The Past is Present: Nasario Remembers the Rio Puerco Nasario Garcia & Shebana Coelho

Thursday, January 12, 2017 - 6:00pm

The new oral history documentary, Nasario remembers the Río Puerco had an unlikely beginning - at Santa Fe's Collected Works Bookstore when director Shebana Coelho heard author and celebrated folklorist Nasario García tell stories of his boyhood in the now ghost towns of New Mexico's Río Puerco valley. Be part of the journey to continue the story of a forgotten part of New Mexico and a storyteller who is entering his eighth decade of speaking recuerdos about land, loss, and community.  The event will feature a trailer and clips from the documentary, Nasario García, director Shebana Coelho, poet Anne Valley-Fox and the production team, storytelling opportunities for you to share your recuerdo/memory, and an update on the status of the film, which New Mexico PBS has expressed an interest in broadcasting.

Visit Nasario Remembers for more information. 

About Nasario Garcia:

Considered a leading folklorist in New Mexico, Nasario has published 10 books in Spanish (the language of his countrymen and women) and English related to folklore and oral history. For the past thirty-plus years he has worked tirelessly to preserve the rich Hispanic culture and language of northern New Mexico."Though he is a professional folklorist, and most of his books are compilations of oral lore, his work might nonetheless be compared to that of Faulkner or [Gabriel] García-Márquez, so completely is this lost world present on the page. Garcia has in fact written a collection of prose stories that are based on this culture, 'The Naked Rainbow and Other Stories.'" By bukhtan, Chicago, Illinois, USA. amazon.com.

Besides his bilingual works on folklore and prose stories—the latter for adults as well as children—that depict a disappearing way of life in rural life New Mexico, García’s books of poetry also capture the spirit of his childhood in his village of Ojo del Padre. As he says in Bolitas de oro: Poems of My Marble-Playing Days, "Since reliving one’s past is not an option, offering a poetic vision of my upbringing in rural New Mexico was the next best thing." Many of García’s colorful poems are perfect for children and young readers; they are written in simple and straightforward language that describe people, the landscape, and animals.

About Shibana Coelho:

Shebana Coelho is a writer and director, originally from India, now living in New Mexico. Her work spans genres, from documentary to fiction, theatre to poetry. Her documentary work has been broadcast on American Public Television, National Public Radio, The Discovery Channel, and BBC Radio Four and has received a Telly award and a South Asian Journalists' Association (SAJA) Best Documentary Award. Her poems, stories and articles have appeared in domestic and international journals. She received a Fiction Fellowship from the New York Foundation for the Arts (NYFA), and a Fulbright grant to Mongolia. She wrote and directed When The Stars Trembled in Río Puerco, an oral history play, adapted from the work of Nasario García about life in four now ghost towns in the Rio Puerco valley (April 2014, Teatro Paraguas, September 2014, National Hispanic Cultural Center.)