Grand Opening & Celebration

I have moved my gallery to a very beautiful historic adobe building in downtown Santa Fe at 221 East De Vargas Street!

The Grand Opening and Celebration is on

Friday, August 2, 4:00PM to 7:00PM

My new gallery is located directly behind the Oldest Church (built in 1610) and the Oldest House (who really knows how old it is??) just off of the Old Santa Fe Trail a few blocks away from our historic Plaza. The building is a sacred space, ancient and full of history.  It is the perfect place to exhibit my body of work; Landscapes of the Soul and the Sacred Women of the Bible. It is three times larger than the previous gallery I had for over the past two decades! There are 4 parking spots designated exclusively for my gallery so those of you who would like to drive over to visit will have a convenient place to park. Everything about it is so welcoming…

This “sacred” space seemed to have miraculously appeared just as I finished the Sacred Women Guidance Card set.  No sooner did I complete this culmination of 22 years of working with the Sacred Women, then did the invisible hand of the feminine divine swoop down and begin to orchestrate the move.

It’s as though the powerful feminine archetypes I work with wanted a change of location, a larger and more spiritual space in order for me to continue my work.


The light itself within my new gallery is beautiful enhancing the color and light I place within my work. In addition my new gallery space is giving me the opportunity to facilitate lectures, workshops and teachings on site.

I am so very grateful to all of you for your friendship and supporting my artwork over the years! Sending you wishes  full of blessings and gratitude!

I look forward to seeing you at my opening or on your next visit to Santa Fe!
Women of the Bible; Limited editions

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Sarah
“Joy, Faith and Laughter”

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Miriam
“Sing and dance the true
song of our soul”

judith

Judith
“Shining our bright inner light”

Click here to see all 12 women >

Click here to see the new landscape paintings >
Click here to see the Sacred Women Card Deck and Guidebook>

Landscapes of the Soul; Limited editions

blessing of the sun violet

Blessing of the Sun,
Violet

chama river green border

Dance of Spring,
Chama River Psalm

blessing of the sun orange

Blessing of the Sun,
Orange

All of the art on the website is unframed. If you are interested in a frame please email me and I will send you photos of the frames with their prices.

Please enjoy browsing through my latest work as well as long time favorites on my new website.

Click here to visit my website >

From Lilith Magazine about Sara Novenson

lilith-logo

June 15, 2015, by

This Artist Teaches Woman Power

Red Tree Painting
© 2012 Sara M Novenson, Evening’s Flight,” Archival Pigment Print.

The first thing you notice when looking at Sara M. Novenson’s paintings are the colors: Rich and vibrant, the blues, pinks, purples, reds and yellows invite you to peer closely, and whether you’re perusing her Great Women of the Bible series or her landscapes, the limited-edition work is striking. What’s more, most of Novenson’s art is bordered by hand-painted Hebrew letters—excerpts from the Psalms as well as blessings—that remind us to appreciate the miracle of creation.

Collectors of Novenson’s work include actor Fran Drescher, the late musician Frank Zappa (1940-1993) and the Pratt Institute in Brooklyn, New York and she has had exhibitions throughout much of the world. Novenson has also run her own gallery on Santa Fe, New Mexico’s famed Canyon Road since 1996.

A reviewer, writing in the Santa Fe Focus, describes her creations as “dazzling,” with “life-inspiring rays of sun and people shimmering with power and beauty.” But most notable, the reviewer wrote, is “the female energy and spirituality” each painting exudes.

This, Novenson told Lilith, is exactly what she intended. In fact, her Women of the Bible series aims to imbue viewers with a better understanding of female power, and whether they’re seeing images of Deborah, Esther, Hannah, Judith, Leah, Miriam, Naomi, Rachel, Rebecca, Ruth or Sarah, she hopes they’ll walk away feeling “empowered from both within and without.”

Take her painting of Judith. Dressed in gold, Judith is holding a menorah high above her head, a stance indicating her triumph over General Holofernes, the hated military henchman of Assyrian King Nebuchadnezzar. “Judith was the widow of a judge,” Novenson begins. “Shortly after her husband’s death a spy came to the hills where the Jews lived and informed them that they were about to be attacked. Holofernes had already begun withholding water from the community so it was only a matter of time before everyone was going to die of dehydration.”

