Spring for some art
Three decades in, the annual spring Gallery Walk still draws nearly 1,000 people to downtown art shops. It's safe to say it's one of the biggest downtown arts events of the year (come back in September, when the fall version happens). There are 10 participating galleries. Here's a roundup of some things to expect at each place:
Open Shutter Gallery
There are 40 years of photographer Jonathan Blair's work on display. Blair's first photography assignment was in Yosemite National Park as the park's official photographer. From there, he has been taking photos of more than just beautiful places – other beautiful things like archaeology, circuses, space travel, shipwrecks and much more.
Durango Arts Center
Kids show their phenomenal talent at the center's Creativity Festivity. This is the 21st year for the exhibit, which showcases the work of local students. This year's them is “Origins,” which means: “Something from which anything arises or is derived. Source, root, beginning, headwater, inception, germination, origination, lineage, ancestry, birth, creation, foundation.”
Karyn Gabaldon Fine Arts
Cheryl Williams, from Ashland, Oregon, has an international reputation for her pottery, sculpture and paintings. Her artwork is featured in the White House Collection – and many other famous collections around the world. Her work captures the essence of light and color; she makes unique use of vibrant pigments and colors. The gallery also will have jazz music by Jeff Solon and Elizabeth Riordan.
Sorrel Sky Gallery
Well-known jeweler and lapidary Scott Diffrient, from Santa Fe, will be the focus at Sorrel Sky. He creates “modern artifacts” – contemporary jewelry inspired by ancient designs. Diffrient especially likes to find rare and unusual types of turquoise, gaspeite and coral.
One of Durango's oldest galleries will feature award-winning Navajo silversmith Jeanette Dale. Her pieces are recognizable for combining silver and natural stones. Dale has been making jewelry since 1973. She learned the skill from her mother.
Claude Steelman's photographs of wild animals are instantly recognizable. His nature photography captures the grandiosity of the West – its vast expanses, inhabitants and contrasting colors. Steelman's exhibit tonight will showcase new wild mustang images from his recent trips.
Sandy Cushman, a Durango textile designer, uses color and pattern in her hand-silkscreened fabric to create her art-to-wear pieces. Cushman, who graduated from the Rhode Island School of Design, draws inspiration from her clipping file, which includes images of rugs, textiles, animals, flowers, the Great Wonders of the World and an occasional New Yorker cartoon. Local performer Pete Giuliani will provide music during the gallery walk.
Diane West Jewelry & Art
On display at the gallery will be landscape artists Kelly Schurger, who travels extensively in Colorado to capture images of mountain scenes to paint. The gallery also will introduce Durango paper artist Anne Moreau. Her processes are based on reuse, repurpose and reconfiguration. “They aim at echoing nature's metamorphoses,” she said.
Local favorite Rosie Carter will have new assemblage work and screen prints at &. Her work is inspired by “relationships with people, place, landscape and outlook, existence and invention,” she said. There also will be new work from jewelers Crystal Hartman and Danielle Dalley, as well as new work from the co-op's member artists Scott Dye, Minna Jain, Shay Lopez, Elizabeth Kinahan and Tim Kapustka.
At Azul, expect to see new works and collections from several international and local artists, including glass jeweler Carol Martin. There will be the summer jewelry collection from Ayala Bar, new glasswork from Kosta Boda and new steel furniture from Frank Seckler.