Meet Jay and Jerry Jaramillo, Two of the Street-Smart Artists of Artopia 2017

Jerry and Jay Michael Jaramillo.
Jerry and Jay Michael Jaramillo. courtesy Jaramillo
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.

Among the artists representing Santa Fe are Jay and Jerry Jaramillo, a pair who show that talent can run in a family.
click to enlarge "Águila (Eagle)," by Jerry Jaramillo. - JERRYJARAMILLO.NET
"Águila (Eagle)," by Jerry Jaramillo.
Jerry Jaramillo — fine artist, muralist, sculptor and jeweler — is a true renaissance man who embodies the spirit of artists before him with a futurist vision and a message of peace, love and unity. Born and raised in Brighton, he went from Brighton High School to the University of Colorado Boulder, where he majored in fine arts. Over his forty-year career, Jerry has painted dozens of large-scale murals in Denver; his works have been shown not just in Colorado, but in New Mexico, Arizona and Washington, as well. He's even gone international, as a master muralist in Zihuatenejo, Mexico.
click to enlarge "Denver Skyline 2015," by Jay Michael Jaramillo - JAY MICHAEL JARAMILLO'S FACEBOOK PAGE
"Denver Skyline 2015," by Jay Michael Jaramillo
Jay Michael Jaramillo's Facebook page
Jay Michael Jaramillo is a multimedia, visual and performing artist born in Denver in 1990. From the start, Jerry Jaramillo encouraged his son to explore his creativity and express himself freely. Jerry taught Jay a myriad of techniques and forms of expression: painting, muralism, sculpture, jewelry, singing, acting and being a craftsman in a technological age. Jay received more formal knowledge at Metropolitan State University; he graduated in 2014 with a bachelor of arts degree and a minor in business. Jay is currently a graduate student at the University of Colorado Denver, where he is earning a master’s degree in public administration. He considers himself an "artrepreneur," and would like to become a coordinator/director of public art, assisting artists in creating more public art and beautifying communities across Colorado.

You can find him on and Instagram/Twitter/SnapChat: @JayMichaelJ. To see more of Jerry Jaramillo's work, go to
click to enlarge "Wild Stallion," by Jay Michael Jaramillo - JAY MICHAEL JARAMILLO FACEBOOK PAGE
"Wild Stallion," by Jay Michael Jaramillo
Jay Michael Jaramillo Facebook page
Along with Jay and Jerry Jaramillo, curator Jolt of Guerilla Garden has tapped Ava Van Deursen, Mai Wyn Fine Art, Core New Art Space, Denver Art Society Cooperative, Alpine Fine Art and CHAC Gallery & Cultural Center to represent Santa Fe. You'll find their work in the City Hall South Building, which will also host Artopia's early admission party, where you can also enjoy a performance by Grupo Huitzilopochtli Danza Azteca.

courtesy Grupo Huitzilopochtli Danza Azteca
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 Early entry general admission tickets are $30; general admission tickets are $25. But use your street smarts to get the best deal of all: $100 VIP tickets snag you guaranteed seating by the fashion runway, a reception featuring food from Troy Guard's restaurants and an open bar, a goodie bag and all the art you can handle.

And get your tickets now: Prices increase at 10 a.m. on Tuesday, January 17.

See you February 25 at Artopia 2017.
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