Art Beat

Michael Paglia's brief sketches of what's happening in the Denver art scene.

Collide, which closes tomorrow at the Emmanuel Gallery on the Auraria campus, is an elegantly presented and intelligently put-together presentation of some Asian-American artists who work in the region. The show was organized by participants Ken Iwamasa and Polly Chang and beautifully installed by Mark Masuoka, Emmanuel's director.

In addition to Iwamasa and Chang, the show includes a number of well-known names such as Homare Ikeda and Albert Chong. Less well-known are Abbas Meghjee, Michele Kong, Jaeha Yoo and Rokko Aoyama. Glean (above), a 1996 installation by Aoyama, who works in Fort Collins, is on display upstairs. On a hand-carved table made of aspen, Aoyama has placed three square cut blocks of beige Indiana limestone. On top of these, the artist has stacked three piles of white paraffin sheets. The result has all the ceremonial solemnity of an altar.

The title of the show is meant to convey the intersection of East and West in the work of these local Asian-American artists. But given how well many of them have done around here, a more apt title might have been Merge. -- Michael Paglia

 
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