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Archive for the ‘art’ Category

A Night Out

Bruce was my plus one for the Denver Art Museum’s preview of the recently renovated museum tower and newly constructed welcome center (the round building in the photo).  It was my first big event without a mask since the pandemic.  All attendees had to be vaccinated (yeah!).  The cocktail party dress code resulted in a well-dressed crowd.  I opted to skip the black-tie dinner event on Friday night as the cheapest ticket was $1,000.  Everyone was in a festive mood.  I saw so many people I hadn’t seen since the pandemic.  It was a most enjoyable evening. 

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Recent Viewings

I hit a few of the co-ops on Friday night by myself.  I had been out with Bruce two nights in row.  The fundraiser on Wednesday and a gallery opening on Thursday night.  I wanted to have art night without watching Bruce work the room, which he can do like no one else.  I’m also still on a hiatus from Bart after a rather unpleasant conversation about hateful statements he makes.

A few pics from recent viewings:

Louis Recchia, Inside Out, oil on canvas, 36 x 48, $750, Pirate Contemporary Art.
1,Tracey Russell, Something about Cicadas, acrylic on panel, 30 x 30, $1,400, Core New Art Space.
Michael Hedges, The Dreaming Tree, oil on canvas, 70 x 62, $9,500, Space Gallery.
Karen Scharer, Thunder After Dark, oil on canvas, 72 x 60, $13,500, Space Gallery.
Kathryn Oberdorfer, In Gratitude, acrylic, oil pastel and pastel on canvas, 36 x 48, $700, Spark Gallery.

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Giving Back

Last night I was Bruce’s plus one at a fundraiser for one of his causes.  The event was held in a stunningly-beautiful house in Cherry Creek situated on a double lot.  The open-floor plan house with a sleek modern interior had doors opening onto an expansive patio and pool which easily accommodated the hundred or so attendees.  The trans community was well represented at the art auction event.  A local drag queen was the MC.  I didn’t find any art I was interested in so I donated a couple of hundred bucks, which, paled in comparison to Bruce’s contribution as an event sponsor.  Bruce also dropped a bundle on art in the auction.  I met a few Bruce’s coworkers, one of which was a strikingly handsome man in his early thirties.  He was most engaging which made the evening very enjoyable. 

Bruce dropped me off a little before 10.  I googled the house before I went to bed.  It had recently sold for $7.5m.  Given Cherry Creek real estate prices, the house is easily worth penny.

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Rooftop Cocktails

Bruce met me a gallery opening on Friday afternoon decked from head to toe in Ferragamo.  He was wearing an exquisite pair of custom lace-up alligator shoes.  The shoes were almost as expensive as the art.  The shoes became a topic of conversation. 

After the gallery opening, Bruce hosted a small cocktail party on his rooftop deck.  Mike called me on the short drive to Bruce’s townhouse.  He wanted to know the parking options as he was trying to decide which car to drive.  The Bentley he recently acquired or his G-Wagon.  I told him the G550 would be easier to park given the only option was on-street parking. 

I arrived at Bruce’s house first and let myself in as his front door was unlocked.  His house was a mess.  His other guests were arriving at 6 and there was clutter everywhere.  It was type of clutter that a person who grew up with domestic help would have, who never learned to clean up after themselves.  When Bruce arrived I told him we needed to pick up the place.  I pointed out his guests had to walk through four floors of clutter to get to the roof.  Bruce didn’t care as the guests would be on the rooftop most of the night.  We barely made a dent in mess when the first guests arrived.  A handheld vacuum stayed mid-way up the second flight of stairs all night.

It was a most enjoyable evening even though Bruce only offered drinks.  Not a nosh in sight.  Mike and I were the only single guests.  The other guys were couples.  All were friendly and handsome with interesting tales to tell.  Conversation was lively all night.

The guests departed for dinner just before 9.  Mike was meeting his nephew at Capital Grille while I headed home. Before we parted ways at our cars, Mike remarked about the messy house, the sink full of dirty dishes and unkempt guest bathroom without a hand towel.  It seems Bruce never learned about entertaining, which, is odd given his mother hosted lavish parties and fundraisers in the mansion he grew up in. 

I spent the rest of night snacking while watching a Netflix dating show about young adults on the spectrum.  The most interesting evening was a good way to kick off the weekend.

Pamela Joseph, Doritaenopsis (orchid), acrylic, gold leaf and mixed media on plexiglass, 40 x 45 x 3, 2002, $18,000, Michael Warren Contemporary Art.

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The Have and Have-nots

After getting my booster shot yesterday after work, I hit the gym before meeting Bruce at a gallery opening.  Upon entering the gallery we were greeted by the owner and the manager.  Scotch was offered but we both declined as I had a few stops to make and Bruce was stoned. 

Bruce advised the owner he wasn’t going to buy the sculpture on loan on his rooftop deck but fell in love with a more expensive sculpture. Bruce decided to pass on the sculpture for now as he’s dropping $5K on weekend in P-town with the new boyfriend.  He said he needed to economize, which means flying commercial. 

