the Governor's Arts Award Winners

Carmella Padilla

Santa Fe

2009 recipient, Literary Arts

Santa Fe native Carmella Padilla is an award-winning author and editor who has written extensively about the Hispano art, culture and history of New Mexico.

Padilla’s popular books include The Chile Chronicles: Tales of a New Mexico Harvest, which received the 1999 Historical Society of New Mexico’s Ralph Emerson Twitchell Award for a significant contribution to the field of history, and Low ’n Slow: Lowriding in New Mexico and El Rancho De Las Golondrinas on which she collaborated with photographer Jack Parsons, who received a Governor’s Arts Award in 2006.

In addition to authoring books, Padilla has curated museum exhibits, worked in public relations and volunteered for numerous non-profit organizations such as the Spanish Colonial Art Society and the Santa Fe Railyard Park and Plaza project. She also worked closely with the group that established the successful annual Santa Fe International Folk Art Market.

"Carmella Padilla’s passion for the culture of New Mexico in all its forms shines through in her eloquent and honest writing, giving readers a clearer understanding of the rich history of the arts and traditions of New Mexico," said nominators George Paloheimo and John Berkenfield of El Rancho de las Golondrinas living history museum near Santa Fe.