Moving Forward, Looking Back: Journeys Across the Old Spanish Trail

  • Visual arts
  • Washington, D.C.
  • Thu, April 30 —
    Sun, June 28, 2015
Moving Forward, Looking Back: Journeys Across the Old Spanish Trail

This artistic project explores the Spanish legacy found along the Old Spanish Trail combining photography, video and sound.

Moving Forward, Looking Back: Journeys Across the Old Spanish Trail started in March 2014 with a road trip across the Southwest of the Spanish photojournalist Janire Nájera.

She and her assistant Matt Wright followed the footsteps of trader Antonio Armijo, who opened the route of the Old Spanish Trail between the states of New Mexico and California in the 19th century.

During her trip, Janire met and interviewed Spanish descendants to analyze how the traditions of the first settlers have merged with local cultures influencing the creation and identity of today’s pueblos and cities, revealing some traces of Spanish intangible heritage that remains across these states.

Nájera has captured her experience along the route in a daily log, a book and a photography exhibition that will travel across the U.S. and that premieres at the Former Residence of the Ambassadors of Spain in Washington, D.C.

Related event:

Book launch and exhibition tour

  • On Saturday, May 2nd at 12 pm. RSVP required.
  • Join us for the public presentation of the book Moving Forward, Looking Back, whose title gives name to this exhibition at the Former Residence of the Ambassadors of Spain. Photographer Janire Nájera will recount her experience interviewing and photographing the Spanish descendants from the Southwest while driving an old RV across the Old Spanish Trail, and along with Embassy of Spain’s Cultural Counselor Guillermo Corral and the SPAIN arts & culture team, she will discuss her views about the historical and present traces of Spanish culture in the U.S. She will then guide us on a tour through the exhibition.
  • The talk will be accompanied by mimosas and Spanish snacks.

Meet the artist and enjoy a Spanish wine at the public opening on April 30, from 7 pm to 8:30 pm. RSVP required.


Venue map

Former Residence of the Ambassadors of Spain, 2801 16th Street NW, Washington, D.C. 20009


Free admission. Opening hours: Friday through Sunday, from 12 pm to 7 pm; Monday–Thursday by appointment only.

More information

Moving Forward, Looking Back


Organized by SPAIN arts & culture and Spain-USA Foundation. Moving Forward, Looking Back was the selected project of an open call organized by SPAINred. This project is accompanied by a photography book authored by Janire Nájera. The catalog of this exhibition is published by RM.



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