A New Home for Kirkland Museum of Fine & Decorative Art
Kirkland Museum is temporarily closed because we are building a new facility and relocating to 12th Avenue & Bannock Street, near the Denver Art Museum and the Clyfford Still Museum, in Denver's Golden Triangle Creative District. The new 38,500-square-foot museum, designed by Seattle-based Olson Kundig, is projected to open in early 2018.
In 1910–1911 English-born artist Henry Read (1851–1935) commissioned architects Maurice B. Biscoe (1871–1953) and Henry H. Hewitt (1875–1926) to design 1311 Pearl Street for his Students’ School of Art at 1311 Pearl Street in Denver. The Arts & Crafts building has only ever served the cause of art education, creation and appreciation.
In 2000, an addition to the original building was completed. This addition was built to the immediate south of the original studio & art school building. Kirkland Museum opened to the public on April 2, 2003 and welcomed the citizens of Colorado and visitors from around the world.
In 2013, 10 years after the museum opened to the public, it became clear that in order to best promote international decorative art, Colorado and regional art and Vance Kirkland, a larger building would be necessary. In January 2014, Kirkland Museum announced plans to move the museum to a new building to be built at 12th Avenue and Bannock Streets in Denver’s Golden Triangle. Over 450 guests joined Denver Mayor Michael B. Hancock for the groundbreaking held September 10, 2015.
In early 2018 Kirkland Museum will open its doors to a new building, featuring the relocated 1910–1911 studio & art school building. The new facility in the heart of Denver’s Golden Triangle Creative District will feature the addition of new or expanded visitor amenities and provide a world-class display space to exhibit the collection in the salon style for which Kirkland Museum is known.
Click here to view photos of the new museum construction
Rendering of the new Kirkland Museum of Fine & Decorative Art, 12th & Bannock, opening early 2018—including Vance Kirkland’s original studio (at right). Elevation looking southwest on Bannock Street by Olson Kundig.
Vance Kirkland Studio Move
On Sunday, November 6, in partnership with Mammoth Moving & Rigging Inc. and Shaw Construction, the Vance Kirkland Studio building made its highly anticipated move through the neighborhood via eight sets of remote-controlled articulating wheels to its new home eight blocks west at 12th & Bannock in Denver's Golden Triangle Creative District.
Vance Kirkland's studio & art school building (built 1910-1911 for Henry Read's Students' School of Art) is the heart of the Kirkland Museum experience. Kirkland (1904-1981) was among the most important Colorado and regional painters of the 20th century and painted in the studio for most of his 55-year career. To honor its significance, Kirkland Museum has worked closely with the historic preservation community to ensure that the move and the condition of the three-room studio are maintained.
We extend a huge thank you to our partners Mammoth Moving & Rigging, Inc. and Shaw Construction for their meticulous care in moving the Studio, as well as the numerous city agencies who assisted in making it possible and the support of our neighbors. We are expanding our universe and are excited to be surrounded by wonderful institutions that make Denver a world-class art destination.
For photo and video of the Studio move, see our Facebook page and YouTube Channel.
Additional renderings of the new museum, courtesy of Olson Kundig:
Entrance on Bannock Street, and the central exhibition corridor of the new museum. The brick wall of Vance Kirkland’s studio & art school is visible at the far end.
- Announcement of future relocation; architect chosen: January 27, 2014
- Groundbreaking: September 10, 2015
- Existing location began temporary closure: May 2, 2016
- Studio move: November 6, 2016
- Expected opening at the new location: Early 2018
Denver’s Golden Triangle Creative District is the place to go for art and culture in Denver. Located steps from the gold-domed State Capitol, the neighborhood is home to the Denver Art Museum, Clyfford Still Museum, History Colorado Center, Byers-Evans House Museum, Denver’s Central Public Library and numerous galleries. Kirkland Museum’s new location makes it more convenient for art lovers who can now park once to experience all the world-class artwork Denver offers in the Golden Triangle.
