MetroABQ Newsletter -- February

MetroABQ Newsletter -- February
by Chris Lucas

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The KiMo Theater Tour Balcony Scene

The KiMo Theater Tour Balcony Scene
by Chris Lucas

I was fortunate one afternoon to be part of a tour guided by KiMo Manager Larry Parker, who was very gregarious & entertaining, & provided a wealth of knowledge about the historic building. Above is the stage & below Larry Parker is talking, the balcony is below that & the historic Bachechi plaque is last.

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Architect Antoine Predock's New Urbanist Community of La Luz: 5 Tennis Court NW--A Pocket Listing

Architect Antoine Predock's New Urbanist Community of La Luz: 5 Tennis Court NW--A Pocket Listing
by Chris Lucas

The La Luz community is special. The architecture is unique & every turn in the neighborhood imparts a different interesting sceneRead More


The Kimo Theater: The MetroABQ's Famous Pueblo Deco Theater

The Kimo Theater: The MetroABQ's Famous Pueblo Deco Theater
by Chris Lucas

The Kimo Theater is arguably the most colorful & the most architecturally interesting building in the MetroABQ. Found on Route 66 downtown between 4th & 5th Sts, you can't help but be drawn to the protruding ornaments, considerable tilework & intricate wall murals that adorn the Central Ave façade. Those three elements are integral to classic Pueblo Deco architecture, which is a mix of Pueblo Revival & Art Deco styles--a uniquely Southwestern creation.

Or, as the Kimo describes it, the KiMo opened in 1927 as a "Pueblo-Deco picture palace & vaudeville theatre. Pueblo-Deco was a flamboyant, short-lived architectural style that fused the spirit of southwest Native American cultures with art moderne elements, popular during the 1920's-1930's."The interior included plaster ceiling beams to mimic actual wood vigas, colorful Indian symbols, air vents disguised as hanging Navajo Rugs, war-drums, Native American death canoe chandeliers, wrought iron Sandhill Crane railings, shields & buffalo skulls with red glowing eyes."

I was fortunate one afternoon to be part of a guided tour through the Kimo. Some images of the exterior & inside entrance are below.


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The Next Fifty--The Historic La Luz Community Celebrates Half A Century!

The Next Fifty--The Historic La Luz Community Celebrates Half A Century!
by Chris Lucas

Nestled along the Rio Grande Bosque on the MetroABQ's westside sits a community that is a living study of New Urbanist theory. For 50 years, the La Luz community has been celebrating "environmentally friendly habits by creating walkable neighborhoods containing a wide range of housing" types. The 96 townhome community is now looking toward the next fifty years of life. Designed in 1968 by renowned architect Antoine Predock (see the Rio Grande Nature Center in the North Valley, the Aperture Center in Mesa del Sol & hundreds of other lifetime projects), the neighborhood, riverside near Montaño & Coors Blvd, threw a party commemorating the last fifty & celebrating the next fifty.  I was lucky to be at the event, in The Meadow gathering space, seen above & the two images far below. Just below is an image facing the other direction, toward a row of residences on Tennis Court NW... Read More


MetroABQ Mural Maps: Searchable Street Art Through MurosABQ & Mural Fest

MetroABQ Mural Maps: Searchable Street Art Through MurosABQ & Mural Fest
by Chris Lucas

The MetroABQ has a great supply of art & artists. They can be found in the galleries, of course, often regulated during monthly ARTScrawl & First Friday art events. However, some of the best art can be found outside, as geometric fractals created by school-age children, & especially large-scale building-length mural projects, which have proliferated beautifully in our city lately, like this one on the edge of Uptown.  Read More


Winter Views of the Sandia Mountain Range, NM

Winter Views of the Sandia Mountain Range, NM
by Chris Lucas

Another reason to love the MetroABQ is the random views you experience, when you're doing something else. Showing a newer home last weekend in northern Placitas, the winter Sandia Mountain view was impressive--the recent dusting of snow looked like confectionary, above. In Placitas, homes often sit on one-acre + lots, & often atop their own hill, overlooking the arroyos below. The distance is deceiving: between the mountains & myself are dozens of hills & arroyos, which often make travel there a bit slow-going. as you must drive around the hills, not through them.

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