Free For All

It seems like folks don't make as much of a fuss as they used to over World AIDS Day, observed annually on December 1. It's particularly true in the local art world, where "day without art" exhibits used to be more prominent. Is it just a phase provoked by the state of the world and the economy? That's anyone's call, but AIDS hasn't gone away, nor have the memories of the hundreds of artists who've been lost to virus.

But if you want to pay your respects, drive south to the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs, where the Campus Activities Board will host West Coast artist Jason Dilley's Project Face to Face. The weeklong show at the Gallery of Contemporary Art might induce some AIDS-related contemplation. The touring installation features plaster casts of some diverse faces of HIV-positive people, mounted on black wall panels and accompanied by taped personal stories. Dilley's project of several years is ongoing: He likes to add new faces and voices to the walls wherever it travels, notes gallery director Gerry Riggs. At UCCS, a gutsy student Riggs calls "Liz" will offer her face and story for public scrutiny.

Dilley will be on hand throughout the week, beginning with an opening reception from 6 to 8 p.m. Monday, December 2, at the gallery. Riggs says the show, which takes time to digest as viewers go from panel to panel listening to the tapes, will also include a videotape of a Dilley interview broadcast on Good Morning America. In addition, the artist will meet with students and give plaster-casting demonstrations on campus through December 7. UCCS is at 1420 Austin Bluffs Parkway, Colorado Springs. For gallery information, call 1-719-262-3567.

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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