There are any number of ways to move through the world. Every day, artist and historian Chloé Duplessis makes the conscious decision to move in love.
As a woman of color and person navigating life with a disability (Duplessis is legally blind as a result of Stargardt disease, a rare disease that causes early macular degeneration), it would be easy to live with nothing but negativity. But her work over the last four years - including Denver’s first accessible “I VOTED” sticker - demonstrates a passion for providing all viewers an insightful glimpse into the lives and experiences of others.
“My diagnosis set me free,” Duplessis said. “If I don’t lean into my creative power now, when will I?”
Her latest show, Blind Spot, features 20 works of collage and fabric art that focus on history, accessibility and privilege. It’s on display in the free OZ Gallery, 9209 Dorothy Blvd. in Thornton, through Friday, March 24. The gallery is open from noon to 5 p.m., Tuesday through Friday, and from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on second Saturdays.
Duplessis’ work is largely inspired by the stories she hears while out touring the country, and by surveys she has audiences fill out centered on particular topics or themes. When the topic of what privilege looks like in modern society was raised, she knew it was important to examine.
“The questions I asked people this time were, `Do you think privilege exists? Have you experienced privilege? And how do you define privilege?’” she explained. “The responses I received showed that we’re all having these different experiences right next to each other, but aren’t sharing them.”
When unveiling a new collection, most artists participate in the opening night festivities and maybe a special event here or there, but Duplessis goes above and beyond by making herself available to anyone who wants a guided tour through Blind Spot.
“Opening receptions are great, but many people aren’t able to attend, so I’m doing tours three days a week,” she said. “It’s not just about increasing accessibility for the show, but doing anything I can to support the arts.”
As a dedicated historian, once the exhibit’s run is finished, Duplessis will use collected thoughts from those who have visited to make a new work to be donated to OZ, thus continuing the chain of powerful artifacts left behind for those who follow.
Duplessis’ work may be challenging at times, but there’s a definite power in seeing others’ experiences honored and expanded upon. She hopes the work will have profound effect on those who open themselves to it.
“I want everyone to see the exhibit in their own way and at their own pace,” she said. “If someone knows that privilege exits, they’ll be gratified by what they see, and if they don’t think it exists, they should definitely come see the work.”
For more details, visit www.thorntonco.gov/arts/Pages/exhibits.aspx.
Cyrano comes to the Wheat Ridge Theatre Company
There’s something about the story of Cyrano de Bergerac that just seems to never get old. Something about people using a go-between for romantic endeavors just seems to always resonate. Can’t imagine why.
The Wheat Ridge Theatre Company is staging Edmond Rostand’s immortal romantic dramady at its new home, 5455 W. 38th Ave., Unit J, through Sunday, Feb. 19. Performances are at 7:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday and 2:30 p.m. on Sunday.
Directed by Mellisa Taylor, the show follows the deeply witty and wise de Bergerac on his romantic quest to win Roxane, who is attracted to de Bergerac’s friend Christian. Christian uses de Bergerac’s words to woo Roxane. It’s all just a recipe for a broken heart or three.
Visit https://wheatridgetheatre.com/ for details and tickets.
To Infinity and beyond at DMNS
Seeing viewers have the opportunity to return to movie theaters has been one of the great pleasures of the post-shutdown world, and the Denver Museum of Nature & Science, 2001 Colorado Blvd. in Denver, is making that return all the more eye-opening with the opening of its brand-new Infinity Theater.
According to provided information, the theater received a serious upgrade, including “a new lobby entrance with brand new finishings, an impressive new laser projector and sound system, new audio and visual accessibility features, such as a hearing induction loop and updated closed captioning system, enhanced programming, 2D and 3D capabilities and much more.”
The Infinity is currently screening Ocean Odyssey 3D and Serengeti 3D. Everything you need to know can be found at www.dmns.org/visit/infinity-theater/.
Clarke’s Concert of the Week — 36 Chambers of Shaolin and A Ballet Through Mud at Boettcher Concert Hall
Sometimes a project just sounds cool, you know? The Colorado Symphony hosts a bunch of events like this, but their latest may just be the coolest one yet. The legendary RZA (a Colorado Symphony Imagination Artist and de facto leader of the Wu-Tang Clan) is teaming with the Symphony to bring audiences “36 Chambers of Shaolin and A Ballet Through Mud,” at the Boettcher Concert Hall, 1000 14th St., No. 15, in Denver, at 7:30 p.m. on Friday, Feb. 17 and Saturday, Feb. 18.
According to provided information, this double feature features a performance of “36 Chambers of Shaolin” and a brand-new RZA work that blends together spoken word, live ballet, and the Symphony’s signature orchestration.
This will surely be one of the year’s best live events, so get details and tickets at https://coloradosymphony.org/.
Clarke Reader’s column on culture appears on a weekly basis. He can be reached at Clarke.Reader@hotmail.com.