GOCA plans for new windmill sculpture and exhibitions

Caitlyn Dieckmann

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UCCS’ Galleries of Contemporary Art (GOCA) announced a new public sculpture is to be installed to light up the sky near the Ent Center for the Arts, entitled “The Windmill Project,” by artist Patrick Marold.  

According to a press release, the sculpture will be part of GOCA’s 2020-2021 season “Art WithOut Limits” sculpture program curated by GOCA Director Daisy McGowen. This in collaboration with the University of Denver’s Vicky Myhren Gallery, which features outdoor artwork along the I-25 corridor between Colorado Springs and Denver.  

     McGowen touched on the piece, calling it “a living body of light,” explaining that there was a version of the windmill in Vail, Colorado, as well as in Vermont and Iceland. McGowen said it is comprised of wind-generated components that activate several LED lights that will “illuminate the landscape, capturing the choreography of the wind movement.” 

     According to the press release, the sculpture uses renewable energy as its central component. But “The Windmill Project” is not the only new piece featured this season; there will also be several other outdoor sculptures around the building. 

     Also included in GOCA’s 2020-2021 season, as provided through an email from McGowen, is the “Seat of Learning” exhibition by Jane Lackey and Thomas Lehn, “Sacrum” by artist Danielle Rae Miller and several virtual webinars with visiting artists as part of the Visiting Artists and Critics Series.  

     The “Seat of Learning” exhibit was open during the previous spring semester and reopened on Aug. 25. It is open to view by appointment in the Marie Walsh Sharpe Gallery of Contemporary Art at the Ent Center until Nov. 11. Viewings of the exhibit can be reserved for times with up to 10 visitors total, within 45-minute blocks of time 

A GOCA exhibition in 2019.
Photo courtesy of GOCA photo database.

     According to UCCS Presents, “Seat of Learning is an art installation investigating time, movement, memory, knowledge and how we learn from material objects. The concept originated when the artists found a vintage school desk that encapsulated 20th-century early learning through its patina, material presence and history of use.”  

     UCCS students worked with Lackey and Lehn to create the entire structure that houses the objects, which viewers can move throughout, according to McGowen.  

     Miller’s exhibition, “Sacrum,” opened by appointment on Sept. 22 at GOCA Downtown and will be available through Dec. 7. 

     “Miller uses images with pre-attached meanings in our human mythologies — snakes, bees, butterflies, hummingbirds, beetles, roses, sunflowers, the human heart, ribcage, [and] pelvis — to engage an emotional response in viewers, to gently nudge individual and cultural memories and hint at broader connections between all forms of life on this planet,” McGowen said.  

     UCCS’ Virtual Visiting Artists and Critics Series is entering its eighth season and is free, although registration is required. The series will continue to take place via Zoom and has already featured Lackey and Lehn on Sept. 1; Miller’s talk takes place Sept. 30, followed by Iranian-American interdisciplinary artist Sara Z. Meghdari on Oct. 27 at 4:30 pm.  

     Meghdari received their Bachelor of Arts in Communication from UCCS and holds their Master of Fine Arts in Photography, Video and Related Media from the School of Visual Arts.  

     GOCA Downtown is also fostering the arts by teaching UCCS students in its learning lab, “which is a collaboration between GOCA and VAPA [Visual and Performing Arts],” McGowen said.  

     Further information on “Seat of Learning” or other upcoming exhibits and activities can be found on the UCCS Presents webpage at http://uccspresents.org/events/2019-20/seat-of-learning

     Appointment information and other inquiries can be emailed to [email protected].