Get ready for the arty party of the year: Artopia 2017, Westword's annual celebration of art, culture and fashion, will return on Saturday, February 25. And this round, we're bringing style off the streets and into City Hall, where we'll commemorate four of Denver's most iconic strips — Larimer, Santa Fe, Federal and Colfax — as well as the city's best street artists.
Helping to represent Federal: Bobby LeFebre, who was born and raised on Denver’s Northside — where he continues to live, work and create.
LeFebre is a multidisciplinary creative who has been creating, writing, performing and administering art and culture for local, national and international communities and audiences for over fifteen years. "Primarily an artist of the written and spoken word, Bobby utilizes writing, performance, art and community engagement as agents of provocation to create social dialogue, critique and change," according to his artist's statement. "He always seeks to explore, celebrate and critique the human condition by juggling justified indignation, academic insight, cultural celebration, and barrio analysis. Bobby believes art, culture, and words are indestructible bridges connecting us across the social, political, cultural and psychological boarders we impose upon one another."
And what will LeFebre be doing at Artopia? A Denver native, he has recently dedicated part of his creative pursuits to addressing the conflict of this changing city through playwriting, public performance, filmmaking and community engagement. LeFebre will bring these themes to life at Artopia through art installations, a screening of an episode of his forthcoming web series produced with Alan Dominguez and Manuel Aragon, Welcome to the Northside, and more.
LeFebre isn't the only artist you'll find in the Federal Room. Curator Jolt of Guerilla Garden has also tapped "Lowlife Assimilation" Amanda Patterson Jimenez + Cholo, Saints and Sinners C.C. Colorado,
Wiser, Anthony Garcia Sr., Manuel Medina, Kyle Bryant and Robert Rodriguez.
To represent Santa Fe Drive, Jolt has tapped Jay and Jerry Jaramillo, Ava Van Deursen, Mai Wyn Fine Art, Core New Art Space, Denver Art Society Cooperative, Alpine Fine Art and CHAC Gallery & Cultural Center. You'll find their work in the City Hall South Building, which will also host Artopia's early admission party, where you can enjoy a performance by Grupo Huitzilopochtli Danza Azteca.
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Another space in City Hall will capture the style of Larimer Street with work by Pat Milbery, Casey Kawaguchi, Scot LeFavor, Chris Haven, Patrick Kane McGregor, Jeromie Lawrence Dorrance, Pher01, Mpek36, Tuke, and Dunn the Signtologist.
And in the Colfax/Cue Room, you'll find photos by Billy "Ghost Lenz" Riesing, along with work by 303 Boards; Thick as Thieves Tattoo with Ryan Yates, Elizabeth Rybecky, Kevin Miller, Mike Pinto, Samantha Kuhn and Jymi Shores; Chris Bailey with his North American Skateboard Express; and Save the Signs with Corky Scholl, Brendan Lenahan, Mark Stein, Bill Guerriero and Joshua Hicks.
Nine of Denver's top designers will also show their street smarts in the Whiteout fashion show, always an Artopia highlight. And, of course, there will be cocktails, music and plenty of merriment.
Tickets are now on sale at westwordartopia.com. Buy yours today — and see you February 25 at Artopia 2017!