The Hype about CIIPE

Oct 052011
Authors: Amy McDaniel

In its 32nd year, the Colorado International Invitational Poster Exhibition is the only show of its kind in the United States. It’s also right here in our backyard.

The biennial event features poster designs from 90 artists in 33 countries and consists of several separate satellite exhibits.

The main display is featured in both the Curfman Gallery located in the Lory Student Center and the Clara Hatton Gallery in the Visual Arts Building at Colorado State University. The Curfman Gallery showcases posters submitted by prominent designers from Latin America and Europe. The pieces from Asian and North American artists are available for viewing in the Clara Hatton Gallery.

Many of the designers visually convey commanding social and political messages ranging from ending suffering in Haiti to promoting education. The posters use striking graphics to please the eye, entertain our senses and make us wonder.

When asked what makes this particular exhibition so unique, CIIPE co-director John Gravdahl explained that unlike other art exhibitions around the world, “we’re asking individuals what they think their best work is, not what any particular, other group of people happens to like about their work.”

This provides a special opportunity for art lovers to gain insight into the mind of numerous artists around the world. Designers like Germany’s Holger Matthies and Mexico’s Jose Manual Morelos are giving us a taste of what makes them tick; they show us which of their pieces speak to them the most.

The Fort Collins community and CSU students are truly privileged to have access to such a unique exhibition. Not a traveling event, CIIPE is only around for a few more weeks. The exhibition ends October 13, and it will not be back until 2013.

Don’t miss an opportunity to view posters like Mohammad Sharaf’s “Chameleon MPs” and Vjeko Sumic’s “April 2010.” These two posters tied for first place after this year’s Honor Laureate Leonardo Sonnoli judged the artwork submitted for the exhibition.

Students can also purchase posters in the art office for $40, and full-color catalogs are available for $15 and feature every piece displayed in the exhibition. Hurry though, these incredible works of art are going fast!

For more information, visit these websites:

Art Department Website-

CSU News and Information- -Search “17th Biennial CIIPE”

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