|"Road at Eli's" oil on canvas, 20x16 inches
Outside of Santa Fe, New Mexico, midway to Taos is a sleepy little mountain village called Dixon. Eli Levin, a well known realist artist around these parts, built a house of earth there, originally as a place to get away from Santa Fe on weekends, but now that he is in his late 60's, he lives there with his girlfriend. Two other buildings are separate, a studio and guesthouse, both made of mud and stones. Recently a bedroom was added to the main dwelling—of mud of course. The two made the sun-hardened bricks, and then built the structure.
|Bedroom in earthen room
|View of bedroom made of adobe
|Artist studio, on hill above house
Heidi Of The Mountains and I have been staying there while Eli and Abby are away to Chicago. They went the old-fashioned way; by train. Everything is old and worn at the house. Old utensils, a record player, weathered tools, appliances from the past, well-seasoned furniture, wood stoves and a big wood pile by the garden. The floors are made of earth too . . . and when inside, I feel perfectly at home and need not worry about being careful. I relax, lay out on the couch and read a classic book from Eli's well-stocked trove of literature, or step outside and make a painting.
Heidi too, feels totally comfortable and exclaims her satisfaction and delight. We are in a private hide-away, with trees and fields surrounding us, mountains, and a stream rushing past at our feet. Two cats and Heidi's poodle dog, Gracie, complete the picture.