Paper Work: Joseph Coniff, Rachel Doniger, Wilma Fiori, Martha Hughes

Rule Gallery

January 25 - March 2, 2019

  • Reception: Friday, January 25 from 6-9p
jcruleJoseph Coniff, Panel Composition 13, 2019, acrylic and wallpaper on wood panel,16.25 x 17 in

Rule Gallery
530 Santa Fe Drive
Denver, CO 80204


RULE Gallery is pleased to present Paper Work, a group exhibition featuring Joseph Coniff, Rachel Doniger, Wilma Fiori and Martha Hughes. The show will be presented at RULE’s Denver gallery, located at 530 Santa Fe Dr. with a public reception on January 25 from 6-9pm and will be on view through March 2, 2019.


Paper Work brings together a group of artists utilizing paper in various ways in their artistic practice. For Wilma Fiori, her Cobweb series grew from an interest in anthropology, creating tightly composed textural paintings on paper with marks that hint at hieroglyphics. With Hughes, repetitive, gestural mark making within defined grids brings life into what would otherwise be a static form. Evoking the practice of animation, her drawings allow the viewer to see a series of movements all at once, emphasizing how the whole is greater than its parts. Coniff, meanwhile, employs commonplace wallpaper, thoughtfully tearing it to create organic breaks in the pattern. Applying the pieces to painted panels, his compositions represent the redirections we can experience when our cultural conditioning is interrupted. Finally, Doniger’s practice is based on exploring the graphic potential of paper itself using a seemingly simple process of cutting and folding thousands of shapes in the paper. She produces pieces that, from a distance, seem unassuming but upon closer study resolve themselves in to visually complex landscapes that can exemplify the serenity of rolling grasslands and the chaos of raging seas. By bringing together traditional and unorthodox uses of the medium, the artists in Paper Work bring depth and complexity to the simplest of materials.


Joseph Coniff (b. 1981) received an MFA in 2016 from the University of Delaware, Newark and a BFA from Rocky Mountain College of Art and Design in 2011. His work has been included in New American Paintings, Creative Quarterly, Studio Visit Magazine, and Vogue Espana among other. Coniff has been called one of Denver’s most notable emerging artists and has received numerous awards and recognition in the Denver press. He has completed residencies and guest lectures in Wassaic, NY; Santa Fe NM; Berlin, Germany; and at Black Cube, Denver, CO. Coniff’s work has been exhibited nationally and internationally in Denver, Marfa, New York, Los Angeles, Philadelphia and Berlin and is in numerous public, business and private collections nationally and internationally.


Rachel Doniger (b. 1979) received a BA from Brown University in 2001 and a MArch from the School of Art and Architecture, Washington University, St Louis, MO in 2006. A former architect, Doniger has been exhibiting her paper reliefs since 2014. Notable exhibition venues include the Arvada Center for the Arts, Blue Print Gallery, Redline Contemporary Art and Ice Cube Gallery. Her work resides in the collection of the Chicago Ritz Carlton and in private collections across the United States.


Wilma Fiori (b. 1929) received her BFA from Loretto Heights College in Denver, CO. She initially worked as a representational artist, but was drawn to anthropology by the abstraction of primitive art. In the early l980’s she volunteered as a curatorial assistant to Richard Conn in the Native Arts Department of the Denver Art Museum. Fiori studied under Dale Chisman at the Art Student’s League of Denver from 1987 until 2007 and additionally studied with Bill Joseph, Quang Ho, Jerry de la Cruz, Jeffrey Keith and Mark Lunning. She has exhibited her artwork for over 30 years in Colorado, Indiana, Illinois, Texas and New York. Her work can be found in the permanent collections of the Ritz Carlton Hotel, Denver, Regis University, Denver and numerous business and private collections across the country.


Martha Hughes (b. 1949) received a BFA in Studio Art from the University of Texas at Austin in 1973. Her work has been included in numerous solo and group shows across the USA including exhibitions in New York, Texas, New Orleans, New Mexico and Colorado. Hughes works in a variety of mediums including painting, drawing, photography, and computer-based media. The artist has resided in Marfa, Texas, since 2004 where she owns and runs Marfa Works on Paper gallery. Her work is in numerous collections throughout the country including the Lannan Foundation, Santa Fe and the St George Hotel, Marfa.


RULE Gallery, founded in 1991, has locations in Denver, CO and Marfa, TX. RULE represents emerging and mid-career contemporary artists and artist estates, with a focus on fostering investigative art practices while developing artists’ long-term careers. Outside their robust in-house exhibition schedule, RULE coordinates programming in prominent institutions and non-traditional settings, expanding community engagement with the work. In addition, the gallery actively endeavors to bring greater recognition of the region’s historic art movements to a broader audience.