Behind the Mask

The pairing of clay artists Gayla Lemke and Marie EvB Gibbons goes back more than twenty years; friends and colleagues, they met at the old Off-Center co-op in Arvada and have since shown work side by side many times, in various settings. Now the two ceramic wizards will again get together at a co-op — Edge Gallery, in the Navajo Street Arts District — for Face2Face, a two-person show of clay masks both fanciful and spiritual, in contrasting yet complementary styles. Inspired by a roomful of masks they’d seen at a museum, Lemke and Gibbons decided to create a room of their own for Lemke’s annual slot as an Edge member.

“It’s called Face2Face because it metaphorically works, since a mask is like a face on your face, and also because Gayla and I will be face-to-face in a show again,” Gibbons notes. “We landed on that title because it explained us and the work in the show.” But there are definite differences to the two artists. Lemke is known for her beautifully carved, textural surfaces and fired stains; Gibbons always starts with a cast of her own face before imbuing her masks with narratives and sometimes macabre character. Placed in proximity to each other, the works are bound to make the space inside Edge, 3658 Navajo Street, look like a fantastic costume shop when Face2Face opens with a reception from 6 to 10 p.m. tonight. The show continues weekends through December 1; for more information, go to edgeart.org or call 303-477-7173.
Fri., Nov. 8, 6-10 p.m.; Fridays-Sundays. Starts: Nov. 8. Continues through Dec. 1, 2013