Since the giant shipping container first came onto the Denver art scene, Black Cube has never been like other museums, especially when it comes to building lasting relationships with its artist fellows. On Saturday, April 23, as part of Doors Open Denver, Black Cube will launch the first of two alumni projects for 2016 with artist fellow Derrick Velasquez and his New Brutal 2.
“We love our artists, and we want to have a committed relationship to them,” says Cortney Stell, Black Cube’s executive
New Brutal 2 is a continuation of Velasquez’s Black Cube pop-up exhibition New Brutal, a project that was installed at the future Stanley Marketplace in December and focused on the aesthetics of buildings in Denver. Velasquez compared two contrasting architectural moments in New Brutal, using the custom crown moldings and ornamentation seen in older eras as well as very cubical structures that can be seen throughout Denver real estate today. Stell says his new piece, which will take the form of an outdoor sculpture in La Alma/Lincoln Park’s sunken amphitheater, is more about the architecture of the buildings.
“This is kind of a weird sculpture because it's a sculpture talking about buildings,” Stell says. “From the street side, the sculpture will finish the facade so it looks like a pediment from Greco-Roman buildings, but on the inside of the
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The chosen location for New Brutal 2 has been known for gang violence in the past, Stell notes, and because of that and ongoing construction in the area, she and Velasquez were required to pull permits from Denver Parks and Recreation for the exhibition. “The artwork might get tagged, and the shipping container might even get tagged in this location,” she says. “Derrick is looking forward to this as
Black Cube’s New Brutal 2 is being funded by Doors Open Denver and a grant from the Bonfils-Stanton Foundation that supports free, architecturally inspired arts activities. “Partnering with Doors Open Denver, the City and County of Denver and especially the Denver Architectural Foundation is wonderful, because we can have these conversations around the artwork from an architectural side,” Stell says.
New Brutal 2 opens with a Doors Open Denver reception from 3 to 6 p.m. on Saturday, April 23; Velasquez will speak at 5 p.m. New Brutal 2 will stay on display at La Alma/Lincoln Park amphitheater, between East 11th Avenue and Osage Street, through May 16; it will be open to the public from 1 to 5 p.m. on Thursdays and Fridays. Find out more at blackcubeart.org.