Last-minute 2017 art exhibits and events take on hot issues and offer year-end variety, while others celebrate diversity or the longevity of local co-ops. Take in some art before the year is over at these shows and more.
Across the Ocean, Over the Wall
PlatteForum, 2400 Curtis Street
December 14 through January 27
Thursday, December 14, 6 to 8 p.m.
Artist Sarah Fukami, who references her own family’s background as Japanese immigrants in her work, invited ArtLab high school interns to universalize the concept during her eight-week PlatteForum residency, culminating in the multimedia installation Across the Ocean, Over the Wall. Presented in partnership with Our Immigrant Stories, a larger project spearheaded by Denver’s Agency on Human Rights and Community Partnerships and the Denver Film Society, Across the Ocean opens December 14, so join the fold! You’ll miss out on the collaborative multicultural installation’s interactive component if you skip the opening: an invitation to fold paper koi and cranes honoring personal immigrant family members at origami folding stations.
Visions West Contemporary, 2605 Walnut Street
December 14 through January 13
Opening Reception: Thursday, December 14, 6 to 8 p.m.
Seven Denver artists dive into the Yellowstone caldera with unexpected results, imagining the before-and-after West of legend and the way it might all end: in the eye of geothermal disaster. Taryn Boals, Travis Walker, Scotty Craighead, Katy Ann Fox, Thomas Maker, Mike Piggot and Ben Roth bring different views of the West to gallery walls.
2017 Pirate Group Show
Pirate: Contemporary Art
7130 West 16th Avenue, Lakewood
December 15 through 31
Opening Reception: Friday, December 15, 6 to 10 p.m.
Pirate: Contemporary Art marks another milestone since joining the gallery diaspora from Denver to Lakewood: its first true member show at the new location. The 2017 Pirate Group Show, the gallery’s 38th, settles in nicely while looking forward to 2018, throwing up work by current members and associates on newly painted walls. Get a real feel for Pirate’s anything-goes sensibility.
Winter Group Show Artists' Reception & Holiday Party
Mai Wyn Fine Art, 744 Santa Fe Drive
Through January 22
Holiday Party/Reception: Friday, December 15, 5 to 9 p.m.
Mai Wyn’s winter group show focuses on small, affordable and wonderfully diverse work, just in time for last-minute holiday shopping — or personal collecting, if you’re looking to spruce up your own walls with something new. Plus, it’s a party, for heaven’s sake! Eat, drink, be merry, and buy art.
Alto Gallery, 4345 West 41st Avenue
December 16 through January 27
Opening Reception: Saturday, December 16, 6 to 10 p.m.
Artist Steve Legg usually goes by s. legg, and that suits him. A conceptual thinker with a determined work ethic, he’s all about ideas, executed in infallibly inscrutable ways. For Animals, Legg forays into the human world’s not-so-pretty relationship to nature, using jagged manmade materials and a painful sense of irony. But once he’s dragged you through all that pain, you can feel good knowing that 50 percent of all sales will benefit MaxFund Animal Shelter.
Drew Austin, Sculptural Space: Live Art Demo
Denver Art Museum, 100 West 14th Avenue Parkway
Saturday, December 16, noon to 3 p.m.
Sunday, December 17, noon to 3 p.m.
Young Denver artist Drew Austin, a recent RMCAD graduate now working out of a studio at the Temple in RiNo, moves quickly: This weekend, he’ll be working live at the Denver Art Museum, giving an installation demo blending mural painting and sculptural techniques. See an artist in action and get into his creative process; the event is free with regular museum admission.
See Westword’s calendar listings for more art events and openings.