UPCOMING EVENTS

Find out what we’ll be showing at the Modbo soon. Check out artists, plan your night in Colorado Springs, and be the first in line to buy the best pieces!

November’s First Friday: Texture, by Susan Tormoen

November’s First Friday: Texture, by Susan Tormoen

The Modbo presents November’s First Friday: Texture: New Art by Susan Tormoen.  The opening reception is from 5:00 pm until midnight on Friday, November 2nd. The show runs through Friday, November 23rd. The Modbo is located in the Arts Alley in downtown Colorado Springs at 17C E. Bijou. Find the stretch of Bijou that is between Cascade and Tejon, and go south down the alley. Street parking is available, but The Modbo recommends the lot on Cascade just north of Bijou, which is only $1 after 3 pm. The Modbo can be reached at themodbo@gmail.com, themodbo.com, or 633-4240.

Colorado Springs artist Susan Tormen initially studied philosophy at Carleton College and Lake Forest College.  As she was finishing those studies as a young mother, she took a few art classes. At that point, Tormoen focused on watercolor, but after moving here from Wisconsin and taking a workshop from Pueblo artist Fran Dodd, she became enamored of pastel.  She loved the colors and the what became possible with the stroke of a pastel stick. Recently, however, Tormoen renewed her acquaintance with oil, and the pallet knife as her instrument of choice. Says Tormoen, “The visual impact of color is the main objective of my work.  I use complimentary colors often to facilitate this, and I depend exclusively on a pallet knife to apply them. If I mix my colors from a tube of paint, I do so only partially, leaving streaks of pure color in the stoke.” In this new body of work, “Texture,” the artist has applied layers upon layers of paint, leaving some of the original color to show through.  She has taken advantage of the texture of the first application, and the way the knife glides over tisi with its new color. The result is a visual impact on the viewer which hopefully achieves a pleasure similar to the artist’s satisfaction in the work.

The Mussorgsky Project: Pictures at an Exhibition Reimagined

The Mussorgsky Project: Pictures at an Exhibition Reimagined

The Modbo presents October’s First Friday: The Mussorgsky Project: Pictures at an Exhibition Reimagined, with art by Phil Lear and musical collaborations throughout the month.  The opening reception is from 5:00 pm until midnight on Friday, October 5th. The show runs through Friday, October 26th. There will be live musical collaborations on First Friday, Friday the 19th, and Friday the 26th.  The Modbo is located in the Arts Alley in downtown Colorado Springs at 17C E. Bijou. Find the stretch of Bijou that is between Cascade and Tejon, and go south down the alley. Street parking is available, but The Modbo recommends the lot on Cascade just north of Bijou, which is only $1 after 3 pm. The Modbo can be reached at themodbo@gmail.com, themodbo.com, or 633-4240.

Russian composer Modest Mussorgsky wrote his famous piece, “Pictures at an Exhibition,” in 1874.  An artist friend named Viktor Hartmann had just died suddenly, and plunged into despair, Mussorgsky and other friends of Hartmann staged a memorial exhibition of hundreds of Hartmann’s works.  This became the inspiration for Mussorgky’s composition. The much beloved classical piece was originally written for solo piano, but quickly after its premiere was orchestrated by Maurice Ravel, and then rearranged for other instruments in countless versions over the years.  

For such a well known piece, gallerist and classical pianist Lauren Ciborowski has always found it to be a bit odd that the works by Hartmann which inspired it are… not terribly interesting.  In her opinion. Says Ciborowski, “They aren’t bad, per se, but nothing about them seems awe-inspiring enough to have sparked such creative genius in Mussorgsky.” It is out of that musing that Ciborowski decided to embark on a pet project that she’s always wanted to do– showing an exhibit of art more worthy of Pictures at an Exhibition.  She sought out acclaimed local painter Phil Lear, and he agreed to take on this unusual project.

Says Lear, “It’s always exciting to see one branch of the arts inspire another. A painting inspires a piece of music which, with this project, inspires another painting. For me what’s great about “Pictures” is the new character of each movement. It’s like a collection of short stories.

Creating work for this project obviously has involved listening to the same music over and over. I’ve tried to avoid any connection to the original paintings that the composer drew from, and been moved simply by the emotion and visual imagery I get from Modest’s pieces. In particular I’ll replay different versions of, say, “The Gnome” until I get a concrete vision of what sort of scene I see this music accompanying.  Sometimes it’s felt like putting a score to a Looney Tunes adventure. The movements are so varied – theatrical, serene, sometimes almost menacing – that it hasn’t been difficult to explore a different mood in each piece for this project. Throughout I’ve tried to keep a similar playfulness to the work, and attempted to give it all a feeling of old Russia to acknowledge its origins.”

