"Pod is dead. Long live Pod."
That's Lauri Lynnxe Murphy's weary-yet-relieved refrain as she closes the book on Pod, the quirky artist-run and artist-supporting retail adventure she and a partner oversaw for two years in a Santa Fe Drive storefront. Pod and the partner are gone (though Murphy promises to park Pod on the Internet sometime in the future), and now she's single-handedly turning the room over to Capsule, the gallery that formerly shared space with Pod.
The tiny, morphing space is no stranger to change. It's been Ilk and the Soup and Pod and Capsule, but for the most part, Murphy's always fit into the mix, either as a member, a studio holder, a proprietress, a contributor or a curator. Now she's on her own, and 554 Santa Fe Drive is hers to do with as she likes. If her early plans are any indication, she'll keep 'em coming and going at Capsule. In her most ambitious scenario, Capsule will eventually house the gallery, rental studios and a community screen-printing shop where classes will be held. That all seems to be at the mercy of Murphy power, a formidable force.
In the meantime, Capsule celebrates its rebirth tonight from 7 to 11 p.m. with a grand reopening and reception for its first show, Stupidfresh, featuring mixed media on found objects by Steve Karpik. On hand will be Moe Perdue and the Lost Words and performance musicians Antenna 10. Karpik's show continues through October 15.
For details, call 303-623-3460. -- Susan Froyd
That Hits the Spot
Chow down for charity at Vesta Dipping Grill.
The plates may be small, but hearts will be big tonight when Vesta Dipping Grill, the hip restaurant at 1822 Blake Street, closes to the public in order to host Small Plates for the Spot, an annual fundraiser that benefits the Spot, a home away from homeless for teens to go and make connections, friends and music. "We have seen a threefold increase in the number of homeless youth here in Denver in less than a decade," says Jamie Van Leeuwen, development director of Urban Peak, which merged with the Spot two years ago. "Programs and partnerships such as the one that has been formed between the Spot and Vesta are critical if we are to impact the number of young people on the streets."
Some of those kids will perform at the party; DJ K-Nee will also be on hand. And a silent auction will increase your opportunity to do good while having a very good time -- visiting the Grey Goose martini bar, or the cheese table set up by the Truffle, or satay and ceviche stations staffed by Vesta chefs. "We're going to have tons of food," promises Vesta manager Dave Zahradnik. And big fun. The party starts at 7 p.m.; tickets are $65. For reservations, call Tamara Greenlee at 303-777-9198, ext. 210. -- Patricia Calhoun
This year's edition of The International Experimental Cinema Exposition lives up to its name. The slate, assembled by TIE director/curator Chris May, includes Taiwanese director Tony Wu's Maps Dreaming -- which was made using "real and fake semen and blood," May says -- as well as works by Andy Warhol and Denver's Boyd Rice. As a bonus, filmmaker Thorsten Fleisch will screen educational shorts made in Third Reich-era Germany. "They're free from racial prejudices and beautifully shot -- a pleasure to watch," May declares. TIE runs tonight through September 25 at the Mayan Theatre, 110 Broadway, and other area venues. Phone 1-800-595-4849 for info about ticketing and passes, or get the scheduling lowdown at www.experimentalcinema.org. -- Michael Roberts
Seeing the year in pictures.
Photographer Anna Newell came up with the idea for Daily: A self-portrait a day for a year while teaching a group of middle-school-aged girls. "Something that continuously came up was how each girl saw themselves," Newell says. "I was thinking about what I thought when I was that age and how it hasn't changed much." Realizing she was still like those girls in some ways -- uncertain one moment, courageous the next -- Newell decided to delve deeper. "The idea came from a desperate desire to see who I really am."
Three hundred and sixty-five self-portraits later, Newell is unveiling her journey of self-exploration tonight and Saturday at Orange Cat Studios, 2625 Larimer Street, from 6 to 10 p.m. The photographs are funny and sad and everything in between, yet always unflinching. Still, having a year of her life on display has left Newell feeling vulnerable and exposed: "I want to wear a paper bag on my head to the opening," she jokes. But the show must go on, because she feels it's important for people to see the big picture. "It may be my face," she says, "but it is a reflection of how people feel and are."