Explore local design, past and present, during Denver Design Week.EXPAND
Explore local design, past and present, during Denver Design Week.
Denver Design Week

Twelve Things to Do During Denver Design Week 2017

The design world is a wide umbrella, under which artists, architects, makers, entrepreneurs, environmentalists, tech nerds and, of course, designers of every stripe thrive elbow-to-elbow along a prescient road to the future. Whatever is next, they’re the ones who are on to it first. Denver Design Week aims to give a platform to speakers from all these disciplines and more, bringing innovation and design-speak to the public through a series of tours, panel discussions, presentations and parties. Come along with us on an abridged list of cool Denver Design Week offerings. Then see the entire lineup of events at the DDW website or on Facebook, and purchase tickets in advance at Eventbrite.

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Anthony Camera

Blue Silo Tour
Blue Silo Studios
4701 National Western Drive
Saturday, July 15, 10-11 a.m.

Artist Michael Gadlin is one of the twenty or so artists who share studios at Blue Silo, a relic of a building restored in the 2000s by Denver artist couple Reed Weimer and Chandler Romeo. As you tour the structure, which began as a creamery in the 1900s, with Gadlin, you’ll meet some of its denizens and learn about its checkered history as everything from a janitorial supply warehouse to a punk-rock rehearsal hall, while pondering its future on the edge of the National Western redevelopment site.

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Stanley Marketplace

Denver Design Week Launch Party
Stanley Marketplace
2501 Dallas Street, Aurora
Saturday, July 15, 7-10 p.m.

Shmooze with people from the design community and kick off the week’s events properly at the Stanley Marketplace, one of the region’s most buzzed-about retail and dining developments — and if you haven’t been yet, get a good look at the former ejection-seat factory and hangar’s slick do-over. Mingling will be made easier by a spread of bites and sips from local restaurants, distilleries, breweries and wineries.

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Denver Design Week

Where Wood Meets Steel: The Transformative Globeville Workshop
Where Wood Meets Steel Custom Furniture
4903 Washington Street
Sunday, July 16, 1:30-2:30 p.m.

For an inside scoop on the maker milieu from a small and personal perspective, this tour shows how grassroots fabrication and high-tech business intersect in a better world. Owners Ryan Dirksen and Marina Chotzinoff will guide folks through their sustainable furniture workshop Where Wood Meets Steel, where they transform local salvaged hardwood into functional and modern pieces. Good design starts with one good mind; see the process here from start to finish.

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Denver Design Week

16th Street Mall: Public Art? You’re Walking on It
16th Street Mall
Sunday, July 16, 4:30-5:45 p.m.
16th Street Mall: The Spine of the City
Monday, July 17, 9:30-10:30 a.m.

As the city prepares to overhaul the 16th Street Mall, you’ll learn everything you’ve ever wanted to know about it — and why every detail that’s gone into its construction deserves scrutiny in the renewal process — at one or both of these programs. First, tour the mall on July 16 with Historic Denver’s director of preservation programs John P. Olson, whose job it is to consider the original design decisions made by mall architect I.M. Pei and his team 35 years ago and consult on how to best preserve their aesthetic intentions without impeding modernization efforts. Once you’ve been brought up to date, hear a panel of expert presenters talk you into the present and, more important, the future of the mall, on July 17.

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Denver Digerati

Imagination Unleashed: The Digital Invasion in Contemporary Art
CU Denver College of Architecture & Planning
1250 14th Street
Monday, July 17, 2:15-3:15 p.m.

If you ask Ivar Zeile, the trendsetting Denver gallerist and champion of new visual art on digital platforms as director of Denver Digerati and the Supernova Digital Animation Festival, the real scene is on the screen. In anticipation of Supernova 2017, returning to the Denver Theatre District in September, Zeile will treat his audience to some creative eye candy and discourse on why tech-generated fine art is eating up the Internet globally.

Continue reading for seven more things to do during Denver Design Week.

