Curiosity is king.
Mark Bueno, Angie Eng, Sean Patrick Faling, Chelsea Gilmore, Clay Hawkley, Julie Maren, Elizabeth Morisette, Thomas Scharfenberg & Kenzie Sitterud
(Boulder, CO - December 18, 2018) - The Dairy Arts Center kicks off 2019 by breaking down a standard barrier between artwork and viewer – allowing visitors to touch and play with everything in the exhibition. All four galleries are dedicated to paintings, installations and sculptures you can touch, manipulate and interact with.
The Polly Addison Gallery hosts the work of Angie Eng. On view are two separate bodies of work that evoke different reactions. In “This Land Is My Land” Eng invites you to touch painted parts of an American flag, which then triggers the sound of a poem being read. Twelve works in the series allow exploration of what it means to be American. Next to this series is a large mandala comprised of e-waste arranged (and rearrange-able) on a magnetic board.
Dominating the MacMillan Gallery is “The Wardrobe” by Kenzie Sitterud. Their work is literally a closet for you to walk into, close the door and think. Sitterud's installations are designed to create the same dysphoric environment experienced by the queer community who exist in a society that is not designed for, and is not inclusive of them. On the wall, Elizabeth Morisette takes the idea of white gloves to the next level with “Jazz Hands” and plays off the idea of using white gloves to handle art.
Chelsea Gilmore turns waste into beauty in the Hand Rudy Gallery. “I want to respond to space as an animal. When we are overwhelmed in a visual and tactile experience, our intrinsic nature sets in as we remember the ways of life beyond our own.”
One step into the McMahon Gallery and you are already walking on art. Thomas Scharfenburg applies his signature repetitive shapes and colors on the entire gallery floor. Viewers are welcome to ascend the stairs to the breezeway above for a change in perspective. Sean Patrick Faling invites visitors to pick up a phone and call someone while Mark Bueno invites visitors to scratch off the surface of his “Win/Win” series of paintings. “These original scratch-off paintings are a testament to risk and chance for all who enjoy collecting art” says Bueno. Exhibiting distressed popular art posters, Clay Hawkley invites you to add to their demise by touching them. He references the idea that something happens as art is viewed, reproduced or handled. Finally, in a nod to the simple desire to touch a painting, two of Julie Maren’s paintings hang for visitors to reach out and touch, stroke or poke as much as their heart desires.
Glen Moriwaki, Michael Brohman & C. Maxx Stevens
(Longmont, CO June 6, 2018) The Firehouse Art Center brings together Glen Moriwaki, Michael Brohman & C. Maxx Stevens who each have a personal relationship to current or historically marginalized groups. “A Place in History” contends with memory, both individual and collective, and how self- perception and past experiences alter how people compile their own cultural and personal narratives. Importantly, these artists subvert expectations and stereotypes, revealing how communal trauma induces deeply personal revelations of truth.
Glen Moriwaki’s work forms a starting point to understand how we perceive history, when so many stories are unknown to us, or in some cases literally hidden from us. His work stems from the Japanese interment camp Heart Mountain Relocation Center in Wyoming, which opened 75 years ago this year. It was here that his parents and his 97 year old uncle (who now resides in Longmont) were interned during World War II. In processing the experiences his family had, he exasperates the idea of freedom with a large wall installation comprised of 70 sheets of watercolor paper painted with free-flying birds, tumbling across the sky at will. A companion piece next to the installation is a silent video portraying images of confinement.
Of his work, Moriwaki states, “art is a powerful force to connect people in divisive times. Having grown up as a Japanese American in a postwar California that was once galvanized against my immigrant community, I have been searching for ways in which art can reach out to both the individual and the larger community over issues no longer historical but contemporary and universal.”
Michael Brohman sets the stage from a different angle, creating works that tell the story of systemic oppression in a myriad of ways. In his formative years he struggled to find his identity as a gay man raised in a condemning religion, and uses his work to consider forced categorization. From the way in which borders divide and segregate people to how humans are segregated in life and in death. He also uses branding and labeling of people in a unique way.
