Public Art

Civic Center Park is home to the largest public art collection in Denver. From sculptures and statues to murals and fountains, you’ll discover a wide array of works, each telling a part of the park’s evolutionary story. Scroll down to see our features, or visit Denver Arts and Venues’ Public Art website for a full listing.

Detail of the artwork Mine Craft, which shows the topography of the state of Colorado using multi-colored panes of glass.

Bronco Buster Statue (1920)​

Renowned sculptor Alexander Phimster Proctor was commissioned to create two statues for Denver’s Civic Center, both paying homage to Denver’s Wild West heritage. The first of these was a bronzed depiction of a cowboy “bronco busting”-breaking a wild horse for saddle riding. The “Bronco Buster” statue was presented to the city by John Kernan Mullen in 1920. Fun Fact: Proctor used Slim Ridings as the model for the piece; when Slim landed in jail for horse rustling, Proctor put up his bail so he could complete the modeling job.
Bronco Buster statue of cowboy on bucking bronco
Statue of American Indian riding a horse

On The War Trail Statue (1922)

The second of two statues commissioned by famous sculptor Alexander Phimster Proctor, “On TheWar Trail” was presented to the City by Stephan Knight and dedicated in 1922. The bronze sculpture depicts an American Indian riding bareback on a horse with a spear in his hand. According to the Indian Administrative Service, models for the male figure were Jackson Sundown (Nex Perce); followed by Gray Eagle (Blackfoot); and finally Eddie Beaver of Browning, Montana.

Sea Lion Fountain (1922)

The Sea Lion Fountain, designed by Robert Garrison, was installed in 1922. The 60-foot by 30-foot basin features two bronze sea lions, being ridden by cherubs, facing each other from opposite sides of the pool.
Seal Pond sculpture at Civic Center Park

Ascent (2017)

The Denver Arts & Venues Public Art Program commissioned an original musical composition for Denver’s City and County Building Chime. The composition will act as a signature piece for Denver; something that will be memorable to identify Denver to residents and visitors. The composition is celebratory in nature (e.g., uplifting, lively, positive: evoking the spirit of Denver). The composition will announce important events that take place in the City and County Building and adjacent Civic Center Park.

Elk Group and Buffalo (1920)

Two murals, painted by Allen True and located in the Voorhies Memorial, feature a pair of elk and a pair of buffalo. Materials include oil paint, fabric, concrete, concrete block, adhesive, and varnish.

Buffalo mural shows two buffalo in browns and oranges.
Painting of a bearded man crouching down and panning for gold in a thick forest. A horse is behind him with a large pack on its back.

The Prospector (1920)

The Allen Tupper True mural “The Prospector,” in an alcove in the colonnade of the Greek Theater and Colonnade of Civic Benefactors. The mural depicts a man panning for gold, his pack mule is in trees nearby. A stairway with balustrades is below the mural.

The Trapper (1920)

The Allen Tupper True mural “The Trapper,” in the colonnade of the Greek Theater and Colonnade of Civic Benefactors. The mural depicts a man on a horse with a rifle and a dog running along side.

Painting in greens, browns, and gold features a man riding a horse away from us, while turning to look back at the viewer.
Mine Craft artwork is wavy, multi-colored panes of glass in greens, blues, and browns installed in the doorway.

Mine Craft (2017)

Mine Craft is the result of studying of the iconic imagery associated with Colorado. Inspiration was drawn from the geography, industry and global presence of the state, and explored a variety of methods to represent these abstracted elements through the application of the current advancements in fabrication technology. The geography and landscape of Colorado is unique and exceptionally beautiful. Mine Craft uses the topography of the state, cut from a variety of materials embedded with significance to the region and stacked in order to create an abstracted scale map of Colorado. Decades ago, like many of the states that were on the frontier, Colorado was wild and beautiful and free for the taking. This artwork delves into the increasingly relevant subject of our responsibility to the environment. Conscientious extraction and use of the earth’s resources has implications not only for the residents of the region, but also on a much larger, global scale. The striations seen in the piece are intended to represent materials that are locally sourced. The overall design is tactile and nuanced – distinctly modern, both in its formal representation and materiality – and sits in subtle contrast to the neo-classical architecture of the McNichols Building. Mine Craft acts as an invitation to entice visitors into the building to explore its contemporary art exhibitions.

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