Influence Someone

Art is nice to look at — to hang on walls, set on tables, display for friends and family to admire. But that’s not all that art — or the individuals who create it — is good for, of course. “I think it’s important for people to realize that artists do have a voice,” says Golden-based artist Regina Benson. “And it’s not just that they’re trying to beat you over the head with their interpretation of the world. What they want, like all art, is a conversation.”

The American Print 2009 — Influence Someone: Politics in Print exhibition, which runs through March 22 at the Foothills Art Center, features 73 juried works by 43 artists from 17 states. Each piece attempts to engage viewers in a dialogue about the economy, the environment, war, presidential politics and other inescapable American truths. Curtis William Readel’s “Excessive,” for example, is a reimagining of George Washington on the one-dollar bill — only with fat cheeks and three chins. Benson’s “Line in the Sand” shows a series of footprints and boot prints separated by a concepts from the Geneva Protocol: “Laws of War,” “Rules of Engagement” and “Principle of Proportionality.”

“The line in the sand is that point you can’t cross without causing a serious conflict,” she explains. “We bigger countries, we sort of bulldoze our way through indigenous populations. Through our might, we determine what that line in the sand will be. The whole concept to me is bizarre: to make civilized the most uncivilized kind of thing…to make the unthinkable somehow polite.”

Get in on the conversation today at 11 a.m., when Benson and other exhibition artists present a gallery talk. Admission to Foothills, 809 15th Street in Golden, is $5 and $3 for seniors; find more information at or by calling 303-279-3922.
Sat., March 14, 11 a.m., 2009

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Drew Bixby