Brohman says, “words are used as descriptors to affirm inclusion or to alienate. Language is used subtly with verbal micro aggressions or directly as a display of dominance and hierarchy. It categorizes and separates individuals into groups with preconceived attributes or inferiorities.”
C.Maxx Stevens then shifts our perspective from an outside, collective conscience to the inner self and devotes her work to telling her story while affirming her family and cultural traditions. She explores the pre conceived notions of what Native American art is and “should” look like.
“My work evolves around the notion of memory / life and narrative / fiction. Negotiating with these stereotypes can be time consuming as I don’t feel I need to explain the way my work has evolved or what it means. In the two bodies of work in the show they are based on my process of using materials and being contextualized with my beliefs as a native artist. The spheres are personal and the two-dimensional works are contextualized on my life and memory views of both the native and non-native societies.”
Each artist grapples with these concepts as inheritors of marginalized status, but they do so as individuals, and the strength of the experience lies in the ways they challenge our expectations for such work.
The Women's Art League, Fred Annes, Drew Austin, Shannon Belardi, Sarah Bozaan, Katie Caron, Diane Cionni, Trey Duvall, Jessica Forrestal, Brian Fouhy, June Glasson, Joshua Goss, Erica Green, Clay Hawkley, Patricia Howard, Helios Lucida, Suchitra Mattai, Collin Richard, Fazilat Soukhakian, Jodi Stuart, Louis Trujilo & Kaitlyn Tucek
Artists in the 21st century have to be shrewd to stand out. They often employ multiple disciplines to produce notable work. They challenge the world around them and explore unusual notions. This collection exemplifies artists using any means necessary to express themselves. Subject, medium and/or technique are pushed in innovative ways and combinations. Space is redefined, color bends and flows, marks become obsessive, organic life is raw and distorted. These visual entrepreneurs transcend the norm by provoking innovation and wonder.
Libby Barbee, Justin Beard, Adán De La Garza, Clay Hawkley, Jennifer Ivanovic, Cindy Sepucha & Mario Zoots
Firehouse Curator Jessica Kooiman Parker encouraged artists to use their creative practice to process authentic reactions to modern times and to channel that energy into new work. By encouraging work of this subject matter, the artist becomes a sincere reflection of our society and the issues we face.
Fortunately for us contemporary artists are able to unpack the headlines, filter them through their creative practice and present them to the world as a mirror to the chaos. Ideally, we stop, think and change. It’s an important role for artists to play and it is equally important to offer the opportunity for them to create work in this vein. Artists are essentially a way to ‘check’ audiences and document our society.
Stemming from frustration and feeling powerless, Kooiman Parker embarked on a mission to give artists an opportunity to create political work. Artists were asked the following questions: Do you believe in something enough that you are willing to fight for it? What do you stand for? What are you embarrassed of? Their responses are as varied as our society at large; from fossil fuels and feminism to housing issues and TSA pat-downs.
Erica Green, Jodie Roth Cooper & Liz Quan
This exhibition takes a look at three artists working with various mediums (thread, porcelain and metal) to create organic, geometric forms. Their individual configurations develop a language of jarred and broken spaces, tangled textures and precise angles. Together the work invites the viewer to explore tiny, delicate and harsh constructions of life. The free flowing, dripping thread drawings of Erica Green, spread across the page like cells building upon themselves. She references mistakes, the unknown and forgotten spaces. The smooth, refined work of Liz Quan forms an inciting world of texture, weight and color. Strange shapes create a narrative of play and mystery. In contrast to Quan and Green, Jodie Roth Cooper creates sharp mechanical bodies that climb the wall as if, at any moment, they could forever meld into a structural component of the building itself.
