- Exhibition: VANTAGE POINT
- Showing: February 17th 2017 - April 1st 2017
- Opening Reception: FEBRUARY 17, 2017
The work featured in Vantage Point comes from the overlapping reality of two artists working in Colorado’s Front Range and Eastern plains stretching into Nebraska. You might be thinking of bucolic farms or Denver skyline stock photos. Don’t. Artists Tony Ellis and Paul Brokering are out to reawaken our experience of the commonplace with a visually powerful response to the question: What makes a photograph fine art? Setting the stage for Denver’s Month of Photography, Vantage Point will compel you to decide for yourself.
Tony Ellis photographs are often mistaken for paintings. In his first exhibition at Space Gallery, Ellis elevates the remnants of Denver street art and urban grit into images that live somewhere between super and abstract realism.
A graduate of the West of England College of Art, Ellis works on Colorado wind energy projects. “At first I was taking photographs for fun, then my love of abstract art kicked in and I found myself discovering what I see as “accidental Rothkos” on abandoned buildings, old trains and rusted ranch equipment.”
After several exhibitions in the Midwest, Ellis’ work was acquired for the permanent collections of the Urban Institute for Contemporary Art in Grand Rapids, Michigan, in 2014, and the University of Iowa in Iowa City, Iowa, in 2016.
Ellis returned to Colorado two years ago to focus on Denver’s urban environment “and the ephemeral detail of deteriorating graffiti, altered by weather, paint or, better yet, attempts to remove it from places we walk by every day.”
Paul Brokering’s focus on buildings we might dismiss as mundane artifacts of rural life emerge as bold studies of artistic elements. “We drive by these buildings often and seldom take time to stop and discover the beauty of these structures that never change,” he offers. Brokering’s emphasis on shape, color, and repeating patterns of built environments draws us away from a building’s function to its powerful aesthetic.
Brokering, a native Coloradan and former resident and graduate of the University of Nebraska College of Architecture, returned to Denver ten years ago. Brokering admits that his passion for photography happily coexists with his career as an architect. The instant gratification of digital photography, combining the promise of more control of the creative process and his natural love of gadgets, were a powerful elixir pulling him towards photography.
Brokering has exhibited his photographic work in Colorado and Nebraska since 2005. This is his second exhibition of abstract images at Space Gallery.