2021 Holiday Open House at NM Museum of Art

2021 Holiday Open House/Free Museum Admission

After last year’s hiatus, the New Mexico Musuem of Art is excited to bring back the Museum’s Annual Holiday Open House! Though they are making changes to allow for COVID-safe practices, there will still be activities, music, Baumann puppet entertainment, and, of course, art!

Join the fun on December 19 from Noon-5:00 pm to enjoy a day of carolers, food, and a special appearance from Santa! The afternoon will also feature recorded performances of the Gustave Baumann marionettes from Christmas past and a chance to visit the Museum Library to view our collection of historic Christmas cards designed and printed by Baumann (aka Papa Gus!)

Gustave Baumann, a Santa Fe Legend, was an artist of many trades. His work included printmaking, painting, and marionette-making. Baumann hand-carved and decorated wooden puppets called marionettes and brought them to life in live performances. Some characters were tall and skinny, others were short and stout, some were animals, and some were humans, but all had a personality and story of their own. He created a traveling marionette theater complete with scripts, costumes, props, backdrops, scenery, and a stage. Over a twenty-year period, he created nearly 100 marionettes; however, he was not a puppeteer. He left the actual performances to his wife Jane and Teatro Duende. In 1932 the Baumann Marionette Christmas Show at the NMMOA became a cherished community tradition. 

Selfies with Gustave Baumann’s Santa marionette will be available in the lobby at 1:30 p.m. and 3 p.m. Parents, have your camera ready for this photo opportunity. Get your picture taken with Santa on your lap! It’s a photo opportunity for children of all ages, led by actor Danielle Reddick.  

A recording of the 2019 performance of A Really Big Party for Papa Gus will run continuously in museum lobby. Teatro Duende presents a little skit by Gustave Baumann’s marionettes. Juan, Rosina and Miguelito try very hard to get ready for a party, but rascally Warts keeps causing trouble! Puppeteers: Danielle Reddick, Patrick Briggs, Melissa Heiman, Liam Benjamin Merkle, Camille Cooper and Susie Perkins. Directed by Barbara Hatch.  

A selection of handmade holiday cards by Santa Fe artists are on view in the museum’s archive and library. Drawn from the museum’s rich collection of ephemera, these holiday cards are rarely available for viewing, so don’t miss your chance to view these unique holiday greetings! 

Packets with self-guided activities will be available for pick up in the lobby. These activities promise an adventure through the museum and may contain some holiday sweets, too! 

While you’re on the plaza be sure to check out more Holiday Open House offerings across the street at the History Museum and Library! Visit their event page for more information. Admission to both museums will be free all day!

Date: Sunday, December 19, 2021

Time: 10:00am- 5:00pm

Location: New Mexico Museum of Art, 107 West Palace Ave., Santa Fe, NM

Cost: Museum admission will be free all day!

Event Information

Location: New Mexico Museum of Art, 107 West Palace Ave., Santa Fe, NM


Cost: Museum admission will be free all day!