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Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center Opens Mikel Glass: The Discarded
Mikel Glass, Overnight Shipping Box, 2007. Enamel on wood, 6 1/2 X 21 X 16 in. Collection of Ron and Una Brasch, Colorado Springs, CO.

COLORADO SPRINGS, CO.- The Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center presents a new exhibit of works by contemporary artist Mikel Glass from Jan. 17 – April 19.

Glass’s art ranges from Realist paintings to postmodern sculpture of such items as a used pizza box or shipping box. The 12 sculptures, 23 paintings and an installation piece in Mikel Glass | The Discarded reflect the artist’s Realist style, which honors the illusionary virtuosity of many artists since the Renaissance, while elevating the objects he depicts to extraordinary relics of past events.

“Mikel Glass’s painting and sculpture are a powerful intersection of contemporary themes rendered with astounding craftsmanship,” said FAC and exhibit curator Blake Milteer. “Glass’s art provides the artist a means of reckoning with the world by interweaving the mundane and the spiritual in a diverse body of work that draws equally from Renaissance painting, Surrealism, Dada, and conceptual art.”

Glass’s humorous and ironic reconstructions of discarded objects bring into question the very nature of art, inspiring viewers to unravel complex layers of meaning. He recreates cardboard boxes out of wood and paint and assigns each sculpture with a fictional, often humorous, back story or provenance. He paints people, mannequins, rubber gloves, dolls that he finds in the trash and fruit from a market.

With this exhibit, the Fine Arts Center is producing a 60-page catalogue with a foreword written by FAC President Sam Gappmayer, an introduction by Milteer and an essay by filmmaker J.J. Abrams. The catalogue tells the stories of how Glass crafts his artwork, including The Battle of Jogkith, a fanciful oil-on-canvas painting of retreating creatures made of fruit being attacked from the air. (The FAC exhibition will include an installation piece of the fruit creature diorama.)

“For the fruit creatures, I went to the flower district and bought plastic fruit,” recalls Glass, who works out of his studio in Hell’s Kitchen. “Then I had to engineer and assemble them. Next, I had to build and decorate a set and pose them. At the end of three days, I stood in front of what looked like a diorama at the Natural History Museum and said, ‘Yes, there it is!’ And then I said, ‘Damn, now I have to paint this thing.”

“Mikel Glass approaches his work with a fearless passion,” writes John A. Parks of American Artist. “Unafraid of varying his subject matter, he blithely changes media from painting to sculpture and back again. Moreover, he is consistently courageous in taking on difficult and challenging subjects in his work. While most artists construct exhibitions around single themes, mindful of maintaining a cohesive style, Glass seeks to explore a huge variety of possibilities in his oeuvre … (He) is forging his way into new territory and finding novel ways to deploy his considerable representational skills.”

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