Lisa Law lives on her memories. Timothy Leary squinting at the sun at the Human Be-In in San Francisco. A young Harrison Ford fixes the wiring at at a friend’s house in Hollywood. Ken Kesey perched like a Valkyrie on the hood of his painted hippie bus (Named “Further” as it loses to Wavy Gravy’s in the Great bus Race outside Santa Fe. The ’60s zeitgeist seems to have appointed Law its official photographer. She was always in the right place at the right time, always knew everyone involved and always had her camera. “Back then, when I shot a picture, I didn’t know how important it was going to be,” she says. “Now I know.”
Law came to Santa Fe in 1974 with her four children, whose names read like an ascending mantra: Dhana Pilar, Solar Sat, Sunday Peaches, Jesse Lee Rainbow. That’s when she started selling photos of her friends-memories were already in demand. Today, Law’s extensive archive is used by everyone, from public television to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. UNM uses her Flashing On The Sixties as a history textbook.
But Law, 52, is not exclusively into the ’60s; she’s also an active advocate for teens of the ’90s. And she’s concerned that Santa Fe seems to have so little time for its youth. Recently, she helped Mark Rendleman raise $69,363 for the CCA teen center.
Santa Fe can raise $100,000 for AIDS patients that come here to die,” she says. “Why can’t we raise that for the living?”
Soon she’ll be living north of town in Embudo, working on her next five photo books in a house she’s building on land she and her children own together. Her purpose in life now? To get her remaining images—her “other children”—out on their own. –R.U.