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Shelley Reed, “Kestrel,” oil paint.
Shelley Reed, “Kestrel,” oil paint.
Shelley Reed, Visions West Contemporary

Ten Things for Art Lovers to Do Over Memorial Day Weekend in Denver

Hey, it’s a long weekend: Take in some art, spruce up your patio garden, turn on your thinking machine for some performance art, or nosh your way through an arts district. These ten art openings and events are sure to make your Memorial Day break memorable.

Ten Things for Art Lovers to Do Over Memorial Day Weekend in DenverEXPAND
Visions West Contemporary

Birdwatcher
Visions West Contemporary, 2605 Walnut Street
May 22 through July 6
Reception: Friday, May 31, 6 to 8 p.m.

Birdwatcher is, indeed, for the birds — and the people who love them: This group show is all about the avian persuasion, rendered across a gamut of mediums, including drawings, paintings, ceramic works, fiber assemblages and sculpture with digital video enhancements. Get a preview this weekend or wait for the May 31 reception.

Digital Embodiment gives visual context to living with disabilities at Art Gym.EXPAND
Digital Embodiment gives visual context to living with disabilities at Art Gym.
Courtesy of Mary Grace Bernard

Digital Embodiment
Marilyn Rea Nasky, Sky Above
Kaira Delfosse, Moment of Clarity
Art Gym, 1460 Leyden Street
May 23 through June 14
Opening Reception: Thursday, June 23, 5 to 8 p.m.

Art Gym member and performance artist Mary Grace Bernard lives with, and is inspired in her thinking by, cystic fibrosis, a physical disability that drives her — and others in the same creative boat — to explore digital platforms of self-expression when the body can’t comply. Bernard curated Digital Embodiment, which is both a physical exhibition in Art Gym’s main gallery and an online archive of performative work by herself and others. The show lives a psychic life beyond gallery walls, because after all, breaking down walls is what shared experience is all about. Art Gym members Kaira Delfosse, a painter, and Marilyn Rea Nasky, a watercolorist, will be showing in the Common Space Gallery.

Catch a super-sampler of Space Gallery artists at the grand opening of the Space Annex.
Catch a super-sampler of Space Gallery artists at the grand opening of the Space Annex.
Space Annex

Momentum
Space Annex, 95 South Cherokee Street
May 23 through June 15
Opening Reception: Thursday, May 23, 5 to 10 p.m.

After a soft opening in April, Space Gallery’s new sibling in a former industrial building, Space Annex, is throwing a grand-opening group showcase of small works by dozens of artists represented by Space that doubles as an opportunity to view the building’s shiny remodel. Look for the mural designed by Frea Buckler that wraps itself around the structure, then drop in for a proper introduction.

Paul Keefe, "Sundial."EXPAND
Paul Keefe, "Sundial."
Paul Keefe

Paul Keefe, Take a Penny, Leave a Penny
Lane Meyer Projects, 2528 Walnut Street
May 24 through June 24
Opening Reception: Friday, May 24, 6 p.m.

Artist Paul Keefe takes his materials — from blocks of ice to staples — both seriously and lightly in Take a Penny, Leave a Penny, which comments on the fleeting importance of artwork that could fall apart or melt away in a matter of minutes. The tour de force? Perhaps that could be “Press Release,” a stack of 10,000 copies of said press release that forms its own precarious pedestal. Keefe displays a sense of humor — and of the beautiful ephemeral — in his here-today, gone-tomorrow style of art-making.

"Apples: Eating the Globe," an installation-in-progress by Tsehai Johnson at the Center for Visual Art.
"Apples: Eating the Globe," an installation-in-progress by Tsehai Johnson at the Center for Visual Art.
Tsehai Johnson

Biennial MSU Denver Art Department Exhibition
Center for Visual Art, 965 Santa Fe Drive
May 24 through July 20
Opening Reception: Friday, May 24, 6 to 8 p.m.
Free, RSVP in advance

Metropolitan State University of Denver’s Center for Visual Art pays tribute to MSU art faculty in a big collection of work by 31 artists, who give the world a peek into what they do when they’re not teaching students. During the reception, one faculty member, Tsehai Johnson, will lead a 7 p.m. workshop at which wannabe artists of all ages and skill levels will create ceramic apples that she’ll include in her own installation, Apples: Eating the Globe, with a repeat program at 7 p.m. during the Art District on Santa Fe's First Friday in June.

Lisa Kerns takes an abstracted view of the night sky at Pirate: Contemporary Art.EXPAND
Lisa Kerns takes an abstracted view of the night sky at Pirate: Contemporary Art.
Lisa Kerns

Lisa Kerns: New Works
Megan Bray and Eden Hall, Combustion/Harmony
Pirate: Contemporary Art, 7130 West 16th Avenue, Lakewood
May 24 through June 9
Opening Reception: Friday, May 24, 6 to 10 p.m.

Pirate member Lisa Kerns presents new work that abstracts the colors and mood of the night sky in the main gallery, while Megan Bray and Eden Hall exhibit soft sculptures, paintings and more in the associates' space. In the Treasure Chest: Venezuelan abstract painter Onecho.

Hey Hue drops by the Shop at Matter with living art in hypertufa planters by the Fancy Real.EXPAND
Hey Hue drops by the Shop at Matter with living art in hypertufa planters by the Fancy Real.
Bruce Price, the Fancy Real.

Hey Hue Art Pop-Up
Shop at Matter, 2134 Market Street
Saturday, May 25, noon to 5 p.m.

The Hey Hue art truck, an affordable-art gallery on wheels, will stop at Matter for a spectacular sale of garden-ready hypertufa succulent planters made from scratch by Denver artist Bruce Price, who sells the ecologically sound mini-gardens under the Fancy Real moniker. Put some art in your garden, and pray it’s done snowing in Denver for the season.

Visit the "Primordial Playground" with performance artist Jared David Paul Anderson.
Visit the "Primordial Playground" with performance artist Jared David Paul Anderson.
Courtesy of Leon Gallery

Empirical Imperatives Performance Art Series
Jared David Paul Anderson: The Primordial Playground
Leon Gallery, 1112 East 17th Avenue
Saturday, May 25, 7 to 10 p.m.

Leon’s Empirical Imperatives series continues over Memorial Day weekend with Jared David Paul Anderson’s The Primordial Playground, a movable feast of performance art that’s previously gone down in a cave and in an alley. In an actual gallery setting, Anderson will break art down into its most primal form of expression — but we can’t tell you how he’s going to do it. The beauty of performance art is that you never know what you’ll get until it’s screaming in your ear.

Human Cluster Project Art House Shuffle ACT II
1119 Corona Street
Sunday, May 26, 2 to 10 p.m.

This DIY house party mixes visual art, fashion, spoken word and live music in an interactive, be-here-now atmosphere. Find the full lineup on the Facebook event page.

Have a last look at Mai Wyn fine Art's Spring Group Show during the Art of Brunch in the Art District on Santa Fe.
Have a last look at Mai Wyn fine Art's Spring Group Show during the Art of Brunch in the Art District on Santa Fe.
Mai Wyn Fine Art

The Art of Brunch: May Edition
Art District on Santa Fe
Sunday, May 26, 2019, 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.

If you’re not slogging through the woods, catching a game of sporty ball or festing it up with thousands of people you’ve never met over Memorial Day weekend, how about brunch? Discover participating galleries and businesses in the Art District on Santa Fe’s last Art of Brunch Sunday of spring (it'll be back in the fall), with brunch bites at every stop among more than twenty participating locations. Yes, it’s free!

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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