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Going To the Birds

At the risk of pigeonholing MCA Denver, the city’s bastion of contemporary cool seems to focus a lot on conceptual projects, and its latest, Thinking About Flying, is no exception. To put the, uh, show together, Pittsburgh-based artist Jon Rubin asked to have a pigeon coop installed on the roof of the museum. The MCA then acquired eighteen homing pigeons from the Foothills Pigeon Racing Club, who will call the coop home for a while. Visitors will be able to check out a pigeon and take it home in a carrying case, complete with instructions on feeding and care. The pigeons will then hopefully fly back to the MCA from anywhere in the city, and even up to hundreds of miles away. So, other than teaching MCA employees how to clean up pigeon poop, what is the point of the project? It’s to invert the usual relationship between a museum, its artwork and the visitors by having the visitors take responsibility for the artwork (the pigeons) them-selves, says MCA spokesman William Sawyer. “Jon Rubin is taking a portion of the museum and moving it into people’s personal spaces as opposed to institutional spaces — like some of the exhibits here now, which will never be in somebody’s home.” Not that you’d want a pigeon in your personal space for long, anyway. Rubin will speak tonight at 6:30 p.m. at the MCA, 1485 Delgany Street; pigeon checkout continues Tuesday through Friday from 1 to 4 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday from 2 to 5 p.m. After that, it will be by reservation and on a first-come-first-served basis by calling 303-298-7554, ext. 207, through December. For more information, go to
Tuesdays-Sundays. Starts: Aug. 17. Continues through Dec. 31, 2011


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