First Friday Downtown

Free and open to the public, First Friday Downtown features new art, live music, and special events on the first Friday of every month from 5-8 p.m. at dozens of galleries, retailers and nonprofits throughout Downtown Colorado Springs.

join the popsicle promenade

On September’s First Friday Downtown, treat yourself to a progressive summer dessert tasting and art walk at a dozen Downtown venues. Present your Popsicle Passport at participating restaurants and galleries to receive summer-themed gourmet treats and chances to win prizes. Tickets only $10, learn more.

TAKE A FIRST FRIDAY WALKING TOUR

Gain new insight into downtown Colorado Springs’ arts scene and hear from exhibiting artists on the Curator/Artist-Led First Friday Downtown walking tour. The free one-hour tour will visit a selection of downtown galleries. On September 1, the tour will be led by photographer and curator Robin Schneider (ArtbyBAMF). The tour will begin at 6 p.m. at the Gallery Below (716-B N. Weber St.) and then will continue to a selection of First Friday venues. Tours continue monthly, featuring a different local artist/curator tour guide each month.

TAKE THE FIRST FRIDAY SHUTTLE

To help make your First Friday experience more enjoyable, the Cultural Office of the Pikes Peak Region is pleased to provide a free shuttle bus service that makes a continuous loop around the city from 5-8 p.m. on First Friday. Shuttle stops every half-hour at key Art Walk destinations Downtown and in Old Colorado City. The shuttle bus service is intended to serve area residents as well as visitors to our community. In addition, local artists and performers will be along for the ride to entertain you, and share stories and interesting facts about the City of Colorado Springs.

Please follow this link to see a list of First Friday events by corresponding shuttle bus stop.

HIGHLIGHTS THIS MONTH

Click images to view details. See map at right (bottom of page on mobile).

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The Portal Project

215 S. Tejon St.
| 5-8 p.m.

The global public art initiative, Portals, is now in Colorado Springs, Colorado, USA! Portals are gold shipping containers equipped with immersive audio-visual technology. When you enter one, you come face-to-face, live, full-body, with someone in an identical gold shipping container somewhere else on Earth. The Colorado Springs_Portal connects to countries around the globe, including Afghanistan, Jordan, Germany, Honduras, Iraq, Kenya, Mexico, Myanmar, Palestine, Rwanda, and the UK.

Stop by the Colorado Springs_Portal on the west lawn of the Pioneers Museum on First Friday, August 4 from 5-8 p.m. to strike up a conversation with a stranger in a different time zone. RSVP for 20-minute time-slots to enter the Portal at www.sharedstudios.com/colorado-springs. Walk-ins are also encouraged!

Questions? Email Colorado Springs Portal Curator, Max Ferguson at coloradosprings@sharedstudios.com

Pictured: Promotional image for the Portal Project. Image courtesy Imagination Celebration.

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Colorado Springs Conservatory

415 Sahwatch St.
| 5-9 p.m.

The Colorado Springs Conservatory will display the art of Dianna Cates Dunn beginning with an opening on Friday, September 1st, 5:30pm-7:30pm, as part of First Friday Downtown.  Light refreshments and beverages will be served. Join us as we display the art of this talented local artist and enjoy our live background music by Wesley Rivera. This event is free and open to the public, no RSVP required.

ABOUT THE ARTIST

Colorado Springs Conservatory’s First Friday Artwalk Artist is Dianna Cates Dunn, the recipient of many awards including TOSCA Magazine’s 2015 Colorado Artist of the Year and the Founders Award from the Colorado Watermedia Society. Dianna is a Utahan by birth, Coloradoan by choice, and an artist by nature and desire. Art has formed her life.  After years of training with various artists and designers she paints to satisfy all the feelings, emotions, and ideas rumbling around her life. Each work is an abstracted expression of an event experienced or observed by her.  Each painting is an evocative journey that you, the observer, want to take.  For the observer of her art, the truth is simple; either you are touched by what you see, or, you are not.  Surround yourself with that which intrigues you, and, with what draws you back to it time, after time.

Pictured: Tools of the Trade by Dianna Cates Dunn. Image courtesy Colorado Springs Conservatory.

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The Modbo Gallery

17C E. Bijou St.

The Modbo presents September’s First Friday on September 1st, 2017 with “EPHEMERA,” a show of work by Tony Achilles, generously sponsored by Colorado Foot and Ankle. First Friday’s reception happens from 5 pm til midnight, and the show remains up through Friday, September 29th.  

