Art Review

Neo-Modernists Go for That Waxy Buildup in Works on View at Space

Michael Burnett, director of Space Gallery, has a taste for neo-modernism -- that post-postmodern style that's been coming on strong for the last decade. You can see it in his neo-modernist building, which opened this past summer (and which, by the way, has become the place to have your cannabis-friendly same-sex wedding).

See also: The new Space Gallery went from prefab to fabulous

And you can see it in the artists in his stable -- like the group of ten that make up Natural Surroundings, all of whom are creating contemporary versions of modernist abstraction. Some are riffing on abstract expressionism, others on minimalism; still others are doing work that lies somewhere in between.

Each artist is given his or her own section, and their work is shown in some depth. Most of them use encaustic, a medium in which pigments are blended with wax, resulting in translucent colors often applied in extremely thick layers.

Many of the artists work in Colorado, but others come from across the country. Participants include Patricia Aaron, Haze Diedrich, Jane Guthridge, Howard Hersh, Jeff Juhlin, Stephen Shachtman, Bill Snider, Betsy Stewart, Laura Wait and John Wood.

Through September 20 at Space Gallery, 400 Santa Fe Drive, 720-904-1088,

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Michael Paglia is an art historian and writer whose columns have appeared in Westword since 1995; his essays on the visual arts have also been published in national periodicals including Art News, Architecture, Art Ltd., Modernism, Art & Auction and Sculpture Magazine. He taught art history at the University of Colorado Denver.
Contact: Michael Paglia