October 2012: Becoming Van Gogh Opens, Now Boarding Departs, Untitled #52 (Written Off) Wraps Up the 2012 Series and Other Highlights

The highly-anticipated Becoming Van Gogh, an in-depth exploration of Vincent van Gogh’s unconventional path to becoming one of the world’s most recognizable artists, opens at the Denver Art Museum (DAM) on October 21. The exhibition examines critical steps in the largely self-taught artist’s evolution through more than 70 paintings and drawings by Van Gogh, along with works by artists he responded to. Works in the exhibition are drawn from museums and private collections, and many have not been seen by the public for decades.

Vincent van Gogh, Self-Portrait with Straw Hat, 1887. Van Gogh Museum Amsterdam (Vincent van Gogh Foundation).
By focusing on the various stages of Van Gogh’s artistic development, Becoming Van Gogh illustrates his initial foray into mastering draftsmanship, understanding the limitations and challenges of materials and techniques, learning to incorporate color theory and folding myriad influences—including other artists—into his artistic vocabulary. No other exhibition has focused so intensely on Van Gogh’s personal growth and progression in his journey toward his own personal style.

Becoming Van Gogh is a world-exclusive to the DAM. The exhibition will be on view through January 20, 2013. Dated and timed tickets are required and are now available online at www.VanGoghDenver.com, at the museum and by phone at 720-913-0130 (service fee added to phone orders).

Paint Studio and Weekend Artist Demonstrations

Opening October 21

Visitors can dive into the creative process behind assorted techniques and mediums in the Paint Studio. See tools used by artists and photographs of their workspaces at the Studio Walk, play with paint or contribute to a larger-than-life masterpiece in our newest studio.

Each weekend local artists will demonstrate different painting techniques in a variety of mediums. Free with general admission. No reservations required.

Weekend Demonstration Schedule, noon–3 pm

October 21, 27 & 28: Nathan Abels - Acrylic painting

Vincent van Gogh: The Development of a Signature Style

Sundays, October 21–November 11, 1–2:30 p.m.

Vincent van Gogh, The Blute-fin Mill, 1886. Museum de Fundatie, Heino/Wijhe and Zwolle, the Netherlands, Photo: Hans Westerink.
Delve into the world that shaped a young and intense Vincent van Gogh in this four-part course. For the first session, join DAM Gates Foundation Curator of Painting and Sculpture Timothy J. Standring and Senior Researcher of Paintings at Amsterdam’s Van Gogh Museum Louis van Tilborgh to examine the main themes of Becoming Van Gogh. In following sessions, art historians will discuss the forces, people and places that, along with the artist’s commitment to teaching himself, influenced the development of Van Gogh’s unique style. $75 DAM members, $85 others. Register online or call 720-913-0130.

Untitled #52 (Written Off)

October 26, 6–10 p.m.

To celebrate the opening of Becoming Van Gogh, Untitled #52 (Written Off) examines artists forgotten in their own time, while offering odes to the museum’s own artworks that deserve a second look. Enjoy a detour or listen to local music. Don’t miss the latest installment of Buntport Theater’s Joan and Charlie Discuss Tonight’s Theme. Be prepared for a dose of the unexpected! Included with general admission, two-for-one with valid student ID during the event. Cash bar. For details, visit www.denverartmuseum.org. This is the final Untitled event of the year; watch for the return of Untitled in 2013. Untitled made possible by the citizens who support the Scientific and Cultural Facilities District (SCFD).

Conversation with Curator: El Anatsui: When I Last Wrote to You about Africa

October 5, 4 p.m.

El Anatsui, Zebra Crossing III, 2007. Aluminum and copper wire; 61 x 17 in. Courtesy Denver Art Museum.
Join DAM chief curator and curator of native arts Nancy Blomberg for a tour of the special exhibition, El Anatsui: When I Last Wrote to You about Africa. Conversations with Curators feature lively discussions with different curators on the first Friday of every month. Free with general admission and no reservations are needed. Meet on level four of the Hamilton Building. For information, call 720-913-0130.

Create Playdate: Crumple

September 12, 11 a.m.–1 p.m.

Drop in with your little ones, age 3 to 5, and meet up with other tots and their grown-ups as we check out art made from crumpled and folded bottle tops. Transform something old into something new, listen to stories and play art games in the galleries. Free with museum admission; children 5 and under are always free. Reservations are not required. For more information, e-mail familyprograms@denverartmuseum.org or call 720-913-0130.

Now Boarding: Fentress Airports + The Architecture of Flight Closes October 7

Incheon International Airport Passenger Terminal, Seoul, South Korea, 1993-2001. Photograph of airside. Photograph © Paul Dingman/Architectural drawing © Fentress Architects.
This is your final call to see Now Boarding: Fentress Airports + The Architecture of Flight, an exhibition that takes visitors on a journey through the history of airports aided by film, digital art, animation, models, drawings, photographs and full-scale architectural elements. Travel through six airports designed by Denver-based Fentress Architects: Denver International Airport, South Korea's Incheon International Airport, Seattle-Tacoma International Airport, Mineta San Jose International Airport, Raleigh-Durham International Airport, and Los Angeles International Airport. Now Boarding will change how travelers view airports and their design. The exhibition is included in general admission.

Laura Letinsky: Still Life Photographs, 1997–2012 Opens October 28

Laura Letinsky’s still life photographs have evolved from studies in melancholy and absence to subtle, yet surprising, explorations of perception, color and space. Wavering between flatness and volume, story and metaphor, these photographs contain mysteries that challenge viewers to keep looking and asking questions about how we see. This survey exhibition traces the paths Letinsky followed in her work from the late 1990s until today. The exhibition will be on view through March 24, 2013.

Families work together to create an art project during CelebrARTE.
CelebrARTE: Revive

October 21, 1–4 p.m.

¡Bienvenidos al CelebrARTE! Be inspired by the art of El Anatsui as he revives the past to make art for the present and future. Celebrate nuestros antepasados (our ancestors) and explore the arts made for life and afterlife. Viva la vida and participate in las artes that make life new again. All CelebrARTE activities are included in general admission, and reservations are not required. For more information, contact Madalena Salazar at 720-913-0054 or msalazar@denverartmuseum.org.

Celebrate Kids Photography Week at the DAM

October 6, 11 a.m.–2 p.m.

As part of Kids Photography Week, October 1–7, explore the western American art galleries and visit different types of landscapes as seen in photographs and paintings. Then come create your very own half and half landscapes with professional photographers. This special activity will take place on level seven of the North Building between 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. on a drop-in basis; no reservations necessary. General admission is free for Free First Saturday. Visit www.cpacphoto.org for information on other Kids Photography Week activities.

Free First Saturday

October 6, 10 a.m.–5 p.m.

On the first Saturday of every month, you can enjoy our art collections and non-ticketed exhibitions without spending a dime! Free general admission tickets are available on-site starting at 10 a.m. Free First Saturdays are sponsored by Target and made possible by the citizens who support the Scientific and Cultural Facilities District (SCFD).