To incorporate the musical element of this collaboration, Ciborowski has programmed three nights of music.  On First Friday, October 5th, between 5 and midnight you will hear classical performances by Jeremy Van Hoy accompanied by Lauren Ciborowski, Solveig Olsen (who will premier a new vocal arrangement written by Mark Arnest with Lyrics by Nico Wilkinson), The First Congregational Church handbell choir, led by Mandy Todd, and The Catamount Quintet.  The second evening of music will be on Friday, October 19th, at 7 pm, $7-$10 suggested donation. This night will feature local musicians My name is Harriett, Charlie Milo, Jeremy Facknitz, Solveig Olsen reprising the piece from First Friday, Allison Lint, and Swelter and Burn. There will be some classical performances in this evening, but mostly, you’ll have the unique opportunity to hear local players riffing on Mussorgsky in their own style.  Plus, special guest Max Ferguson will add a bit of dramatic flair to the evening. Finally, on Friday, October 26th, 7 pm, $7-$10 suggested donation, join us for a night of modern jazz with Denver musicians Paul Riola, Joshua Trinidad, Kim Stone, Ian Argys, and Michel Stahli. This performance will be livestreamed on Jazz 93.5.

Phil Lear bio:

Phil Lear has been painting professionally in the Front Range area for over a decade. He has won awards for his plein air work, and gained considerable recognition for his renderings of intriguing figurative scenes. Whether painting landscapes or narratives, he approaches his work as a story-teller.

Following an illustration-focused degree in commercial art, Phil traveled and took on various projects that nurtured his creative skills, before settling in Colorado Springs. He is honored to have his work in many private collections, as well as on view to the public through a number of business commissions.

The Small Works Show Call for Artists

The Modbo is delighted to announce a Call for Artists for its wildly popular annual Small Works Show 11, the original Colorado Springs small works exhibition!

Intake is at The Modbo and SPQR, 17B and 17C East Bijou, from 10 am until 3 pm on Saturday, November 24th, 2018.

All works must be under 24 inches in every dimension, including the frame. There will be a $4 hanging fee per each piece that is accepted (after a light jurying process). All pieces must be wired and ready to hang with two screw eyes or two D-rings on the back.

There are no restrictions on subject matter or media, though we have limited space for 3-D/non-wallhangable work.

The show will open on Friday, December 7th, 2018 in both The Modbo and its adjoining gallery, S.P.Q.R., and will run through January 11th.

Questions? Email themodbo@gmail.com or leave a message at 633-4240.

September’s First Friday at The Modbo: Tooth & Nail by Ashley Urban

September’s First Friday at The Modbo: Tooth & Nail by Ashley Urban

The Modbo presents September’s First Friday: “Tooth & Nail,” new work by Ashley Urban.  An L.A.-based artist, Urban’s show will feature a panoply of media, from drawings and paintings to wearable art, replete with an element of installation.  The opening reception is from 5:00 pm until midnight on Friday, September 7th. The show runs through Friday, September 28th. The Modbo is located in the Arts Alley in downtown Colorado Springs at 17C E. Bijou. Find the stretch of Bijou that is between Cascade and Tejon, and go south down the alley. Street parking is available, but The Modbo recommends the lot on Cascade just north of Bijou, which is only  $1 after 3 pm. The Modbo can be reached at themodbo@gmail.com, themodbo.com, or 633-4240.

‘Tooth & Nail’:

This body of work is an homage to the ways in which the artist has learned to cope with, heal from, and grow gracefully from the traumatic events of her life and the human experience of misery which she used to believe defined her. Learning to transform out of an existence that felt hopeless, victimized, pessimistic, self loathing, and damaged beyond repair, she has fought tooth and nail to develop a deeply intentional moral philosophy; that pain and creativity can be used as a fuel to feed the flames of healing and higher being. The philosophy of ‘Tooth & Nail’ also concludes that we must acknowledge and accept the beasts that are our inner sufferings. However, it is necessary to diligently tame them with ravenous creative expression, appreciation for nature, the pursuit of knowledge, forgiveness, gratitude, integrity, respect and empathy, the endeavor to inspire others, fierce exploration of the unknown outside of and within our own psyches, the release of ego, and sharp focus on the discipline of continually growing rather than living in fear. Ultimately, this starts with finding and holding onto love and tenderness for one’s self. Mother nature and the natural order of the world is vicious. And even more vicious can be the way that we treat ourselves, however, once we learn to look at this harsh existence and our own beings in a compassionate and artistic way, there lies a whole universe of stunning beauty within pain, loss, decay, and the growth that stems from it all.

