Explore the Expanding Denver Art Scene

Denver has become a major arts destination! But it has not always been that way; indeed, Denver is in the midst of an artistic revolution that has decorated the city with more museums, galleries, public works, and culture than it could have ever dreamed of having just a few decades ago. As Denver-area residents we are very lucky to be part of this renaissance and should all try to take advantage of our expanding art scene. Doing so relies on strong enough vision to experience art at its fullest; that’s why Vision Care Specialists offers comprehensive eye exams and many other vision services so that you can enjoy the exploding Denver art scene.

Since Denver art is everywhere, let’s explore it by region.

Downtown Denver Museums and More!

Some people say that Denver’s art revolution began in 1988 when the city voted for a 0.1% sales tax to support cultural institutions. But while the next couple of decades brought about some artistic development—in Denver’s revitalized LoDo district, in the new Denver International Airport, in the expanded Denver Performing Arts Complex, and in the Colorado Convention Center,—the Denver art scene truly took off in 2006, with the construction of the Hamilton Building, the chromatic, geometric expansion to the Denver Art Museum that now defines the city.

Not only did the Hamilton Building provide the perfect venue for the DAM to display its modern and contemporary collections as well as exhibitions from around the world, but it also set the stage for the growth of Denver as a serious art town. Galleries opened all over the city, art festivals sprang to life, sales soared, and public art projects to surface with greater frequency. The Denver Museum of Contemporary Art opened soon after, the Colorado History Museum reinvented itself, and the Light Rail continues to bring a host of artistic and architectural improvements to Downtown Denver and beyond.

Santa Fe: Colorado’s Gallery District

Santa Fe, New Mexico has long been known as the artistic oasis of the American West. But Santa Fe is at risk of being outpaced by its namesake: Santa Fe Drive in Denver has quickly become an exceptional art and gallery district. With over 60 galleries, shops, and restaurants and a monthly First Friday Art Walk, Santa Fe Arts District is not just a bustling center of commerce, but a living lab of artistic innovation and experimentation native to Colorado.

RiNo: River North Is Denver’s Newest Arts District

The newest region to join the roster of Denver art hubs is River North, an area north of Downtown Denver and Five Points along the South Platte River. As the area has turned from a neglected industrial park into a muralled, gritty district with as many breweries as galleries, it has become the happening spot for every sort of craft, from fine arts to furniture, handmade longboards, and more.  Whether you’re new to Denver a native, the RiNo Arts District will surprise and enthrall, so go check it out!

How To Use This Information

In order to enjoy Denver’s exploding art scene, make sure your vision is the best it can be.  Vision Care Specialists offers comprehensive eye exams—and much, much more—so that Coloradans can appreciate the full beauty of where they live. For more information about Vision Care Specialists, visit or call one of our locations or contact us online.