One pair that's in a great place — on the east wall — is the one dedicated to Mark Brasuell and Aidan Grey. The two paintings are the same size and have palettes and even compositional features that are similar. Brasuell told me they worked side by side on them. Directly across the room from the Brasuell/Grey combo is a more disparate pairing, with Susanne Alethea Mitchell's marvelous "Escape" on three vertically stacked unframed pieces of paper and an ink drawing by Sinae Lee. Mitchell's style combines surrealism with post-pop and a touch of feminist content (the images of paper doilies). Lee created an elegant, vaguely constructivist scene of figures in black outlines that are scattered across the page.

Despite its many shortcomings, Edge Pairings has a lot to recommend it, and I've only mentioned a handful of the 44 artists in the show. What I found wrong with it could easily have been fixed if a curator had volunteered to help out — and as it happens, I know one with some free time: William Biety. The curator and exhibition designer at van Straaten Gallery and for many years at its predecessor, the Sandy Carson Gallery, was laid off on January 15. I've long thought of Biety as one of the top exhibition designers and curators in town, and he seemingly always assembled a great group of works and placed them perfectly within the gallery. His voice will be sorely missed at van Straaten and in the Denver art world. Here's hoping that he'll wind up somewhere else.

"Cake Decorations," by Rian Kerrane, bronze and ready-made plastic trees.
"Cake Decorations," by Rian Kerrane, bronze and ready-made plastic trees.
"Muffins," by Hopi Benton, cast iron and paper doilies.
"Muffins," by Hopi Benton, cast iron and paper doilies.

Someone winding up somewhere else provides the perfect segue to another bit of local art news. David Dadone, formerly the deputy director at Denver's Museo de las Américas, will soon take over as chief executive at the Boulder Museum of Contemporary Art. An immigrant from Argentina, Dadone has a background in business along with his experience at the Museo. He replaces co-directors Penny Barnow and Joan Markowitz, who stepped down this winter after five years. One thing I hope is that Dadone quickly realizes what a great asset BMoCA has in curator Kirsten Gerdes Stoltz.

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