Young talent featured at Bookcliffs Arts Center |

Young talent featured at Bookcliffs Arts Center

Young, local artist Dylan Bentz works on his piece in the Bookcliffs Arts Center’s inaugural Street Art Competition in August. His work is being featured the entire month of September at the Bookcliff’s Stone House Gallery.
Ryan Hoffman / Citizen Telegram |

Youth community member, Dylan Bentz, has stepped into the limelight this week in Rifle’s local art scene. What started as simple participation in the Bookcliffs Arts Center’s inaugural Street Art Competition in August, turned into not only a win in the competition, but also a solo art show the entire month of September at the Bookcliff’s Stone House Gallery.

At the First Friday Opening of Dylan’s show, Sept. 3, community members arrived to see the work, but were first greeted with the artist spray-painting live outside of the gallery.

Stepping inside, the show was comprised of 10 original pieces of colorful cosmic settings.

The most spectacular element within this story is not the win, the show or the live painting — the fact is, Dylan picked up his first spray can in May. Barely four months in, and this creator is rocketing forward with his practice.

In an interview with the artist, he shared that the “thought process behind it all was simple.” He simply wanted to give it a try. Recognizing first within himself that he was enjoying what he was doing and liking what he was seeing, he quickly began receiving unconditional support and encouragement from his friends and art teacher, Liz Waters.

Dylan spoke of his appreciation for all the support — big and small opportunities all encouraging his movement forward.

With excitement in his voice, he shared his intention for further involvement with the Bookcliffs Arts Center, community art projects and personal creative exploration.

The art community in Rifle is on the rise, witnessing this vibrant creative initiative within our youth adds color to the foundation in which it stands on. To all other creative initiatives out there, the support is here for you as well. If you find yourself interested in a medium or an event then try it, you may like it. Doors only open from there.

Sara Gallagher is the special events director at the Bookcliffs Arts Center. She can be reached at

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