Fifteen best Denver ART moments in 2011

We've been rolling off lists this week like there's no tomorrow, and maybe there isn't, considering that pesky 2012 Mayan prophecy and all that. Earlier this week, Jef Otte presented his 10 best moments in Denver arts list, riffing on some of his favorite moments in arts and culture from the year past. Herewith follows a list of Denver's big ART moments, presented in chronological order.

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15. World premiere of Night Hunter, an animation by Stacey Steers, Denver Art Museum, February 11

It took Boulder animator Stacey Steers, already a favorite of Denver Art Museum director Christoph Heinrich's, more than four years to complete the painstaking work on her hand-collaged work Night Hunter, a beautiful film that unfolds, for all the work, in just over fifteen minutes. Steers debuted the film at the DAM in February, where it remained on view (along with a Victorian dollhouse assemblage featuring tiny screens flickering animated excerpts through its windows) later as part of the museum's Blink! Light, Sound and the Moving Image exhibition, in itself a fascinating maze of projections, films, neon and TV screens. A stunning achievement in animation, the film has since been making selective film fest rounds, including a screening next month at Sundance. Five years from now, perhaps we'll be marveling at her next triumph.

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14. On Being a Woman, Wazee Union, February 18

The brainchild of Westword MasterMind and Titwrench producer Sarah Slater and designer Baily Rose, On Being a Woman was just that -- a free-form expression of womanhood in art, performance and music that spread its tendrils through the hallways of Wazee Union in February. In no way strictly for the girls, the event was pure celebration, a party swimming in both feminism and femininity (indeed, actor Julie Rada spent the show performing in a tub of water) and a kind of joy that happens when women take charge of their destinies.

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13. Denver Month of Photography, March 1-30

Denver MOP wasn't new this year, but the citywide celebration of photography did make a bigger splash during its monthlong run, when multiple gallery shows and an international Big Picture photo swap swathed the town in black and white and glorious color. We can hardly wait to see what Mark Sink and his photographic co-conspirators come up with next time.

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