Three Denver Arts & Venues projects honored today at Americans for the Arts annual convention in Denver
Jun 15 2018
On June 15 at their annual convention in Denver, Americans for the Arts honored 49 outstanding, exemplary and innovative public art works created or debuted in 2017, including three Denver Arts & Venues projects. The honors are part of the Public Art Network Year in Review program, the only national program that specifically recognizes the most compelling public art as chosen by a panel of public art experts. This is the 17th year that Americans for the Arts has recognized public art works.
“To be recognized by Americans for the Arts Public Art Network for three of our projects is an incredible honor,” said Denver Arts & Venues Executive Director, Kent Rice. “It’s evidence of the strength and dedication of our Denver Public Art team, our public art selection panel, and the artists, designers and fabricators involved with each project.”
Denver Arts & Venues projects recognized by the Public Art Network
The RAW Project Denver
Aiming to improve learning environments and communities around Denver’s low-income neighborhoods, in Sept. 2017 the Re-Imagining Arts Worldwide (RAW) Project engaged more than 30 artists to paint exterior walls of Villa Park and Sun Valley elementary schools -- Eagleton, Cowell and Fairview -- branching out for the first time from Miami’s Wynwood urban arts district where the project began. Denver Arts & Venues and Denver Public Schools supported The RAW Project Denver to broaden and strengthen outlets for learning through creativity. Community members, teachers and students also participated, and artists took to the classrooms to talk about the creative process. The RAW Denver Project raised funding through a Denver Urban Arts Fund Grant, and corporate and private contributions. The RAW Denver collaboration is one of a new series of Urban Arts Fund partnerships focusing on community building and social change, addressing diversity, equity and inclusiveness values. Read more about the Urban Arts Fund and The RAW Denver Project.
“Sky Song” is an interactive Denver Public Art installation, designed and fabricated by Denver-based artists Nick Geurts and Ryan Elmendorf. The mirror-polished stainless steel 8-foot structure invites passersby to press any combination of its 33 buttons which activate lights and tones on the Levitt Pavilion amphitheater building façade. This piece allows visitors to create their own sound and light performance on the amphitheater’s non event days, and light without shows during concerts. Read more about “Sky Song” and watch videos of the artwork in action .
Composed by Kevin Padrowski, “Ascent” is a Denver Public Art commissioned musical composition for the Denver City and County Building’s bell tower. The composition acts as a signature piece for Denver, drawn from Denver’s catalytic energy and the ambiance of Denver’s Civic Center Park. The musical piece is celebratory in nature, evoking the spirit of Denver as the chimes peal to announce important events. Read more about “Ascent” and listen to the tune.
In celebration of this honor, the chimes of the City and County of Denver building will play “Ascent” at the top of the hour from 1-8 p.m. on Friday, June 15.
“The best of public art can challenge, delight, educate, and illuminate. Most of all, public art creates a sense of civic vitality in the cities, towns, and communities we inhabit and visit,” said Robert L. Lynch, president and CEO of Americans for the Arts. “As these Public Art Network Year in Review selections illustrate, public art has the power to enhance our lives on a scale that little else can. I congratulate the artists and commissioning groups for these community treasures, and I look forward to honoring more great works in the years to come.”
The projects selected for Year in Review can be viewed online and are on display at the AFTA Convention, in Denver at Hyatt Regency Denver at the Colorado Convention Center through June 17.
The Public Art Network presentation, including insight into selection process from three independent public art experts—Bryan Lee, Jr., director of design at Colloqate Design in New Orleans; Karen Mack, executive director of LA Commons in Los Angeles; and Denver artist Patrick Marold -- and photos and descriptions of all 49 projects, will be available for purchase through Americans for the Arts’ store.