Michael Chavez, the curator at Foothills Art Center (809 15th Street, Golden, 303-279-3922), has organized Pattern Recognition, which looks at art that considers repetition. This is the second show that Chavez has put together at Foothills that surveys a contemporary stylistic category being done in Denver. The first examined contemporary realism, while Pattern Recognition looks at contemporary abstraction. Taken together, the two shows help establish Chavez's own unique vision and perspective. With Pattern Recognition, it's obvious that he saw a lot of solos to come up with the idiosyncratic list of artists who assemble similar elements to build compositions.
Though "pattern" appears in the exhibit's title, Chavez excluded pattern painting. A partial exception to this is the work of Emilio Lobato, as in the painting "Andaluz" (pictured), featuring a moody palette that fleshes out stacks of colored stripes. Bruce Price also addresses the idea of patterns, but he doesn't actually do patterns; he obliterates them. His flying checkerboards and colliding three-dimensional planes allow him to cram in a great deal of visual information, which violates any number of formalist tenets.
As usual, Steven Read's pieces are extremely smart. In the watercolor-pencil-on-canvas painting "Dativas 1," multi-colored lines define a grille. Opposite is the DVD projection "Stuff (or 1000 manipulative electronics deceptions)," which has geometric compositions that change according to electronic pulses.
Chavez also included a number of wall sculptures, including an installation by Lauri Lynnxe Murphy made up of similar polymer shapes that were painted or wrapped with cloth. Next to it is a postmodern ceramic by Tsehai Johnson that wraps around a corner and looks like wallpaper made of porcelain. Tyler Aiello is represented by a group of semi-spherical constructions made of small metal circles. Paula Castillo, the only artist not from Colorado, does something similar with her organic-looking welded-steel sculptures.
Chavez's Pattern Recognition is uneven, but it's an interesting take on what's going on.
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