Cubic Feed

Colorado native Montgomery Knott began the first incarnation of Monkey Town more than ten years ago in a Williamsburg loft in Brooklyn, but his dream to take the immersive film-and-food experience on the road will bring him back to Denver for a three-month stand that he says is a testing ground for the tour to follow. And he thinks Denverites are more than ready to be his guinea pigs, considering the cultural and gastronomic dividends: a curated program of video art by eighteen local and national artists projected on the dining cube’s four massive walls, with a changing slate of pop-up performers and a meal of several courses created by chefs from the Populist, City, O’ City/WaterCourse and Noble Swine Supper Club to complete the experience. “This is one of the most unique dining experiences you’ll ever have,” Knott promises — and the numbers don’t lie: “It sounds like hyperbole, but by the time our last run was almost over, we sold out every night.”

And that has a lot to do with the Monkey Town mixture of accessible highbrow eye candy and an edible pleasure zone of food and drink. “Most of the art I’ve selected is not necessarily challenging art, even though it’s all very sophisticated,” Knott notes, adding that this is a far more enjoyable way to see video art than as a distant spectator in a museum or gallery. Only 32 diners will be seated around the perimeter of the cube for each performance, making for another kind of theater: “There’s a real intimacy to being in that environment, where everyone is looking at each other looking at the screen,” he explains.

Monkey Town 4 kicks off tonight at the Exdo Hall, 3545 Larimer Street, and runs nightly except Mondays through June 1, with two seatings each night; the all-inclusive admission price for the program with a five-course meal is $80, including a gratuity, and there’s a $50 three-course option on Tuesdays only. Go to monkeytown4.com for reservations and information.
Tuesdays-Sundays, 6 & 8:30 p.m. Starts: Feb. 27. Continues through June 1, 2014

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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