"I always had a good time at Artopia," says Silas Ulibarri, aka Jolt, the founder of Guerilla Garden. He's talking about Westword's annual celebration of the arts, which has evolved a lot over the past two decades but remains one of the best annual parties in town. And this year's Artopia, set for Saturday, February 21, at City Hall, 1144 Broadway, should be bigger and better than ever.
Whiteout, our annual fashion show, will be part of the 2015 Artopia, where it will fill the main stage with the creations of seven local designers and boutiques, all playing off an Alice in Wonderland theme. But there will still be plenty of room for lots of live music and art displays -- and this year, the art exhibits are curated by none other than Jolt himself. "I'm basically trying to do a Guerilla Garden party," he says.
That party will feature more than two dozen artists and organizations, including Sarah Shavel, Soldier Ink Design, Baily Rose, Jaime Molina, Bindle Punk and the Institute of Sociometry. Some of the artists will be creating work on site; others will be on hand to talk about their pieces -- and Jolt will also have a few surprises in store, as befits the man whose logo is a guerrilla gorilla.
This year's Artopia will also include a celebration of the tenth annual MasterMind Awards. Over the past decade, we've awarded fifty artists and arts organizations (including Jolt) no-strings-attached grants as thanks for the contributions they've made to the local scene. Who will be this year's award winners? Come to Artopia, where you'll meet them along with past winners.
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For more on MasterMinds, Artopia and the Denver arts scene in general, pick up the next issue of Westword, which will include our annual Winter Arts Guide. And in the meantime, watch for more announcements on the Arts & Culture blog (yes, formerly known as Show and Tell) at westword.com.