Art Explorers is an evolving program committed to exploring the Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks (OMDP) through a series of hikes and collaborative art-making activities in and responding to the four areas of the OMDP. Designed with the SW Chapter of the Girl Scouts, the Green Chamber of Commerce and Friends of the Organ Mountains, Art Explorers works with local experts to expose youth to meaningful experiences in nature while introducing topics of land use, stewardship, history and science.
Faith Purvey is the lead artist and organizer for Art Explorers and works directly with all parties to generate site-responsive, collaborative art works. With Las Cruces Art Museum’s studio as a home base, participants venture into the wilderness to take photographs which are used to generate material to contribute to a collective sculpture. The project emphasizes new ways of seeing natural features in the OMDP Monument and introduces techniques such as solar dyeing and sewing through a collaborative, team-oriented process.
Art Explorers is the only program associated with the Girl Scouts’ new OMDP badge. A similar White Sands National Monument badge has been unveiled, with badges for Mojave Desert and other places in the works. Art Explorers aims to enact an engaged, aesthetic model on a national scale.
The program is funded by a grant from the McCune Foundation.