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Denver Design Week

Keynote: Reinventing Transportation: The Disruption of Driverless Mobility
Workplace Resource
1899 Wynkoop Street, #150
Tuesday, July 18, 6-8 p.m.

The future is here, according to Colorado driverless-car advocate Rutt Bridges. Climb into the driver’s seat with Bridges as he talks you through the pros and cons of driverless mobility and how it will change the way people get around.

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Denver Design Week

Solar Decathlon: Innovation Through Competition
CU Denver College of Architecture & Planning
1250 14th Street, Sixth Floor
Wednesday, July 19, 9:30-10:30 a.m.

Collegiate scientists from across the nation will gather in Denver this October to take their chances in a win-win competition to build the most efficient prototype solar homes. Before thousands of spectators descend on the U.S. Department of Energy’s Solar Decathlon Village out near Denver International Airport to inspect its feats of architectural engineering in the fall, competition manager Joe Simon will give insights into past innovations unveiled at the decathlon, as well as a sneak peek at what’s to come in 2017. Learn more about the event online.

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Denver Design Week

Designing for Accessibility: Overcoming the Outdated Notions of Disability
CU Denver College of Architecture & Planning
1250 14th Street
Wednesday, July 19, 2:15-3:15 p.m.

Accessibility and the general plight of the disabled is in the news in Denver lately, making it the perfect time to learn what’s being done about it. And no one knows more about that than Damon McLeese of Denver’s VSA Arts/Access Gallery, where he’s been advocating for and guiding the futures of the differently abled through the arts for more than two decades. McLeese will open a window to innovations that are replacing old-school wheelchairs and walkers through creative technological advances.

Film Screening: Linotype: The Film
Rock Bottom Restaurant & Brewery
1001 16th Street, #A-100
Wednesday, July 19, 7:30-9:30 p.m.

Denver Design Week will even have its own movie night, micro-cinema-style, right in the alley between Welton and California streets on the 16th Street Mall. Designer/filmmaker Doug Wilson will introduce his documentary Linotype: The Film: In Search of the Eighth Wonder of the World, a loving tribute to a dying technology and the people who kept the presses running. Revolutionary in its time, the linotype type-casting machine has been overshadowed by technology, but not before leaving a cast of wonderful characters in its wake.

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Denver Design Week

Responsive Learning = Innovation + Creativity
Denver Chalk Art Festival
1430 Larimer Street, Suite 200
Thursday, July 20, 10-11 a.m.

Jim Stephens of the CUBE School, who calls himself an “experience architect,” believes our educational paradigms are ready for a modern overhaul. Stephens will lead his audience on the first leg of that journey, while sharing new life-navigation tools and appreciation for the cultural environment that drives us all. Immerse yourself!

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Denver Design Week

Keynote: Good Design: Always Modern, Ever Traditional
Room & Board
222 Detroit Street
Thursday, July 20, 6-8 p.m.

The nitty-gritty of any design fest has to be the thing itself: design, what’s good and bad about it, and how we can define a place through wise and fluid architecture. Architect Jeff Sheppard and educator Christine Franck will bring the power of good design into perspective by citing hard examples, from public places like the Cherry Hills Municipal Center and the Blair-Caldwell African American Research Library to the Room & Board building in Cherry Creek North, where the lecture takes place. Enjoy nibbles on the rooftop afterward, courtesy of the modern home-furnishing store.

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Denver Design Week

Closing Celebration: Denver Women in Design: A Celebration in Honor of Florence Knoll’s 100th Birthday
2501 Blake Street
Friday, July 21, 6-8 p.m.

Denver Design Week signs off with a tribute to women in design, as exemplified by home-design icon Florence Knoll, whose clean, mid-century furniture defined style in its time and still looks sharp in a modern setting. Celebrate Knoll’s 100th birthday and hear from Gillian Johnson, Lisa Abendroth, Jenny West and Amy Siegel, a panel of women in design who will muse on the field’s future. It’s a closing party, too, with cocktails, birthday cake and ice cream.

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