Gallery Sketches: Four New Shows in Denver for First Friday (and Beyond!) in June

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A party atmosphere will pervade tonight at Denver art openings in settings both traditional and refreshingly untraditional. Relax! It’s Friday! Here’s where to find the art in June.

(RE)VISIONS: New Works by Uchay Joel Chima
Art at the Cube, SugarCube Building 
Open on First Fridays in June, July and August, or by appointment
Opening reception: 6 to 9 p.m. Friday, June 5

Downtown Denver’s SugarCube Building is adding “gallery” to its mixed-use repertoire of apartments, restaurants and office spaces, beginning with (RE)VISIONS, a display of gritty mixed-media works by Nigerian artist Uchay Joel Chima. “Chima acknowledges a history of degradation in Nigeria and elsewhere, but refuses to allow that history to define the current reality,” says show curator Janine Sytsma. “Instead, he imbues his work with a sense of beauty, hope and promise.” The exhibition, which spreads throughout the building, opens with a true downtown experience: a First Friday reception that includes bites from Osteria Marco and tours of the artwork with the artist. The show will be open again on First Fridays in July and August, or by appointment.

The Slipcast Object Revisited
Plinth Gallery
June 5 through July 25
Opening reception: 5 to 10 p.m. Friday, June 5

Jonathan Kaplan’s Plinth, Denver’s premier ceramic-art gallery in RiNo, celebrates slipcast techniques in clay with an overview of sixty diverse works by 29 artists, curated by internationally known artist Heather Mae Erickson. See what’s current in the world of clay while enjoying local wines from Balistreri Vineyards, pierogies and other Polish eats by Baba & Pop's Kitchen and live music by Casey Cormier. Curator’s awards will be announced at 7 p.m.

Jet Martinez, Kabloom!
Black Book Gallery
June 6 through June 27
Opening reception: 6 to 10 p.m. Saturday, June 6

Black Book will fill its main gallery with gorgeous floral panels by Oakland-based Jet Martinez, who sources colorful motifs from the folk-art traditions of Veracruz, Mexico, where he was born. Martinez is also currently at work on a public mural version with gold accents on the retaining wall along Cherry Creek near Speer Boulevard and Colfax Avenue; meet him at the reception. Black Book will also feature artist David Cooley in the project room in June.

Art & Writing
Lighthouse Writers Workshop
June 5 through 19

In conjunction with its annual Lit Fest, Lighthouse Writers Workshop will once again open the doors of its home in Capitol Hill’s Millheim Mansion for a third room-by-room exhibition of work by local artists in literary and historical themes. The show officially opens this weekend, but curator Eric Matelski says the best times to visit are from 7:30 to 9 p.m. Mondays through Thursdays June 8-11 and June 15-18, when Lit Fest workshops and salon aren’t overflowing with people. Participating artists include Roy Anneberg, Valerie Savarie, Rene Farkass, Phil Bender and Leslie Aguillard.

Want more? See the Westword art event listings to learn more about current gallery and art museum exhibitions and openings in the metro area. 

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Join the Westword community and help support independent local journalism in Denver.


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