Golden, CO — On January 23, Foothills Art Center opens The Engaged Object, an exhibition featuring 50 works of fine craft that address contemporary social, political and environmental issues. 

Thirty artists from around the world—from Colorado to the United Arab Emirates—represent diverse viewpoints in work created in clay, glass, metalwork, textiles and wood. 

Viewers will be challenged, and possibly uncomfortable, with some of the topics at hand. But since 2016 is a presidential election year, Foothills Art Center is eager to engage audiences in a dialogue about major political and social issues.

“Our goal with this exhibition is not only to present the very best works of art done in fine craft media, but also to stimulate the community’s ideas and perceptions about the world we live in,” says Foothills Art Center curator, Marianne Lorenz. “Art has been used in the service of social and political movements, for good and evil, from ancient times to the present day. And this exhibition will highlight the role of fine craft in that process.” 

Going beyond the battle of ideas, artists in the exhibition bring the issues into personal spaces, where the problems are harder to ignore. 

  • Anne Morton uses worn clothing from her community to quilt honest portraits of homeless friends like the person represented in Michelle. 

  • Denver artist Ira Sherman’s Seed is a fully-functional device that allows cryogenic banking at home, away from the laboratory environment and mass storage of commercial cryogenic sperm banks.

  • Clay artist Ron Geibel explores gender identity under the veil of the middle-class American home in Strike.   

Members of the media are invited to preview the exhibition January 22 at 5:00 PM. 
Foothills Art Center is also presenting a lecture to accompany The Engaged Object: “Art and Politics: A Curatorial Process” on January 31, and a panel discussion with Colorado artists Regina Benson and Ira Sherman on March 6.

To RSVP for the media event or for more information about the exhibition, please contact Exhibition Manager Becky Guy at 303.279.3922 x30,

Regina Benson
Ron Geibel
Charlotte Kruk
Kate MacDowell Robert Mickelsen
Ann Morton
Ira Sherman 

CONTACT - Exhibition Manager Becky Guy at 303.279.3922 x30,

Located in historic downtown Golden, Foothills Art Center enriches the local community as a cultural destination for residents and guests to discover, create, enjoy and learn about contemporary and historic fine craft. Here you will find unusual and inspiring objects in wood, ceramics, fiber, glass, metals and other fine craft media. Our three galleries are set in 19th-century historic buildings, including a Gothic-style church, Queen Anne manse, and Victorian mansion. And our Gift Gallery offers one-of-a-kind treasures handmade by Colorado artists.

Anna Schoen