Judith Painting
© 2012 Sara M Novenson. “Judith” from the Women of the Bible Series and the Book Illuminated Visions, Women of the Bible, Archival Pigment Print.

Judith, Novenson continues, prayed about the situation and then took off her mourner’s black, put on beautiful clothing and jewelry, and went to where Holofernes was staying. He was attracted to her and invited her to a banquet where he proceeded to get really drunk. “He later invited her back to his tent. She went, but when she got there she took a sword from the wall and cut his head off. Without Judith, the Maccabees would not have happened. She helped them see that it was possible to resist tyranny.”

As she tells Judith’s story, Novenson sounds both awestruck and proud. “Judith asked God to work through her and had the courage to take action. She used her mind to figure out what she needed to do. Maybe she was really afraid, but she did it anyway,” she gushes.

Other women in the series are similarly powerful, she says, a dramatic mix of ferocity, fortitude, strength and sass.

“Painting for me is a prayer of gratitude,” Novenson explains, and regardless of subject – whether she is depicting people or the world’s natural beauty – she says that her efforts bring her face-to-face with “the presence of God.” Particularly important, she says, is the light and color of New Mexico’s topography.

“Blessing of the Sun, Violet," Archival Pigment Print. © Sara M Novenson 2012

A transplant – Novenson grew up in Teaneck, New Jersey and graduated from the School of Visual Arts in New York City – she fell in love with the US west as a five-year-old, when her family took a cross-country car trip to California that included a stopover somewhere in New Mexico. “Even as a kid, I knew I did not belong in New York City,” she laughs.

She also knew that she had to make art. Her dad was an amateur photographer and before she was eight, she’d learned to develop film in his darkroom. By 12, she was taking the bus into Manhattan for summer classes at the Art Students’ League, but a desire to move west nagged at her. After college, she headed to Albuquerque. “I was painting a lot there,” she says, “and doing graphic design, making jewelry and waiting tables to get by, but I moved back to New York in 1980 because I felt that there were not enough art opportunities for me in New Mexico. Nonetheless, I promised myself that after a few years, I’d move back.”

In 1984, however, Novenson married a musician; when he got a job with the Radio and TV Orchestra of Cologne, Germany, the pair moved abroad. Although Novenson had been reared in a religiously observant family, it was only after she got to Germany that the need to make explicitly Jewish art became apparent to her. “It was weird,” she explains. “I’d walk into a restaurant for dinner and get these awful feelings. I’d later learn that the site had once been in the heart of the Jewish community.” She was also shocked, she says, to discover that many European Jews still kept silent about their heritage.

“Isaac Bashevis Singer became my favorite writer when I was living in Germany,” she says. “I Ioved his stories. They were visceral, as if the words formed paintings that I could actually see. One night, my husband was on the road and I was reading “Satan in Goray,” a story about one of the pogroms of the 1600s. It was very descriptive, very scary to me. I decided I had to stop reading and turned on the TV. And there he was: Isaac Bashevis Singer was being interviewed. I’d recently read his short story “There Are No Coincidences,” so I was absolutely stunned by the synchronicity. It inspired me to begin studying Jewish folk art and learn about all the work that had been wiped out by the Holocaust. At that point I also started visiting every Jewish museum I could get to in Europe.”

Novenson eventually left her spouse, returned to New York, and, in 1992, kept her promise to herself by moving to Santa Fe. She has since immersed herself in study of Torah, Midrash and Kabbalah, an effort that has been incorporated into her paintings, illustrations and drawings. Art, she says, is her way of honoring the struggles and triumphs of her fore-parents. But she does more than this. Her lectures about Jewish art, folk traditions and Biblical heroines have taken her to every corner of the US – including churches and other non-Jewish venues.

It’s clear that Novenson, now 61, loves juggling scholarship with creativity.

She is currently at work on a 13th portrait in the Women of the Bible series and frequently travels to the Chama River to paint the birds, flora and fauna that live and grow there. As she breathes in the landscape, she says that one particular Psalm resonates most loudly: “With You is the source of life. By the light may we see light.”

And we do.