The Denver Art Museum has announced three gifts totaling $18 million in support of its North Building revitalization project.
The gifts were made as part of a $150 million capital campaign aimed at connecting the DAM campus with the surrounding neighborhood and making other improvements designed to sustain the museum's operations and relevance into the future. Opened in 1971, the Gio Ponti and James Sudler Associates-designed North Building houses the majority of DAM's permanent collection galleries. Plans for the project call for construction to begin by the end of the year, with completion scheduled to coincide with the building's fiftieth anniversary in 2021.
A $10 million gift from the Helen K. and Arthur E. Johnson Foundation will help the museum realize Ponti's original vision for a completed seventh floor, including a major expansion of the galleries for the museum’s Western American art collection, which will be known as the Helen and Arthur E. Johnson Galleries of Western American Art. The expansion also will provide access to two terraces with views of downtown Denver and the Rocky Mountains.
The museum also announced a $4 million gift from the Bonfils-Stanton Foundation in support of the project's strategic and master planning phases, including an assessment of all building systems. In recognition of the gift, the museum will rename the gallery on the building's first floor, which currently is closed, the Bonfils-Stanton Gallery and will dedicate the space to special exhibitions focused on works from the museum's permanent collection.
A third gift of $4 million from Amanda J. Precourt, the founder of AJP Realty and Design, will be used to create new galleries by dividing the original two-story high Bonfils-Stanton Gallery. To be named for Precourt, the new galleries will give the museum a dedicated, appropriately scaled space for showcasing its extensive design collection, including recent acquisitions and important gifts, as well as a comprehensive installation highlighting the evolution of modern and contemporary design.
"We are so grateful for these early and generous gifts to the campaign dedicated to supporting some of the museum's most notable spaces and collections," said Christoph Heinrich, Frederick and Jan Mayer Director of DAM. "These contributions have helped build the foundation of our campaign. They will not only allow us to upgrade current gallery spaces, but also create new spaces to showcase our collections as well as in-gallery opportunities for visitors to learn about and interact with more of our collections every day."