Art is All Around

Philip J. Steele Gallery curator Cortney Stell spends a lot of time scouring the world for trends in art. It’s her passion, and it pays off: Stell continually charms international artists into visiting the Rocky Mountain School of Art & Design to exhibit and discuss their work. And her first show of the year is just that kind of exhibition: The Temporary Institute of Emancipated Objects examines the trend toward ready-mades that incorporate objects from everyday life, featuring artists Brett Windham, Barry Anderson, Humberto Duque and Whitney Lynn, a spread-out quartet from New York City, Kansas City, Mexico City and San Francisco, respectively.

“The concept of the ready-made has never really died since Duchamp invented it,” Stell says, adding that she’s seen more than a little of such work in her recent travels to Europe. “The idea that all objects are art objects challenges the relationship of art to common everyday items. To that end, she’ll present works that incorporate “oven mitts, balloons, doll furniture, bricks, an igloo made of ice from a snow-cone machine, advertising images” and other ordinary objects, generating an experience that will not only prove interesting to the public, but will also be educational for RMCAD students bent on finding their way in the contemporary art world.

The show opens at the gallery, 1600 Pierce Street on RMCAD’s Lakewood campus, with a reception tonight from 5 to 8 p.m.; a panel discussion — “Beg, Borrow and Steal: Four Contemporary Views on Failure” — with all four artists, will also take place tonight at 6:30 p.m. in the Mary Harris Auditorium. The lecture is free, but to make reservations, which are recommended, go to The Temporary Institute continues through February 7, along with a pair of solo shows by Zach Reini and Gretchen Marie Schaefer in the Alumni and Rude galleries. Call 303-753-6046.
Mondays-Saturdays. Starts: Jan. 10. Continues through Feb. 7, 2013

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Susan Froyd started writing for Westword as the "Thrills" editor in 1992 and never quite left the fold. These days she still freelances for the paper in addition to walking her dogs, enjoying cheap ethnic food and reading voraciously. Sometimes she writes poetry.
Contact: Susan Froyd