As we were leaving the gallery, Bruce asked me if I wanted to come over and help paint his media room.  Seriously?  I was wearing a linen shirt and summer bucks. He offered to loan me a pair of pants and suggested I could paint shirtless. I declined the offer as I had other openings to attend. If Bruce can afford a pricey weekend in P-town he can afford to hire a house painter. 

We parted ways.  I headed to the co-ops while Bruce drove home.  The co-op openings were a mixed bag, but mostly positive.  I ran into Miss Y who was with two ultra-chic lesbians who looked like they just walked off the runway of a cutting-edge fashion show.  They were friends of Miss Y’s live-in girlfriend who was out of town on business.  Miss Y bought a sculpture which will be a nice addition to her collection. 

After the co-ops, I met Miss Y and her posse, which had grown in size, at a new gallery in the Golden Triangle just a few hundred feet from The Art Hotel.  The gallery has a DJ and a bar.  It’s owned by the nightclub next door which financially supports the gallery.  A huge pride flag hung in the window of the gallery. It was a welcoming sign.  The crowd was definitely more upscale and well-dressed than the co-op crowd.  The art was stellar and expensive.  I didn’t see anything under a grand and most were over 5.

I called it a night a little early.  I bid adieu to Miss Y and the fashionista lesbians.  I was feeling really fatigued.  Perhaps it was booster shot side effects.

I walked by The Art Hotel valet on the way back to my car.  There was a Jaguar SUV and a McLaren waiting to be parked.  I passed the DAM with its Gio Ponti building sitting dark after a $150m renovation. The reopening this fall has been monetized with a series of splashy events.  Next, I encountered a row of tents pitched on the hell strip in the block before my car.  Expensive art, $200k sports cars, and a pricey art museum renovation yet there are people living in tents just a few blocks from the Capitol.  It’s becoming a city of the have and the have-nots.  How sad is that?

The drive home was uneventful.  Ferdinand arrived home as I pulled in the driveway.  Moments later a G-Wagen blocks my driveway.  It’s Mike.  He knew I was out and about because he was tracking me on Scruff.  He wants to go for a drink.  I use booster shot fatigue as an excuse. I skip my usual Friday night candle-lit bath. I’m in bed a little after 10 headed to dreamland.         

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An Art Adventure

Bruce invited me join him for the First Friday Art Walk.  We met at the sister gallery of gallery where he bought his last painting.  He was invited to come early to preview a new exhibit.  He currently has a $10k sculpture on loan on his rooftop deck from the gallery. Bruce showed up in double monk strap Ferragamo’s, Hermès sweater and Maison Margiela pants.  I was decidedly more casually dressed in J.Crew.  Drinks were immediately offered.  I had water while Bruce enjoyed a beer. 

After touring the exhibit, the curator, who used to live in Denver but now has a primary residence in Amsterdam and farm in Portugal, opened a bottle of apple cider produced on his farm.  The cider was too sour for my liking but I drank it as the curator was very proud of his product.

We left the sister gallery and drove over to the main gallery.  Thankfully, a parking place had been reserved for Bruce.  Parking was scarce due to the First Friday art crowds.

The gallery manager showed us a few paintings in the back room from our favorite artists.  There were some stellar works.  Bruce texted a few pictures of the paintings to his new boyfriend who lives a few states to the east.  A $20k painting was put on hold.  Bruce thinks it will be perfect for the new house his father is building.  Framing decisions were made for his painting which is still on exhibit.  We left with sufficient damage done.

Our next stop was a clay gallery a few doors down.  I introduced Bruce to the owner.  She gave him a tour and made artist introductions. Bruce purchased a ceramic bowl which needed to be glazed and fired.

Further down the street a stop was made at another high-end gallery.  A $5k painting was put on hold. It’s by the artist who painted the painting Bruce gave me for Christmas.

We wandered around a few of the other galleries.  Nothing was appealing.  We enjoyed the street scene while we wandered back to have a second look at the $20k painting.  Street tacos were picked up a block from the gallery.  Bruce conversed with the vendor in Spanish tipping her $20 on a $15 purchase.  There would be no pricey post-art dinner at his favorite restaurant.

Back at the gallery we had dinner at a long table on the gallery floor while a few people wandered around the gallery.  Shots of Scotch were offered.  Interesting conversation with the gallery manager flowed effortlessly while we ate. 

Soon it was time to close up shop.  We bid farewell to gallery manager before hopping into Bruce’s car.  Bruce invited me back to his house to smoke pot and relax on the rooftop deck.  I declined the offer as I had been up since 5.  I didn’t want to spend the night at Bruce’s house or have to Uber home.  Bruce dropped me off at my car by the sister gallery.  We parted ways after another art adventure.

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Bruce met me at a gallery on Santa Fe yesterday afternoon to preview the show opening last night.  Bruce had wanted to meet M, the gallery owner, for many months but schedules and his many trips never allowed it.  The stars aligned and a meeting was arranged.  We wanted to view the new presentation and get out of the Santa Fe Arts District before the crowds descended for the monthly art walk. 

