Gustavo Victor Goler was raised in Santa Fe, New Mexico among a family of Latin American art conservators and restorers. Goler’s early years were spent apprenticing in his families conservation studios where he learned wood carving skills by restoring 18th, 19th and 20th century Saints from Latin America and New Mexico. Goler began carving original Santos in high school as a hobby, creating a few pieces a year that he would give to family and friends. In 1986, he opened up a small conservation studio in Santa Fe, NM where he specialized in the conservation of Santos.
In 1988, Goler juried into Spanish Market in Santa Fe, NM. His high level of craftsmanship and innovative design have garnered him numerous awards including the Master Award for Lifetime Achievement in 2016. His work as an art conservator has exposed him to historic New Mexico Santos in churches, museums, and private collections while his technical ability as a woodcarver and in-depth knowledge of materials has allowed him to create original pieces with a unique style. Aside from Spanish Market, he has participated in individual, museum and group shows alongside some of New Mexicos award winning artists. These exhibitions include retrospective shows at the Harwood Museum in Taos, NM and the National Hispanic Cultural Center in Albuquerque, NM.
As a full-time artist since 1986, Goler lectures regularly on the subject of New Mexico Santos. In addition, he mentors developing artists and museum docents, teaches classes and continues his in-depth research on the subject of devotional arts. His work can be found in publications, museum and private collections, and churches around the country.