Shock and AWE

Photographer Stephanie Auld formed the AWE Collective, a 1,400-square-foot gallery and studio space at the far southern end of the Art District on Santa Fe, out of her desire to “see less traditional and more local art” along the thriving gallery row. And tonight, the collective (which officially opened in December) will host an opening that Auld feels is pretty special. Among the ten unknowns exhibiting, there will be at least one edgy artist with a local rep: Street artist Frank Kwiatkowski, who carves block prints on orange traffic cones and is something of a mythical figure in the indie scene, will be making live art at the reception. But while Kwiatkowski might be her ace in the hole, Auld is more than enthusiastic about the rest of the artists involved.

“This is going to be one of best shows we’ve had yet,” she says. “We have a great group of artists this month, all showing for the first time. We have everything from photography to graffiti to street art to mixed media, and all of it is extremely affordable. That is part of my purpose: to show lesser-known underground local artists who provide art at really reasonable prices.” Many of them, she adds, are “living-room people, who just do art for fun and may not have ever had the experience of showing in a gallery, because they feel intimidated or they don’t feel their stuff would fit in at a Santa Fe Drive gallery.”

The show opens tonight with a reception from 7 p.m. to midnight, or see it by appointment through the end of April. For details, call 720-340-1293 or go to www.awecollective.com.
April 1-30, 2011

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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