The Modbo is located in the Arts Alley in downtown Colorado Springs at 17C E. Bijou.  Street parking is available, but The Modbo recommends the lot on Cascade just north of Bijou, which is only a $1 after 3 pm. The Modbo can be reached at themodbo@gmail.com, themodbo.com, or 633-4240.

ABOUT THE SPONSOR

“EPHEMERA” by Tony Achilles is proudly brought to you by Dr. Eric Gessner of Colorado Foot and Ankle.  With two locations in Colorado Springs, Colorado Foot and Ankle provides patients the best foot and ankle care in Colorado.  Their experience in podiatry is coupled with a genuine concern for their patients.   More information available at www.cofootandankle.com .

ABOUT THE EXHIBIT

“Beauty is a fleeting experience. It is both personal, as it is a projection of ourselves, and a chance encounter, since one never knows when one will come upon it, or when it will suddenly emerge into one’s space, for a moment. Beauty comes in many forms, and it is present everywhere- in the dark as well as in the light. Beauty is, by its nature, ephemeral.  I am moved by sensual beauty, like many of us, and femininity seems to me to be the very womb of sensuality. I find photos from the golden years of Burlesque, when women were just starting to shake off the constraints of Victorian morality, to capture the essence of feminine sensuality in a way that seems sublime from the vantage point of the 21st century, when femininity itself is commoditized, and its soft edges are trimmed away. The photos I have found from that brief era have been my inspiration for these paintings, and those beautiful women, who emerged into our space, for a moment, have been my muses. This body of work pays homage to that, most ephemeral, form of beauty.” --by Tony Achilles

ABOUT THE ARTIST

Tony Achilles is an oil painter, illustrator, mural artist, and art teacher, born and raised in Denver Colorado, and is presently working from his studio in the LoHi neighborhood of Denver.  Though having studied under master painters, Ron Hicks, Margaretta Gilboy, and Mark Daily, at the Art Students League of Denver, Tony considers himself to be, primarily, a self taught artist. Achilles has been showing publicly since 1989. Galleries and nontraditional art spaces where he has exhibited work include, Theory and Practice Gallery, Andrew Clark Photography Studio/Gallery, The Art Student’s League of Denver, The Arvada Art Center, The Cherry Creek Arts Festival, Inner City Art Expo Gallery, and most recently, The Modbo Gallery in Colorado Springs. When he is not preparing work for exhibition, Tony stays busy with commissions and various commercial and decorative art, projects. His murals can be found in various business, restaurants, and private homes, throughout Denver, and surrounding areas.

Pictured: Work by Tony Achilles. Image courtesy the Modbo.

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Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center at Colorado College

30 W. Dale St.

The Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center at Colorado College (FAC) is excited to introduce works by photographer Emma Powell on view and available for sale through Sept. 30, 2017 with a special First Friday Art Party Sept. 1, from 5 – 7:30 p.m. in the Deco Lounge. This event combines a reception for photographer Emma Powell, Colorado College assistant professor of art, and a celebration of the exhibition Raízes/Roots: Transformations in Contemporary Brazilian Art, featuring Brazilian music in Deco Lounge, a tour of Raízes/Roots, and a performance by acclaimed Brazilian musician and singer, Michelle Castro.

Event details:

  • 5 – 6:30 p.m. – View photographs by Emma Powell in Deco Lounge and the FAC Shop and music by Michelle Castro Quartet in Deco Lounge (5 – 5:45 p.m.)
  • 5:45 – 6 p.m. – “Lightning Tour” of Raízes/Roots: Transformations in Contemporary Brazilian Art led by Naomi Wood, exhibition curator, and featured artist Annie Ganzala
  • 6:15 – 7 p.m. – Performance by Michelle Castro Quartet in the FAC courtyard. Originally from Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Michelle Castro began studying music at 12 years old. As a vocalist and guitarist, she began to play internationally when invited to perform two tours of Germany with a choro/samba band as lead singer. She is proud to say she grew up in the Rocinha favela where she draws much of her musical inspiration and her passion for social activism.

 

ABOUT THE SHOW

Powell’s work explores a fictional narrative that visualizes curious scenarios in order to convey a message or feeling instead of a record of a moment. Powell first began to explore photographic storytelling while working on her Master of Fine Arts thesis. Building on this interest in narrative, subsequent bodies of work have emerged. The body of work featured in Deco Lounge is a collaborative narrative with fellow photographer Kirsten Hoving titled “Svala’s Saga.”

