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Gone But Not Forgotten

Mark Travis blazed onto the Denver art scene in the 1980s, and he exemplified the lifestyle of the classic artist-persona as made famous in fiction: He drank, smoked, did drugs and chased women while banging out one great painting after another. Although Travis first made a name for himself with abstracts, in the past decade he was also interested in depicting the female nude.

Then, last fall, Travis decided to create a new body of politically charged work, and Space Gallery director Michael Burnett felt that it should be unveiled in an exhibit just in time for the Democratic National Convention. Travis was game for the project, but he inadvertently dropped the ball when he died of natural causes last December (see “Live Hard,” January 10, 2008).

After Travis died, Burnett immediately made the decision to keep the slot he’d reserved for the artist; however, the theme of the show was necessarily changed to reflect the profoundly different circumstances. In place of the political show — Travis had not gotten around to doing that work before he died — Burnett opted to present Mark Travis: Memorial Exhibit, made up of pieces from the artist’s studio, such as “Untitled” (pictured), which was done in mixed media on canvas.

For information, call 720-904-1088 or check out And whether you knew Travis or not, you could do worse than pay homage to someone who was a real artist’s artist.
Aug. 22-Oct. 11, 2008


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