The American Museum of Western Art, located in the historic, Victorian-era Navarre Building in Downtown Denver, Colorado, represents a cross section of paintings from the early 19th century through the age of industrialization, surveying the art of the American West on three floors of gallery space. The Museum offers both guided and self-guided tours. If you decide to go for the latter, you will receive an audio guide and thus are free to go exploring the collection of paintings on your own.
The Anschutz Collection
Permanent home of the Anschutz Collection, over 300 paintings by more than 180 artists are displayed making for a better understanding of the beauty and history of the American West. The Collection provides examples from all schools that contributed to the development of the Old West, being Indian territory, that passed into a settled region and history. Among others, the schools represented include the Expeditionary Artists, the Hudson River & Rocky Mountain Schools, the Narrative Artists, California Painters, as well as the Expressionists.
The building to which the museum is home to has an interesting history of its own. Designed and built in 1880, it opened as a school for young ladies, before it became a co-educational school. 9 years later, the building was sold and opened again as a hotel, which soon became popular as a place to dine with “ladies of the night“. In 1904, when gambling and prostitution was being stopped, the building, called The Navarre, officially became a top-ranked dining club.
In the late 1940s and 1960s the Navarre served as one of Denver's finer dining and entertainment establishments. Exchanging hands several more times, the building became the hottest jazz club in town, before The Anschutz Corporation restored, refurbished, and redecorated the building, which is where the American Museum of Western Art is home to.
How to get there
The Museum is close to a number of light rail and bus stops, the closest light rail stop being 18th St. & California, about 3 blocks west of the Museum; the closest bus stop being Stop #17765 just in front of the Museum’s entrance. Parking is not provided for visitors, yet there are numerous public parking lots in the immediate area.