^
Keep Westword Free
4

The Denver County Fair Arts Pavilion: All Colorado, all the time! Here's what you'll see

What can you expect in the Denver County's Fair's landmark Arts Pavilion? Not even pavilion manager (and official fair poster artist) Mark Penner-Howell knows for certain at this juncture, at least as far as the big juried show is concerned, but there are at least 400 entries to pick through when they start coming in tomorrow afternoon. That means there's going to be something for everyone -- from cowboy art to modern assemblage -- going up on the 700 linear feet of wall space allotted. A better picture of Colorado's diverse art milieu couldn't be found anywhere.

"We'll have lots of mixed media and assemblage, and more than 100 paintings and 100 photos," Penner-Howell says of the show. "We do have one video artist, but there's no crazy performance or big installation art; it's mostly stuff that sits on a wall. We'll try to find a way for all the stuff to coexist in a semi-rational way, but it's going to be wacky and, hopefully, a good representation of what's out there." And the individual competition ring, where ribbons will be handed out throughout the fair in sixteen media categories, will be a real proving ground, he adds: "Some of the judges are curators from the Denver Art Museum {other members of the arts community, including photographer Mark Sink and CVA director Jennifer Garner, are also involved in the judging}. How often does someone from the Denver Art Museum walk into your little Santa Fe Drive gallery? They are almost forced to look at your work, here."

In his mind, the Arts Pavilion is just one cog in a brilliant machine. And a lot of people, artists included, are waiting to see what happens this year before jumping in for the next one. But Penner-Howell is totally in tune with the fair's vision for creating something different that people haven't seen before. "I think it's all shaping up to be a really successful thing," he predicts. "Some groups are going completely out of their way to create an impression, and it's going to be lots of fun -- even the people who come to the fair will be participating in the making and the cultural identity of the thing. Everybody will be contributing to it. The whole city is coming together to create this. This is a scene we're all making up together."

I Support
  • Local
  • Community
  • Journalism
  • logo

Support the independent voice of Denver and help keep the future of Westword free.

Also in the Arts Pavilion, you'll find artist displays and booths with art for sale; visit the Denver County Fair July 28 through 31 at the National Western Complex. Go to the website for a complete schedule of events and competitions.

Follow us on Twitter!

Like us on Facebook!

Keep Westword Free... Since we started Westword, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Denver, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Denver with no paywalls.

We use cookies to collect and analyze information on site performance and usage, and to enhance and customize content and advertisements. By clicking 'X' or continuing to use the site, you agree to allow cookies to be placed. To find out more, visit our cookies policy and our privacy policy.

 

Join the Westword community and help support independent local journalism in Denver.

 

Join the Westword community and help support independent local journalism in Denver.