STUDENTS CREATE THOUGHT PROVOKING EXHIBIT
Emmanuel Gallery, located at the center of Auraria Campus across from the Plaza building and adjacent to the library, is a creative firestorm of student artwork. The gallery turned 40 years old recently, and in honor of its birthday, a new exhibit has been installed. Open Walls is a futuristic exhibit featuring pieces from several students around campus.
Centered at the heart of the small gallery is a living room setup adorned with couches, chairs, side tables, and lamps. Strings hang from the ceiling with clothespins attached, and in each clothespin is a note card. Some read “paint a painting each week” or “expand my thoughts in order to create better art.” Each card represents a creative goal that gallery attendees have.
The idea of the Open Walls exhibit is to look into the future. The living room setup is used as the basis of these ideas, as the gallery holds several events as a part of the current exhibition.
“People can say how they feel and what their thoughts are about a given topic on certain nights. It’s very cool and gives us a chance to reflect on the world around us and talk about something that is meaningful,” CU Denver student Hannah Emmons said.
Open Walls not only involves students in thought-provoking conversations, but all of the artwork inside is created by students that are involved with the arts at Auraria. The Open Walls exhibit is ever-changing and expanding all the time.
“It’s so cool to have a place of our own,” Emmons said. “When you go into the Art District in Five Points or down by Santa Fe, every gallery only showcases artists who have made it or achieved major commercial success and most aren’t from here. This is a place where you’re only featured if you go to school here—it’s like home.”
Sticky notes are found at every turn in the gallery, with questions like “what do you like about the gallery?” or “who is the gallery for?” Another stack of sticky notes and a Sharpie sits next to the questions so that every person has the chance to answer the questions being asked.
The artwork displayed on the walls is nothing short of unique. Each piece has a way of showcasing the artist who made it and creating a sense of individuality, but the whole exhibit is tied together by the bloodline that is Auraria. Currently, the printmaking club is on show, complete with examples of the printing stages involved.
As soon as one walks through the door, the sense of family and camaraderie enhances the visual experience the gallery-goer and influences the way they view each piece of art on the walls. The gallery is a must see for those on Auraria Campus, and it remains on display until Feb. 13.
Above: A student-created piece sparks commentary on a generation’s obsession with social media
photo: Ashley Bauler • CU Denver Sentry