We got Golds in the Indy Best Of 2011′

A big thank you to all that voted for us this year in the annual Colorado Springs Indy Best Of.

We won Three Golds! 

1) Best Gallery

2) Best Place to See Emerging Artists

3) Best Place To Buy Art

and our own Brett Andrus took Silver for Best Artist.  We are happy, fell really good! Thank you for the support

Here is the right up from the Indy:

Place to Buy Art
Place to See Emerging Artists

The Modbo

(17C E. Bijou St., 633-4240,

It’s your basic downtown alley: potholes, trash bins, graffiti … until you get to the end that’s home to the Modbo and its companion gallery, S.P.Q.R.

That’s where, most weekends, owners Brett and Lauren Andrus pack so much art and music into the tiny buildings that colors and sounds just have to spill out into the alley.

And you, dear culture-loving readers, love to partake of the smorgasbord they offer. A recent “weeklyish” e-mail blast previewed art shows in each gallery, live music and a theater production, plus an art show Lauren helped curate for Ormao Dance Company — all in the space of about nine days. Brett also curates art exhibits for four other venues around town.

It’s worth noting that both Andruses have other jobs: She’s a piano accompanist; he’s a mortgage loan officer by day, and a painter and painting teacher by night.

Where do they get the energy? It helps that they’re still young: Lauren is 29, Brett is 33. But much of it is simply fueled by a love for and belief in the work they do.

“I just really have a passion for art and feel the necessity to encourage people,” Brett says. “It’s really cool, too, because we’re seeing people doing more collecting.”

They started Modbo in summer 2009 and S.P.Q.R. in late 2010, and the galleries are already “pretty self-sustaining,” he says. They may never get wealthy pursuing this dream, but they’re richly rewarded when they see a classical music aficionado standing next to a Mohawked kid at a concert, or when they watch people fall in love with a painting and realize they can afford it.

“We undeniably feel great about what we’re doing,” Lauren says. “I feel that, whenever one of us feels crappy about how things are going, we’ll buoy each other up.”

Adds Brett with a laugh: “I think we’re both bull-headed enough to make it work.” — RVP


An Exciting Surprise Announcement!

Brett and Lauren Andrus, owners of The Modbo, are delighted to announce their newest business venture, SPQR.  Named for the motto of the ancient Roman Republic, SPQR will be a multi-functional arts space located in the building adjacent to The Modbo in the Arts Alley District. 

Since opening The Modbo in June of 2009, Brett and Lauren have seen eager crowds of art buyers, music listeners, and poetry readers.  Art classes, taught by Brett, have also been incredibly popular, filling the small space with easels and canvases.  SPQR will allow the Andruses to expand their offerings, with art classes running concomitantly in both spaces, as well as exhibits and musical events.

“We really appreciate this opportunity,” says Lauren Andrus.   “The landlords and building manager of the Saks Building have been so kind and receptive to what we want to provide for the arts community.” Brett agrees.  “With this expansion,” he says, “we’re able to really focus on our mission of bringing high-quality arts to the community.  We’ll have additional space to teach out of and a larger variety of everything that we offer.”

A new round of classes will begin in both spaces in January, with new teachers from The Modbo Collective and a variety of subject offerings such as Figure Drawing, Introduction to Oil Painting, and more.  Information is available at

SPQR is located in the former Rubbish Gallery, at 17B East Bijou.  Brett and Lauren would especially like to acknowledge those who spent so much time and energy to make Rubbish a great arts space, including Lorelei Beckstrom, Caitlin Goebel, Carlita Trujillo, and Josh Kennard.  Without their tireless efforts, the Arts Alley District would not be what it is today. 

Although openings will continue at The Modbo, look for the grand opening of SPQR on Friday, December 10th.  The Modbo’s famed Small Works Show will open in both spaces on that evening at 5:30, for the Biggest Small Works Show Ever.  Just in time for the holidays, you can shop for art in two buildings packed to the gills with works under 24 inches.  Additionally, there will be live musical entertainment that evening by hip-hop group Pirate Signal, local indie rocker favorites HEADHUM, and the usual Modbo-esque dash of classical.  It will be a musical mash-up not to be missed!

 Brett and Lauren would like to thank the arts community for their support; without our fans and supporters, this expansion would not have been possible.  Here’s to keeping the Arts Alley District alive and well!