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Rooms with a view 

click to enlarge "On the Street" by Pam Aloisa.
  • "On the Street" by Pam Aloisa.

The very privileged in love enjoy the luxury of knowing the bedroom as an intimate sanctuary, a sentiment so intense it tends to hold sway over other perceptions of the space, including the more utilitarian notion of the bedroom as a place to sleep.

Pam Aloisa takes neither for granted. The Springs artist and professor of art and art history at the Air Force Academy sets out to expand our impressions of the bedroom with her exhibit Making Our Beds: Contemporary Interiors, currently on display in the 3rd Floor Foyer Gallery at the Sangre de Cristo Arts and Conference Center in Pueblo.

Aloisa, who also holds the designation of director/curator of the Academy's Professors Art Gallery, is concerned with "how we build our nests, how we make them our own, and what we do in them." Although she writes that her inspiration is derived from "life," the accomplished artist/academic also has been struck by the bedroom's appearance, or omission, in art history.

"The history of art features very few bedrooms and beds, other than as mere backdrops for more important subject matter," she posits in her statement.

Aloisa shifts that importance not by honing the focus of each painting on the bed itself, but in shifting its function throughout the show. It's here that she's able to break down the limitations of what we consider "beds" and "bedrooms."

"Some beds aren't beds at all," she writes, referring to blankets, cardboard, sleeping bags -- materials that might be used by homeless persons, for instance, that haphazardly but legitimately construct a haven. "Others are imaginary ... brick, water, flowers and feather beds," she continues. "[They] poetically defy our expectations of these subjects."

Even so, Aloisa avoids abstraction. While she may stretch our imaginations, her subjects are never foreign.

-- Vanessa Martinez

capsule

Making Our Beds: Contemporary Interiors of Pam Aloisa

Sangre de Cristo Arts and Conference Center, 3rd Floor Foyer Gallery, 210 N. Santa Fe Ave., Pueblo

Through Feb. 4

Call 719/295-7200 or visit sdc-arts.org for more.

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