The Colorado State University System today announced that it has selected eight artists, including four from Colorado, to activate the CSU System Spur campus in north Denver with one-of-a-kind, large-format art installations. Located within the future National Western Center, the three-building Spur campus will open in 2022, acting as a front door to the world-class research and education provided by the CSU System.
More than 445 local, national, and international artists submitted concepts celebrating Spurs commitment to culture, education, innovation, and research. Installations will take place between August 2021 and June 2022.
The artists selected each have a brilliant and unique approach that will add to the Denver landscape their works are meaningful, sustainable, and inspiring. Within each of these works is diversity of thought and artistic approach, said Amy Parsons, executive vice chancellor of the CSU System. CSU is proud to work with these eight talented artists on the Spur project.
Each commissioned artist will receive a portion of the nearly $1.3 million allocated for this effort, as part of the states commitment to public art through Colorado statute. Installations will include street art and murals, sculptures and site-specific artwork. Artists are encouraged to engage with nearby communities, and all works selected are meant to inspire and create interaction with the Spur campus.
As a youth growing up in Denver, Colorado, the amazing landscapes and rigid Rocky Mountains triggered my artistic interests. I found the art in the alleys of Denver very inspiring, said Anthony Garcia, owner of Birdseed Collective in Denver, and the artist selected to create a mural in the alley of the Spur water building. My own artwork is a living, breathing creature created on a back-alley wall, organic and man-made. I want the world to see what I see.
The CSU System partnered with Colorado Creative Industries, as well as Denver-based art consulting and curatorial firm NINE dot ARTS, and Tribe Development Company to select artists and create a cohesive art collection that will breathe life and culture into the new campus.
We were inspired by not only the volume of submissions, but by the unique and thoughtful ways that artists around the world think about artwork within the public realm, said Martha Weidmann, CEO and cofounder of NINE dot ARTS, which led the collaborative campus art masterplan with a focus on selecting innovative, engaging, imaginative, and relevant artworks. Once complete, this highly visible art experience will highlight the ways food, water, and health impact humanity.