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Denver Arts & Venues is pleased to present three new Spring exhibitions at McNichols Civic Center Building, with several exhibition-related events, including a new Cultural Fashion Runway Series tied to exhibition themes.

“Often clothing and accessory design are overlooked as artistic mediums, but through fashion, we can explore cultural themes in an accessible way,” said Shanna Shelby, Denver Arts & Venues program administrator and curator of McNichols Building exhibitions. “Our hope is that with the Cultural Fashion Runway Series, we not only elevate fashion as an artform and celebrate emerging designers, but that we also spark interest in how design is tied to the themes of our seasonal exhibitions here at McNichols Building.”

Imperfect Pixels and Imperfect Union (First Floor), Jan. 20-April 23, is an exhibition of two bodies of work by artist and community designer, Travis Sheridan. “Imperfect Pixels” consists of pixelated portraits of members of our Black community, recently killed. These portraits highlight our collective lost potential, and viewers are asked to take time to reflect how, with their deaths, the personal stories of each subject have become distorted. “Imperfect Union” asks viewers to consider how the five promises laid out in the Preamble to the US Constitution --  justice, domestic tranquility, common defense, general welfare and the blessings of liberty -- are distorted and unfulfilled. https://www.mcnicholsbuilding.com/exhibitions/detail/imperfect-pixels-and-imperfect-union- 

Zen Gardens from Kyoto to Denver: The Photography of William Corey and Scott Dressel-Martin (Boettcher Cultural Pavilion, Second Floor), Jan. 20-May 1, celebrates the beauty of Japanese Zen gardens through the photographic medium. The dramatic, large-format photographs of the late William Corey are rich with color and composition. Scott Dressel-Martin, long-time Denver Botanic Gardens photographer, captures the beauty of the changing seasons in the Gardens’ Shofu-En Japanese Garden. https://www.mcnicholsbuilding.com/exhibitions/detail/zen-gardens-from-kyoto-to-denver--the-photography-of-william-corey-and-scott-dressel-martin 

Tomorrow is a New Day: The Artwork of Lauren Iida and Morn Chear (Third Floor), Jan. 20-May 1. “Tomorrow is a new day” is a popular Cambodian proverb with a message of optimistic perseverance through times of adversity. The artwork in this exhibition features deeply personal work from Open Studio Cambodia block print artist, Morn Chear, and Open Studio Cambodia founder and Japanese American papercut artist, Lauren Iida. Each has used art as a powerful tool to heal and grow, and express their valuable and unique points of view. https://www.mcnicholsbuilding.com/exhibitions/detail/tomorrow-is-a-new-day--the-artwork-of-lauren-iida-and-morn-chear 

“This exhibition is a wonderful opportunity to introduce our artwork to Denver, and we are so grateful for the opportunity to share our artwork at the McNichols Building,” said Open Studio Cambodia founder and artist Lauren Iida. “We hope that by promoting healing from the unjust incarceration of Japanese Americans during WWII and confronting the stigma of disability through art, this exhibition increases awareness about what Open Studio Cambodia does. ‘Tomorrow is a New Day’ offers a message of hope and resilience in these difficult times, and we strongly believe in the power of art to carry that important message far and wide.” 

The McNichols Building exhibitions are open daily from 8 a.m.-5 p.m. and Denver Arts & Venues has several exhibit-related events for those interested in learning more about the artworks and artists featured. 

Virtual Tour of “Imperfect Pixels” and “Imperfect Union,” guided by artist Travis Sheridan – Friday, Feb. 11, noon: Join Denver Arts & Venues on Facebook for a live tour of the McNichols Building’s first floor exhibits, “Imperfect Pixels” and “Imperfect Union,” guided by artist Travis Sheridan. FREE.

Tomorrow is a New Day: Virtual Discussion with Lauren Iida – Tuesday, March 1, noon: Join Shanna Shelby, Denver Arts & Venues, and Open Studio Cambodia founder, Lauren Iida, for a virtual discussion about Open Studio Cambodia and the artwork featured in "Tomorrow is a New Day: The Artwork of Lauren Iida and Morn Chear." Lauren will touch on her artistic practice, including social practice art, mentoring emerging Cambodian artists and her public art career. The event will also include a short video by Morn Chear. FREE. 

William Corey’s Zen Gardens: Virtual Discussion with Reimi Adachi Corey – Monday, March 7, 4:30 p.m.: Join Shanna Shelby, Denver Arts & Venues, and Reimi Adachi Corey, wife of the late William Corey, in a discussion about "Zen Gardens from Kyoto to Denver: The Photography of William Corey and Scott Dressel-Martin." Reimi will discuss William's inspiration and photographic methods, as well as share the stories behind the photographs chosen for the exhibition. 

Arts & Venues Cultural Fashion Runway Series: Mottainai – Saturday, March 12, doors, 7 p.m., runway show, 9 p.m.: The inaugural Cultural Fashion Runway Series event highlights the Japanese concept of mottainai, encompassing the idea of respecting resources rather than wasting excessively. Through her studio, ARAE, local designer Rachel Lavine exemplifies this practice in her design development. Levine is a textile artist with a focus on shibori and fabric dyeing techniques, which she uses for her signature, one-of-a-kind, art-to-wear collection. This sustainable fashion runway show will also showcase vintage kimonos from the Nikkei Treasures collection. Prior to the runway show, attendees are invited to peruse the wabi-sabi vendor marketplace which will feature local artists from across Colorado. Tickets go on sale Friday, Feb. 4, 10 a.m. at AXS.com, $6.35-$44.80.