Steamboat Springs artist taps into left and right brain |

Steamboat Springs artist taps into left and right brain

Nicole Inglis

— When her 3-year-old daughter is asleep, Missy Borden dives inside. She takes to her art studio in Steamboat Springs and explores, through painting and collage, her creative side and her rational, reasonable nature.

A full-time mother with another child on the way, Borden, 23, isn't exactly overwhelmed with free time. But the therapeutic nature of her artwork helps her work through whatever life throws at her.

The Steamboat Springs High School graduate is the featured artist this month at the Steamboat Springs Center for Visual Arts, which will hold an opening reception for the show "Rational/Intuitive 0123456789" during First Friday Artwalk from 5 to 8 p.m. today.

Borden's new show features 16 pieces of varying sizes that use a number theme along with contemplative collage work to express the duality of the human mind.

Borden said the number theme stemmed from a painting she did for her daughter, Mya, who is just starting to learn to recognize numbers.

"I love math and I love art, and those things, they don't always go together," Borden said. But Borden said they are dependent on each other.

Recommended Stories For You

And that's where the Rational/Intuitive project evolved into an exploration of the relationship between the right and left brain, the dualism of artistic creativity and logic that Borden is discovering in herself.

She said that many people are interested in personal growth and exploration and that art can help in that process.

"I think understanding yourself and your way of thinking, it can help you with how you live your life," she said.

One of the aspects of the project is a series of small squares that each have a number surrounded by torn magazine pieces in muted white and beige. Each of the pieces has an uplifting and thoughtful title such as "Widening the Circle of Compassion" or "Awareness."

It's as if the numbers are representing steps toward a goal. But Borden said that goal isn't necessarily something specific.

"I think it's just constantly working on yourself and trying to be a better person," she said.

Center for Visual Arts executive director Linda Laughlin said she noticed Borden's talent years ago when she was taking art classes at Colorado Mountain College.

"Her work communicates to people in a strong way," Laughlin said. "It's not just a pretty picture. No one would walk by this and say, 'It's just numbers.' You want to study it."

The Center for Visual Arts is one of 16 venues on this month's artwalk.

First Friday Artwalk listings

❱❱ Artists' Gallery of Steamboat, 1009 Lincoln Ave., 970-879-4744

All-gallery show featuring oil, acrylic, watercolor paintings, monoprints, metal and wood designs, bronze and minerals sculptures, fused glass, photography and fiber arts. David Marshall's designs will be featured in the small works gallery.

❱❱ Jim Steinberg Photography/Portfolio Collection, 1016 Oak St., 970-879-3718

Jim Steinberg's hardcover books will be half off. The gallery also will feature a new series of Colorado fall photos.

❱❱ Mangelsen-Images of Nature, 730 Lincoln Ave., 970-871-1822

Thomas D. Mangelsen has long been recognized as one of the world's premier nature photographers. For more than 30 years, Mangelsen has traveled throughout the natural world photographing a diversity of ecosystems and wildlife.

❱❱ Sleeping Giant Gallery, 601 Lincoln Ave., 970-879-7143

Local art by nature photographer Don Tudor, Raku stoneware and porcelain by Brown Cannon and turned wooden bowls from beetle-kill pine by Roger Ross.

❱❱ Steamboat Art Museum, 807 Lincoln Ave., 970-870-1755

The Scott Christensen exhibit continues through Oct. 15. The Rocky Mountain Plein Air Painters show is in the museum's newly renovated space around the corner on Eighth Street.

❱❱ Steamboat Springs Center for Visual Arts, 906 Lincoln Ave., 970-846-5970

New work by more than 40 local artists from large-scale abstracts to representational paintings and photography. This month features Missy Borden and her "Rational/Intuitive 0123456789" exhibit of new paintings inspired by her exploration of right brain/left brain creativity.

❱❱ Wild Horse Gallery, 802 Lincoln Ave., 970-879-5515

Featuring the photography of Rod Hanna. Visit

❱❱ artWorks, The Victoria Building, 941 Lincoln Ave., 970-879-7596

Explore the creativity and skill of Steamboat artisans, from concrete countertops to hardware, ironwork, cabinetry, quilting, ceramics, fabrics and murals.

❱❱ Azteca Taqueria, 116 Ninth St., 970-870-9980

Featuring new work by local artist Suzy Patillo. Enjoy accompanying flute music and complimentary refreshments.

❱❱ Bust of Steamboat, Library Hall, Bud Werner Memorial Library, 1289 Lincoln Ave., 970-879-0240

Preview the "bra" entries for the 10th annual Bust of Steamboat. The Bust of Steamboat raises funds for local women in their fight against breast cancer. Learn more at

❱❱ Colorado Group Realty, 509 Lincoln Ave., 970-875-2917

Susan Corser presents a collection of framed prints of her landscape paintings. Her paintings focus on the compositions created by patterns in nature and the moods and memories the natural world evokes.

❱❱ Creekside Cafe, 131 11th St., 970-879-4925

Creekside is featuring the work of ceramic artist Deb Babcock, who is showing a variety of wall hangings, pocket vases, plates and platters in a colorful and vibrant aspen forest design.

❱❱ East West Frame Shop, in the alley at Eighth and Oak streets, 970-879-5225

Benefit for Barb Vargas: A silent auction of donated local art. $5 raffle tickets will be sold for a chance to win a $500 gift certificate from East West. Refreshments will be served.

❱❱ Harwigs/L'Apogee, 911 Lincoln Ave., 970-879-1919

Featuring Marc Kamua Woolley, a carpenter and sculptor. The artist will be showing woodworks that stem from his interest in fluid form and movement.

❱❱ Off the Beaten Path Bookstore, 68 Ninth St., 970-879-6830

Carnival Masks decorated and donated by local artists will set the tone for this opening reception for The Lowell Whiteman School's mask fundraiser.

❱❱ Urbane, 703 Lincoln Ave., Suite B101, 970-879-9169

Urbane presents a collection of more than 30 works from Michael Benninghoven that will be available through a silent auction with all proceeds benefiting the Snowboard Outreach Society.

Go back to article