Carmella Padilla is a Santa Fe journalist, author, and editor who explores art, history, and culture in New Mexico and beyond. Padilla co-edited and contributed to A Red Like No Other: How Cochineal Colored the World (Skira Rizzoli, 2015), winner of the 2017 Alfred H. Barr Jr. Award for distinguished scholarship in art history. Her books include The Work of Art: Folk Artists in the 21st Century (2013) and El Rancho de las Golondrinas: Living History in New Mexico's La Ciénega Valley (2009), and her articles have appeared in the Wall Street Journal, the Dallas Morning News, American Craft, and elsewhere. In 2009 Padilla received the New Mexico Governor's Award for Excellence in the Arts.
Denise Chavez is a performance artist, novelist, and teacher whose work celebrates the border corridor of southern New Mexico, West Texas, and northern Mexico. Her novel, Face of an Angel (1994) won the American Book Award and her The King and Queen of Comezón (2014) won the 2015 International Latino Book Award and the New Mexico-Arizona Book Award for fiction.
Dana Gioia is an internationally acclaimed and award-winning poet. Former Chairman of the National Endowment for the Arts, Gioia is a native Californian of Italian and Mexican descent. He received a B.A. and a M.B.A. from Stanford University and an M.A. in Comparative Literature from Harvard University. Gioia currently serves as the Poet Laureate of California.
Gioia has published five full-length collections of poetry, most recently 99 Poems: New & Selected. His poetry collection, Interrogations at Noon, won the 2002 American Book Award. An influential critic as well, Gioia's 1991 volume Can Poetry Matter?, which was a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle award, is credited with helping to revive the role of poetry in American public culture. In 2014 he won the Aiken-Taylor Award for lifetime achievement in American poetry.
Charlene Villaseñor Black is a professor of art history and Chicana/o Studies at the University of California, Los Angeles. She recently edited Tradition and Transformation: Chicana/o Art from the 1970s to the 1990s and a dossier on teaching Latina/Latino art in Aztlán: A Journal of Chicano Studies. Her 2006 book Creating the Cult of St. Joseph: Art and Gender in the Spanish Empire was awarded a College Art Association Millard Meiss Subvention. She is associate director of UCLA's Chicano Studies Research Center and the editor of Aztlán. In 2016 she was awarded UCLA's Gold Shield Faculty Prize for Academic Excellence.