Featured Relocation News
- Westword, April 12, 2017: A Look at the Kirkland Museum, a True Landmark in the Making, by Michael Paglia
- Colorado Public Radio, January 4, 2017: With A New Location, 2017 Is The Year The Kirkland Museum Goes Big, by Corey H. Jones
- The Denver Post, January 1, 2017: 10 Denver arts and culture events to look forward to in 2017, by Ray Mark Rinaldi
- Denverite, November 9, 2016: WATCH: Vance Kirkland’s studio rolls across Denver, by Kevin Beaty (VIDEO)
- Westword, November 7, 2016: Watch the Historic Vance Kirkland Studio Relocate (VIDEO)
- National Trust for Historic Preservation, November 7, 2016: Historic buildings on the move, by Kirsten Hower
- The Denver Post, November 6, 2016: Historic 150-ton Kirkland Museum trundles across downtown Denver as it moves to new location, by Tom McGhee (VIDEO and article)
- Fox 31 Denver, November 6, 2016: Historic museum makes a long-awaited move (VIDEO)
- CBS Denver 4, November 6, 2016: ‘Museum On The Move’ Creates Plenty Of Interest In Capitol Hill (VIDEO)
- Denver 7, November 6, 2016: Kirkland Museum moves from Capitol Hill to Golden Triangle (VIDEO)
- Colorado Public Radio, November 4, 2016: Who Was Vance Kirkland And Why Is His Art Studio Blocking Denver Traffic? by Corey H. Jones
- Westword, November 4, 2016: Vance Kirkland Studio Moving to New Museum Site on November 6, by Michael Paglia
- The Denver Post, November 2, 2016: Kirkland Museum moving to new site—that is, the entire building is moving, by Ray Mark Rinaldi
- The Denver Post, April 23, 2016: Take a last look at Denver's Kirkland Museum—for free, by Ray Mark Rinaldi
- Westword, April 1, 2016: Will the Kirkland Museum Be the Best New Building of 2017?, by Michael Paglia
- Westword, September 16, 2015: When It Opens in 2017, The New Kirkland Museum Will Be Transcendent and Ascendent, by Michael Paglia
- Colorado Public Radio, September 11, 2015: Kirkland Museum Breaks Ground on New Denver Facility, by Corey H. Jones
- The Denver Post, September 10, 2015: Kirkland Museum Breaks Ground in Golden Triangle, by Ray Mark Rinaldi
- Westword, September 9, 2015: The New Kirkland Museum Breaks Ground, Will Elevate Denver's Art Scene, by Michael Paglia
Click here for our Relocation Press Kit
Click here for our Press Page
For images, logos, media requests or questions, please contact Renée Albiston at firstname.lastname@example.org or 303.832.8576 x 210.
To stay up to date on our progress and receive regular construction updates, join our email list.
July 10, 2017, the enterior is nearing completion with sidewalks poured and the fence enclosing the sculpture area installed.
July 10, 2017, our sign went up!
May 24, 2017, pavers have been installed in the parking lot
May 23, 2017, panorama of new museum exterior
May 23, 2017, looking northwest from 12th & Bannock
May 9, 2017, museum entrance on Bannock Street
May 9, 2017, looking west from the sculputre gallery into the temporary exhibition gallery. Note the brick wall of Vance Kirkland's studio at right.
May 9, 2017, the central promenade gallery, with columns installed and painted
May 9, 2017, the ticketing desk has arrived in the admissions area
May 3, 2017, glass bars, some backed with gold leaf, were installed among the yellow terra cotta bars on the exterior
May 3, 2017, the sculpture gallery
May 3, 2017, the admissions area is taking shape
February 28, 2017, a roof now connects Vance Kirkland's studio & art school building to the new museum
February 23, 2017, Kirkland Museum Volunteers stand where the ticketing desk will be
February 8, 2017, drywall installed in the central axis gallery
February 8, 2017, a side view of the terra cotta bars
February 8, 2017, exterior installation of the yellow terra cotta bars is nearing completion!
January 18, 2017, installation of the yellow terra cotta tiles on the exterior progresses on the east side!
December 20, 2016, more progress on the exterior cladding, west side
December 6, 2016, contractors have begun installing the yellow terra cotta tiles on the exterior. Made in Germany, each “baguette” is placed per a detailed plan that notes size, shape and color.
