Departures some in progress, some in suspension seem to be the theme in our local art world lately. Along with news of longtime Gazette critic Mark Arnest moving into a marketing position with the Colorado Springs Philharmonic, come two other updates of art in motion.
First: The University of Colorado at Colorado Springs has named Caitlin Green, a Springs native, as interim replacement for departing Gallery of Contemporary Art curator Christopher Lynn.
"I'm thrilled to be coming back to the Springs," says Green, who will step in Friday, Aug. 15. "It's my home, and I love it and I couldn't be happier to have found such an incredible opportunity."
After undergraduate work at the University of Denver, Green received her MA at Sotheby's Institute of Art in London. While overseas, she became involved in the international contemporary arts scene. She's done curatorial consulting with Lakewood's The Lab at Belmar and Denver's Plus Gallery, in addition to work with the city of Colorado Springs.
"She's very imaginative and well-connected in the community, in terms of rapport with the local art world and also in working with funding and grant-awarding agencies," says Suzanne MacAulay, chair of UCCS' visual and performing arts department.
MacAulay says UCCS envisions Green's interim directorship to span roughly two years. Over that time, the school will conduct a national search for a director; Green may apply if she chooses.
Lynn, whose departure MacAulay terms "a genuine loss," is taking a job at Cleveland's SPACES gallery, another contemporary art venue. In announcing his decision, Lynn had noted that restricted finances at UCCS had left him unable to hire an assistant, which he felt he needed. MacAulay says Green will have access to the talents of senior art history students who have been trained in the gallery and museum practice program. MacAulay's also created a gallery assistant to the director position that requires more commitment than a typical work-study position.
"We do have a strong gallery and museum practice program," MacAulay says. "We just have to work with the resources we have."
The latter sentiment could be echoed at Cottonwood Artists' School. The 60-artist conglomerate is still operating on a month-to-month lease at the city's old gas administration building at 25 Cimino Drive; it had hoped to purchase and move into a space at 427 E. Colorado Ave. by now.
Executive director Peggy Vicaro says she still expects Cottonwood to move within the next three or four months. Aside from constructing some new walls and removing the drop ceiling, she says, no significant amount of work needs to be done on the new site.
Behind the scenes, though, financing needs to be secured and finalized. Though Vicaro and colleagues had intended to purchase the larger gallery space (which will accommodate 80 to 90 artists) they are now looking at leasing with an option to buy.
Member artist Deb Komitor says the community recently bolstered by a handful of new members has remained largely upbeat while in limbo. A few Cottonwood veterans have left recently, but for personal reasons unrelated to the delay, according to Vicaro.