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Art Base to open James Surls exhibition

Basalt gallery showing 30 new drawings by famed sculptor

Staff report
James Surls, “Spot On.” Courtesy image

The internationally renowned sculptor and artist James Surls, based in the Roaring Fork Valley, will open a new exhibition in his home community.

His “Complete Fragments” opens Friday at the Art Base in Basalt. The show features 30 new drawings by the artist, who calls them “sketches of psychological being.”

The exhibition will be on view through Sept. 27.



The gallery selected the pieces from a series of 56 vignettes that Surls completed during a 20-day water fast earlier this year. Surls attended a health retreat in Santa Rosa, California, this spring, and during this rigorous health reset, rather than feeling depleted, he described feeling invigorated and found himself inspired.

Several drawings are relevant to his surroundings in Santa Rosa, others show familiar forms from Surls’ work, including head forms, molecules, flowers, eyes, and geometric and organic shapes.




“We were honored when James approached us to exhibit this new, extraordinary body of work,” said Art Base curator Lissa Ballinger.

Surls’s work is in major museums and collections around the world including the Centro Cultural Arte Contemporaneo in Mexico City, the Museum of Modern Art, the Smithsonian American Art Museum, the Guggenheim Museum and Whitney Museum of American Art. He has lived in the Carbondale area with his wife, the artist Charmaine Locke, since 1997.

James Surls, “Me Holding Two Rings.” Courtesy image
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