Steamboat Arts Council removes the partition between the visual arts and other art forms

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— Admirers of the visual and culinary arts will be tempted by a multi-sensory experience, Palettes: A Feast for the Senses, hosted by the Steamboat Springs Arts Council on Friday evening at the Depot Art Center.

In addition to the already well-received, food-themed art show that opened at the Depot on Feb. 7, this week’s event will offer wine, music and movement. Those in attendance might even learn a new French idiom: amuse bouche. The phrase describes bite-sized appetizers, and the evening’s nibbles will be prepared by McKnight’s Irish Pub & Loft, Harwig's/L'Apogee and even by some of the visual artists.

If you go

What: Palettes: A Feast for the Senses

When: 6:30 p.m. Feb. 21

Where: Depot Art Center, 1001 13th St.

Reservations required: 970-879-9008 to hold a spot

Cost: Free to Arts Council members, $25 for nonmembers, or join the nonprofit for the arts at www.steamboatarts.org.

The idea for Palettes came together in the mind of Routt County artist Gregory Block, who has a thought-provoking image in the show that required him to break lots of eggs. As a youngster, Block attended a school where no boundaries were drawn between academics, visual arts, music and other art forms. Recently, he found himself wondering why chefs, musicians, photographers, painters and sculptors don’t co-mingle their work more often.

“The idea goes back to my childhood when all of those things were integrated very seamlessly and beautifully,” Block said. “I grew up in an environment that didn’t partition visual arts away from music and cooking. The idea is to take down those walls.”

When Block introduced his concept for Palettes to Arts Council Marketing and Communications Specialist Mical Hutson and fellow artist Kim Keith, they threw their energy into the project.

Hutson said six artists from among those featured in the current show in the Depot were selected to carry out the “no barriers” approach to multidisciplinary art forms.

Perhaps none of the visual art pieces will epitomize the concept better than Keith’s soaring experimental book art collaboration with Jay O’Hare, “Bible Page Installation,” which incorporates salted rock candy, frankincense and “young bird” mix. It defies description.

Also in the show is Susan Schiesser Raymond’s whimsical paean to gluten, “Pizza Dog,” a painting of a hound dog holding a symbolic stalk of wheat in its muzzle.

Fred Hodder contributes his photo collages, overlaying translucent images of Manhattan landmarks. Look closely at one of his mildly voyeuristic images peering inside high rise apartments and decide for yourself if one of the occupants is slyly photographing the photographer.

iPhoneography is rapidly becoming a recognized new art form and Kate Alexander contributes lush images of vegetables including a gloriously textured heirloom pumpkin. Don’t be surprised if Eva Luna serves Spanish tapas with her oil paintings of flamenco dancers.

As a special bonus, frequent travelers to Ireland, Joel and Karen Schulman, will serve Irish coffees from McKnight’s paired with her location iPhone images of the famous drink in various pubs.

Finally, Block’s contribution is an oil painting of the nontraditional contents of a refrigerator, which is wide open to interpretation, though the artist insists his primary subject matter is no more than light.

To reach Tom Ross, call 970-871-4205, email tross@SteamboatToday.com or follow him on Twitter @ThomasSRoss1

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