Bruce arrived.  Introductions were made. M gave us a personalized tour of new exhibit featuring work of three artists.  Soon glasses of a good Scotch were offered followed shortly by Bruce dropping $7k on a painting.  Bruce also put a sculpture and a monotype on hold for consideration.  We’ll be going back for a second look.

What was supposed to be a simple meet and greet turned into an event.  I didn’t expect Bruce to buy a painting given he just finished construction of a rooftop deck for his townhouse ($$$). We left just before 6.  Bruce headed to the airport to pick up his sister who flew in to have dinner with him.  She leaves this afternoon.  I went home and had leftovers for dinner before binging the final season of Bosch on Prime.  I wasn’t up for the art walk by myself as Bart was MIA, which, usually means he had a sex date with one of his meth-addicted FWBs.  I was content with Bosch, a bath and bed by myself.

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A New Etiquette

Spending a quiet evening at home after a long day of yard work and errands allowed me to enjoy the beauty of the flowering crabapple trees in the neighbor’s yard. I ate dinner on the rear terrace while muted sounds of conversation from another neighbor’s small al fresco dinner party provided atmosphere. Hearing people enjoy their yards, in what I hope, is the final phase of our pandemic was a trophy on the mantle of proper pandemic behavior. It feels like what I speculate getting out of prison must feel like as I’ve never been in prison or jail. Just rewards for limiting personal contact while wearing masks.

At the art openings last night, there was a new etiquette on display. The art crowd is slowly starting to emerge from hibernation. Most conversations started with an inquiry as to the vaccination status of those involved. If fully vaccinated status was disclosed, people actually hugged. It was a small, but remarkable, sign that our lives are slowly returning to our pre-pandemic normal. A normal I welcome with open arms.

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A Double Whammy Of Loss

It was a tough week. Work was like hell with a paycheck.  I fielded endless texts from Bruce as his relationship ended on the day of his mother’s funeral.  A double whammy of loss for Bruce.  A break up two weeks after buying wedding rings at David Yurman.  On the bright side, Bruce’s mother funded his private jet travel for the foreseeable future.  What a parting gift!

I was in need of art.  Bart and I attended Space Gallery’s 20th Anniversary opening/celebration. The art was stellar.  It brought peace to my soul.  I ran into an old friend who recently moved back to Denver.  He immediately zeroed in on Bart after introductions were made.  Bart could have cared less as the man didn’t look like an emancipated meth addict, his favored body type.  Odd, yes, but there is so much about Bart that is odd.  This was the second time in as many weeks that I introduced Bart to a man who immediately started hitting on Bart.  Bart wasn’t interested and it clearly showed.  If anything, Bart is a man magnet. 

Here’s my favorite painting of the night:

Patricia Aaron, Nothing But Blue Skies (Cape Town, South Africa), beeswax, pigment and mixed media on panel, 36 x 36, $6,500, Space Gallery.

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The Exposure

I hit the galleries by myself last Friday.  I needed a break from Bart.  I get tired of hearing his misogynistic opinions and insulting comments about rich people.  I saw some great art in the two hours I was out of the house.

I worked in the yard most of Saturday afternoon.  My neighbor, Mrs. D., stopped to chat with acceptable social distance since I was not wearing a mask.  She invited me for cocktails at 5.  Being a psychiatric nurse, she managed to work the high rate of suicide by single men into the conversation.  I assured her I was fine and would see her, and her husband, at 5 for socially-distanced cocktails.

I came into the house around 3.  I had a notification on my iPhone advising I may have been exposed to Covid on March 19, which was two weeks after my first vaccine shot.  I called Mrs. D. to cancel cocktails due to my possible exposure.  Just before 5, my doorbell rang.  Mrs. D. was at my side door holding a silver tray of hors d’oeuvres and a gin and tonic.  Since I couldn’t come for cocktails, she brought the party to me.  Such a nice gesture!  She set the tray on the side porch and scurried across the street to greet arriving guests who have been fully vaccinated.

I sat on the porch enjoying a very refreshing gin and tonic and hors d’oeuvres while googling quarantine protocol for exposure after the first vaccine shot.   Google can be a blessing and a curse.  Search results supported 7, 10 and 14 day quarantines.  I was already on day 8 so I decided to go with 12 days since I have no symptoms. 

While I’m grateful for the notification, it seems odd that it came 8 days after the exposure.  I guess it depends upon when the person self-reports the Covid diagnosis.  I’m also grateful I’m not sick.  I only left the house on the 19th to attend two socially-distanced gallery openings with a handful of other patrons.  I’m guessing that’s when it happened. 

Quarantine has allowed me to skip the gym without feeling guilty.  Just a few more days and I’ll be back at it.  In the meantime, I have plenty of yard work to keep me busy.

Scottie Burgess, Brand Power, extruded polystyrene and paint. Seen at Pirate Contemporary Art.

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