About the artist:

Since 2013, Ashley Urban has lived and created in downtown Los Angeles. Raised in the seclusion of Pike National forest of Colorado, she constantly marveled at the endless beauties, delicacies and dangers of mother nature, creating within her a deep connection to the natural realm, which is ever present in her many creative processes.  

Through creative expression and exploration of ourselves and our surroundings, she concludes that we can all become more emotionally sophisticated individuals, and draw light from our inner darkness, while shedding this light onto the people in our lives. She is currently developing an all-encompassing philosophy and brand, through her fine art, illustration, mixed media design and photography, to her way of dress and her various involvements in the fashion industry, her advocacy for cultural and self exploitation, and ultimately through the way she believes in treating other human beings, into what she calls ‘The Art of Style’. This philosophy states that style is not simply exclusive to fashion and what one wears. Rather, style is exhibited in the details of all of our creative choices. Style is the way we construct and implement positive moral values unto ourselves, unto nature and unto others. Style is using our creative freedoms to heal ourselves. Style is to make every movement through life a work of art. Style is to appreciate and seek out the beauty within the smallest details of our environments. And ultimately, style is striving to make consistent positive impacts on the world. Through ‘The Art of Style’, she wishes to not only share her numerous artistic visions, but to encourage and inspire others to thoroughly investigate the world around them and their individual creative callings.

August’s First Friday at The Modbo: The Ocean Between the Waves by Shannon Dunn

August’s First Friday at The Modbo: The Ocean Between the Waves by Shannon Dunn

The Modbo presents August’s First Friday: “The Ocean Between the Waves,” new work by Shannon Dunn.  The opening reception is from 5:00 pm until midnight on Friday, August 3rd. The show runs through Friday, August 31st, and there will be a free artist’s talk at 5:30 on the 31st. The Modbo is located in the Arts Alley in downtown Colorado Springs at 17C E. Bijou. Find the stretch of Bijou that is between Cascade and Tejon, and go south down the alley. Street parking is available, but The Modbo recommends the lot on Cascade just north of Bijou, which is only  $1 after 3 pm. The Modbo can be reached at themodbo@gmail.com, themodbo.com, or 633-4240.

In the painting series, “The Ocean Between the Waves,” Shannon Dunn explores the human experience mirrored through the metaphor of water. The same water that covers 70% of planet earth composes up to 70% of the human body. Humans have a connection with the ocean in both a physical and spiritual way. Water has the ability to both reflect and distort reality.  The ocean encompasses a host of opposites that mirror life: Fear and Fascination, Light and Dark, Reflection and Reality, Surface and Depth, Life and Death. Through this series, the artist aims to inspire the viewer to look deeper past the surface of life to see what lies beneath.

A Chicago-area native, Shannon Dunn attended Illinois State University where she studied Art and Education.  Shannon’s painting style is inspired by her background in printmaking and her love for stylized, simplified drawings.  Never one to stick to a single medium, Shannon paints in oils, ink, acrylic, and resin. While her work is largely focused on the human figure, she draws inspiration from the natural world, observations of social behavior and her spiritual beliefs. Shannon’s work has been shown in various exhibitions throughout the Pikes Peak Region.  She currently resides in Colorado Springs, CO with her husband and two children.

 

July’s First Friday at The Modbo: Up in Smoke by Jann Vail

July’s First Friday at The Modbo: Up in Smoke by Jann Vail

The Modbo presents July’s First Friday: “Up in Smoke,” a show of humorous fiber art and mixed media by Jann Vail. The opening reception is from 5:00 pm until midnight on Friday, July 6th. The show runs through Friday, July 27th. Additionally, TILLIVERY, Till’s chef-prepared food delivery service, will be offering tastings of their new menu during the opening reception– savory items at SPQR, dessert at The Modbo. The Modbo is located in the Arts Alley in downtown Colorado Springs at 17C E. Bijou. Find the stretch of Bijou that is between Cascade and Tejon, and go south down the alley. Street parking is available, but The Modbo recommends the lot on Cascade just north of Bijou, which is only  $1 after 3 pm. The Modbo can be reached at themodbo@gmail.com, themodbo.com, or 633-4240.

