Arts and Culture

Rupert Jenkins assumes directorship at the New Colorado Photographic Arts Center

Seems like only yesterday that Working with Artists and the then-virtual Colorado Photographic Arts Center announced their impending merger, and indeed it was really only a few months ago. But no sooner did it begin to gather steam in its new guise as the New Colorado Photographic Arts Center when the announcement came, earlier this month, that executive director Linda Sheridan, the WWA side of the fresh organizational equation, had resigned and CPAC's Rupert Jenkins would be filling her seat.

Sheridan especially brought stronger programming initiatives to fruition at the center during her yearlong incumbency, something that will ironically really become evident in the coming year. But Jenkins's tenure promises a new and different eye in the gallery; his greatest strength is in curation, and strong exhibits promise to give the New CPAC a public face.

Following is a statement from Jenkins, as he continues forging a new path on the local photography scene.

Now seems an appropriate time to let you know what else is cooking at CPAC, but let me give you some background to my involvement with the organization first. I joined the "Old CPAC" as a Board member in 2009. At that time CPAC was an all-volunteer center-without-walls run by a working board. Linda and I met at Working with Artists for the first time almost exactly a year ago, when I was installing an exhibition of works from our Print Collection. By that time I was Chair of the CPAC Board. Our initial discussion included the possibility of CPAC and Working with Artists merging, something that had been proposed as long ago as 2007 and had remained on the table over the years. By late August, 2011, we had filed the papers to make that merger legal, and Linda and I proceeded to work together as co-directors of "the New CPAC."

The CPAC/WWA merger created a unique opportunity for us to develop a nationally-significant photo center serving the Denver-metro region, one that nurtures new talent, expands concepts, generates skills, and contributes fully to a sustainable market for collectors and artists. This was the vision shared by Linda and myself, and by our boards, and it continues to drive CPAC's programming today.

To that end, we have already made improvements to our gallery spaces and have expanded the scope of exhibitions. Beginning in January we'll be: -programming monthly portfolio reviews (free to members). -expanding our class curriculum under the old WWA banner. -making classes more affordable (look for a special discount offer early-December). -upgrading our darkroom facility for renters and students. -making our Print Collection accessible on-site for research and exhibitions.

As I mentioned, we are also writing a vision plan that will define our future services, direction, and location. Almost incredibly, 2013 will be our 50th anniversary year - a really significant milestone and one begging to be commemorated with a major initiative.

Picture perfect, Rupert.

And meanwhile, photographer Patti Hallock will speak at 7 p.m. Wednesday at the New CPAC as part of an ongoing Reading Robert Adams series in conjunction with the center's current group exhibition, Situating Robert Adams (on view through December 17). Admission is $3 to $5.

To keep up with the Froyd's-eye-view of arts and culture in Denver, "like" my fan page on Facebook.

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Susan Froyd started writing for Westword as the "Thrills" editor in 1992 and never quite left the fold. These days she still freelances for the paper in addition to walking her dogs, enjoying cheap ethnic food and reading voraciously. Sometimes she writes poetry.
Contact: Susan Froyd

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