“The Spirit of Potential Forces” is a one-person exhibition by Denver artist and master printer, Mark Lunning. The artist reception for Mark was one of our more beautiful openings, if we do say so ourselves.
His work, colorful original zinc-plate etchings with circles, dots and other floating geometric shapes made for a magical setting to be sure. Mark uses meticulously etched zinc plates saturated with various colored inks combined with hand-colored and cut rice paper shapes called Colle to make each piece. The combination of the Colle and zinc plate results in stunningly beautiful and multi-layered works on paper that are unique and one of a kind. The titles that Mark has given to each piece, such as “Overcoming Resistance”, “The Beauty of Decay”, and “Methodical Chaos” provides some insight into the artist’s intent and vision. The work gives an uplifting sense as it moves through the more intriguing and complex areas culminating in a freeing and orderly release.
Mark is an accomplished artist; his recent 30-year retrospective at Regis University’s O’Sullivan Gallery certainly attests to his long successful career. Not to mention the fact that Governor Hickenlooper has two of Mark’s pieces in his personal collection. It was a true honor to have Mark in the gallery explaining to guests just how he made each piece. The important distinction between a scanned copy of an art work (often called giclee) and the richness of one of Mark’s original etchings with ink and hand-cut papers right on the paper was quite enlightening to many.
One of 15th Street Gallery’s missions over the past 5 or 6 years has been to illuminate the difference between a scanned copy, usually not ever touched by the artist’s hand, and an original print, carefully and intimately worked by the artist. “The Spirit of Potential Forces” makes one truly aware of the beauty and value of an original print.