In 2005, Westword introduced its first class of MasterMinds, five aesthetic adventurers working in a variety of mediums, but all changing the cultural landscape of Denver.
Those first awards came as quite a surprise -- both to the recipients and to us here at Westword. Why? We found that most of the winners used their cash prizes to help other people in the arts -- paying their way through classes, giving hands-on advice on how to start their own business. And when the time came to name our second class of MasterMinds, our first winners were just as generous with their advice for who should be honored. The result was another winning class: Cafe Nuba (which celebrates its tenth anniversary this month) in the Literary category; Katie Taft in Visual Arts; Deb Henriksen in Fashion/Design; Johnny Morehouse in Multimedia; and Dragon Daud of the now-stalled art bus in Performing Arts.