Displaced: A Diversity of Conceptual Works at Ice Cube Gallery

Posted: 02/25/2011 01:00:00 AM MST

( image: Rebecca Vaughan and Peter Illig )

Katie Caron, one of the area’s top clay artists, also happens to be a talented curator.

That becomes clear after seeing “Displaced,” a brainy, sophisticated group exhibition that runs through Saturday at Ice Cube Gallery — one of Denver’s most handsome art spaces.

Caron chose 11 artists from this region and elsewhere, including some of her fellow students at the prestigious Cranbrook Academy of Art in Bloomfield Hills, Mich., where she earned her master of fine arts degree in 2009.

In a statement accompanying the show, Caron writes that these artists “reveal the residue — often hidden in plain sight — that results from our culture’s constant creation and consumption.”

The theme’s exact meaning, though, seems less important than the opportunity to see this edgy, conceptually driven body of work by diverse artists who all seem in tune with the latest currents.

Among the highlights is an installation exploring domestic interiors by Max Blankstein of Detroit. It includes “Cast and Recast. Cast Off, Cast Out,” a funky re-creation of a radiator molded in red fleece-covered plaster.

In “White Reef,” a fragile, retiring piece tucked into a dark corner and gently lit from below, Tiernan Alexander of Philadelphia uses recycled knitted fabric dipped in porcelain to evoke the textured topography of a coral reef.

Nikki Pike of Denver has built a sound installation that is meant to be a kind of pipe organ. The piece, titled “Ice Bellows,” makes use of the captured sounds of ice melting to create an aural experience.

In addition to exhibitions in museums and commercial galleries, Denver needs adventuresome, independent offerings like this one, which give the art scene greater depth and dimension.

This ambitious show, organized on an almost non-existent budget, is a coup for Caron and this still-emerging cooperative gallery.

to read the whole article and more arts features go to http://www.denverpost.com/art/ci_17465502

PAST EXHIBITS: Karen Roehl, Michael Gadlin

July 22 – August 13

KAREN ROEHL, “Hue Awakenings”


MICHAEL GADLIN, “Perfervid Lines”

Opening Reception: Friday, July 22, 6 – 10 pm

Second Saturday, August 13, noon – 7 pm

Gallery Hours: Friday noon – 9 pm, Saturday noon – 5 pm


This is a new series of paintings through which Roehl attempts to acquaint herself with other parts of the color wheel.  Inspired by the Abstract Expressionists, Roehl’s work attempts to gain access to the inner workings of self as an individual, and on a larger scale, as a sentient being and member of larger communities, both local and global. Roehl’s intention is to learn another language, one that speaks outside of the intellect, and to recreate an experience of self-discovery through mark-making. Roehl explores the things that make us each unique, as well as those things we hold in common, and to somehow render with paint, and other mark-making devices, where and what the boundaries are.

CURRENT EXHIBITS: Ajean Lee Ryan, Gary Parkins

August 19 – September 10

Ajean Lee Ryan and Gary Parkins

Opening Reception: Friday, August 19, 6 – 10 pm

Second Saturday, September 10, noon – 7 pm

Gallery Hours: Friday noon – 9 pm, Saturday noon – 5 pm

Admonish the Tender-Hearted:  New Work by Ajean Lee Ryan

Ajean Lee Ryan, visual artist and Assistant Professor of Drawing at Colorado State University, will present a series of new large-scale drawings at the Ice Cube Gallery at the Dry Ice Factory in the Rino District of Denver.  The opening reception will be held Friday, August 19 from 6:00-9:00 pm.  The exhibition will be open to the public from Aug 19-Sept 10.  Gallery hours are Friday from 12:00-9:00 pm and Saturday from 12:00-5:00 pm.  Monday through Friday by appointment only.  The exhibition is free and open to the public.

Ryan’s recent work investigates the gothic and poetic worlds depicted in traditional fairytales and folklore.  Using pastel and ink on a large scale, Ryan creates intensely layered drawings re-creating abstracted landscapes and stories that she is currently reading to her own child.  The mythological, pastoral and the hauntingly poetic narrative of children’s literature has heavily influenced her recent body of work.

Ajean Lee Ryan received her B.A. in Fine Arts with a concentration in Painting from U.C.L.A. where she studied with professors such as Lari Pittman and Charles Ray.  In 2000, she obtained her M.F.A. in Drawing at U.C. Berkeley.  She has exhibited both nationally and internationally.  In January, she participated in an internationally juried exhibition of nine artists at the AIR Gallery in New York and was selected as a participant in the Drawing Discourse Biennial at the University of North Carolina, Asheville.  Last year, Ajean Ryan won “Best of Show” in the exhibition titled “Materialization” at the Deborah Martin Gallery in Los Angeles, California.

Ajean Lee Ryan has been the recipient of numerous awards and grants including most recently the Colorado State University Summer Fellowship Award.  She is an Assistant Professor of Drawing at Colorado State University and currently lives and works in Fort Collins, Colorado.


The latest shows at Ice Cube Gallery are a delight

Although it has only been a going concern for a few months, the upstart Ice Cube Gallery (3320 Walnut Street, 303-292-1822, www.icecubegallery.com) has surely become one of the most impressive exhibition spaces in town. It’s not just how beautiful and spacious the facility is; it’s also the high quality of the work displayed there.

By Michael Paglia.

“As usual, there are two solos on view, supplemented by a group show dedicated to the work of Ice Cube‘s members. The main gallery has been divided into two separate spaces. Ahead and to the right is Personal Landscapes: Textile Installations byRegina V. Benson, while Resolution: Paintings by Patrick Loehr is off to the left.

Benson, who lives in Golden, has been making textile art for nearly thirty years, but it’s only been in the last five that she started exhibiting it. Her complicated process involves dying, staining, rusting, embossing and sewing. The results are abstractions in the form of wall reliefs and suspended installations, like the compelling “Amber Grove” (pictured). Benson is a native of Lithuania, and the reference to amber conveys not only the color of the piece — and of everything else in the show — but also her homeland, where amber artifacts are so highly prized that there’s a major museum dedicated to them.

Loehr, of Denver, is represented by two distinct bodies of work. The older pieces, done last year, are from his “Exquisite Corpse” series and refer back to a drawing game invented by the surrealists. A piece of paper is folded into three parts, and three artists create unrelated drawings that are brought together as one when the paper is unfolded. Loehr scanned the drawings and sent them to an Internet-based company that produces “authentic oil paintings on demand.” The results are very creepy.”