ARTventure Tours

Go on, get out of the hotel and experience the incredible variety of art and culture throughout Denver first-hand!

ARTventure Tours are a great opportunity to dig into the art all around you. These special off-site, educational tours are available to all Convention attendees and are designed to showcase the artistic successes of our beautiful host city.

Each ARTventure has a maximum capacity of 40 persons. Please sign up early to reserve your spot!

ARTventure Tours require an additional fee of $60 per person. Based on availability, Convention attendees are allowed to bring a maximum of two guests.

ARTventure Tours will take place on Saturday afternoon, departing the Convention headquarters hotel on foot or by bus or bicycle (depending on the tour) at 1:30 p.m.

Please note: If you do not wish to participate in an ARTventure, there will also be Convention programming during this period.

Tour 1: The Art of Healing: Innovations in Art, Therapy & Wellness
Saturday, June 16, 1:30 pm - 5:00 pm

On the Anschutz Medical Campus you’ll find some of the most renowned medical minds in the world, the brightest educators and the most brilliant healers and caregivers. Using art in healing and wellness is given top priority here. Children's Hospital Colorado uses the positive value provided by art to help kids heal and created its facility with that in mind. The Ponzio Creative Arts Therapy Program offers children and families a broad creative palette for the healing of the body, mind and spirit. There is also an on-site art gallery, and public art woven into the entire fabric of the state-of-the-art building. They operate partnerships with cultural organizations like Colorado Ballet, that bring an array of artists into the caregiving setting. No other children's hospital in the country offers the breadth of expertise in clinically creative interventions, substantiated by ongoing research. Through this unique program, kids are recovering and finding their passions and their strengths.


Across campus is The Center for Bioethics and Humanities that is devoted to using the arts and humanities as a part of the training and education of medical professionals. They host world–renowned art exhibits in their gallery at their facility, the Fulginetti Pavillion, which is also home to Gossard Forum, a unique in-the-round auditorium seating 140.  The Forum is a specialized space to elevate and encourage deliberation of the most pressing moral healthcare issues we face, both within the campus community, as well with our regional and national communities. After touring these unique facilities., experts from the two programs will share how they use art of all forms in healing, education and serving their medical objectives. (Both programs are recent recipients of the prestigious Bonfils-Stanton Foundation Science, Medicine and Arts Award.


Tour 2: Five Points: Art, History & Culture in the Harlem of the West
Saturday, June 16, 1:30 pm - 5:00 pm

Five Points, founded in the 1860s, is one of Denver’s oldest neighborhoods and it features some of the city’s cultural gems, oldest homes and iconic historic storefronts. It was known as the "Harlem of the West" because it was a frequent stop for jazz greats including Billie Holiday, Louis Armstrong and Miles Davis. It has been referred to as the seat of Denver’s African American community.  Today, Five Points' history and cultural vibrancy is reflected in some of the artistic and creative anchors of the community. Learn about dance performance and education, and community building at Cleo Parker Robinson Dance, one of the foremost modern dance companies in the nation, recognized by their dynamic body of works inspired by the African American experience. Get a glimpse of the past through stories of the African American pioneers who helped shape the West and the city when you visit the Black American West Museum and Heritage Center and the Blair-Caldwell African American Research Library. Time permitting, we will also visit the studios of KUVO, one of the nation’s premier public radio stations devoted entirely to jazz, which also has a rich legacy in Five Points and Denver. Along the way, our exploration of Five Points will also include conversation around the forces of gentrification and displacement, a major current challenge in this historic community.

Our thanks to the 4 Ever Young Foundation for its support of the Five Points: Art, History and Culture in the Harlem of the West tour.

Tour 3: Colorado Rocks! Music, Social Impact and Rolling Stone’s “Best Amphitheater in America"
Saturday, June 16, 1:30 pm - 5:00 pm

Experience iconic Red Rocks, the only naturally-occurring, acoustically perfect amphitheater in the world!  This tour celebrates Colorado’s unique music culture while taking in panoramic views of Denver. A visit to the Colorado Music Hall of Fame illustrates how the distinctive history of music in Colorado has grown into a culture both supporting local musicians and fostering social good.

You will hear how public-private partnerships advance music as a key creative industry in the state, and meet musicians, activists and music organizations that support a growing local music scene focused around positive community change. 


Tour 4: New Models for Downtown Arts: Denver Theatre District & The Next Stage
Saturday, June 16, 1:30 pm - 5:00 pm

The Denver Theatre District (DTD) enlivens a 16-block area of downtown Denver through interactive, immersive and experimental arts, culture events and experiences by providing creatives with a platform and financial support for sharing their work. Join the tour to learn about this nationally unique public-private partnership that leverages managed outdoor media to support downtown activity and bring exciting unique arts experiences to the public. You will also explore their newest venture, Understudy, a first-of-its-kind experimental art and culture incubator located in the Colorado Convention Center. 

