Art Review

Timmy Flynn's Hardware Store

There are a bunch of shows at Edge Gallery (3658 Navajo Street, 303-477-7173, that link up with one another pretty well. The buzz, however, has zeroed in on the most ambitious of the group: Timmy Flynn's Hardware Store, which occupies the front gallery. The show, Flynn's homage to a hardware store, was inspired by an old family snapshot of himself as kid playing clerk at a hardware store.

As you enter Edge, you come to the fairly realistic checkout counter complete with an old chrome cash register — and this is no Home Depot, but one of those small storefront operations that used to be everywhere. To stock the shelves, Flynn invited other artists including Gayla Lemke, John Davenport, Phil Bender and Sandy Toland, to bring in their own hardware-themed pieces. It's a neat effect, but there is one thing missing that would have heightened the realism: the overpowering smell of grass seed that would hit your face even before the bell on the shop's front door stopped ringing.

In the middle space are two solos, Ashley Hope Carlisle and David Jones. Carlisle creates abstract sculptures in metal and other materials that have organically derived forms reminiscent of plants. Jones, on the other hand, is interested in the industrial landscape that he renders in both two- and three-dimensional versions. I thought his pieces were extremely thoughtful, in particular "Finite" (pictured), a two-part installation made up of a scale model of an oil well and storage tanks.

In the Associate Gallery is Fragile Moments, featuring the work of Hans Wolfe. These pieces are ordinary things like a wire coat hanger or a small hand rake executed in torch-worked Borosilicate glass. They're really cool, and the perfect ending for the group of attractions at Edge because Wolfe's exhibit could have been part of Flynn's hardware extravaganza up front, thus bringing viewers full circle.

Everybody's talking about Flynn's show, but the other exhibits are also good. Check them out before they all close on July 13.

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Michael Paglia is an art historian and writer whose columns have appeared in Westword since 1995; his essays on the visual arts have also been published in national periodicals including Art News, Architecture, Art Ltd., Modernism, Art & Auction and Sculpture Magazine. He taught art history at the University of Colorado Denver.
Contact: Michael Paglia