Summer kicks off June 3 at the Denver Art Museum (DAM) with Free First Saturday, CelebrARTE and a “Family Fiesta.” Hosted by Mi Tierra artist Justin Favela from 1-3 p.m. on Martin Plaza, the “Family Fiesta” performance is a celebration between the artist, his family and anyone else who wants to join. The public is encouraged to join the artist and his family in games, dances, music, cuisine and piñata time. In “Family Fiesta” the event is taken out of its traditional context (a cookout in the backyard or park) and put in an unexpected, public place where anyone can learn about the artist’s culture and what “fiesta” means to him.
Throughout the day the whole family can enjoy free general admission and artmaking activities. During the summer, the Family Activity Cart will be available daily from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Create-n-Takes will be in the galleries Tuesday through Friday and on Free First Saturdays from 10:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. General admission is free for youth 18 and younger; The Western: An Epic in Art and Film also is free for youth 18 and younger.
On view through Sept. 10, The Western: An Epic in Art and Film is the first major exhibition to examine the Western genre and its evolution from the mid-1800s to the present through fine art, film and popular culture. Featuring 160 works, the exhibition explores gender roles, race relations and gun violence—offering a visual journey that is more than cowboys and American Indians, pursuits and duels, or bandits and barroom brawls. The West—synonymous with the romantic, large-scale paintings of Frederic Remington and Albert Bierstadt—also materializes in the works of contemporary artists like Kent Monkman and Ed Ruscha and the films of John Ford and Sergio Leone. By featuring these and other artists, authors, filmmakers and historic figures together, The Western observes how the mythology of the West spread throughout the world and endures today.
The exhibition is accompanied by a 320-page illustrated book, available in The Shops at the Denver Art Museum and online. Special ticketed exhibition; free for kids 18 and younger. #SummerintheWest
The Western-related programming
June 2, 4 p.m.
Thomas Brent Smith, director of the Petrie Institute of Western American Art at the DAM and co-curator of The Western: An Epic in Art and Film, will discuss the recently-opened exhibition and the enduring mythology of the Western. Entry to The Western requires a special exhibition ticket, but the talk is included in general admission. Meet in Sharp Auditorium
June 30, 5:30–7 p.m.
Thomas Brent Smith, director of the Petrie Institute of Western American Art at the DAM, will provide behind-the-scenes details around this first major exhibition to examine the Western genre and its evolution from the mid-1800s to the present through fine art, film and popular culture. $5 for DAM members, $10 for others. A separate admission ticket is required to view The Western before or after the lecture.
June 30, 6–10 p.m.
Zoom in for main attractions and epically moving pictures at Untitled: Action! Produced with local creatives, Untitled Final Fridays is the museum's monthly late night program featuring workshops, performances and tours with a twist. Experience the museum in an entirely different way—every time. College students with valid ID receive 2-for-1 admission to Untitled Final Fridays. #UntitledDAM
Through Sept. 10, 2017
Explore the epic mythology of the West in The Western: An Epic in Art and Film, then bring it to life through character and costume design in the Costume Studio. Invent your own larger-than-life characters or get inspired by historic Western figures like Annie Oakley to sketch one-of-a-kind designs. Draw inspiration from the desert landscape to create a costume out of unexpected materials like foam, bubble wrap and coffee filters. Included with general admission, which is free for youth 18 and younger. In addition to daily hands-on activities, the Costume Studio will have demonstrations by local artists every weekend from noon−3 p.m.
