750 Camino Lejo Santa Fe, NM 87505 505-982-2226

2018 Masters Award for Lifetime Achievement: Carlos J. Otero

2018 Masters Award for Lifetime Achievement Recipient
Carlos José Otero (Painted Bultos, Retablos, Painted Reliefs, Gesso Reliefs)


The Recipient for the 2018 Masters Award for Lifetime Achievement has been awarded to Carlos José Otero,
a 23-year participant of Traditional Spanish Market and Winter Spanish Market.

The Los Lunas native is an accomplished santero who has won 4 Best of Show awards, along with numerous first-place honors and other awards in Spanish Market. He has been a member of the prestigious Spanish Colonial Arts Society since 1996 and participated in every summer and winter show since then.

Otero is a true traditional artist who grinds his own earth pigments and makes varnish from piñon sap and gesso from gypsum and rabbit-hide glue before carving and painting each piece. A retired Albuquerque Public Schools teacher of Spanish, New Mexico culture, tradition, architecture and industrial technologies, he has continued to make presentations and performances to children and adults on his favorite topics-New Mexico history, art, culture, tradition and genealogy. He is an award-winning poet and composer who has written corridas, entregas (advice for newlyweds), and marchas (traditional wedding marches).

Otero served in Vietnam in 1967-68. Upon returning, he married Vicki Sedillo y Chavez de Otero in 1970. The two are direct descendants of many of the founding families of Santa Fe, Albuquerque, Alameda, Tomé, Los Chaves, and Los Griegos. The couple is part of the music ministry for the Our Lady of Guadalupe Church in Peralta, where Otero made the 14-by-14-foot reredo, altar, and angel candles.

Robin Gavin