Commissioned Works

The Denver Art Museum's landmark 2009–2010 exhibition EMBRACE! was curated by Christoph Heinrich, then Deputy Director and Curator of Modern & Contemporary Art, and now the current Director of the Denver Art Museum. The concept was to invite international artists (seventeen in all) to create site-specific installations, paintings, and sculptural works directly connected to the new building, exploiting the very sloped walls and odd spaces which often pose difficulties to more traditional works of art (see the painting “April, 2004 DAM Building Progress” in the painting category “Construction Series” for a taste of the wild angles of this building).

My own response to this challenge was to paint a full sized 18' x 32' wall with a photorealistic depiction of the steel framework that was once visible at that exact location — a sort of peeling back of the walls to reveal the skeleton underneath. This was not only an attempt to reveal a hidden aspect of the building, but also to peel back time to reveal another moment many months before the finishing of the space.

This installation/mural is titled “A Moment in Time: Here”, and I'm quite pleased that the museum purchased the mural for the permanent collection, rather than destroying it at the end of the exhibit as had been planned.

Another commissioned work is “Denver Justice Center Under Construction”, a 26" x 68" panoramic painting installed in the headquarters of Monticello Associates of Denver.

This was based upon some 10 photographs, which pieced together the wide view of this moment during construction, and required many hours of Photoshop “stitching” to create a final photograph from which to paint. The painting, and custom metal frame, were calculated to fit within the wall alcove selected by the client. This painting is the culmination of several previous smaller studies and detailed views painted of the same “DJC” subject.

—Rick Dula