June Costume Studio Weekend Demonstration Calendar
June 3–4 & 10–11: Adolfo Romero—Costumevolution: Masks in Motion
June 17–18 & 24–25: Daniel Crosier—Monster Mask Making
Through July 16
Contemporary works and abstract expressionist masterpieces converge in Shade: Clyfford Still/Mark Bradford, a two-venue presentation at the DAM and Clyfford Still Museum (CSM). Paintings by renowned contemporary American artist Mark Bradford—representing the United States at the 2017 Venice Biennale—are on view at the DAM, alongside related canvases by Clyfford Still. An exhibition of Still's work, selected in collaboration with Bradford, is on view at CSM. Shade underscores the legacy of abstract expressionism and Bradford's exploration of abstraction's power to address social and political concerns. Bradford has long been fascinated by Still's extensive use of black as a signature component of his work. Shade explores both artists' unique relationships to black in their paintings, whether it's used to force viewers out of their comfort zones, evoke emotions or confront conventional notions of race. An illustrated exhibition catalog is available in The Shops at the Denver Art Museum and online. Included with general admission, which is free for youth 18 and younger. Present your ticket receipt from DAM or CSM at the other venue and receive free admission to see the rest of the collaborative exhibition during its run. #MarkBradfordShade
June 11 and June 24, 9 a.m.
In these two-venue talks, guides from the CSM and the DAM will collaborate to take visitors through Shade: Clyfford Still/Mark Bradford. Begin at the DAM to view the work of Mark Bradford, then venture to the CSM to see the paintings by Clyfford Still that Bradford selected for this joint exhibition. Compare and contrast both artists’ work, and explore how Bradford uses the power of abstraction to address social and political concerns. Enjoy before-hours access to the galleries in these morning programs. Meet at the DAM, Hamilton Building main entrance. Free; registration required at clyffordstillmuseum.org. Co-sponsored by the Clyfford Still Museum and Denver Art Museum.
June 13, 1–3 p.m.
Take inspiration from Mark Bradford’s multilayered paper collages in the exhibition Shade: Clyfford Still / Mark Bradford and create your own mixed media collage. Consider content while experimenting with different textures and paper treatments to create your layered design. Bring your own supplies or use one of our communal sketch pads. Included with general admission, which is free for youth 18 and younger.
June 27, 1–3 p.m.
Abstract art is bold and captivating, and yet most works are non-representational—not depicting actual things. We’ll use these abstractions to force us toward expression—idea, emotion, philosophy, characters—and therefore into language and story. Come ready to be moved by the work of Clyfford Still and Mark Bradford. Pick up a pencil and spark your creative interests with the help of a DAM instructor in these informal writing sessions. Included with general admission, which is free for youth 18 and younger.
Through July 16
DAM tours: Wednesdays, Fridays & Sundays, 2 p.m. — CSM tours: Wednesdays & Sundays, 3 p.m.
Back-to-back public tours of the two-venue exhibition Shade are available. A 45-minute tour of Shade is offered at the DAM on Wednesdays, Fridays and Sundays at 2 p.m.; meet on level 1 of the Hamilton Building. On Wednesdays and Sundays, continue your tour of Shade at CSM at 3 p.m.; meet in the Anschutz Foundation Atrium. Free for CSM and DAM members; others can buy a ticket at either venue to be admitted to both.
Through Oct. 22
Mi Tierra features site-specific installations by 13 Latino artists that express experiences of contemporary life in the American West. Dynamic artworks were created by Carmen Argote (Los Angeles), Jaime Carrejo (Denver), Gabriel Dawe (Dallas), Claudio Dicochea (San Antonio), Daniela Edburg (San Miguel de Allende), Justin Favela (Las Vegas), Ana Teresa Fernández (San Francisco), Ramiro Gomez (West Hollywood), John Jota Leaños (San Francisco), Dmitri Obergfell (Denver), Ruben Ochoa (Los Angeles), Daisy Quezada (Santa Fe) and Xochi Solis (Austin).
These artists examine diverse narratives of migration and the complex layering of cultures throughout the Western United States through ideas related to labor, nostalgia, memory, visibility and displacement. Their installations incorporate mixed-media, performance-based video art, digital animation, fiber constructions, painting, sculpture and ceramics. Guided tours of Mi Tierra offered Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays at 2 p.m. through Oct. 21. An exhibition catalog is available in The Shops and online. Included with general admission, which is free for youth 18 and younger. #MiTierraDAM
ALSO ON VIEW
Extended through Nov. 19, 2017
This exhibition features 65 examples of contemporary Japanese ceramic arts, created by 35 Japanese artists, from the collection of Robert and Lisa Kessler. The works include pieces made by master ceramists who were designated as Living National Treasures in Japan, as well as by emerging artists. The diversity of these objects reflects both the continuation of tradition and new creativity in contemporary Japanese ceramic arts. An illustrated catalog is available in The Shops and online. Included with general admission, which is free for youth 18 and younger.
