The Mayday Experiment: Looking to the Future -- Through Windows!

Lauri Lynnxe Murphy
Lauri Lynnxe Murphy (left) and Victoria Salvador in the loft of the tiny house.
After a big problem when we tried to level the tiny house, I returned the broken jacks to Harbor Freight. (Thank you to the kind manager and clerk who took them back, even though they were past the ninety-day deadline -- when something looks that dangerously broken, I suppose you have no choice, but they still did me a solid.) There I picked up two jack stands, thinking that with the two remaining working jacks plus those, we would get the tiny house leveled. But first we would have to get it moved - when it fell, it wound up a foot closer to the street and too close to the tree.

Still, Victoria Salvador and I were determined to get these windows in before the big snow, no matter what. To that end, she had brought her friend Edgar Arvizu, a maintenance man with mad skills, and I had invited three art students I had met while speaking to Jennifer Garner's Metropolitan State University class the week before: Meredith Bowdish, my new intern whose thesis was about tiny houses, and Tony Bearzi and Jamie Devendorf, both of whom were enthusiastic due to their own tiny-house dreams.

Step one of the process was to hitch the house up to Bertha and begin the painful back and forth of maneuvering it into place.

See also: The Mayday Experiment -- A Tiny House, Big Disaster

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Signal to Noise Leads Sci-Art Movement at Denver International Airport

Jeff Merkel
Director of Signal to Noise Jeff Merkel smiles at his newest creation, "Open Windows."
Sitting in the cozy mastering room tucked into the back of his RiNo office space, Jeff Merkel can't help but smirk. "It's been a while since I've been in here," he says, looking around at the various speakers on the wall. In fact, it's been a long time since Merkel has done anything related to recording music. Instead, he's been in his workshop, getting down to what really makes him tick: sci-art. As the director of Signal to Noise Media Merkel's had his mind on science-based art projects for a while.

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It's a Small World for Matt Scobey, Denver Creative and 2015 Biennial Ambassador

A Platforms table by Matt Scobey and Bonnie Gregory.
Denver artist and maker Matt Scobey is one of those people who quietly do what they do and don't make a big deal out of it. He's also a community-builder who likes to share ideas and take on projects that morph and change without finite boundaries. When Scobey isn't at work or experimenting with modern furniture concepts, he's likely to be found combing the city's alleys for found materials to repurpose.

See also: 100 Colorado Creatives: Matt Scobey

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The Nkisi Project Brings the Power of Community to Ice Cube Gallery

Photo by Christy Wolfe
Tammi Kefauver Brazee and Sarah Rockett building the Nkisi Project.
When Ice Cube Gallery director Sarah Rockett had some extra space at Ingrained, the co-op's December group show, she decided that it should take a village to fill it. Inspired by her longing to build a community in Denver as tight as the one she'd left behind in New Orleans, Rockett invited more than thirty artists from six states (including co-curators Peter Yumi and Tammi Kefauver Brazee) to submit their own unique Nkisi Nkondi, or power figures, to be interwoven into a group installation: The Nkisi Project. We asked Rockett to elaborate on her concept, which she hopes will lead to others like it in the future. Keep reading for her insights...

See also: Birdseed Collective Brightens RTD Bus Stops With Art Through the P.S. You Are Here Project

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Gallery Sketches: Four Shows to See in Denver for December 12-14

Derrick Velesquez
Collaborators Amber Cobb and Laura Shill are among 23 Tank Studio artists in a group show at Ironton.
December brings group shows, big and small, to Denver galleries -- as well as one epic, plein air painting journey. Boughs of holly aren't the only thing decking the halls around town. Despite the holiday hustle, there's plenty of art to see this weekend -- here are a few places to catch it.

See also: Let There Be Light: Luminarias de Santa Fe Drive

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Photos: December's First Friday Nightlife in the Art District on Santa Fe

Though the First Friday of December traditionally collides with the Parade of Lights, art-lovers still flocked to Santa Fe Drive, despite interfering downtown gridlock. Read on to see photographer Danielle Lirette's images from the art district's monthly gallery stroll.

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Gallery Sketches: Four Shows for First Friday in December

Work by Emma Ginsberg brightens the walls at Zip 37 tonight.
Plenty of Denver galleries will kick off December with shows of small and affordable art for the holidays. But there's much more to see this First Friday, and it's a good night to venture from the downtown area, where the Parade of Lights will create gridlock and parking nightmares, and hit one of the nearby arts districts, where you'll find illuminating work and maybe even a parking spot. Here are four suggestions:

See also: Gary Isaacs Offers 36 Looks at the Lion's Lair -- With the Denver Broncos UK Live at Leon

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Gary Isaacs Offers 36 Looks at the Lion's Lair -- With the Denver Broncos UK Live at Leon

Gary Isaacs
Over the time that Gary Isaacs has been photographing Denver landmarks, he's become something of a local landmark himself. The photographer has a show up at Leon Gallery, 36 Views of the Lion's Lair, which runs through January 4. As Isaacs recalls the inspiration for the series,he was just back from visiting an uncle in New York City, and "I was walking past the Lion's Lair for the zillionth time when it spontaneously occurred to me that it might be interesting to make a series of photographs all anchored by at least some portion of the Lion's Lair facade.... It's as simple as that. These images are photographs of both the Lion's Lair itself and of moments visually sandwiched between myself and the facade of the Lion's Lair."

See also: Leon and NIne More Unexpected Places to Throw Your Holiday Party

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The Mayday Experiment: Tiny House, Big Community

The tiny house outside City, O'City.
I recently had a conversation with a painter who has had, from my estimation, a great career. He's been gifted with museum shows, his work is in big collections, and his exhibitions have always met with critical acclaim. I don't feel that I've had a shabby career myself -- far from it -- but if I were to compare myself to him, I could only find my accomplishments lacking.

He urged me to find a way to stay in Denver. "You just need to make more money," he said, "It's not that hard." I retorted, "Is my job to make more money or make more art?" But he has a point -- staying in booming Denver requires making more money, which is something I'm not always great at. I'm often so busy with passion projects that I don't have time to focus on making money in the traditional sense, but I always part because I believe that somehow, if I work hard, the universe will provide what I need. And it usually does.

See also:
The Mayday Experiment -- a Tiny House Becomes a Home

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Photos: Homegrown Comix and Cartoonists at the Cowtown Comics Fest

The local comics community set up tables last Sunday at Morey Middle School for the Cowtown Comics Festival, an all-Colorado artist expo that featured everything from hand-stapled zines to hardback graphic novels. Photographer Nicki Lamson was there, and brought back these images and more from the low-key fest.

See also: Another 100 Colorado Creatives: Noah Van Sciver

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