Winter in the desert isn’t the same as winter in other places. I grew up in East Texas, where it’s wet, cold, and muddy, barely passing for a season. Here it’s windy with low temps at night and highs in the day. Perfect camping weather, which is likely why the tourists pack up and come here, even on Christmas Day. The nights are still clear and full of stars, and I have yet to see a Christmas light, as we locals prefer to keep lights down to preserve dark skies. So, instead of erecting a tree or hanging decorations, I have instead spent my time with a hand-painted mug full of warm, nutty coffee, looking out at the Chisos while producing this issue for you.
Here you’ll find work by artists with a plethora of credentials and accolades, including an Emmy Award winner and a Texas Poet Laureate. You’ll see works by people with multiple skills, from building to music to art to blogging to engineering to teaching to weaving. I’ve had the pleasure of interacting with all of them. They are people, just like you or me. Their accomplishments should be a reminder that art is within us all. We make it every day in one form or another. All people make art; all people should be valued, and, thus, I believe, all art should be valued.
My art, I’ve found, is people. I love people and what they are capable of creating. Like little gods, we go about the world making our marks, shaping our worlds, constantly contributing to others’ creations through countless conduits of interaction. You read or look or listen to what is printed on these pages, and it will become a small part of you, a collaboration between you and these artists, our editors, me. As our worlds collide, we create spectacular light shows, firings in our brains, supernovas vibrating into the vast universes around us.
This holiday season, remember your power, purpose, and potential. Each beautiful piece herein harks to it, hopes to inspire dreams of the day your world meets theirs.
Kate Keenan, Managing Editor