Artbeat

Brief sketches of what's happening in the Denver art scene.

Just in time for the gift-giving season, the Edge Gallery (3658 Navajo Street, 303-477-7173) is presenting its annual fundraiser, Blue Light Special, in which nothing costs more than $200, and a portion of each sale is donated to Edge. Although the Edge-sters want their alternative gallery to look like an alternative discount store, to be honest, it looks more like a church rummage sale with pieces climbing the walls and covering the floor.

The two galleries in the front are chock-a-block full of a motley selection of artwork, none more motley than Roger Beltrami's descriptively titled "Cat Crucifixion." (Gosh, wouldn't that make quite the impression under the tree?) Well, remember, the artists who belong to the Edge co-op are experimental, and experiments are more apt to be failures than to be successes -- and at these low prices, the members are more apt to unload their failures than their successes.

But that's not true in every case. For example, there are the lyrical little graphite-and-wax-on-paper drawings by Lisa Chicoyne. Also nice are Susan Goldstein's mixed-media prints and the wall-mounted fiber sculptures by Gail Wagner. If you dig a little, you could actually find the perfect something for someone on your list. And for goodness sake, you might even know the kind of person who would just love that blasphemous depiction of the calico on a cross -- though I hope I don't.

A much more contemplative mood is conjured up in the back room, where a solo show devoted to the work of Virginia Jenkins called Year of the Blue Moon and the Seven Sisters has been installed. The show includes a handful of small mixed-media pieces and a trio of large acrylic paintings, the best of which is, by far, "Dreaming of the Edmund Fitzgerald" (above). Jenkins has written that the paintings were inspired by her travels in North America, but they also seem to refer to transcendentalist landscapes from the 1940s.

Both the sale and the show close this Sunday.

 
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