Jim Burgel

Functions, Occupations, and Activities
>Carpenter, model builder, assemblage artist
Wood;Mixed media
I was at the University Theater in Berkeley, California, when I decided to build a scale model of a mobile home...A couple of years and 1,000 miles later in New Mexico, my neighbor came upon a miniature Blessed Virgin Mary while working in her yard. We called her the Milagro (Miracle). The Milagro turned out to be the missing ingredient, and because work was slow, I decided it was time to build the trailer. It came to be known as El Rancho Encantado (the enchanted ranch)... At the Smithsonian—This project took about 12 days to complete, from start to finish. Most of the tough work of collecting all the materials, however, had been accomplished prior to assembly...The Rancho is now in the Smithsonian Institution. It awaits display in the museum’s still-to-come exhibit on life in the 20th century: The Hall of Everyday life in the American Past...I hope they put it in a darkened room because the best time for viewing El Rancho Encantado is at night, with a few of its lights on. If you listen closely, you can almost hear the wind blow.—James A. Burgel, a finish carpenter living in Santa Fe, N. M. [Retrieved on 2/21/2018 from http://www.finehomebuilding.com/2008/06/23/el-rancho-encantado]
Geographic names
Santa Fe