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When the former owner of The Open Shutter Gallery, Margy Dudley, heard about LPYS's mission she wanted to help local youth any way she could. Eight years ago, Dudley offered up space in her art gallery to LPYS for the first-ever youth-focused art show titled Unchain my heART. The downtown Durango location of Dudley's gallery provided prime real estate for youth to showcase their artwork in a professional way and get paid for their work.
"Margy was really the inspiration for this event and her gallery was such a beautiful space for all of us to gather. We had music and food. It was really fun and the community just packed the house," said Katy Pepinsky, LPYS Executive Director.
Since this event began, LPYS and partners have provided a place for 99 youth artists to display their work and more than $6,500 has been raised for youth through art scholarships. The art show has moved to different venues over the years since Dudley closed her gallery. Past shows were held at the R-Space and the Durango Arts Center. Due to the pandemic, this year's show which is being held on February 17th, will be virtual like last year. LPYS also hosted three FREE artist workshops for youth in Durango, Ignacio, and Bayfield this year to kickstart their creative talents leading up to the show.
"One of our goals for this event is that every artist sells their artwork and each year the community has really shown up for youth in this way. It gives youth that boost of confidence and they feel valued when they see their artwork sell," said Pepinsky.
This year more than ever, we need the help of everyone in our community to "break the internet" and show our talented local youth that they are valued and supported.Here are three ways you can help us with this event:
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