Labyrinth theme inspires interpretations

Own an Original exhibit runs through end of year

Sonya Ellingboe
sellingboe@coloradocommunitymedia.com
Posted 11/15/22

The Littleton Museum’s gallery holds a varied collection of paintings and sculptures now through Dec. 31. It’s the 57th annual Own An Original exhibit, labeled a “thematic fine art …

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Labyrinth theme inspires interpretations

Own an Original exhibit runs through end of year

Posted

The Littleton Museum’s gallery holds a varied collection of paintings and sculptures now through Dec. 31. It’s the 57th annual Own An Original exhibit, labeled a “thematic fine art competition” by the Littleton Fine Arts Board. It was open to artists working in any medium except photography and the theme chosen by the board was “Labyrinth.”

The exhibit includes 35 paintings and sculptures, selected by juror Molly Casey of Nine Dot Arts, a consultant and curator who advises clients about collecting art. She and her business partner have offices in Denver and elsewhere and contacts with thousands of artists in the U.S. and internationally. She has a painting near the entrance and says “inspiration comes from places where the natural world meets human interference.”

The Best of Show award went to Niri Cath for “The Park,” an acrylic painting on a panel depicting a parking structure — “an unhappy replacement for an ancient lake.” Cath wrote: “in my work, I reflect not only on the impact we have on the fragility of nature, but also on the consequences that our attitudes towards the world around us have on our own psyches.” Coloration is low-key and subtle. No way out of this dilemma, it would seem.

First Place was awarded to Randall Steinke for his colorful “Keyhole,” showing a woman trying to spy on someone else, rendered in bright colors. “I paint in a figurative expressionistic style, using bold, vibrant colors,” he wrote. Bright turquoise, yellows, reds, purples sing out on this and his “Broken.”

Second Place went to Stacy Roberts’ “Hidden Place,” executed in soft pastel. “To me, the labyrinth represented the inner journey with all the convoluted paths and blind alleys,” she wrote.

Third Place was awarded to John Long for “imaginary time,” painted with acrylic paints on corrugated cardboard. Perhaps a suggestion of tree rings? Oranges, purples, lavender on a mottled blue and green base.

Honorable Mentions included Emily Lamb’s “Enlightenment,’ a classic Greek head, with glistening bits of glass around the open crown and inside, a blown glass orb nestled in an ephemeral bubble “like thoughts contained in a vortex,” Lamb wrote, “representing our inner mind trying to narrow down.” Her technique includes Pate de verre handblown glass. Also winning an Honorable Mention was Elizabeth Morrisette’s “Lean in,” created with multicolored sewn zippers in a form that has collapsed to one side.

This exhibit is fun for a visitor to contemplate as one tries to interpret a given artist’s intentions.

Back in the early Littleton Fine Art Committee days, members hoped that some items from this exhibit would find their way into local homes as holiday gifts. Readers might hold that thought as they visit the Own an Original show. There are some really special pieces there.

The Littleton Museum at 6028 S. Gallup St. is open Tuesdays through Sundays. 303-795-3950. (And the attractive museum shop holds a lot of smaller treasures ...)

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