Portal Gallery

From Our Mountain to Yours: Sharing Visions of the Land of Enchantment featuring the artwork of Betty Lehnus and Sandi J. Ludescher


Stitch together the pieces of our land, our passions, and our relationships with those who are close to us and watch it come to life in the Portal Gallery at the Fuller Lodge Art Center. Experience the connections we have to our beloved Land of Enchantment as well as between friends and artists, Sandi Ludescher and Betty Lehnus. These two painters will have their own collaborative exhibit titled, “From Our Mountain to Yours: Sharing Visions of the Land of Enchantment”. Celebrate the landscapes and the personalities that you will only find in New Mexico.

Sandi J. Ludescher began painting around the age of 13 and sold her seascapes right on the beaches of Southern California. Having obtained her BFA from the College of Fine Arts at the University of New Mexico, she now lives just outside of Santa Fe. She finds herself painting en Plein Air, where she still sells her paintings right off the easel. When she’s not painting, she plays harp professionally, much of it for hospice patients. Her musical influence is evident in a lot of her artwork. She celebrates life in both music and art. 

Originally from Chicago, Betty Lehnus is now happily settled in the mountains east of Albuquerque. Her paintings are also done en Plein Air and then she uses photo references to add details to her work, capturing “the drama and beauty of the Southwest in all seasons”. Betty has been the recent recipient of several prestigious awards such as the 2018 Susan Erbe Award for Purple and Gold out of the Pastel Society of New Mexico and 1st Place Prize out of the Pastel Society of New Mexico Signature Show in 2017. She is a member of the Portrait Society of America, the New Mexico Art League, and a Signature Member of the Rio Grand Art Association, among others.

From different corners of the country, these two artists found each other and formed a friendship based on mutual admiration and inspiration. Sandi says that, “Betty is my best artist friend. She is not only beloved by her viewers and collectors but is also widely respected by other artists for both her art and her character. I guess you could call her an ‘artist’s artist.’” As they bounce ideas and critiques off of each other, they also share similar values and just have fun with life. Of Sandi, Betty says, “My friend is a remarkably independent thinker and truth-teller. Sandi is my most valuable critic, always ready to say ‘make the darks darker, and the lights lighter’ as well as ‘beautiful.’ For me, her work is nearly always a ‘wow’; strong, imaginative and absolutely original.”


November 17, 2018 – January 5, 2019

Artist Reception, Saturday, December 8, 2pm to 4pm


Attention Artists: Learn how you can reserve the Portal Gallery for your own show. Check out the links below.

Portal Information – Prospective Exhibitor

Portal Information – Accepted Exhibitor

Portal Application


Background image is “Lily Pond” by Sandi J. Ludescher