Extended through Nov. 19, 2017
Innovative and unexpected―these works reveal the vast range of materials and processes utilized by contemporary designers as they challenge our notions of what design can be through the enduring form of the chair. The methods employed by these designers demonstrate a juxtaposition of handcraftsmanship and digital production, from unconventional and spontaneous processes (melting, wrapping and molding), to sculpting with math and technology. Some utilize longstanding production methods, while others push the limits of existing technologies or build their own specialized tools. Included with general admission, which is free for youth 18 and younger.
Gregg Deal, Walt Pourier, Melanie Yazzie
Former Native Arts Artists-in-Residence Melanie Yazzie, Gregg Deal and Walt Pourier are returning to the museum for a one-of-a-kind collaborative project called Action X Community X Togetherness. The alumni residency offers a unique opportunity for co-creating and the three artists were quick to find a central theme for this residency: art as a call to action and a catalyst for change. Their exploration of this theme will drive a variety of joint projects including talks, tours and workshops at Untitled Final Fridays (June 30, July 28, Aug. 25), demonstrations at Free First Saturdays (June 3, July 1) and hands-on artmaking at the Friendship Powwow and American Indian Cultural Celebration (Sept. 9). The Native Arts Artist-in-Residence program is generously supported by the Virginia W. Hill Foundation.
On view through fall 2017
Our final Cuatro artist, James Córdova, has created a triptych in the santero tradition, featuring a sculpture of San Hipólito in the center panel and paintings of crowned-nuns on the wings. The triptych also includes early colonial indigenous motifs found in mural paintings in Mexico. Córdova’s work explores images of conquest and paintings that came out of the Spanish Colonial period, a period that brought about new ideas and artistic creations that initially appear European, but upon in-depth exploration reveal the many influences of the indigenous peoples of Mexico. Cuatro: A Series of Artist Interactions is made possible by a grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services.
ADULT LECTURES & PROGRAMS
Wednesdays and Fridays, noon
Join a docent for a 30-minute, in-depth look at an aspect of the museum’s collections or something special happening in the galleries. Topics in June include Come to the Garden Party! (June 2), Clyfford Still/Mark Bradford (June 7 & 9), Walter Radcliffe: Proud Father (June 14 & 16), Where is Ana Mendieta? (June 21 & 23) and Kay Sage: Forgotten Surrealist (June 28 & 30). Included with general admission, which is free for youth 18 and younger. No reservation required.
June 2, 6:15–11 p.m. (doors open at 5:30 p.m.)
The 2017 Colorado Dragon Film Festival’s opening night will feature the Colorado premier of the Taiwanese film, 52Hz, I Love You, as well as a red carpet, bling, photo ops, a chance to meet the director and an after-party. Writer/director Wei Te-sheng will field questions following the viewing. A romantic comedy musical set in Taipei City, the title is taken from a news story about the “loneliest whale in the world,” whose calls—at 52Hz—were too high for other whales to hear. Film will be shown in Sharp Auditorium of the Hamilton Building; after-party will be in Duncan Pavilion. Purchase opening night tickets in advance at https://cdfilm.ticketleap.com/cdfilm; tickets will not be available at the door. For details, email email@example.com or visit www.cdfilm.org/content/52hz-i-love-you. Sponsored by the Asian Art Association, a DAM support group, and the Denver Art Museum.
June 20, 1 p.m
Sarah Magnatta, interpretive specialist for Asian art, leads a mindful exploration of the Hayagriva mandala in the Tibetan art gallery. Discover overlooked details, explore ideas and make connections as we linger, look and discuss. Meet on level 1 of the Hamilton Building. Included with general admission, which is free for youth 18 and younger. No reservation required.
June 21, 6:30 p.m.
