The Plantera Group follows its own financial planning advice: Art is a smart investment. That's why it's opened its spacious Victorian office to local artists for the past three years.
For the latest show, the Plantera gallery will be filled with the work of five emerging young female artists -- none is over the age of 20 -- all with roots in Colorado Springs. Two have moved away for college: Lauren Olson is halfway through her first year at the Pratt Institute in New York, and Courtney Alyn Eichengreen studies chemistry and biology at CU-Boulder. The other three attend Palmer High School.
Their pieces range from oil paintings to photography, and address a variety of topics and influences. Shannan Sorensen admits to "being mainly influenced by Tim Burton," while Audrey Bell says she's "currently very [informed by] German expressionists." Dani Merriman is inspired by everyday objects. She created a shoe project designed to "convey the lifestyle of the person who would wear the shoe."
Eichengreen already has tasted a bit of what the "real" art world can be like. Last year, her work was banned from the annual Palmer High School art show, and the Colorado Springs Police Department confiscated several of her paintings. While hardly pornographic, they did portray other Palmer students. But she had the last laugh. The story made national news and caused outrage among art educators and enthusiasts. Several of the previously banned works are in the show. All proceeds from the opening event will benefit the Colorado Springs Conservatory, which offers education for youngsters in music and art. Talented musicians from the conservatory will provide entertainment.
-- Bettina Swigger
Five Young Artists
Plantera Group, 731 N. Weber St.
Opening reception, Friday, Nov. 11, 5-8 p.m. Exhibit open through Jan. 27. Gallery hours: Monday-Thursday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Friday, 9 a.m. to noon.
Opening reception: $15; free admission otherwise. Call 886-0456 for more information.