ABOUT THE ARTIST

Powell is an assistant professor of art at Colorado College. She graduated from the College of Wooster, and received her MFA in photography from Rochester Institute of Technology. Her work often examines photography's history while incorporating historic processes and other devices within the imagery.

ARTIST STATEMENT

“‘Svala’s Saga’ is a photographic fairy tale about the journey of a single character and the world she inhabits. As told through 50 interrelated photographs, our strong female heroine, Svala, is confronted with the sudden loss of the world’s birds. She then embarks on a mythic quest: as the Earth heats and cools, she journeys through the wilderness searching for the last remaining eggs.

The landscape of Iceland is an active character in the narrative. Svala interacts dramatically with a variety of visually astonishing rock formations, steam vents, glaciers, and geysers. In this realm of environmental extremes, Svala’s story abounds with magic and metaphor.

We chose to print ‘Svala’s Saga’ using the historic palladium process coated over a digital/pigment underprint, a process that has been called ‘pigment over palladium.’ This hybrid technique lacks the immediate historical references of other vintage processes. Instead, it evokes hand-colored photographs or painted illustrations, reinforcing the combination of fantasy and photography.”

Pictured: Nesting by Emma Powell. Image courtesy the Fine Arts Center.

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Wild Goose Meeting House

401 N. Tejon St.

Live music from local reggae band Mo Mungus beginning at 9 p.m. No cover.

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Art 111

111 E. Bijou St.
| 5-10 p.m.

Presenting 21st Century Cave Man Paintings by Steve Cedre. As always this is a family-friendly, free event.

Pictured: Reclaimed by Steve Cedre. Image courtesy Art 111.

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Boulder Street Gallery

206 N. Tejon St.
| 5-8 p.m.

Presenting new works in watercolor, oil, pastel, and acrylic by the 27 Boulder Street Gallery artists, along with our great new look in the recently remodeled Gallery. Featured artists for September are Lisa Dillmann and Jacqueline Pearson, with guest artist Suzanne Favier. Boulder Street Gallery is located downtown between Terra Verde and the Skirted Heifer and across from the Uncle Wilber Fountain. More info at www.boulderstreetgallery.com, or call 719 636-9358.

ABOUT THE ARTISTS

Lisa Dillmann's lifelong love of nature and art began in rural Vermont, and her talents have been reflected in numerous local galleries and juried International watermedia exhibits. To see more of Lisa's artwork, go to (http://www.lisadillmann.fineartstudioonline.com/).

Similarly recognized with awards and shows, Jacqueline Pearson paints what she feels rather than taking a photorealistic approach. Color highlights her subjects but not purely as an end in itself. To see more of Jacqueline's artwork, go to (http://www.jacqueline-pearson.fineartamerica.com/).

Pictured: Worth Saving by Lisa Dillmann. Image courtesy Boulder Street Gallery.

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Lawrence Dryhurst Gallery

122 E. Kiowa St.

A western and contemporary art show at The Lawrence Dryhurst Gallery to finish off the rodeo summer on September 1 from 4-8 p.m.

Denver’s western fine artist and horse whisperer, Sandy Pfeifer, will be appearing at The Lawrence Dryhurst Gallery for one night only.

Our First Friday will feature her originals, giclees, cards and bin art.

She is known for capturing the essence of the moment and maybe even the true feelings of the horse.

Pictured: Work by Sandy Pfeifer. Image courtesy the artist.

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Colorado Photography School

14 E. Bijou St.
| 5-8 p.m.

Gallery exhibit features student works in photography.

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The Independence Center

729 S. Tejon St.
| 8 a.m. - 12 p.m.

A special addition to First Friday on September 1, the Independence Center proudly presents The Art of Accessibility. This exhibit showcases the various mediums of artistic expression by local people with disabilities. This is a partnership between The Independence Center, The Arc Pikes Peak Region, and The Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center at Colorado College. The event will be held at The Independence Center, which features universal accessibility for all. Open from 4 to 8 p.m. on First Friday.

Pictured: Through My Eyes by Nina Kamekona

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Kreuser Gallery

218 W. Colorado Ave.
| 5-8 p.m.

Kreuser Gallery is proud to present Stream of Consciousness: a convergence, new work by Laura BenAmots. Opening reception: Friday, September 1, 5-8 p.m. Show will run September 1-28, with an artist discussion on September 21 at 5:30 p.m. More information: www.abigailkreusergallery.com or 719.464.5880.

