Big events collide in a beautiful way this weekend in Denver, with an international presence here for the Biennial of the Americas, joining a hardworking community of street artists who've descended on RiNo to paint murals for CRUSH 2017. Local galleries and businesses are getting in step with satellite exhibits and events — and then there’s all the great regular stuff. Here’s a smorgasbord of this weekend’s best art events.
Saber Acomodar: Art and Workshops of Jalisco 1915
MCA Denver, 1485 Delgany Street
Through January 21
Saber Acomodar officially opened September 13 with a sold-out bash, but now the Biennial-inspired exhibit is open for a quieter — and closer — look at work made in collaboration between artisans working with traditional techniques and contemporary artists updating the ancient ways in modern installations. Curator Patrick Charpenel of New York’s El Museo del Barrio brings together 25 artists and craftspeople working in the Jalisco region of western Mexico for this showcase, a beautiful soup of work both handmade and conceptual.
Elements & Curiosities: Valerie Savarie & Sharon Eisley
Valkarie Gallery, 445 South Saulsbury Street
Through October 8
Opening Reception: 5 to 8:30 p.m. Saturday, September 16
Paired exhibits showcasing work by Valkarie studio residents Sharon Eisley (a carved-panel oil painter) and Valerie Savarie (an altered-book artist) are getting to be a regular thing at the Belmar gallery: For their fourth duet, Elements & Curiosities, the artists explore the elements — earth, air, fire and water — each in her own way. The pièce de résistance at the show’s opening will be a cabinet of curiosities-themed surprise. Guess you’ll just have to be there to see it.
Eduardo Portillo, Frontera
Rule Gallery, 530 Santa Fe Drive
September 14 through October 28
Opening Reception: 6 to 9 p.m. Thursday, September 14
Artist Eduardo Portillo, a Salvadoran now living and working in Houston, casts an eye on the borderlands for Frontera, a roomful of minimal sculptured paintings depicting cutaway slices of abstracted Southwestern topography on irregularly shaped canvases.
Station 16 Annex Street Art Market
The Source Hotel and Market, 3350 Brighton Boulevard
Opening Thursday, September 14
Noon to 8 p.m. September 15 through September 17
The Source gives the nod to the Biennial and CRUSH alike by hosting the Street Art Market, an artist exchange with Montreal’s Station 16 Gallery, complete with a space installation, an outdoor mural-in-process by Canadian artist Whatisadam, live silkscreening demos, drink specials at the RiNo Yacht Club and limited-quantity print releases every afternoon at 2 p.m. Want to party with the artists after hours? Hit the Station 16 Annex After Hours cocktail-fest and groove to tunes spun by Weird Touch from 11 p.m. to 2 a.m. on Saturday, September 16. Also on tap over the weekend: Concurrent pop-ups by Sandy Calistro (Saturday) and Andrew Hoffman (Sunday) at Svper Ordinary Gallery.
Ahol Sniffs Glue
Pon Pon, 2528 Walnut Street
Opening Reception: 8 to 11 p.m. Thursday, September 14
A CRUSH-sanctioned exhibit, Florida muralist Ahol Sniffs Glue’s show should be an eye-opening experience: Patterned walls of multiple sleepy eyes are the artist’s signature shtick, often seen on the walls of Wynwood in Miami. Chances are he’ll also be hawking copies of his new book, a tome of collaged cell-phone imagery called Cellular Fuckery.
Border: Both Sides Now
Art Students League of Denver, 200 Grant Street
September 15 through October 13
Opening Reception: 5:30 to 8 p.m. Saturday, September 16
The Art Students League of Denver adds a layer to Biennial ideals with Border: Both Sides Now, a group exhibit blending work by Latin American and Chicano artists commenting on immigration from both sides of the border. Curated by Artnauts founder Dr. Geroge Rivera, whose thing it is to seek out global ideas in art, it’s an exhibit that couldn’t be more current.
99 Pieces of Art on the Wall
Access Gallery, 909 Santa Fe Drive
6 to 9 p.m. Friday, September 15
Access Gallery’s annual 99 Pieces of Art on the Wall fundraiser is a collector’s dream and a great play on the meaning of “access” — for the price of the $10 admission, every partier in the room can walk away with a small square foot of art priced between $50 and $250, first come, first served. More than 100 artists, from well-known names to young participants served by the nonprofit, have contributed artwork.
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Arna Miller, Tales of Friendly Fellows
Crema Coffeehouse, 2862 Larimer Street
Opening Reception: Noon to 5 p.m. Saturday, September 16
Artist Arna Miller brings a menagerie of affordable screenprinted creatures to CREMA, right in the thick of the CRUSH 2017 action, where you can duck in for the best coffee in the world without skipping an art-viewing beat.
See Westword’s calendar listings for more art events and openings.