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Michael Dowling's experiments with drawings on books go on display Saturday in the Project Space at K Contemporary.EXPAND
Michael Dowling's experiments with drawings on books go on display Saturday in the Project Space at K Contemporary.
Michael Dowling, K Contemporary

Ten Things for Art Lovers to Do on First Friday Weekend in Denver

Get your First Friday on in style in May: The pickings are sweet, with a full roster of exhibits spotlighting sculpture, street art and think pieces. Here are ten suggestions to send you on your way.

A length of fencing in Mackenzie Urban's installation “To all of my neighbors” at Georgia Art Space.EXPAND
A length of fencing in Mackenzie Urban's installation “To all of my neighbors” at Georgia Art Space.
Mackenzie Urban

Mackenzie Urban, To all of my neighbors
Georgia Art Space, 952 Mariposa Street
Open on Saturdays and Sundays, 1 to 5 p.m, May 4 through 26
Opening reception, Friday, May 3, 6 to 10 p.m.

Mackenzie Urban — a young artist/scientist studying an odd mix of molecular, cellular and developmental biology and sculpture at the University of Colorado Boulder — accessed her scientific views to build a bridge out of a fence for To all of my neighbors. Urban notes how humans are all genetically similar beings, yet they fence themselves off from their neighbors as a society. Another local scientist/artist, Megan Gafford, curated the show in Sommer Browning’s garage gallery, where performance artist Esther Hernandez will pitch in with an exquisite- corpse poem created with help from folks in Georgia Art Space’s neighborhood on opening night.

Urban artists Rumtum and Rather Severe team up for Escape to Nowhere at Dateline.EXPAND
Urban artists Rumtum and Rather Severe team up for Escape to Nowhere at Dateline.
Courtesy of Dateline Gallery

Escape to Nowhere: New Works by Rather Severe and Rumtum
Dateline, 3004 Larimer Street
May 3 through 31
Opening Reception: Friday, May 3, 6 to 11 p.m.

Urban artists John Hastings, aka Rumtum, and the team of Jon Stommel and Travis Czekalski, who go by the moniker of Rather Severe, are known for their large-scale street murals bursting with color. But Dateline reveals a more minimal side of the work by showing black-and-white ink drawings. Give them a look, and see what crawls out from between the lines.

Ten Things for Art Lovers to Do on First Friday Weekend in DenverEXPAND
JuiceBox Gallery

Domestic Abstraction
JuiceBox Gallery, 3006A Larimer Street
May 3 through June 8
Opening Reception: Friday, May 3, 6 p.m.

Next door to Dateline, JuiceBox greets spring with a group show by heavy hitters Joseph Coniff, Amber Cobb, Laine Godsey, Marsha Mack, Joshua Ware and Katie Wilker, who all observe the odd entwinement of artists’ everyday lives and exceptional work through the lens of abstract thinking.

Max Kauffman contributes works on paper to Alto Gallery's group show Places Inside of Places.
Max Kauffman contributes works on paper to Alto Gallery's group show Places Inside of Places.
Max Kauffman

Places Inside of Places
Alto Gallery, 4345 West 41st Avenue
May 3 through June 1
Opening Reception: Friday, May 3, 6 to 10 p.m.

Alto unveils a group show of work by Dylan Griffith, Max Kauffman, Douglas Spencer and Michael Strescino, who take off on different tangents to explore the world with an inner eye. Expect a barrage of sweet eye candy.

Sean O’Meallie, "Decor" (detail).
Sean O’Meallie, "Decor" (detail).
Sean O’Meallie

Piece of Work, a group sculptural show
The Modbo, 17C East Bijou Street, Colorado Springs
May 3 through May 31
Opening Reception: Friday, May 3, 5 p.m. to midnight

It’s always a treat when Sean O’Meallie shows his witty, satirical and brightly painted wood sculptures at the Modbo in Colorado Springs. For Piece of Work, he’ll be joined by fellow sculptors Larry Kledzik, Wendy Mike, Daniel Romano and Phil Vallejo. How about a First Friday road trip south?

