The Mile High City’s annual celebration of the arts aims to support the industry by making arts and culture accessible to all
This year’s Denver Arts Week has become Denver Arts Week(end) – taking place from November 6-8 – but it will still celebrate all things art in The Mile High City. As with the traditional nine-day celebration, Denver Arts Week(end) will feature hundreds of arts and cultural events across The Mile High City including the 43rd Annual Denver Film Festival, music and dance performances, visual arts and more – both virtually and in-person – as well as discounts and deals available on memberships, admission, as well as free events for all. The program will still focus on its purpose of making the arts accessible to all – this year with the added component of virtual accessibility – while also supporting the arts industry, which has been significantly impacted by the Coronavirus pandemic.
“Denver is a city that greatly values its arts and culture – and undertakes exceptional efforts to make these things accessible to everyone,” said Richard Scharf, president and CEO of VISIT DENVER. “The community has been rallying around the struggling arts scene by continuing to safely visit open attractions, supporting virtual efforts and more; and Denver Arts Week(end) hopes to further these efforts as the industry navigates the challenges of 2020.”
A pair of reports released in August 2020 by Denver Arts & Venues detailed both the record growth of the arts scene, as well as unprecedented loss due to the pandemic. According to the 2020 City of Denver Creative Economy Report, Denver’s creative industries (music, theater, dance, visual arts, film, television and more) produced $16.2 billion in sales revenue in 2019, or four percent of all goods and services sold within the region. The report also showed that employment in the region’s creative industries had grown 29 percent between 2010 and 2019. Initial analyses of post-pandemic data are showing that Denver’s creative industries will lose an estimated $1.4 billion in sales revenue and an estimated 29,840 jobs for the city, or one third of the gains from the last decade, in just six months.
Denver Arts Week(end) hopes to provide various ways to positively impact the decimated arts industry. Below are several Denver Arts Week(end) events, including both virtual and in-person options. For more details, including additional events and individual location safety protocols, go to DenverArtsWeek.com. VISIT DENVER has also launched a Denver Arts Week Facebook page and Instagram account, so followers can support the arts all year long.
Día de los Muertos at the Arts District on Santa Fe, November 6
Partnering with multiple cultural and citywide organizations, the Arts District on Santa Fe will present a Día de los Muertos Celebration as part of Denver Arts Week(end). The public can pick up a free Altar Kit to make their own ofrendas at home in the lot just north of Su Teatro. Additionally, anyone can submit photos of loved ones who have passed away for a photo memorial to be displayed on the Daniels & Fischer Tower during Night Lights Denver. In addition, the Arts District on Santa Fe and their partners will provide a Virtual Día de los Muertos event with videos, tutorials, performances and more, from 5-6:30 p.m. on November 6.
Rauschenberg: Reflections and Ruminations Denver Arts Week(end) Deal, November 6-8
The Museum of Outdoor Arts is offering discounted tickets to this signature exhibition for Denver Arts Week(end). Using the code MANGO to purchase advance tickets, museum guests will have the opportunity to see more than 50 original artworks by Robert Rauschenberg – considered to be one of the most influential American artists of the 20th century – in the largest solo exhibition of his work ever presented in Colorado.
Denver Museum of Nature & Science: Night at the Museums, November 7
Denver Museum of Nature & Science will be open for free from 5-8 p.m. Capacity will be limited and reservations can be made on the museum’s website. The Planetarium, Phipps IMAX Theater, and traveling exhibitions The Art of the Brick and Dogs! A Science Tail will also be open to guests, but will require a special ticket (not included with free admission).
Kirkland Museum’s Seek and Find Staff Favorites, November 6-13
In conjunction with the Kirkland Museum of Fine & Decorative Art’s new Staff Favorites virtual exhibition, guests can visit Kirkland Museum from November 6-13 to participate in a self-guided scavenger hunt to find each of the staff’s favorite artworks on view at the Museum. Match the detail image in the virtual exhibition with the room where you found it and learn more about each of the works from Kirkland Museum’s three collections (Vance Kirkland paintings, Colorado art and International Decorative Art) in the process.
Night Lights Denver
The Denver Theatre District will celebrate the first anniversary of Night Lights Denver, the year-round projection mapping installation on the Daniels & Fisher Tower. Night Lights Denver features rotating content designed by artists and the community. During Denver Arts Week(end), in conjunction with the Art District on Santa Fe’s Día de los Muertos celebration, Night Lights Denver will feature memorial projections of passed loved ones along with other artworks (Nov. 1-6); and on November 7, the programming will consist of the University of Denver’s Spatial Video Class students’ artwork.
