`Art Strut' celebrates women

Dairy Block is venue for works built around female mannequins

Sonya Ellingboe
sellingboe@coloradocommunitymedia.com
Posted 3/14/21

Eleven invited local artists participated in The Athena Project's pop-up art market, “Art Strut,” on March 13 at Denver's Dairy Block and in the Alley and each will continue to exhibit their …

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`Art Strut' celebrates women

Dairy Block is venue for works built around female mannequins

Posted

Eleven invited local artists participated in The Athena Project's pop-up art market, “Art Strut,” on March 13 at Denver's Dairy Block and in the Alley and each will continue to exhibit their works, all built around female mannequins, through March 31 — inside of Denver Milk Market and throughout Dairy Block establishments.

Visitors can bid for the art at auction throughout the month of March. The address is 1800 Wazee St. and there is a parking garage.

The pop-up exhibit features works by Michelle Lamb of Littleton and other Colorado professional artists: Adri Norris, Autumn T. Thomas, Jana Hope, Lindsey Gutman, Deborah Jang, Tatiana Jordan, Karlee Mariel, Mel Aman and Samantha Doom Donen. Artists received an initial stipend when they accepted the invitation, Lamb said.

Lamb's piece, “Full Speed Ahead,” includes “things associated with women” such as thimbles and bobbins, that “make her look powerful, versus a vision of Betty Crocker,” Lamb said. She's a “modern winged Nike,” Lamb adds.

All pieces will be displayed through this month — in Lamb's case, inside the Denver Milk Market — and in other businesses on the block.

The Athena Project is a Colorado nonprofit that “celebrates and nurtures women's artistic expression. Working actively for equality of opportunity, recognition and pay based on artistic merit alone,” according to the website.

Started by playwright/activist Angela Astle, the project recognizes that “women account for just 25% of playwrights produced across the Rocky Mountain Region. Only 5% of music producers are women. Only 30% of major American museums have women directors right now ...” Additional examples are easy to find through conversation with just about any female arts professional.

Although Denver celebrated Frida Kahlo recently, how many other feature exhibits come to mind?

Starting with a women's play festival some years ago, the Athena Project is expanded to women in visual arts here and explains that “we want to create a safer space for the expression and growth for all women, trans and gender nonconforming individuals.”

The Dairy Block is filled with artwork already (715 pieces) due to a conscious collection effort and these new works will hopefully attract new collectors for the participating artists — and perhaps they will find a home on the block!

The block contains 15 shops, 19 restaurants, business co-working space and a 172-room boutique hotel, the Maven.

And an alley that hosts events, including live jazz ... and there is covered parking.

A glance at the website (dairyblock.com) inspires this art lover to head on down there pretty soon!

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