Contemporary clay artists, masters of many disciplines, at Grand Junction’s Art Center |

Contemporary clay artists, masters of many disciplines, at Grand Junction’s Art Center

Camille Silverman
Special to the Free Press
Art by Erik Gellert of Santa Fe, N.M.
Submitted photo |

The Art Center’s Contemporary Clay opening — set for Friday, June 6 — is a strong showing of what is going on in ceramics around the country.

At 6:30 p.m., juror and clay artist Jim Romberg will talk about the ranges of ceramic works selected, as well as announce the four award winners in this year’s exhibit.

The formal reception is from 7-9 p.m., giving viewers the opportunity to peruse 80 works that highlight not only the mastery of traditional clay forms, but experimentation in drawing, painterly brush-work, sculpture, carving and video work.

The National Contemporary juror Jim Romberg is a clay artist that makes his own brushes and works with expressive forms as well as a very bold painterly mark. His wife, Lynette Jennings, is a painter and famous designer who once lived here in Glade Park.

This is a clay show, but it is about much more than clay as most great bodies of work shown are a compression of many strategies and ideas that move the art-making process forward.

This exhibit shows 55 artists who make unique art from around the country every day. There are seven local artists, five from the Western Slope, and 43 from other areas around the country.

The second exhibit opening this Friday night is Nancy Bauer. Nancy is a local musician and landscape artist who is showing more than 40 paintings. These works have both delicate and bold brush strokes. Some paintings capture the mark made by a confident painter; others show no strokes and a straight forward pictorial image dominates. Like Contemporary Clay artists, Bauer can move through many color palettes and she can scale up or down upon demand. One painting can have a strong preoccupation for abstraction; the next will move to an interest in pure pictorial image.

First Friday openings at The Art Center are always free and open to the public. There will be a community chalk art project sponsored by Oral Health Partners in the sculpture garden. Both exhibits and community projects will run through June 26.

There is also a free lecture presentation by visiting artist and juror Jim Romberg on Saturday, June 7, at 4:30 p.m. It’s great for people who paint, draw, do clay or sculpture.

The Art Center’s summer hours are Monday through Saturday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., and it’s located at 1803 N. 7th St., in Grand Junction.

Tuesdays are free through a gift from Home Loan and Allied Insurance. Admission is free to Art Center members during regular hours and it’s $3 for non-members. For more information, call 970-243-7337, ext. 2, or go to for more information on lectures, classes and exhibits.

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