The Glenwood Springs Center for the Arts brings back its 6-by-6 exhibit and fundraiser
If You Go...
What: 6x6 opening reception with catering from Q’doba
When: 5:30-7 p.m. on Friday (exhibit open all month)
Where: Glenwood Springs Center for the Arts
How Much: Free
There is nothing quite as exciting as a blank canvas. This year, the Glenwood Springs Center for the Arts gave about 100 blank, 6-inch-by-6-inch canvases away to community members who were tasked with doing something creative with them and returning them to be sold in the Center’s second annual 6×6 exhibit.
According to Christina Brusig, executive director of the Center for the Arts, the results reflect the creativity that floods this valley.
“Off the top of my head, we have watercolor, we have oil, we have acrylic, we have some mixed media pieces,” she said. “I’ve seen a large variety.”
The 6×6 exhibit serves as a fundraiser for the Center for the Arts. The Center provides the canvases to anyone who wants them. Participants pick the canvases up and sign an agreement that they will donate whatever they end up making, and the Center will sell the pieces for $20 each and keep the proceeds.
“It’s a nice way for us to make money for our outreach programs and our community-based programs,” Brusig said. “That’s what this is really for.”
Last year, about 75 canvases were donated, and about 60 were sold. This year, the exhibit will feature about 100 canvases.
The idea for the 6×6 exhibit came from Terry Muldoon, the director of visual arts at the Center. She attended a similar show in Denver and brought the idea back to Glenwood.
This year, for the first time, Muldoon hosted two paint days where anyone could come to the Center and work on a 6×6 canvas with some guidance and supplies. Brusig said 17 people attended.
“I think that helped add to the number of pieces that were entered into the show,” Brusig said. “There are a lot of people who don’t normally participate in art shows that felt like 6×6 was a good way for them to start.”
One of the 6×6 artists, Amy Levenson, said the accessibility of the 6×6 show is one of her favorite things about it.
“I really feel like you need a starting point with art,” she said. “Just that first step could lead to other things. You don’t know what you’re capable of until you try it.”
Levenson submitted two pieces this year, “I Ski You” and “Let Me Count the Ways.” The former is a bright, ski-themed collage from magazine cutouts, and the latter would make a perfect Valentine’s Day gift, she said.
“I did two because I had the time to do two, and I want to do what I can to keep the Art Center alive,” she said. “And it’s so much fun doing it because you can really focus in on a 6-by-6. It’s not intimidating. It’s like taking a little bite of a dessert or a dish.”
Something Brusig has noticed this year is a lot of participation from groups. She said members of the Carbondale band Let Them Roar each submitted a piece, and a group from the Glenwood Sewing Center also submitted four pieces.
“I saw it in the paper, and I thought, ‘Oh, this could be fun,’” said Sandy Boyd from the Glenwood Sewing Center. On her canvas is a winter landscape portrayed with fabric. “I like this because it doesn’t have to be paint; it can be fabric to give you really interesting textures and results.”
Levenson and Boyd both agree that the 6×6 exhibit provides the unique opportunity for artists to take risks and try something new. It also allows people who are just getting into the art world to show their work.
“It gives an opportunity for a lot of people to try some things without having a huge investment,” Boyd said. “Artists like to try new ideas, and this is a good opportunity to do that.”
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