First of all, I recommend to everyone a trip to the Harwood Museum to view the permanent installation by the world-renown Agnes Martin. I understand that she would call her work abstract impressionism. However, it is hard not to see it as powerful bold minimalism. I am moved by her work, which seems as far from Jim Wagner’s as possible. Yet Jim and Agnes knew each other from California. This friendship encouraged Jim to move to Taos, following his muse Agnes. Perhaps a gifted art historian could help us identify her influence on Jim’s work.
Wagner leaves behind a wide-reaching collection of work mostly created in Taos: landscapes, portraits, humorously cobbled-together constructions, ceramics, and on and on, from his arrival in 1968 until his death in May 2021. His work shows an original vision of life in Taos. Come discover the many secrets of his work at the Bareiss Gallery.
I think his 50-some years in Taos can be viewed as The Wagner Period. He understood the area’s culture, way of life, and humor like no one else.
— Philip Bareiss