Art for Everyone

The Denver Theatre District enlivens a 16-block area of downtown Denver through interactive, immersive and experimental arts and culture events and experiences. We provide creatives with a platform and financial support for sharing their work.

Many of our events and programs, such as Supernova and Understudy, become woven into the fabric of downtown or spark ideas and trends in other cities.

We formed the Denver Theatre District to bring light, art and activity to the streets of downtown Denver. The DTD launched as a public-private partnership backing the idea that managed outdoor media could support downtown activity and bring exciting unique urban experiences to the public. Over the years the DTD became a key participant in the downtown environment and a force in Denver’s artistic community.

we give people a reason to come downtown, be part of the city and have fun.

Impact

The DTD leaves a lasting impact on the Denver and artistic community through a revenue share model that is the first of its kind in the nation. Our media companies sell corporate advertising on the static and LED screens located throughout the district. We take a revenue share from those sales to fund art and cultural activities for the public. Recently, we worked with Colorado Business Committee for the Arts to determine our actual impact:

$1,000,000+

SPENT on District art and cultural activation

$250,000+

in DONATED LED screen time and billboard space to nonprofit arts organizations

160+

experience-based events LAUNCHED OR SUPPORTED

370,000+

visitors DRAWN downtown for unique cultural experiences

What’s Next

05

December

Blue Chipped @ Understudy

The expensive, investment-oriented “Blue Chip” art market uses the emotional concepts of rarity, VIP treatment, exclusivity and celebrity to transform physical artworks, big and small, into billions of dollars- often stripping the artwork itself of its intimate emotional energy.

The “Blue Chipped” public Understudy installation is a response to that concept of “art as rarified investment” – It is a direct-to-public kiosk operated by artist Jonathan Saiz where hundreds of tiny, original oil paintings are displayed for inexpensive sale. The subject matter of the miniature paintings is whimsically random, from portraits of celebrities, micro-reproductions of famous artworks, words, shapes and even abstract brushwork – the only thing they all have in common is the color blue.

The “value” of the works is measured in the expression of trust between the artist and the unseen buyers as the $20 price for each painting is not paid in a normal transactional exchange: The buyer takes the painting with them, and leaves only their handwritten email address – at a later date, the artist sends an email with quick and easy payment options, (including PayPal, Venmo or the option to mail a $20 bill in a birthday card signed “happy birthday, love grandma”).

The real question here is not whether the art holds any inherent physical value but if the trust-based transaction activates the artwork with more emotional energy based on the buyers choice to pay, to conveniently forget or to willfully steal.

The month-long output of paintings will be displayed on Instagram at @bluechipped and the kiosk will be operated by Jonathan Saiz Seven (7) days a week from 10am to 8pm through Christmas Eve.

Board and Executives

Randy NicholsDTD Committee Chair

Lance ZanettAssistant General Manager, Colorado Convention Center

Tami DoorPresident/CEO, Downtown Denver Partnership Inc

Kent RiceExecutive Director, Denver Arts and Venues

Brian KittsDirector, Marketing & Communications, Denver Arts & Venues

Jayne BuckVice President of Tourism, Visit Denver

Tim VaccaDirector of Programs, Museum of Outdoor Art

Margaret HuntDirector Public Policy and Creative Districts, Colorado Creative Industries

David EhrlichExecutive Director

Partners

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