Anchoring the Denver Theater District is the publicly owned and managed Denver Performing Arts Complex, the largest performing arts center under one roof in the country. Connected by an 80-foot-tall glass roof, the Arts Complex houses ten performance spaces on its 12-acre site and is home to four signature resident companies: Colorado Ballet, Colorado Symphony Orchestra, Opera Colorado, and the Denver Center for the Performing Arts (which is both the city’s largest regional theatre company, and the facility’s Broadway presenter). In 2014, the city embarked on a planning process, called The Next Stage, that re-imagines the campus as a 21st century model for world-class performances, creative placemaking, arts education, and an iconic “must see” destination for visitors. With its assets of land, venues, leadership, creative talent and shared mission – to uplift our city through the arts, DPAC in partnership with the resident companies is uniquely positioned to assert itself as the creative hub of the Rocky Mountain West. We will also learn more about this massive civic cultural planning project, and where it is going.

Our thanks to the Colorado Educational and Cultural Facilities Authority for its support of the New Model for Downtown Arts: Denver Theatre District & The Next Stage tour.


Tour 5: New Voices: How Immigrant Cultures are Enhancing the Front Range Urban Corridor
Saturday, June 16, 1:30 pm - 5:00 pm

In Aurora, a community adjacent to the Denver city limits, there are numerous arts and cultural organizations serving and expressing the diverse heritage of many different populations. Immigrant residents, coming from places like Eritrea, Somalia, Kenya, Ethiopia, Burma, Bhutan, Vietnam and Indonesia, have settled in this community and have brought artistic vibrancy to the area. Cultural organizations hope to help bridge issues such as communication, housing affordability, access and equity to services through community-based arts expressions. We will visit several of these organizations, including Downtown Aurora Visual Arts (DAVA), a recipient of the 2014 National Arts and Humanities Youth Program Award, presented by the President’s Committee on the Arts and Humanities, and have a dialog with community leaders around the issues and the impact the arts can have.

Tour 6: Creative Youth Development & Urban Communities: The Mariposa Story
Saturday, June 16, 1:30 pm - 5:00 pm

The Mariposa Service Providers is an award-winning, public private partnership through the Denver Housing Authority that places youth arts programming at the core of urban development. An inventive model that has earned national attention, this new Denver development supports five youth arts nonprofits engaging more than 2,000 teens each year. Meet mentor artists and teens and hear about exciting work ranging from a culinary academy to the youth-driven music/audio training center happening at Youth on Record, to Art from Ashes, Art Street and Osage Café. The Denver Housing Authority has been nationally-recognized for its approach to affordable housing, which integrates high-quality architecture and human-scale design, seamless mixing of fully-subsidized with partially-subsidized and market rate housing, AND including of public art and the many wonderful embedded youth arts programs we will be visiting and learning more about.


Tour 7: Site-Specific: Social Impact through the Arts in Curtis Park
Saturday, June 16, 1:30 pm - 5:00 pm

Visit two powerhouses of artistic production in Denver’s Curtis Park neighborhood. Platte Forum supports contemporary artists and youth through innovative creative programming that allow youth to work side-by-side with artists. At the historic former synagogue, Temple Contemporary Artist Haven, you will learn about Platte Forum’s residencies and see some 30 individual artist studios and creative nonprofits co-housed at the facility.  Nearby RedLine Contemporary Art Center fosters education and engagement between artists and communities through two-year residencies to create positive social change. Redline is a national leader in connecting art to community and civic action, and in addition to artist-in-residence programs, also operates extensive education programs for youth, an art studio for the large local population of individuals experiencing homelessness, the Arts in Society grant program, and a full program of exhibitions in their gallery space.

Our thanks to the Colorado Educational and Cultural Facilities Authority and the David & Laura Merage Foundation for their support of the Social Impact through the Arts in Curtis Park tour.



Tour 8: Spin Art: Public Art Tour by B-Cycle
Saturday, June 16, 1:30 pm - 5:00 pm

From Denver's Cherry Creek Trail to the RiNo Art District, Denver's most impressive murals and sculptures can be found on foot and on bicycle. Explore stunning works by local, national, and international artists on Denver B-cycle, the nation’s first bike share program.  There is an extensive portion of the City’s public art collection that is easily accessible downtown and along the Cherry Creek Trail where a relatively new murals program has turned the beautiful urban waterfront trail into a linear gallery with murals executed by both local and national artists. Cherry Creek mural artists include local artists Emmanuel Martinez, Jaime Molina, Pedro Barrios and Joseph Martinez, as well as international artists such as Brazil’s Bruno Novelli, Claudio Ethos (Ethos) and Alex Hornest (Onesto). Some of the public sculptures and other art we may visit include Jonathan Borofsky’s Dancers, Donald Lipski’s The Yearling, Lawrence Argent’s I See What You Mean (“The Blue Bear”) and Soundwalk, a sound installation by Jim Green.

[Note: there will be both a walking tour and a bicycle tour to choose from, each with a different itinerary, but neither one physically challenging.]


Tour 9: Latino Art, Culture & History in Denver
Saturday, June 16, 1:30 pm - 5:00 pm

Experience Latino Art, Culture & History when you visit the revitalized Westwood Creative District with its beautiful murals inspired by the neighborhood’s Mexican-American heritage and many innovative creative businesses. Continue your visit at the Art District on Santa Fe, another creative district with more than 30 art galleries, studios and businesses. The neighborhood’s traditionally Latino roots are reflected in the exhibitions and programs at the Museo de las Americas and CHAC (Chicano Humanities & Arts Council), and the theatre performances and education initiatives at Su Teatro Cultural and Performing Arts Center. 

Our thanks to Xcel Energy for its support of the Latino Art, Culture, and History in Denver tour.