Pictured: Work by Laura BenAmots. Image courtesy Kreuser Gallery.

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Coquette’s Bistro

616 S. Tejon St.
| 11 a.m. - 9 p.m.

New works by Lance Green will be at Coquette’s for September’s First Friday. On view in The Dezmond Room, the show runs through September 30. Participants are encouraged to start their walk at Coquette’s, where happy hour runs 4-6 p.m., or make it their last stop for conversation and a special late-night menu.

REVIEW FROM THE SANTA FEAN MAGAZINE

Stylistically primitive, at times almost to the point of entropy, Green’s expressionistic canvases exude metaphysical questionings of someone who’s been through it: through life, through trauma and despair, through emotional pain and suffering.

But if they stopped there, if Green went no further, they wouldn’t be as powerful or exert the pull they do. The shamanistic images that dominate these works, dark and inscrutable as they may be, offer up, too, a sense of compassion, grace and hopefulness.

Seemingly painted instinctually and in a state of abandonment, his paintings possess as much spiritual and symbolic intensity as the ones done by the members of the Der Blaue Reiter (The Blue Group), the early 1900’s German expressionists led by the free form approach of Wassily Kandinsky.

Pictured: Work by Lance Green. Image courtesy Coquette’s Bistro.

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UCCS Gallery of Contemporary Art (GOCA 121)

121 S. Tejon St

Join us for GREAT EXPECTATIONS, featuring the work of Erica Day, Nathan Hodges, Stephanie Kantor, Suzie McMurtry, Diego Rodriguez-Warner, Elizabeth Selby, Frankie Toan, Streeter Wright, Ryan Wurst, Dustin Young. The evening includes a reception sponsored by Cerberus Brewing Co. with DJ set by Ryan Wurst.

This biannual exhibition surveys emerging artists working along the Colorado Front Range corridor. Artists working in Colorado in 2017 are diverse and this exhibit at our downtown GOCA121 site aims to reflect that reality. The artists featured are working across a broad range of media - painting, drawing, sculptural installation, new media, and performance - and creating contemporary art in exciting and challenging ways. Great Expectations will introduce you to some of the brightest (art) stars from the Front Range of Colorado.

Full details + related programming:

https://www.uccs.edu/goca/ART/EXHIBITIONS/2017-18-Season/Great-Expectations.html

Pictured: Promotional image for Great Expectations. Image courtesy GOCA.

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The Bridge Gallery

218 W. Colorado Ave
| 5-8 p.m.

The Bridge Gallery presents Something New, art in various media by Betty Atherton, Deena Bennett, Christy Callaham, Michael Cellan, Judith Marie, Laura McCracken, Susan Risinger and Marc Shereck. Creating art involves playful exploration. Something New is a collection of recent work — or play — by member artists and their guests. The exhibit opens 5-8 p.m. Friday, Sept. 1, and runs through Sept. 30. The gallery, 218 W. Colorado Ave. (under the Colorado Avenue bridge) is open 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Saturdays or by appointment. Information: www.thebridgeartgallery.com or 719-269-7055.

Pictured: Work from Something New. Image courtesy the Bridge Gallery.

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SPQR Experiential Art Space and Studio Gallery

17C E. Bijou St. (alley)
| 5:30-9 p.m.

S.P.Q.R. Experiential Art Space and Studio Gallery presents August’s First Friday on August 4th, 2017 with The Remainder, a show of gorgeous new portraiture by local artist Brett Andrus.  First Friday’s reception happens from 5:00 pm til 11 pm, and the show stays up through Friday, August 25th.  There will be a free artist’s talk on Friday, August 25th, at 6:30 pm.  

S.P.Q.R. is located in the Arts Alley next to The Modbo in downtown Colorado Springs at 17B E. Bijou.  Street parking is available, but S.P.Q.R. recommends the lot on Cascade just north of Bijou, which is only a $1 after 3 pm. Find S.P.Q.R. on facebook, at spqrartspace.com, or by emailing spqrartspace@gmail.com.

The Remainder, Andrus’ most recent exhibition, encompasses the last six months of his work. During this process he set two goals: to make a thoroughly good painting, and to explore and create from a place of autobiographical story telling, pulling from his dreamscape, utilizing symbol, predominant archetypical figures and elements of Magical Realism. This exhibition is about exploring the disintegration and reconfiguration of some of Andrus’ most vulnerable and personal realizations and ideologies. His focus has been on transformative elements, combining the female and child portrait with snapshots of electricity and light, birds and bone, iconic cloth and skin. These forces are tied together with an ever lessening sense of gravity as the full narrative of their story unravels and reconstructs as something true, but ever unattainable. The two most polarized outliers of these ideas, the bride and the self-portrait, bookend the collection as mirrored components, connected through light and dark, maleness and femaleness, emotional accuracy and symmetrical iconography. His purpose has been to be honest about how the past and present feel as though they can fall apart and reassemble in a ever out-of-reach way.

