Specific Environments: The Landscape as Metaphor was conceived as the dynamism of visual forces, unearthing art that is actionable, and objects that ask the viewer to step away from the obvious and move toward the enigmatic, yet not arcane. The goal was to bring together artists whose works are not merely handmade copies of nature, but who use landscape, nature, and the land to enter into a discourse of contemporary issues of our time: environmental degradation, consumption, myth, memory, and perception, and the intersection of technology and terrain, both internal and external.
But the question remains, though, once the school field trips come and go, and the novelty of the new wears off, will this museum with its $10 admission price be appealing to a public with a millisecond attention span more interested in snapping photos with their smartphones than actually spending a sustained time looking at the paintings as Still wanted? With an art viewing public that can go to art fairs for a viewing hypermarket, is there a contemporary art lover capable of seeing the majesty in Clyfford Still’s vision?
Kim Keever creates landscapes that are mesmerizing. The viewer stops, ponders, frozen in her tracks. Where is it? What is it? Have I been there? Will I go there? Itʼs familiar, yet strange. Real, yet an apparition. A Kim Keever photograph is prehistory and post history, the epoch and the apocalypse.
Gregory Euclide is an outsider. An observer. Whether walking in the woods, or driving across country, he pays attention to the minutiae. Important details become part of his art. Since his last solo exhibition at David B. Smith Gallery, his work has branched out into objects that are similar yet diverse. Heʼs created large installations for New Yorkʼs Museum of Arts and Design and Denverʼs Biennial of the Americas. He also produced an album cover for Bon Iver, has been featured at the PULSE Art Fair, and continues to broaden his studio practice creating 3-dimensional works on paper, sculpture, captures, and video. Euclide is pushing the boundaries of the way he thinks about the land, and how itʼs used.
Fort Collins, Colorado, tasked with creating a Rocky Mountain Regional Arts Incubator, won a $100,000 “Our Town” grant from the National Endowment for the Arts. The collaborators on this public-private “creative placemaking” initiative include the city of Fort Collins’s Cultural Services Department, Colorado State University and Beet Street, a cultural programmer behind Fort Collins’s creative industry. When developed, AIR (Arts Incubator of the Rockies), plans to serve 10 states.
The Mayor’s Awards for Excellence in the Arts were awarded November 3 to kick off Denver Arts Week. Mayor Michael Hancock honored the American Indian Galleries at the Denver Art Museum and Phil Bender with the Excellence awards and Veronica Barela with the Legacy Award. Arts Weekends November 12, but it’s not too late to participate. Here’s a selection of things to do as Arts Week comes to a close.