Born in Walsenburg, Colorado, as the middle child in a family of seven children, Jann Vail discovered and fell in love with ceramics in college.  While on summer break one year, she got a job in a ceramics studio working for the woman who would eventually become her mother-in-law. Shortly thereafter, Jann and her husband Tom (also an artist) moved to Los Angeles, where he was going to school, and where she got a job on Rodeo Drive.  This didn’t last for long; soon the Vails left for Berkeley to live with friends who were working in the art studios at the University. The art scene was thrilling, and Jann was happy to be a part of it, learning and working in many different media. Including, interestingly enough, food– at one point, Jann and a friend had a home business called Chubbies Bakery where they catered openings and sold cookies at fairs while dressed in costume.  1974 saw the Vails moving back to Colorado to raise three beautiful girls, and they’ve now been married for fifty years.

About “Up in Smoke”:

“It all started with a cigar box.  I have a collection of cigar boxes and miniatures, and one day I said, ‘I need to do something with these cigar boxes.’  At the time, I was into knitting, and one cigar led to another and another and another. If I can knit cigars, why not try to make some fiber cigarettes, so I did.  Then came the ashtrays, and thus “Up in Smoke” came about. This show is a representation of some of the things I like working with– small things, yarn and boxes. I can’t say I have a “vision” or deep thoughts about the things I make, but one thing for sure, I find myself chuckling when I place a felted cigarette into a vintage ashtray.  Might as well have fun making art– a sense of humor about art is what works for me.” –Jann Vail

June’s First Friday at The Modbo: REMIX, REWORK, REFRAME by Cymon Padilla

June’s First Friday at The Modbo: REMIX, REWORK, REFRAME by Cymon Padilla

The Modbo presents June’s First Friday: “REMIX, REWORK, REFRAME” by Cymon Padilla. The opening reception is from 5:00 pm until midnight on Friday, June 1st with live music by My Name Is Harriett at 9 pm. The show runs through Friday, June 29th. The Modbo is located in the Arts Alley in downtown Colorado Springs at 17C E. Bijou. Find the stretch of Bijou that is between Cascade and Tejon, and go south down the alley. 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.

REMIX, REWORK, REFRAME is a continuation of Cymon Padilla’s series on the work of artist Jean-Auguste-Dominque Ingres, and also includes several new paintings which explore themes of nostalgia, memory, history, and pop culture.  NIneteenth century French neoclassical artist Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres drew and painted portraits which possess subtle anatomical distortions, simultaneously giving his figures a sense of vitality as well as an otherworldly cartoonishness. In this series, Padilla pays homage to Ingres by pushing those distortions near the breaking point. The figures are warped and collaged with digital tools, and then painted using traditional methods employed by Ingres in his own time. Not only is the figurative/spatial axis distorted, but also the temporal one — mixed with portraits of French nobility already dead by the late 1800’s are products from twentieth century advertising, fragments of cartoons from Padilla’s own childhood, and visual elements pulled from digital culture.  Each piece in this series is a lense through which we can appreciate the artistic achievements of the past and also a mirror that reflects our own disorienting present.

Cymon Padilla was born and raised in Colorado Springs and has had a lifelong interest in drawing and painting. These interests crystallized in his first oil painting class at Pikes Peak Community College,  where he received his Associate of Arts degree in 2012. His work exploits traditional oil painting techniques to explore the worlds of art history and pop culture.

 

May’s First Friday at The Modbo: Perceptual Set by Jess Preble

May’s First Friday at The Modbo: Perceptual Set by Jess Preble

The Modbo presents May’s First Friday: “Perceptual Set” by Jess Preble. The opening reception is from 5:00 pm until midnight on Friday, May 4th. The show runs through Friday, May 25th, with a free artist’s talk at 5:30 on that night. The Modbo is located in the Arts Alley in downtown Colorado Springs at 17C E. Bijou. Find the stretch of Bijou that is between Cascade and Tejon, and go south down the alley. 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 show: “Perceptual set” is a phrase used to describe our tendency to unconsciously censor the world around us to suit our expectations. We generally see what we want or expect to see. Our current world’s sociological and political climate is no exception to this rule. Flooded by sensory input that is algorithmically filtered by our own actions, it becomes effortless to slip into a spiral of reciprocating perception. “Perceptual Set” is an analysis of the macro and micro: minuscule viruses that wiped out populations, a sweeping vista of our small planet from space, nebulae where stars and life are born, and a few of the seven wonders of the world– some of our greatest architectural achievements dwarfed in size by the precious brevity of our fragile existence. It is important to consider how small we are, and rejoice in our fleeting place in the universe.