November 14, 2016, Vance Kirkland's studio & art school building now in place on Bannock street. The wheels will be removed and the studio lowered five feet onto its foundation.
November 14, 2016, View from the back of the studio in place at its new home. The wheels will be removed and the studio lowered five feet onto its foundation.
November 14, 2016, view of Vance Kirkland's studio & art school building being moved onto its foundation from Bannock street.
November 3, 2016, foundation awaiting the move of Vance Kirkland's atudio & art school from Pearl Street. Clyfford Still Museum is visible in the background.
November 3, 2016, installation of the underside of the roof overhang
November 3, 2016, looking northwest from 12th & Bannock
November 3, 2016, foyer area. The staff are standing where the front desk will be. The Bannock entrance is visible past them.
November 3, 2016, view north from foyer into axis gallery
November 3, 2016, framed galleries
August 4, 2016, looking northwest from 12th & Bannock. It's become harder to capture the progress with photos as they now install pipes, electrical and mechanical systems. Drywall goes in soon!
August 4, 2016, mock-up of the terra cotta tile bars of varying shades of yellow which will clad the exterior of the museum. The bars are punctuated by glass backed in gold.
August 4, 2016, view looking northeast of the west side of the new building
August 4, 2016, foundation for the Vance Kirkland Studio, to be moved from 1311 Pearl this fall
July 11, 2016, looking northwest from 12th & Bannock
July 11, 2016, central axis gallery of the museum looking south. Electrical wiring is being installed.
June 21, 2016, looking northwest from 12th & Bannock
June 21, 2016, interior of entry foyer and museum store
June 21, 2016, looking north down the central axis gallery of the museum. Gallery walls are now framed.
June 21, 2016, stairs have been installed
June 21, 2016, walls have been framed in the second floor offices
June 21, 2016, walls have been framed in the lower level for mechanical rooms and collections storage. Water and HVAC equipment is being installed.
June 21, 2016, view looking northeast of the west side of the new building. The dirt area will be a parking lot with an entry where the wood beams are at right.
June 21, 2016, foundation for Vance Kirkland's Studio, to be moved this fall
June 2, 2016, the left end of the opening will be the museum's Bannock Street entrance. This south-looking view from the galleries shows the framed walls of the first gallery on the right. The ladder on the right is about where the reception and ticket desk will sit.
June 2, 2016, looking north down the central axis gallery of the museum from what will become the first gallery. On the far side of the framing will sit the reception and ticket desk with the main galleries beyond. The Kirkland Studio will be placed at the far north end of the axis gallery.
June 2, 2016, the second floor where staff offices will be, looking southeast
May 13, 2016, aeriel view looking east
May 10, 2016, looking northwest from 12th & Bannock. Steel for second level roof and offices is in. The visible steel support for the overhang will wrap nearly the entire building on both the first and second floors, providing a unique architectural element.
May 10, 2016, looking southwest at what will be the entry foyer, first gallery and museum store
May 10, 2016, looking south down the length of the museum where workers are spreading pumped concrete
May 10, 2016, workers smooth the wet concrete on the main floor
May 10, 2016, looking southwest at what will be the second floor offices
May 10, 2016, footers have been poured for the foundation of Kirkland's art school & studio building, to be moved from 1311 Pearl fall 2016
May 1, 2016, view from above. 12th Avenue is at bottom left, the future Kirkland Museum at center. The silver square is the floor for second floor staff offices atop the 6 main galleries on the main floor. This square is what Jim Olson calls the "jewel box."
April 27, 2016, looking northwest. The metal beams sticking out to the left will support the exterior overhang as well as the ceiling, now covered in steel as the surface for the roof.
March 29, 2016, aerial view looking southwest
March 29, 2016, aerial view looking northeast
March 9, 2016, looking southwest
January 25, 2016, looking north from 12th Avenue
December 16, 2015, view from the Denver Art Museum's administration building
January 12, 2016, looking north from 12th Avenue
November 2, 2015, view from the Denver Art Museum's administration building
October 12, 2015, view from the Denver Art Museum's administration building