Sarah LaVigne: Month of Photography Denver
Month of Photography Denver by Sarah LaVigne
Since 2004, every two years in the spring, the city of Denver comes alive with photography. This biennial celebration founded by Mark Sink is called Month of Photography Denver, much like events held in various cities. Photographs fill almost every gallery in town and grace the exteriors of many buildings with the street art project, the Big Picture. Weekends are abuzz with often up to ten art openings in one night, beginning in March and ending in mid-April. With over 150 shows and events, it’s largest yet, MoP in Denver is thriving and electric!
Calendars filled quickly with shows, lectures and multimedia events in museums, galleries and coffee shops around the Denver Metro area and Ft.Collins at the Center for Fine Art Photography. MoP’s two signature shows at RedLine Art Space were a part of their year-long curatorial theme “Playing it Forward”. The main exhibition, Playing with Beauty, curated by Mark Sink, was a historical exploration in perceptions and playfulness with the landscape and human form. Also at RedLine, Role Play, curated by the Colorado Photographic Arts Center’s Rupert Jenkins and Conor King, identity, and persona were the focus. The openings at RedLine were the kick off for MoP punctuated by a performance by local dance troupe, Wonderbound. Later in the month were stunning shows with Kristen Sink’s A Tented Sky at Gildar Gallery and Jason DeMarte’s Confected at RULE Gallery.
At Denver Art Museum, David Maisel gave a lecture that highlighted his extensive body of work focusing on the seen and unseen in his striking aerial photographs. The audience was captivated by his multi-hour talk, which was just marvelous! Included in the array of intriguing workshops was Patrick Andrade’s Wet Plate Collodion process demonstration at the Pattern Shop. In multimedia, Picture Society had a packed house at Space Gallery with this year’s video slideshow of contemporary photographers.
The Month of Photography ended with an action packed weekend of portfolio reviews organized by the Colorado Photographic Arts Center and hosted by CPAC’s director Rupert Jenkins. Photographers met one on one with outstanding reviewers including Brian Clamp, Eric Paddock, Hamidah Glasgow, Laura Pressley, David Bram, Jennifer Schwartz, gallerists, book publishers, photo directors and myself who gave critiques and guidance to a bevy of talented photographers. Held at RedLine, the weekend was abuzz with talent from the Southwest Region and was one of the most vibrant events of MoP.
I can safely say I have never been to so many fantastic shows in such a condensed period. If you have all day, I could go through my entire list of must-see shows, so for now I will leave you with the list of exhibitors on the MoP website. We’ll see you all at MoP 2017, surely, it is not to be missed!
Sarah LaVigne is the founder and curator of Picture Society and the Photo Editor at 5280 Magazine “The Denver Magazine”. Previously she has been a Contributing Photo Editor at National Geographic Adventure, Men’s Journal, Best Life, and SKI magazines. LaVigne holds an MFA in Photography from Pratt Institute in Brooklyn, New York, where she began her career in picture making and editing. Her photo editing work has been recognized by the American Photography Association and the Society of Publication Designers. LaVigne also curates photography shows locally and does portfolio reviews for conferences nationally.
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