'PINK PROGRESSION: COLLABORATIONS'
Part 3: 'In a Glade'
By Julia Rymer and Drew Austin
‘This exhibition allows for a wide-reaching visual representation of the current political, ecological and historic moment we live in’
By John Moore, Senior Arts Journalist
The Arvada Center has opened its first major in-person event since the COVID19 shutdown began in mid-March, the long-planned “Pink Progression: Collaborations,” running through November 8.
The exhibit, which has taken over all three of the Arvada Center's indoor galleries and spans 10,000 square feet, features more than 120 mostly Colorado-based artists of all gender identities working in groups of up to four in celebration of the upcoming 100th anniversary of the passage of the 19th Amendment.
Ratified on August 18, 1920, the 19th Amendment guarantees and protects women's right to vote. But this timely exhibit also explores the complex and ongoing struggle for universal suffrage in today's cultural context.
Over the next few days, we are spotlighting four collaborating artist teams, and their contributions to "Pink Progression."
TODAY’S FEATURED COLLABORATION:
'IN A GLADE'
Julia Rymer and Drew Austin
Littleton and Denver
'Voting is a fundamental right that we should continue to fight for, so that it is easily accessible to all people.'
- Tell us about your piece: It's a multi-media installation that combines projected video and sound, along with artist-created textiles and sculptural works, to explore the relationship between the natural landscape and synthetic space. Nature is the backbone of our work, in which we utilize unique creative processes and inorganic materials to recreate a naturally occurring environment in the gallery context.
- What materials did you use? Video and sound, wind, botanical eco-prints on silk with hand embroidery and ink painting, textiles, found leaves, mylar and papier-mache. (Pictured, from left: Drew Austin and Julia Rymer.)
- What are your themes? In bringing natural elements and references into a human-constructed environment, we ask how the viewer responds to the experience of nature in such a clean, white gallery space. Are there ways in which we as humans can learn about the environment and connect with it through the re-creation and the re-contextualization of the natural world?
- What did you learn about collaboration? While our individual work as artists is similar in theme, we have very different processes and work with a wide variety of materials. Collaborating involved combining these visions and processes in a kind of alchemy that allowed something truly unique to unfold, resulting in exciting new “1+1=3” successes. The additional layer of COVID just meant that we had to think and communicate differently about how we can share ideas, successes, failures, and questions with each other.
- What does achieving "suffrage" mean to you in today’s context? We reflect on how far we have come as a society, and how much work remains to ensure equal rights for all. Women’s suffrage was a remarkable achievement that took decades of hard work, effort and persistence around the world. Though American women were granted the right to vote in 1920, this accomplishment is clouded by the fact that Black women were subject to voting restrictions in the South until the Voting Rights Act of 1965. To this day, we continue to see voter suppression efforts across the United States that specifically target minority communities. Voting gives citizens a voice in effecting change in their community, and it is a fundamental right that we should continue to fight for, so that it is easily accessible to all people.
- What, to you, is the cumulative impact of "Pink Progression"? This exhibition comes at the perfect time, and though it may not be the best capacity to view art, the limited access and personal relationship you can have with each work makes this show all the more stronger. Not only combining a diverse range of artists, but then combining those voices together into small groups, this exhibition allows for a wide-reaching visual representation of the current political, ecological and historic moment we live in.
- Last words? Nature has a powerful effect on us as humans. It is our hope that this piece can provide a respite from the busy day-to-day stress and complexity of contemporary life, while at the same time probing the viewers’ relationship to the natural world.
- Visit their web sites: Drew Austin and Julia Rymer.
“Pink Progression” rose out of the 2017 Womxn's March (pictured at right) to inspire social change and explore ideas of feminism, equality, inclusivity, gender identity, unity, and community through creative expression. Participating artists fused their narratives into multidimensional works ranging from site-specific installations, video, performance and traditional fine arts.
“ 'Progression' refers to the hope for progress in the issues that we explore, as well as progressing away from prejudice and erroneous stereotypes,” said curator and artist Anna Kaye. In an interview with 5280 Magazine, she added: “The theme of collaboration was really important because it inspires social change. Nobody can create social change unless they have support.”
John Moore was named one of the 12 most influential theater critics in the U.S. by American Theatre Magazine during his time at The Denver Post. He also is the founder of The Denver Actors Fund, and is now contributing reports on the arts community for ArvadaCenter.Org. Reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
READ THE FULL SERIES:
- PART 2: Jina Brenneman + Margaret Kasahara
- PART 3: Julia Rymer + Drew Austin
- PART 4: Sangeeta Reddy and Jodie Roth Cooper
'PINK PROGRESSION' PARTICIPATING ARTISTS:
- Deidre Adams + Brooke Atherton
- Judy Anderson + Ginny Hoyle + Christopher Hecker
- Theresa Anderson + Alicia Ordal + Kim Shively
- Tya Alisa Anthony + Kim Putnam
- Fawn Atencio + Bonnie Stolzmann + Sarah Wallace Scott
- Mindy Bray + Tonia Bonnell
- Trine Bumiller + Kathryn Winograd
- Katie Caron + Lisa DiMichele
- Irene Delka McCray + Tree Bernstein
- Sally Elliott + Katie Elliott/3rd Law Dance + L. Ashwyn Corris
- Corrina Espinosa + Elisa Groglio + Joanna Bugajska
- Bonnie Ferrill Roman + Judy Gardner
- Ashley Frazier + Becky Wareing Steele
- Steven Frost + Frankie Toan
- Sarah Fukami + Brooky Blunt + Nico Wilkinson
- Melissa Furness + Rian Kerrane
- Jennifer Ghormley + Victoria Eubanks
- Ania Gola Kumor + Leah Swenson
- Susan Goldstein + Gayla Lemke
- Moe Gram + Grow Love
- Jane Guthridge + Voices of Light Chamber Choir
- Kim Harrell + Lynda Ladwig
- Ana Maria Hernando + Amie Knox
- Veronica Hererra + Lola Montejo
- Deborah Howard + Laurel McMechan
- Micaela Ironshell-Dominguez + Renee Chacon-Millard
- Rochelle Johnson + Sylvia Montero
- Samara Johnson + Alanna Lacey + Samantha Bares
- Tsehai Johnson + Leslie D. Boyd
- Margaret Kasahara + Jina Brenneman
- Anna Kaye + Sarah Wallace Scott
- Sammy Lee + Megan Gafford
- Jessica Loving + Rachel Doniger
- Marsha Mack + John Roemer
- Virginia Maitland + Melanie Walker + George Peters
- Julie Maren + Jessica Drenk
- Laleh Mehran + Jayne Butler
- Susanne Mitchell + Janelle W. Anderson
- Sophie Lynn Morris + Hannah Untiedt
- Jennifer Pettus + Rebecca Vaughan
- Sandra Phillips + Virginia Folkestad
- Julie Puma + Patricia Mclnroy
- Sangeeta Reddy + Jodie Roth Cooper
- Susan Rubin + Peter Illig
- Martha Russo + Tina Suszynski + Anna Suszynski + Emma Hardy
- Julia Rymer + Drew Austin
- Dylan Scholinski + Daphne Scholinski
- Sue Simon + Mark Brasuell
- The Great Shout
- Autumn T. Thomas + Tricia Waddell
- Susan Vaho + Elaine Stires
- Sherry Wiggins + Luís Filipe Branco
- Kate Woodliff O’Donnell + Stacey Stormes
- Belgin Yucelen + Anne Waldman + Akin Koksal