Pit ornament

The 2013 University of New Mexico collectible ornament, featuring University Arena, 'The Pit' and benefiting the UNM Parent Association Scholarship Fund, is now on sale at all UNM bookstore locations. The ornaments, which have become a campus tradition, were all designed by artist Jana Fothergill, senior graphic designer for University Communication and Marketing.

Fothergill, who received her B.F.A. from Illinois Wesleyan University and her M.A. from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, has been a commercial artist working with graphic design and illustration since college.  

"Designing an ornament is a time-consuming but simple technique," said Fothergill. "First I draw the image by hand, and then I scan it into Illustrator to add color. The frame is always in a southwestern motif, because it fits with our architecture." 

The Pit, formally known as University Arena, is the sixth in a series of holiday ornaments, and depicts one of college basketball's most famous and recognizable buildings. It got its nickname because it was built in a 37-foot hole on Albuquerque's southeast mesa. Construction of The Pit actually began on the roof and then 55,000 cubic yards of earth were removed to provide for the arena. Nearly 28,000 yards of concrete were poured to create the foundation. The Pit recently underwent a massive upgrade and expansion.  

Fothergill took lots of pictures of the Pit to assess what angle would look best for the ornament. “I felt the architecture of the new front was a wonderful opportunity for a drawing. All the white columns against the windows are marvelous. So this was very different from the other buildings, and equally fun to do.”

The UNM Bookstore on main campus will host a sale and signing of the ornament on Friday, Dec. 6 from 12 – p.m.

Previous ornaments include "University House" (2008), "The Duck Pond" (2009) and "UNM Alumni Memo­r­ial Chapel" (2010), “Zimmerman Library” (2011), and “Hodgin Hall” (2012) are avail­able at the UNM Book­store on main cam­pus and also the Medical/Legal Book­store on north cam­pus for $18.89 (in honor of UNM's founding year). 

The orna­ments are avail­able at the UNM Bookstore and the Lobo Den, located in The Pit. 

All pro­ceeds benefit the Par­ent Association Scholarship Fund.