Born in Greeley, Colorado in 1988, Jess Preble has spent time studying art in San Francisco, Austin, TX, and Colorado. Although working primarily in oil paint, her artistic experience ranges across all mediums of creation, and also includes a background in curating and teaching. She now resides in Colorado Springs and is available for private commissions or gallery collection proposals.

The Joshua Trinidad Trio at The Modbo

The Joshua Trinidad Trio at The Modbo

The Modbo presents a rare late afternoon of jazz featuring the Joshua Trinidad Trio on Sunday, April 15th, at 5 pm (doors at 4:30), $7-10 suggested donation.  This show has limited seating, and tickets are first come, first served. Rooted in Scandinavian jazz and traditional Mexican music, Joshua Trinidad, along with Jacob Young and Ståle Solberg combine a richness of music that is truly original, acoustic and progressive. The Trio explores sounds ranging from ambient soundscape sounds to traditional straight-head jazz.

The Modbo is located in the Arts Alley in downtown Colorado Springs at 17C E. Bijou.  The Modbo is located in the Arts Alley in downtown Colorado Springs at 17C E. Bijou. Find the stretch of Bijou that is between Cascade and Tejon, and go south down the alley. Street parking is available, but The Modbo recommends the lot on Cascade just north of Bijou, which is only a $1 on weekends. The Modbo can be reached at themodbo@gmail.com, themodbo.com, or 633-4240.

Rooted in Scandinavian jazz and traditional Mexican music, Joshua Trinidad (trumpet), along with Jacob Young (guitar) and Ståle Solberg (drums) combine a richness of music that is truly original, acoustic and progressive. The Trio explores sounds ranging from ambient soundscape sounds to traditional straight-head jazz.

The Joshua Trinidad Trio recently signed to RareNoise Records in the UK/Italy. They recorded their record in Giske Norway in the world renowned Ocean Sound Studios. The project was engineered by Henning Svoren. The name of the new release is “In November”. While the album explores a variety of sounds, the Trio takes the listener on a journey that reflects the pilgrimage that these three gentlemen explored while recording in the northern region of Norway.

The Joshua Trinidad Trio is truly a unique group of musicians that only comes along once in a lifetime.  Denver-based trumpeter-composer Joshua Trinidad makes a strikingly original statement on his RareNoise Records debut, In November. Recorded in Giske, Norway, this highly evocative trio outing features the adventurous Norwegian guitarist-composer and ECM recording artist Jacob Young and drummer Stale Liavik Solberg, a central figure on Oslo’s improvising music scene. Brimming with deep and winding lyricism, Trinidad’s elegiac seventh album as a leader is a compelling mix of bold long tones on trumpet, atmospheric guitaristry, fluid melodic invention and daring group improv, all delivered with rare authority by the three intrepid improvisers. From the minor key rubato opener “Beside” to the melancholy soundscape “Bell (Hymn)” to a darkly entrancing “The Attic” and the stirring title track, Trinidad and his empathetic crew of deep listeners show respect toward space and silence on these spellbinding noirish numbers.”

Website: www.joshuatrinidad.com

RareNoise Records: https://www.rarenoiserecords.com/joshua-trinidad

Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E1xr-O_hOCA

 

April’s First Friday: Envisage by Nicole Beck

April’s First Friday: Envisage by Nicole Beck

The Modbo presents April’s First Friday: a gorgeous show of female portraiture by Nicole Beck entitled “Envisage.” The opening reception is from 5:00 pm until midnight on Friday, April 6th.  The show runs through Friday, April 27th.  The Modbo is located in the Arts Alley in downtown Colorado Springs at 17C E. Bijou.  Find the stretch of Bijou that is between Cascade and Tejon, and go south down the alley. 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.

In her new series, Nicole Beck seeks to present to the viewer two views of female portraiture, blending the modern and contemporary. Long a major source of inspiration for artists, women are generally depicted as either beacons of innocence or liberation: Saint or Siren. Beck’s paintings explore individuality, leaving the viewer freedom in how they wish to view the subjects in each painting. As a collection of paintings of self, friends, family and acquaintances, the painter tries to infuse respect for individuality and identity into each piece.

Nicole Beck, from Memphis Tennessee, is a recent addition to the Colorado Springs art community, beginning to establish her painting career soon after moving into the area. She originally earned a minor in fine art at Mississippi State University, where she was blessed to sit under painting and drawing instructors who continue to be an influence in her creative process. Recently establishing a permanent drawing/ painting studio in the city, Nicole continues to primarily explore portraiture, figure studies, and abstract experimentalism. When not painting, Nicole works part-time as a NICU nurse, and enjoys cooking, reading, and wandering around CO with her husband and Tamaskan dog.