Alley Cats: An All Women Art Show, which opens Friday, August 16, was the result of two friends desiring to see more gallery access in the art community. "I've not been super-pleased with how things are run in the Denver art scene," says Taylor Boylston, artist and co-curator of the show. "I got to the point where I realized that if I wanted to see anything change, I'd have to be the one to do it."
Along with friend and co-curator Chelsea Bashford, the two women proceeded to turn their garage into a DIY art gallery. Situated at 409 Inca Street -- in the alley between Inca and Santa Fe Streets, to be exact -- the space, known as The Inca House, is right in the midst of vibrant Denver's Art District on Santa Fe, and looks onto the site of what will become the new Space Gallery.
See also: - Photos: The people of First Friday at Denver's Art District on Santa Fe - Japanther's Ian Vanek on the DIY scene, 'zines and handmade objects - Charlie Boots on social media, the global village and going down the digital rabbit hole
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"We both had recently gotten out of male-dominating relationships and just thought, we love women and we're all about supporting women and supporting women artists," says Boylston of the first show's female-centric theme. But as new group shows rotate in and out of the space every month, she notes, all will be welcome to submit work. Inspired by the number of DIY venues in Denver focusing on music, Boylston and Bashford felt a space as inclusive and organic was needed for both up-and-coming and established artists, too. Making sure that space was "not as structured as a gallery" was key to aiding the creative work of the artists she knows, Boylston says. For Alley Cats, an open call on Facebook for women artists led to an overwhelming response. The curators were able to bring in more than twenty local and national artists -- including Rianna Lee Brown, Jacqueline Sophia Cordova, Alicia Ordal, Katherine Rutter and Kristen Hatgi Sink -- for the group show. After a year traveling and spending time before that in Los Angeles, Boylston says she had all but given up on creating art herself -- until she recently resettled in Denver. Now back to her creative work, the photographer, painter and collage artist will be a part of the exhibition as well, as will co-curator Bashford. Alley Cats: An All Women Art Show opens at 7 p.m. Friday, August 16, at Inca House, 409 Inca Street; the entrance to the art space is in the alley between Inca Street and Santa Fe. The evening is free, and a performance by Mariposa is scheduled for 9 p.m. For more information, visit the Alley Cats event page on Facebook.