The Martin Building of the Denver Art Museum, renovated and finished, centers its extensive art collection back in the city

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The Martin Building of the Denver Art Museum rises within sight of Broadway, right on Civic Center Park, and waits for visitors. The museum has been under renovation since 2017. This month the museum will be reunited with a large part of its collection, offering new attractions and exhibitions when it reopens to visitors before the 50th anniversary of the Martin Building.

Between the redesigned roof terrace to the Ponti restaurant on the ground floor and the connection to the new Anna & John J. Sie Welcome Center, the converted building offers galleries for the museum’s collection expanded on seven levels. Each level features collections of indigenous art and works from Latin America, Asia, and Europe. This includes one of the museum’s oldest collections, Western American Art, which sits proudly alongside sweeping views of the Rocky Mountains in the distance.

Kevin J. Beaty / Denverite
Art in ReVisión: Art in the Americas in the newly opened Martin Building of the Denver Art Museum. October 13, 2021.
Kevin J. Beaty / Denverite
“The Scream” by Kent Monkman in an exhibition of contemporary Native American art in the newly opened Martin Building of the Denver Art Museum. October 13, 2021.

Photography, architecture, design, textile art and fashion will have their own rooms in the building, not far from works and artefacts that are centuries older. On the ground floor is a newly expanded education center with local Denver artists Moe Gram and Frankie Toan. The new design makes it one of the largest museum educational centers in the country.

Museum director Christoph Heinrich said in his opening speech at a press preview this week that the building is central to the organization’s mission. “The finished canvas expands the museum’s ability to serve our community, welcome guests to our city, and preserve and present priceless works of art from around the world for generations to come.”

Kevin J. Beaty / Denverite
A sculpture depicting a character in the Ramayana in the Denver Art Museum’s newly opened Martin Building. October 13, 2021.
Kevin J. Beaty / Denverite
A fashion exhibition in the newly opened Martin Building of the Denver Art Museum. October 13, 2021.

Heinrich also added land recognitions to the Arapaho, Cheyenne, and Ute who are prominently represented in the museum’s indigenous collection. He later added that the extra space led to new acquisitions.

“The Denver Art Museum has been named a World Museum, and you’ll find lots of collection favorites and lots of new acquisitions in all of our brand new galleries,” said Heinrich. “I think that always happens when you’re working towards a new building. When you work towards new galleries, you really get energy and an incentive to bring in new works of art, new collections and new gifts. “

Kevin J. Beaty / Denverite
A view of the Denver Art Museum’s newly renamed Martin Building from a welcome center below. October 13, 2021.
Kevin J. Beaty / Denverite
Christoph Heinrich, Frederick and Jan Mayer director of the Denver Art Museum, speaks during an opening ceremony for the museum’s new Martin Building. October 13, 2021.

Mayor Michael B. Hancock was also present to recognize the city’s role in funding the extensive project, which included the new construction of the Anna & John J. Sie Welcome Center, an extension of the Martin building and the Ponti restaurant , a café and multipurpose event space overlooking Broadway with its curved glass view.

“I’ve been absolutely delighted with this new facility ever since Andrea Fulton, the museum’s assistant director, came into the office and introduced me to the design that was being worked on here,” said the mayor.

Kevin J. Beaty / Denverite
A 17th century cabinet from Mexico in the newly opened Martin Building of the Denver Art Museum. October 13, 2021.
Kevin J. Beaty / Denverite
Mayor Michael Hancock attends an opening ceremony for the Denver Art Museum’s Martin Building. October 13, 2021.

“I am proud to represent a city that understands the real power behind art and culture. Not only is it a huge economic impact of well over $ 4 billion a year that our arts and culture add to our economic vitality as a city, ”he added. “Denver is, and many don’t know it, but we’re the number one city when it comes to promoting art and culture. The National Endowment of the Arts said Denver was a trendsetter. ”He said the newly renovated Martin building was testament to the investment the city and its community have made. “We see the real power of the Denver people appreciating the arts and culture, and you treat them well with great facilities.”

The Martin Building will open to members of the Denver Art Museum on October 21, 22, or 23. The general public can reserve tickets in advance on its website for the free day of the museum reopening on October 24th.


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