Pictured: Riley by Brett Andrus. Image courtesy the artist.

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Plaza of the Rockies

111 S. Tejon St.
| 5-8 p.m.

Join us Friday, September 1st, from 5-8 pm in the lobby of the Plaza of the Rockies at 121 S. Tejon for the opening reception of “Art Works @ Gallery 113,” featuring the artwork of members of Gallery 113. Light snacks and live music provided.

Gallery 113 is a cooperative gallery, owned and operated by Colorado Springs artists. Members like the idea of making their artwork accessible and affordable customers, and they understand the importance of belonging to a network of peers who promote and support their creativity. A rich variety of media, subject matter and style reflect the talented and diverse family of artists at Gallery 113 whose hard work, creativity, and persistence contribute to their success.

The work will be on display during the month of September.

Pictured: Work from Gallery 113 artist. Image courtesy Plaza of the Rockies.

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Escape Velocity

19 E. Bijou St.

A clean, friendly, locally-owned comic shop offering refreshments, music and artist meet-and-greets to First Friday participants. On First Friday, September 1, join us for a night of acoustic alternative music by Brandon Learned, with free food and drink and, of course, comics.

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Gallery 113

125 ½ N. Tejon St.

Gallery 113 hosts twenty-three local artists whose art work ranges from painting in a variety of media, photography, pottery, hand-turned wood bowls, hand-painted silk scarves and paintings, and hand-crafted wood clocks. During the month of August, Gallery 113 will feature the work of painters Corey Pelto and Gayle Gross. Featured artists and other gallery members will be on-hand to talk about their work throughout the evening, and the gallery will be serving light appetizers and several beverages including wine punch and non-alcoholic fruit punch.  

ABOUT THE ARTISTS

Gross’s unique style is building on top of the canvas using found materials. She likes to say there's a spirit of the place in her paintings. The subject is often Colorado landscapes and buildings. The hues are deepened through the depth of 3rd relief. Gayle has her degree in Graphic Design.  

Pelto studied at the Willoughby School of Fine Arts and worked as the cartoonist for the school newspaper and yearbook. He took his artistic interests to The College of Wooster, where he studied Studio Art and illustrating. He also developed passion for Biology beginning a career in Emergency Medicine.

Pictured: Work by Corey Pelto. Image courtesy Gallery 113.

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St. George Anglican Church

217 E. Pikes Peak Ave.
| 5-8 p.m.

The current art exhibit at St. Georges is comprised of contemporary, contemplative pieces that continue the theme of God's creation. The works of several local artists celebrating humanity, nature and the world around us through their paintings and photography. We welcome you to come share their vision and talent.

Pictured: Work from St. George artists. Image courtesy St. George.

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Cacao Chemistry

109 N. Tejon St.

Cacao Chemistry’s featured artist for September is Terri Sanchez, an expressionistic painter of the Colorado landscape. Come by and meet the artist on First Friday from 6:30-8 p.m.

ARTIST STATEMENT

Ultimately my goal as an artist is to communicate with my viewer and remind them of the beauty of God’s creation.  In my expressionistic style of painting, I try to capture richness of bold color, light, texture and atmosphere. I believe the visual arts are meant to be enjoyed and embraced by all and it is my sincere hope that I can use my passion as an artist to capture these special moments in time and translate them onto canvas. I believe my life as an artist is a tremendous privilege and it gives me great pleasure to create beauty for others.

Pictured: Red Rock Dusk by Terri Sanchez. Image courtesy the artist.

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Orly’s Art Gallery

730 S. Tejon St.
| 10 a.m. -5 p.m.

Orly's Art Gallery and Custom Framing holds a 30-plus year tradition of participating in the arts and culture building in Colorado Springs. Their venue offers a collection of the finest original art in town ranging from traditional to abstract works and boasts a collection of vintage furniture and accessories.

Offers custom framing, hanging and delivery, for all you fine art needs. Exclusive dealer for Larson Juhl.

Pictured: Interior of Orly’s Gallery. Image courtesy the proprietor.

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