Two New Sites for Fort Collins Art: A New Rendition Gallery & LocalEasel.com

Rolfe Bautista, Davina Lau and Josh House are pictured above renovating Rendition. Photo by Jenni Pedersen.

By Jenni Pedersen and Karla Colonnieves

Art enthusiasts attending First Friday in Old Town Fort Collins can expect new things in March: Rendition Gallery is re-opening after a transformation to the space, ownership and vision of the gallery, and looking up local artists and galleries before is easier than ever with Fort Collins’ newly launched art search site localeasel.com.

Renovated Rendition is a Site for Progressive Art

Rendition Gallery is a place to experience art from some of Fort Collins greatest talent. The opening show – beginning at 6 p.m. at 251 Jefferson St, in Old Town Fort Collins – will feature great local art, live music by Jonathan Alonzo, and art walkers can meet local artists and watch a demo of Fort Collins’ new art search site from Local Easel partner.

New owners Daniel Ibanez, Rolfe Bautista and Ivan Andrade hope Rendition can fill the gaps in the local creative community by creating a progressive space for showing art, creating art and having creative community.

“We took ownership of this gallery with the intention of taking it in a very new direction,” said Ibanez.

The owners’ vision is that Rendition will provide a space for amazing artwork, artist studios, creative collaboration and community, local music, and it will be an experimental incubator for early and mid-career artists. Mentoring artists of all ages and community service are also fundamental to the new Rendition vision.

Rendition Gallery in the middle of renovation. Photo by Daniel Ibanez.

The First Friday event will feature work by Anna Maddocks, Brett Brady, Allison Sheldon, Justin Camilli, Benjamin Buttice, Tiffanie Collins, Josh House, and Resident Artists Daniel Ibanez, Rolfe Bautista, Chelsea Glanz, and more. Anna Maddocks put together a large portion of the show.

“I know these artists and they are constantly and consistently producing good work, but we are all different,” said Maddocks. “I am hoping to give Rendition a good start. Daniel, Rolfe and Ivan have a vision to have a place for current and contemporary art, and they are creating a space where new ideas can happen.”

Local Easel is partnering with Rendition for its re-opening.

“[Local Easel’s] direct involvement is wonderful for us,” said Daniel Ibanez.

Local Easel has been blogging about the re-opening and will have its homepage plastered with pictures of the new Rendition and information about Rendition’s artists. Jenni Pedersen, co-founder of Local Easel, will also be at the Rendition to demo the site and support the local art.

New Art Site Simplifies Local Art Research

Most people today look for information online; and with so many corporate search engines, websites and directories, local fine art has minimal presence and representation.

Local Easel LLC was created as a response to this problem. LocalEasel.com links the Fort Collins’ community and tourists to local art. Search over 500 artists, 100 local art spaces, and many local artworks and events/exhibitions. For artists and art space owners, Local Easel offers a free platform to reach the Fort Collins community with art and events.

“This is an amazing resource and such a great way to find information on our art scene,” said Darren Mahuron, owner of Opiate Gallery. “If you are a local artist and are not listed, you can join for free.”

“Local Easel is helping to bring the community of artists together. There hasn’t been a strong network of local artists, and Local Easel seeks to change that. By creating an easy-to-use platform with a very accessible navigation system, Local Easel facilitates the communication that needs to happen on a daily basis between artists,” said Ibanez.

Using grassroots marketing techniques, Local Easel seeks to achieve 100 percent coverage of local art in Fort Collins. The organic dimension Local Easel has allows it to bridge the gap and unite each artist and art gallery on an equal playing field, giving every artist and gallery the chance to be represented the way they want to be represented.

While many local artists and art galleries already have web presence, Local Easel’s goal is to become a hub and resource for those websites and the art represented by them. The ultimate vision is to get the local community to artists’ and galleries’ sites, increase search engine results, engage local art patrons and turn Fort Collins into a thriving art community and art destination.

“The community seems to be more intimate through this new project,” said Coleen Cosner, owner of Coco Artist Studio.

Find out more at LocalEasel.com, and watch a video tour of Rendition and Opiate Galleries here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Lw2W9G4p6W0&feature=share.