Art Review

Artbeat

Elizabeth Schlosser Fine Art in Cherry Creek is presenting The Estate of Ethel Magafan, an exhibit of fourteen pieces from the late artist.

Magafan was born and educated in Colorado, but she spent most of her career in the art colony at Woodstock, New York. In the 1930s, Magafan and her twin sister, Jenne, were the wunderkinder of the local art scene. Raised in Denver, they attended the long-closed Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center School, which was the successor to the famous Broadmoor Academy. While there, the twins studied with Frank Mechau and Boardman Robinson. Ethel later earned a sought-after New Deal commission to paint a Post Office mural, which still looks good on the wall of the South Denver Post Office at 225 South Broadway.

Magafan's oldest pieces at Schlosser fall into the regionalist representational style of her teachers, but the more recent works, like the 1960s "Up to the Mountains" (above) are more abstract, though still clearly representational. Gallery owner Elizabeth Schlosser points out that these paintings are the last pieces available from the estate, "and when they're gone, that's it."

The show continues through January 27 at the Schlosser gallery (311 Detroit Street, 303-321-4786).

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Michael Paglia is an art historian and writer whose columns have appeared in Westword since 1995; his essays on the visual arts have also been published in national periodicals including Art News, Architecture, Art Ltd., Modernism, Art & Auction and Sculpture Magazine. He taught art history at the University of Colorado Denver.
Contact: Michael Paglia