Snowmass Base Village art show celebrates local artists
Painted mountains. Metal sculptures. Ceramics, jewelry, music. Three dollar tacos.
These were just a few pieces of the Sun Sets in September Art Show held outside of The Collective in Snowmass Base Village on Sept. 21. For most of the evening, locals and visitors weaved their way from pop-up wall to pop-up wall, taking in the murals and the various artworks displayed on each side.
On one of those sides, visible to anyone walking out of the Limelight hotel, was a woman painted with a smoking cigarette hanging out the side of her mouth, seated beneath a banner that read “Unsavory.”
She was pencil-drawn then painted there less than 24 hours before the show by Snowmass-based artist Teal Roberts Wilson. In red cowboy boots and camo pants, Wilson worked on the woman, free handing her and commenting on how hilarious she thought she was.
But if it weren’t for the support and encouragement of a few Aspen artists and local friends, the painted woman may not have existed as part of the art show at all.
“I gave up on art for a few years but got serious again last year,” Wilson said. “I have a small support group that’s into what I do and told me I couldn’t stop.”
Wilson said she has been into art ever since she was a kid. Her mom was a popular mixed media artist while she was growing up, which Wilson said led her to go to school at the Kansas City Art Institute to study print making.
“As I started to get excited about art, my mom started to tell me not to be an artist, to go into something else,” Wilson said laughing. “The rebel in me went ahead and became an artist anyway.”
After living in Kansas City for a decade, Wilson moved to Snowmass about five years ago for an internship with Anderson Ranch and has been living in the village ever since.
But being a local artist in Snowmass hasn’t been easy, Wilson said. She feels there aren’t as many opportunities for Aspen-Snowmass artists to share their work with the community, making it harder to establish themselves without their own gallery.
“I feel like Snowmass is afraid of art in some ways. People don’t think it’s accessible, but I think through these art shows we’ve proven that it is,” Wilson said of the Sun Sets in September and of the Sub Terranean Art Show held in the same space in March.
Wilson went on to explain that the March art show in Base Village helped her feel validated because many of her local friends who know her from her job in food service finally understood her as an artist, too.
“At that show people came out and my friends came out and understood what I do,” Wilson said. “I think it clicked that you don’t have to go to a gallery or an art museum to experience art.”
With the opening of The Collective and Aspen artist Kelly Peters’ studio in One Snowmass, Wilson said she hopes to help make art shows and installations in the village more commonplace.
On Dec. 13, she and Peters plan to show their art in Peters’ new studio, and both women hope to host classes and workshops in the One Snowmass space to help build community through art.
“Art is accessible on a community level and people will go to great lengths to support their friends because they care,” Wilson said. “I felt invisible for so long that I want to help elevate other artists.”