This issue is the first publication of a new journey and an expanded mission: to bring curated, critical arts and culture publishing to the American Southwest, in print and online. I am thrilled to bring Southwest Contemporary back into print in 2021 with a new, more sustainable model for arts and culture journalism. Historically, this publication (founded by Guy Cross in 1992 as The Magazine) has focused primarily on the arts in Santa Fe and northern New Mexico. While we love our home state, 2020’s considerable disruption in business-as-usual helped us envision a bigger future—one in which we can give voice to artists, writers, and creators across the entire Southwest region. And so, for the very first time, you will find writers and artists creating work from Tucson, Arizona, to Portales, New Mexico; from Houston, Texas, to Denver, Colorado; and many places beyond and between throughout this issue.
This issue’s theme, Bodies//Boundaries, was inspired by some of our experiences during the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. We have had to (re)negotiate how we personally and collectively share spaces in public and private. We have sought the safety of isolation and found the sorrow of solitude. We have celebrated the capabilities of—and resented our reliance on—digital communications and virtualized experiences. With these ideas in mind, we issued a call to artists from across the region to submit work that relates to or explores these concepts. The work featured in this issue represents multiple perspectives on the theme: some direct, some more tangential. I hope this theme provides a thought-provoking lens through which to engage with the work in these pages.
This past fall, we also launched our new SWC Membership program for our readers and supporters. While our content is always free to read at southwestcontemporary.com, members receive great perks like artist-designed merch, print or digital copies of publications, free or discounted event tickets, and more to come. To learn about our membership options and benefits, please visit southwestcontemporary.com/membership. If you’ve already joined us, thank you! Your support has been a lifeline during this incredibly challenging year. We are so grateful. To purchase a copy of this issue, please visit our online store.
I also want to take a moment to thank the artists, writers, advertisers, and team here at SWC that made this issue possible. In a time of great uncertainty, they contributed their talents and insights without reservations, and showed tremendous confidence in and respect for our work. I share this issue with pride and gratitude.
Thank you for reading,
Lauren Tresp, publisher + editor
Edited by: Lauren Tresp.
Contributing editors: Daisy Geoffrey, Angie Rizzo.
Contributors: Sommer Browning, Marcus Civin, Natalie Hegert, Maggie Grimason, Patrick McGuire, Krittika Ramanujan, Angie Rizzo, Greg Ruffing, Lynn Trimble, Lauren Tresp, Joshua Ware.