Suchitra Mattai & Ian McLaughlin
Exposing the prevalence of moving film in art making and installation. Through film, the exhibit depicts the brilliance and absurdity of humankind while exploring one-self.
Gayle Crites, Deborah J. Haynes, Jennie Kiessling & Kaitlyn Tucek
This diverse collection demonstrates how artists contemplate and represent the world around them by the act of making marks. Non-representational art forces us look at the world on a deeply human level: i.e., incorporating our psyches, spirituality, emotions…our essence. Often, these artists abstractedly translate what they observed to express how that moment crystallized in their being. “Mark Making” continues this tradition, with each artist working in different mediums and techniques to bring to fruition how they view the world, and their reaction to it.
Janice McDonald, Mary Williams, Victoria Eubanks, Ken Elliott, David Bailey, Georgia Anderson, Kathy Hall, David Bailey, Denny Driscoll, Dwayne Wolff, Christina Cappelletti, Jenna Dudley, Lydia Pottoff, John Goyer, Irene Delka McCray, Angela Precourt, Mark Bueno, James Roberts, Rebecca Stumpf, Ben Gaude, Diane Martonis, Linda Gleitz, Susie Jones, Sabrina Pitman, Molly Morning Glory, Betsy Anderson, Bradley Books, Chris Combs, Kirsten Boyer, Amelia Furman, Sara Boers Brown, Alicia Jenson, Ninel Senatorova, & Nina Hausfeld
Collaborative teams of artists worked together to create installations and works of art based on local farms.
Megan Morgan, Molly Morning Glory, Heather Cherry, Lisa Truesdale, Maureen Ruddy Burkhart, Anayelli Vazquez, Kathryn Hall, Charles Smith, Cindy Sepucha, Deborah Coccoli, Sarah Hanson, Sara Broers Brown, Jack Greene, Dwayne Wolff, Margaret Josey-Parker, Sarah Kinn, Michael Bellmont, Angela Beloian, Britt Ripley, David Bailey, Irene Delka McCray, Denny Driscoll, Robin Bryant, Chris Brown, Linda Gleitz, Karen Auvinen, Jason Emery, Jessica Eppler, Jason Innes, Ninel Senatorova, Jenny Ward Hodgson, Jacob Leeuwenburgh, Kirsten Boyer, Diane Martonis, Greg Marmolejo, Rebecca Stumpf, Kirby Kana & Angela Precourt
This exhibition is primarily focused on documenting 6-8 local farms through photography, film, poetry, storytelling, painting, printmaking, mixed media, sculpture, song writing and recipe creation. Artists were paired with a local farm to visit, experience, learn, engage and work with the farmers to create their work.
Micheal Bernhardt, Blanca Guerra, Lee Heekin & Penelope Sharp
The work in this exhibition represents various meanings of Ins and Outs. Each artist brings a unique perspective to what is “in” and what is “out.” It can be an internal emotion felt by outside or external pressures… it refers to the intricacies or complications of a situation, decision or process. “Ins and outs” can be the physical environment and how we define what is inside the box and what is outside the box. It is the big picture or how things stand. “Ins and outs” can be as simple as windings, turnings, nooks or recesses. Together the work will challenge you to explore your own idea of ins and outs. We are grateful to view the world through the eyes of these artists, with creativity and curiosity.
Gamma, Frank Kwiatkowski, Thomas Scharfenberg, Mark Sink, Colin Ward, & friends
Opening the gallery space up to street artists to create work on the walls. Not just grafitti, but all types of street art that is happening now. Embracing grit and urban diversity.
Jennifer Ghromley & J. Diane Martonis
In a single word, “echoes” embodies the art of two Colorado artists in a stunning and fluid sensory experience. Constructed primarily of paper, their creations reference repetition, movement and memory through meticulous cutting and folding techniques. Creative lighting and cast shadows engage the space in an evocative way as pieces extend out of the frame, suspend off the wall, and cascade from the ceiling.