Meet fiber artist Kim Mirus during her residency and exhibition at ReCreative Denver.EXPAND
Meet fiber artist Kim Mirus during her residency and exhibition at ReCreative Denver.
Courtesy of Kim Mirus

Kim Mirus, Arctic Threads
ReCreative Denver, 765 Santa Fe Drive
May 3 through 31
Opening Reception: Friday, May 3, 6 to 9 p.m.

For Arctic Threads, weaver Kim Mirus created tapestries translating hard data on the environmental effects of climate change after seeing evidence firsthand in the rapidly transforming arctic climes during a residency on Norway’s Svalbard archipelago. Some map the physical records of change, while another directly incorporates plastic refuse from Arctic shores, all with a chilling message. At the reception, gallery-goers can participate in
a hands-on block-print workshop and hear Mirus speak about the work; as an artist-in-residence at ReCreative, she’ll also be in-house for studio visits from 3 to 5:30 p.m. on May 8 and 22.

Julie Jablonski muses on a house fire for Ashes, Ashes at Pirate: Contemporary Art.EXPAND
Julie Jablonski muses on a house fire for Ashes, Ashes at Pirate: Contemporary Art.
Julie Jablonski

Julie Jablonski, Ashes, Ashes
Leah Fernandez in the Associate Space
Pirate: Contemporary Art, 7130 West 16th Avenue, Lakewood
May 3 to 19
Opening Reception: Friday, May 3, 6 to 10 p.m.

Member Julie Jablonski and associate member Leah Fernandez hold forth at Pirate in May, in the midst of 40 West’s district-wide First Friday hoopla.

Art by Ellie Rusinova of Mad Tatters.
Art by Ellie Rusinova of Mad Tatters.
Ellie Rusinova

Mad Tatters
Abstract, 742 Santa Fe Drive
May 3 through 31
Opening Reception: Friday, May 3, 7 to 11 p.m.
Grand Hello/Goodbye Reception: Friday, May 17

Ellie Rusinova and Brandan Styles, better known as Mad Tatters, will display a new body of their surreal, carnivalesque assemblages and other works at Abstract, but because they will be missing their own opening reception, the dark duo invites everyone to come back on May 17 for a second reception and T-shirt release party with special Mad Tatters funnel cakes dished out by crazy-food monger Andrew Novick.

Mario Zoots shows new collage works for his solo exhibition Gentle Distortion.EXPAND
Mario Zoots shows new collage works for his solo exhibition Gentle Distortion.
Mario Zoots, K Contemporary

Mario Zoots, Gentle Distortion
Michael Dowling in the Project Space
K Contemporary, 1412 Wazee Street
May 4 through June 1
Opening Reception: Saturday, May 4, 6 to 9 p.m.

Mario Zoots embarks on a solo at K Contemporary that breaks down his collage work element by element, asking what’s real about an artwork in an age where the line between originality and appropriation is blurred. “These are the times of alternative facts,” says Zoots in a statement. “We’re adapting to a more flexible view of reality, integrity, sincerity and truthfulness.” While you’re pondering the big questions, you’ll also see a lot of Zoots’s beautifully modern imagery.

Evan Cantor, "Libby Lake," oil paint.EXPAND
Evan Cantor, "Libby Lake," oil paint.
Evan Cantor

Evan Cantor, New Works
Seeds Library Cafe, Boulder Public Library, 1001 Arapahoe Ave, Boulder
May 4 through June 26

There’s nothing wrong with showing your work in a cafe, especially when it’s a cafe in a beautiful setting on an indoor bridge sidling up to Boulder Creek, serving farmers’ market fare. The works of Evan Cantor, who paints lovely oil landscapes, will look fine while you munch on locally sourced goodies.

Interested in having your event appear in this calendar? Send the details to editorial@westword.com. For more events this weekend, see our 21 Best Things to Do in Denver.

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