The Betsy Stage Presents Being Here, through November 22
Being Here, a modern-day theater experience, invites audiences to connect with powerful monologues, personally written or selected by talented Denver-based artists, as they express their perspectives on real-world challenges we all face today. These stories will be told by James Brunt, Sydnee Fullmer, Adrienne Martin-Fullwood, Michael Gurshtein, Todd Kadtke, Michal Meyer, Rekha Ohal, Erin Slimak, Artie Thompson and Lisa Young. Seating is limited and must be reserved in advance.
The FENCE, through November 30
THE FENCE is a juried, traveling outdoor photography exhibit of outstanding images by 40 photographers from around the world. The exhibit is on a tour of eleven U.S. cities, and will be on view in Denver along a 500-foot banner at Cherry Creek Park behind the Cherry Creek Shopping Center.
43rd Annual Denver Film Festival, through November 8
This year’s Denver Film Festival features official selections, exclusive filmmaker conversations, bonus content, special guests and more on an entirely virtual platform, making the event more accessible than ever. There are various passes available – from an All-Access Pass to four or 10 ticket packs. Film screenings and additional event details can be found on the festival’s website.
Art From Ashes First Friday Youth Poet Performances on Instagram, November 6
Youth poets performing on First Friday has been a tradition at Art from Ashes for 15 years, and it will continue virtually in 2020. This special evening provides the young people in Art from Ashes’ Phoenix Rising program an opportunity to showcase their creative genius to community members through poems written in their workshops. Viewers can enjoy these live readings beginning at 4p.m. on Instagram @afaphoenix.
99 Pieces of Art, November 6-7
99 Pieces of Art is Access Gallery’s annual and primary fundraiser that showcases 99+ unique artists and celebrates the diversity of Denver’s art community. This event features artwork of all styles and mediums created by well-known and emerging artists, locals, program participants and Access Gallery artists. This year’s event will be entirely virtual, and new artwork is added for sale regularly, so interested buyers are encouraged to check back often.
Virtual Demos at ASLD, November 6-8
The Art Students League of Denver will celebrate Denver Arts Week(end) 2020 with virtual demos from their talented faculty members. The organization will feature a new demo each day on Facebook live – ranging from felting to Photoshop to painting and more.
Visionbox’s Murumations: Parts 1 & 2, November 6-8
Visionbox Studio Theatre is a professional actors’ studio in Denver that provides actors and other theatre students and professionals with training rooted in graduate level-curriculum, taught by theatre professionals. During Denver Arts Week(end), Visionbox will present Murmurations: Part 1 and Part 2. Part 1 is an evening of two, one-man projects: one is adapted from Chekhov’s Three Sisters, adapted by Jennifer Rincon; and the other is a completely original piece by Visionbox Ensemble actor Trevor Lyons. Part 2 is the company’s newest work, which explores the individual’s struggle to find meaning and connection during this most challenging period in human history. Visionbox has created a performance style now called “low-friction,” that utilizes extreme minimalism on stage with the highest level of technology in design including VR, AR, projection design, 360 camera work and immersive space.
Feelgood Modern Class for Teens & Adults at Cleo Parker Robinson Dance, November 7
Join Cleo Parker Robinson Dance on Zoom for an accessible adult Modern class instructed by Chris Page-Sanders. All abilities are welcome and registration can be found at the Cleo Parker Dance website.
Virtual Drawing with Terra Hanson-Necessary of Atomic Pixies, November 7
The Forney Museum of Transportation will host local artist Terra Hanson-Necessary of the Atomic Pixies art collective for a virtual drawing class. Hanson-Necessary will teach viewers how to draw the Museum’s famed Denver & Rio Grande Western Railroad Locomotive No. 3006.
Virtual Women’s Suffrage Walking Tour, November 8
To help celebrate the 100th anniversary of national women’s suffrage, Historic Denver is taking a look at the influential women who helped Colorado secure voting rights for women 25 years before it was adopted by the nation. Virtually visit the buildings that served an important function in this movement, and learn how these women used their Colorado experience to secure national voting rights for women. A combination of photographs and video along with an expert guide will bring to life the stories and sites of these influential women, while discussing history and architecture.