The Stuff of Life

Art is a big element in the Biennial of the Americas, but many of our local artists felt left out as the event began to take shape. So when Lauri Lynnxe Murphy, one of the area’s toughest artist activists, was offered a chance to curate a showcase that reveled in the diversity and talent the region’s art community has to offer, she fiercely took on the challenge. The sprawling result, Objectophilia, a show featuring 45 artists (about 70 percent of them from these parts) displayed in a huge 20,000 square feet of gallery space, not only promises to be totally fascinating, but is also guaranteed to kick ass. Held together by the overlying theme of our relationship with objects and, in turn, those objects’ relationships to their environment, this is a show that will get under your skin.

“We’re obsessed with stuff in this culture,” says Murphy, who describes ‘Objectophilia’ as “a love of objects so intense that individuals form relationships with inanimate things.” There’s a little bit of that in all of us; in this show, you’ll confront it face-on. Even Murphy herself, who has her own relationship with hoarding, curated the show like a collector would. “For me, curating is like telling a story,” she explains. “I tell different parts of that story through different artists: Some works are about hoarding, some are about found objects, some are about consumerism. Everyone got a different piece of the puzzle.”

Objectophilia opens tonight with a reception from 7 to 10 p.m. at 1490 Delgany Street; entertainment will include dance by Kim Olsen and Sweet Edge, music by the Perry Weissman 3, and a performance by the Motoman Project. The exhibition continues at the temporary space through July 25; additional works are on display at 1900 16th Street. For a complete schedule of Objectophilia-related events and parties throughout July, visit
Wed., June 30, 7-10 p.m.; Thursdays, Saturdays, Sundays, 10 a.m.-6 p.m.; Fridays, 10 a.m.-10 p.m. Starts: June 30. Continues through July 25, 2010

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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