Notes on the “Taoseño” Series

"Mid-Day Walk," oil on panel by Melwell Romancito, 8x10

There are five paintings in my studio that are part of a continuing series called the “Taoseño” series. These are street and landscape scenes with people going about their daily errands. The figures in the scene are rudimentary but specific at the same time.

The first in the series is “Trip to the Post Office.” this would hark back to the day when you could walk to the post office and take your dogs and they wouldn’t have to be on leashes. They would also have to be very good dogs to be taken to the post office. The man almost seems to be wearing Eddie Bauer clothing. Imagine a retiree heading to a village post office at mid-day. One dog is right there with him. The other dog seems to be tempted by something we can’t see (maybe a cat or a prairie dog), but this dog has chosen to be good and not give chase because he gets to go to the post office with his master.

The second one in the series is “Camino Chisme.” that means “Gossip Road” in Spanish. If you happened to move to Taos from somewhere else, you might have been surprised when old-timers used to hold up traffic to exchange important nuggets of information. You learned you did not lay on your horn. The talkers were quite aware that you were there. It was a test of your patience and a test of your ability to identify cultural practices and not get bent out of shape.

If you grew up in Taos, you knew exactly wha what was going on, and you might even know a little something about the nugget of information that was being exchanged.

Even the Magpies are interested, and the dog in the back of the truck has enough sense to be respectful as well.

Third in the series is “Mid-day Walk.” This is a street in the historic district laden with lilacs. We see the trees wearing new green and the distant hill beginning to deepen with color. The dog seems like an older bulldog. He, too, sees something in the distance and he’s straining at the leash a bit, but will probably decide to be good because he gets to walk with his person at the top of the day.

Last in the series, at least at this point in time, is “Burch Street.” Who doesn’t love this street off Kit Carson Road in the autumn when the color is absolutely spectacular? It really doesn’t matter what season you walk down that road. The beauty of the snug neighborhood envelopes as you stroll, cruise, or walk your bike down its sylvan stretch.

There will most likely be more to this series. My plans are to frame them in a dark brown to set off the outlines each of them has. The gallery may hang them at some point, but for the meanwhile, I have them in the studio. Contact the gallery if there is any interest in seeing them in person.