Expect the unexpected at Modern Art 6 in Boise

doland@idahostatesman.comApril 26, 2013 

  • Modern Art 6

    5-10 p.m., May 2, Modern Hotel and Bar, 1314 W. Grove St., Boise. Free.

You never know what's going to happen at Modern Art. "It's hard to predict," says Modern Art co-curator Amy O'Brien.

"The artists give up a nugget of what they're going to do in January when they commit, but you never know what people will actually show up and do."

That's one of the best things about this artistic experience that brings more than 60 artists - and more than 3,000 viewers - to The Modern Hotel for a night. The artists take over rooms, the courtyard and every nook and cranny imaginable to turn them into galleries and performance spaces.

Here's a peek at what you'll find this year:

• Dozens of collaborations pop up at Modern Art each year. To play off that, O'Brien will orchestrate a blind collaboration in room 111 between two artists who have never met.

"They're both game," O'Brien says. "I'm really excited to see what they do."

In room 224, you'll find Super Art Soda, a group of four Boise State art grad students who have banded for Modern Art. You'll see their large-scale, darkly surreal ceramic sculptures of walruses, warthogs and elk that offer ironic commentary on the environment.

"It's melodramatic and somewhat grotesque - in the comical sense," says ceramic artist Eric Mullis, who co-founded the group.

In room 101, you'll find another animal-themed exhibit. Mixed-media artist John Caldwell, in his first exhibit, created "Cultured Creatures" sculptures inspired by his recent six months in India.

"India really changed my perspective on how we as humans use external elements to define ourselves," he says. "What if animals did the same?"

His bear sculpture, pictured, wears a fashionable mask he crafted from origami paper.

• Check out more Modern Art events at the Linen Building, 1402 W. Grove St.

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