of New Mexico’s Lobo Gardens have been growing as a University mainstay for the creation of community, environmental awareness and, of course, delicious produce. Tucked behind a building on the corner of Vassar Drive NE and Campus Boulevard NE, this quiet growing space and “living laboratory” teems with life, according to volunteer coordinator Amara Szrom. The Gardens are an open space for students to help, learn and grow their own plants. In addition to being a volunteer space open on Tuesdays from 1 to 3 p.m., classes, workshops and guest speakers are hosted out of the garden as a part of its role as an outdoor classroom, according to Szrom.

GALLERY: Arita Porcelain Studio

UNM's Arita porcelain studio honors process and history

  Students at the Arita Porcelain Studio, located in the art annex at the University of New Mexico, are unique in their study of the traditional 400-year-old Japanese art of Arita porcelain; UNM is the only university in the United States with faculty authorized to instruct in this art form outside of Japan. Arita porcelain is moreso about the practice and tradition that goes into the process rather than the final product, according to Kathy Cyman, the professor of practice who leads the program. Arita porcelain is a practice out of Arita, Japan, a town in the Saga prefecture, where Izumiyama Kaolin Quarry was founded, the first source in Japan for the raw material that goes into making porcelain clay. 

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Magic: The Gathering Club offers unique gaming experience to UNM students

  On Monday evenings from 5-10 p.m., University of New Mexico students can immerse themselves in a different magical world at “Magic: The Gathering Club,” which focuses on building a community at UNM centered around the card game. “Magic: The Gathering” is a collectable trading card game by Wizards of the Coast built around deck-building, where players can cast spells and summon different creatures to try to eliminate their opponents, according to Daniel Kinghorn, club member. “There are many different ways to play, but they all allow a lot of creativity to build decks that are fun and exciting for all kinds of players,” Kinghorn wrote to the Daily Lobo. “It’s one of the only places where 15 birds can fight an eldritch monster and win.”

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UNM alum celebrates home and family in solo art exhibition

  On Tuesday, March 21, “Poems From Kay Pacha,” a solo exhibition from University on New Mexico alumnus Rosalba Breazeale, will open at the Strata Gallery in Santa Fe. The show centers around the idea of homeland; Breazeale pulled from their own identity as a member of the Ashkenazi and Peruvian diasporas, as well as their journey in finding a sense of home in Albuquerque. “‘Poems from Kay Pacha’ is a collaboration between my body and my plant relative,” Breazeale said. “Since moving to Albuquerque, I’ve been trying to establish more of a sense of home for myself, so in order to become more rooted in this place, things like getting to know the lands and things like foraging respectfully have been really important for me.”

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REVIEW: 100 gecs are slimier and sillier than ever on latest album ‘10,000 gecs’

  Oh, how we’ve missed you, 100 gecs. If you’ve been present in the online sphere since the duo, made up of Laura Les and Dylan Brady, released their first single, you’ve probably had at least one conversation with friends about whether the pair’s music is genuinely good or just a grating, mildly funny joke. Regardless, the group’s latest outing “10,000 gecs” proves that they’re here to stay, retaining the skilled production and irreverent self-awareness that made their debut so captivating while proving to have even more tricks up their sleeve.


REVIEW: ‘In the Camp of Angels of Freedom’ is a passionate, but messy read

  In Arlene Goldbard’s book, “In the Camp of Angels of Freedom,” published on Jan, 24,, Goldbard asks her readers: what does it mean to be educated? In her book, she mixes personal narrative, political observation and portrait paintings; the combination of these highlights how her ideas of education have shifted and formed through personal experience; however, the final product is murky. The book has eleven essays, each focusing on one of her angels. Goldbard explains that her concept of angels comes from the Hebrew word “malakhim,” which, in Jewish mysticism, “are messengers between worlds, translating spiritual energy from the highest realms to the earth bound,” according to the book. Goldbard organizes her angels in a camp, in which the angels communicate a singular message that embodies a specific aspect of her personal ideology. 

GALLERY: Opinion: the lost art of set dressing in high-budget film

OPINION: Bring mess back to set design

  There’s a certain lifeless element to the modern blockbuster that’s difficult to pin down. Culprit not discussed often enough are the set designers and dressers; when done well, their work lends a deeper and more nuanced understanding to the characters and themes. When done poorly, it can kill a film. Though our on screen characters are hotter than ever, there’s an increased sterility in the way they move through their worlds; their arcs feel flat, their emotional situations contrived and their relationships to each other underdeveloped. Some of these issues originate from the performers themselves, but even more from the directors, screenwriters and producers who push out low-quality schlock with little regard for culture or art. There’s no question about it; something is rotten in the state of the blockbuster.

GALLERY: Ethical Thrifting

OPINION: How to be an ethical thrifter

  The past decade has seen a significant uptick in the popularity of secondhand shopping. Thrift stores have seen more traffic than ever due to an increase in trendiness and a decrease in the taboo of buying used, according to NPR. Run-of-the-mill thrift stores are now seeing a new generation of shoppers with different ways of thrifting, and the industry is having to shift in response. According to ThredUp’s Resale Market and Trend Report, the secondhand resale market saw an uptick of 58% in 2021, meaning supply and demand, as well as inflation, have caused these “shifts” to affect a good portion of low-income households.

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ABQ Street Meet fosters creativity and community

  Since 2018, Street Meet New Mexico has been an avenue for local creatives to build connections and strengthen both their professional lives and community ties. Street Meet is a monthly scheduled meet-up in which local models, photographers and cosplayers — hobbyists and professionals alike — come together to take photos. The Albuquerque event was first started by former University of New Mexico student Megan Kamauoha as part of the larger Street Meet collective, which exists in several other cities including Los Angeles and Seattle.

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OPINION: Sensory-sensitive and style-conscious fashion: a guide

  Tactile sensitivity associated with sensory processing disorder can be make-or-break when it comes to personal fashion style and choices. And still, when you look online to find solutions for sensory sensitivities, the answers have a practically nonexistent range between “meeting sensory needs for kids” and lists of colorless, shapeless adult clothing. Neither of these solutions genuinely address the issues or acknowledges that people with sensory sensitivities might still want to express themselves with fashion. If you like wearing a beige strip of fabric every day, more power to you — for the rest of us, there are some simple changes to maintain levels of sensory comfort while still wearing the things we like.

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Local designers push back against the fast-fashion cycle

  In recent years, discussion around the ethics and practices of fast fashion has expanded: what it is, where it comes from and what it looks like. Fast fashion — clothing manufactured to reflect a trend — directly contributes to climate change, waste and overconsumption. Slow fashion, which is the more environmentally and ethically conscious approach to clothing production, places its emphasis on well-paid labor, good working conditions, handmade pieces and well-made garments, according to Forbes. In order to combat the popularity of fast fashion, it is important to figure out how we can all fit ourselves into the slow-fashion movement, according to Joey Wagner, a senior at the University of New Mexico studying journalism who has made their own clothing since 2020.

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Meow Wolf: Corporatized cash grab or subversive art experience?

 The Meow Wolf artists collective, initially founded in 2008 “as an informal DIY collective of Santa Fe artists,” has had a successful last few years with the founding of their flagship branch in Santa Fe in 2016 and opening subsequent locations in Denver, Las Vegas and a recently announced location in Grapevine, Texas, according to their website. With this expansion in popularity and monetization comes questions of authenticity — is Meow Wolf still the homegrown art exhibit it started as in 2008? 

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