The First Emperor’s tomb complex, with its auxiliary pits filled with thousands of life-size terracotta figures, has been hailed as the Eighth Wonder of the World. Professor Eugene Y. Wang, Harvard University, addresses questions including why these figures wear strange slanting hairdos rarely seen at the time, why the terracotta army and the emperor’s “spirit carriages” face opposite directions, was the tomb complex really about the preservation of the emperor’s corpse and was the terracotta army there to defend the First Emperor’s tomb? Lecture admission is free; to attend the reception afterwards, please reserve a seat online or call 720-913-0130. For details, email Blittle@denverartmuseum.org or call 720-913-0040. Sponsored by the Asian Art Association and Curator’s Circle. Supported by the W. S. Jackson Fund.
SPECIAL ACCESS PROGRAMS
Blue Star Museum Program
Memorial Day–Labor Day 2017
This summer, the DAM once again is participating in the Blue Star Museum program, a collaboration among the National Endowment for the Arts, Blue Star Families, the Department of Defense and more than 2,000 museums across America. From Memorial Day to Labor Day, the DAM will offer free general admission to active duty military personnel and their families. For additional details and to find participating museums, visit the Blue Star Museums map. #NEA
June 9 & 10, 10 a.m.–1 p.m.
Get hands on with art! Visitors are invited to try on a button blanket from Northwest Coast tribes and handle a model of the monumental Mud Woman Rolls On. Tactile Tables are regularly scheduled, bimonthly opportunities to experience art in a hands-on way with facilitation by specially trained docents. These tables are designed for visitors who are blind or have low vision, but open to all visitors who desire a multisensory, hands-on experience with art. Included with general admission. No reservation required.
June 15, 1:30–2:30 p.m.
The Alzheimer's Association invites those with early stage memory loss and their families to join Active Minds for an interactive poetry program designed specifically for this audience. The objective is to revisit and enjoy familiar poems and use poetry to trigger memories and enjoy those reminiscences together. Meet on the lower level of the Hamilton Building. (This quarterly program also will be offered Sept. 21 and Dec. 21.) Active Minds is free for registered participants, but space is limited. Reserve a spot by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or calling 720-913-0074.
June 3, 10 a.m.–5 p.m.
On the first Saturday of every month, enjoy the museum’s art collections and non-ticketed exhibitions without spending a dime! Be sure to check out some of the DAM’s many family-friendly activities. Free general admission tickets are available on-site starting at 10 a.m. Free First Saturday is made possible by Your 6 Hometown Toyota Stores and the citizens who support the Scientific and Cultural Facilities District (SCFD). #ThanksSCFD
At CelebrARTE on Free First Saturdays, enjoy bilingual fun for everyone, with a 2 p.m. DAM Highlights tour en español, Create-n-Takes and a storytelling program. Cuentistas tell the tales of artworks during Cuentos del Arte with stories para todos—for everyone—at 11:30 a.m. and 1 p.m. Included with general admission, which is free for Free First Saturday. No reservation required. #GraciasSCFD
June 3, 1–3 p.m.
Join us for a “Family Fiesta” on Martin Plaza hosted by Mi Tierra artist Justin Favela during Free First Saturday. The “Family Fiesta” performance is a celebration between the artist, his family and anyone else who wants to join. The public is encouraged to join the artist and his family in games, dances, music, cuisine and piñata time. In “Family Fiesta” the event is taken out of its traditional context (a cookout in the backyard or park) and put in an unexpected, public place where anyone can learn about the artist’s culture and what “fiesta” means to him. Free admission; no reservation required.
June 14, 10 a.m.-2 p.m. (extended summer hours!)
Drop in with your little ones, aged 3 to 5, and meet up with other tots and their grownups for story time, artmaking and more! Included with general admission, which is free for youth 18 and younger. No reservation required.
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Denver Art Museum
The Denver Art Museum is an educational, nonprofit resource that sparks creative thinking and expression through transformative experiences with art. Its holdings reflect the city and region—and provide invaluable ways for the community to learn about cultures from around the world. Denver metro citizens support the Scientific and Cultural Facilities District (SCFD), a unique funding source serving hundreds of metro Denver arts, culture and scientific organizations. For museum information, call 720-865-5000 or visit denverartmuseum.org.Download PDF of press release.