Diversity, Equity and Inclusiveness Initiative

Multiplicity -- Brenton Weyi from Denver Arts & Venues on Vimeo.

Inspired by IMAGINE 2020, Denver Arts & Venues (A&V) is excited to announce the agency’s Diversity, Equity, and Inclusiveness Initiative (DEI). A&V is committed to these core values in all our programs, initiatives and processes.

As an agency priority, the Diversity, Equity and Inclusiveness initiative will continue to evolve with our steadfast dedication to all our residents, as Denver is a city where everyone matters, and everyone matters in the arts.

Diversity: (Who’s at the table?) Recognition and representation of individual or group differences encompassing race, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, country of origin, ability, socioeconomic status, age, religion, and other areas of identity.

Equity: The fair treatment, access, opportunity, and advancement for all people, while at the same time identifying and eliminating barriers that have prevented the full participation of some groups. Improving equity involves increasing justice and fairness within the protocols, processes, practices and policies of institutions or systems, as well as in their distribution of resources. Confronting and tackling equity issues requires an understanding of the root causes of disparities within our society. Equity is closely tied to actions and results to address historical disparities. 

Inclusiveness: Embracing differences by creating environments in which any individual or group can feel welcomed, respected, supported, and valued to fully participate. While an inclusive group is by definition diverse, a diverse group isn’t always inclusive. To achieve inclusiveness, recognition of implicit or unconscious bias is necessary.


Multilingual Communications

Multilingual efforts include:

  • Beginning in 2017 Arts & Venues has translated key communications into Spanish including agency press releases, online applications, and calls for performers and artists. As of October 2017, 74 documents and 37,424 words have been translated from English into Spanish.
  • Bilingual educational displays for exhibitions at the McNichols Civic Center Building 
  • Bilingual booklet was produced for the exhibition "Inclusion: Diverse Voices of the Modern West," featuring a group of Colorado artists exploring themes of complex connections of racial identity through artistic expression. 
  • Educational companion exhibition Ai Weiwei: Art & Social Change, as well as promotional materials for "Ai Weiwei’s Circle of Animals/Zodiac Heads" were produced in English, Spanish and Mandarin Chinese. 

Arts & Venues conducted an assessment of international symbols used on signage at all agency venues. Results will guide an implementation plan to incorporate universal signage at our premier public venues to facilitate navigation and wayfinding. This project also supports the city’s international efforts. 


Art exhibitions at McNichols Civic Center Building and Civic Center Park focus on themes of diversity, equity and inclusiveness. Informational wall panel and associated collateral for all exhibitions is bilingual in Spanish and English:

Multi-media works bringing attention to the story of refugees and immigrants in Denver.

Group of Colorado artists exploring themes of complex connections of racial identity through artistic expression. Bilingual booklet (English/Spanish) produced.

Exhibition highlighting the diversity in Buffalo Bill’s Wild West shows. The show was one of the most popular traveling shows in the world and it employed performers from every continent (except Antarctica).

Photographs of glaciers in Greenland, Iceland and Switzerland by James Balog, founder of the Extreme Ice Survey, and NASA representative at the United Nations Conference on Climate Change.

In partnership with Mexico’s Televisa Foundation, A&V presents an exhibition on Mexican cinematographer Gabriel Figueroa, one of the most important cinematographers of the Gold Age of Mexican Cinema.

With support from Bonfils-Stanton Foundation, A&V presents "Circle of Animals/Zodiac Heads" in Civic Center Park. A complementary educational exhibit, "Ai Weiwei: Art & Social Change," housed in the McNichols Civic Center Building. Bronze sculptures represent the 12 animals of the Chinese zodiac, and companion exhibit explores artist Ai Weiwei's life and personal history as well as the history of the 12 original heads that once adorned the famed fountain-clock of the Yuanming Yuan, an imperial retreat in Beijing. 

Informational wall panel and associated collateral provided in Chinese, Spanish and English.