Stand Tall Denver Art Sculptures Uplift Downtown Spaces

October 27, 2020

Stephen Sodheim once said “art, in itself, is an attempt to bring order out of chaos.”

The times we are living in have undoubtedly felt chaotic and are certainly unprecedented. We’ve all experienced uncertainty in some form or another as we look to the future. We must not lose sight of what is important – creating a healthy, inclusive, and vibrant community for all.

In light of this, the Downtown Denver Partnership and the Downtown Denver Business Improvement District partnered with artists Jennifer Lupien and Sara Mayo to install the Stand Tall Denver Art Sculptures; a series of sculptures that each send a message of love and hope along the 16th St. Mall. We are stronger together, and these artworks embody the community experiences, hopes, and dreams that we’ve collectively faced in 2020; they serve as a reminder that Downtown Denver will always be a gathering space where all can convene and feel connected to something bigger.

Learn more about these artworks and find out where you can visit them below: DREAM, INSPIRE, HOPE, LOVE, and TOGETHER RESILIENT.

Sara Mayo created the most interactive of the sculptures, DREAM, which can be seen at the intersection of 16th St and California. Sara explains, “Some dreams start from something small, or as I visually interpreted it, from the “ground up”– which led me to use this natural metaphor within the sculpture…The mirror tile around the edges invites the viewer to see their surroundings at a different angle, as well as to reflect upon themselves and their own DREAMS.” Each letter of ‘dream’ can be turned and pivoted, adding a special whimsical touch.

The sculpture HOPE, which can be found at the intersection of 16th St. Mall and Curtis, grew out of Jennifer Lupien’s resourcefulness, and love for all the unforeseen possibilities of what we can do with ordinary things. This sculpture is alive – with lovely flowers that bloom in the wheelbarrow during warm months.

Another one of Jennifer’s sculptures in the series, INSPIRE grew out of her passion and desire to sculpt in steel, and can be seen at the intersection of 16th St. and Stout. As one of the first artworks of this series to be conceptualized, this was the last to be constructed. This piece embodies the importance of paying attention to the ideas that inspire you even when you aren’t sure where they will lead.

Jennifer also created LOVE, which you can find at 16th St. And California. This sculpture was built collaboratively by Jennifer, her family, and her neighbors from the old parts of a cherished Colorado mountain bike. In many ways, this work of art shows that the most beautiful things can come from unexpected places when we come together as communities, and as families to make what we love about Denver even better.

TOGETHER RESILIENT can be seen at the intersection of 16th St. and Welton, and anchors the series, created collaboratively by Jennifer Lupien and Sara Mayo. Jennifer shared, “Firstly, I believe fences and walls divide, and started by creating human figures that appear to over take over the fence. I wanted them to bend (resilient) and meet at their oversized heads (together), creating a heart shape at their core.” This artwork shows that we can overcome anything when we are open to bringing together different perspectives to rise above our circumstances.

Stay tuned for updates – we hope to be expanding the Stand Tall Denver Art Sculpture series in the future.

While you are enjoying art in our center city, you can also visit Between Us: The Downtown Denver Alleyways Project. Funded and produced by the Downtown Denver Partnership and the Downtown Denver Business Improvement District (BID)—this project brings additional public art to Downtown Denver that will surprise, delight, and inspire those who experience the alleyways.