Rising within sight of Broadway, right next to Civic Center Park and awaiting visitors, the Martin Building at the Denver Art Museum has been under renovation since 2017. This month the museum will once again be reunited with a large party. from its collection and will offer new attractions and exhibits when it reopens to visitors before the 50th anniversary of the Martin Building.
Between its newly designed roof towards the Ponti restaurant on the ground floor and its connection to the new Anna & John J. Sie visitor center, the renovated structure will offer seven levels of enlarged galleries for the museum’s collection. Each level will feature 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 stands proudly next to an awe-inspiring view of the Rocky Mountains in the distance.
Photography, architecture, design, textile art and fashion will have their own spaces in the building not far from centuries-old works and artefacts. On the ground floor, a newly expanded education center features local Denver artists Moe Gram and Frankie Toan. The new design makes it one of the largest museum education centers in the country.
Museum director Christoph Heinrich said the building is central to the organization’s mission in his opening speech at a press preview this week. “The completed canvas extends the museum’s ability to serve our community, welcome guests to our city, and preserve and display priceless works of art from around the world for generations to come. “
Heinrich also included recognitions of lands to the Arapaho, Cheyenne and Ute peoples, which feature prominently in the museum’s indigenous collection. He later added that the extra space spurred further acquisitions.
“The Denver Art Museum has been named a global museum, and in all of our brand new galleries you will encounter many collection favorites as well as many new acquisitions,” said Heinrich. “I think it’s something that always happens when you’re working on a new building. When you work for new galleries, you get really energetic and inspired to bring in new artwork, bring new collections and new gifts.
Mayor Michael B. Hancock was also on hand to recognize the city’s role in funding the larger project, which included the new addition of the Anna & John J. Sie Visitor Center, an addition to the Martin Building that includes the Ponti Restaurant, a cafe and multi-purpose space for events that faces Broadway with its curved glass view.
“I am absolutely delighted with this new installation and have been since Andrea Fulton, the deputy director of the museum]came to the office and shared with me the design we were working on here,” said the mayor.
“I am proud to represent a city that understands the true power of arts and culture. Not only is it a great economic impact, well over $ 4 billion per year, that our arts and culture contribute to our economic vitality as a city, ”he added. “Denver is, and a lot of people don’t realize it, but we’re number one city for arts and culture sponsorship. The National Endowment of the Arts has stated that Denver is a trendsetter. He said the newly renovated Martin Building was a testament to the investment of the city and its community. “We see the real power of appreciation that the people of Denver have for the arts and culture, and you treat them well with great facilities.”
The Martin Building will open its doors to members of the Denver Art Museum on October 21, 22 or 23. The general public can book tickets in advance for the museum’s free reopening day on October 24 on its website.