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Frederic C. Hamilton Building
Daniel Libeskind

October 09, 2006 /

Denver, Colorado, USA

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Photo courtesy Denver Art Museum

Libeskind's design consists of geometric, titanium-clad angles, which reflect the nearby Rocky Mountain peaks and rock crystals.

The new Frederic C. Hamilton Building is situated directly south of the two-towered North Building, designed by Italian architect Gio Ponti and James Sudler Associates, and adjacent to the Denver Public Library, designed by Michael Graves.

The expansion, the museum's first major addition since the North Building was completed 35 years ago, nearly doubles its facilities.

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Photo © John Boak

The Hamilton Building rises from two stories to four as it moves towards the north. A sharply cantilevered section of the building juts across the street towards the North Building above an enclosed steel-and-glass bridge that links the two structures.

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Photo courtesy the Denver Art Museum

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Photo © John Boak

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Photo © John Boak

The bridge also provides access to the new Duncan Pavilion, an indoor/outdoor event space.

From the pavilion visitors can view the mountains and the Denver skyline.

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Photo © John Boak

The new building will house the Modern and Contemporary art collection as well as the collection of Architecture and Design and Oceanic Art and serve as the main entrance to the entire museum complex.

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Photo © John Boak

A giant bronze spider by French-born American sculptor Louise Bourgeois is placed in front of the entrance.

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Photo © John Boak

Visitors enter the building through a visitor's service area before moving into the 120-foot high El Pomar Atrium that features dramatically sloping walls, a skylight, and a grand staircase that follows the walls to provide easy access to the building's galleries. The main lobby also provides access to the museum shop and 280 seat auditorium.

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Photo © John Boak

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Photo © John Boak

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Photo © John Boak

An additional two-story atrium is located in the bi-level modern and contemporary galleries. The gallery spaces include an outdoor sculpture garden.

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Photo © John Boak

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Photo © John Boak

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Photo © John Boak

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Photo © John Boak

The Museum complex includes a landscaped pedestrian plaza, designed by Libeskind, featuring significant works of outdoor sculpture.

Three new sculptures around the Hamilton Building are the Big Sweep by Coosje van Bruggen and Claes Oldenburg, Scottish Angus Cow and Calf by Dan Ostermiller and an untitled sculpture by Beverly Pepper.

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Photo © John Boak

Libeskind and Davis Partnership have also been commissioned to design a 1,000-car parking structure, wrapped by a privately developed residential and retail space, adjacent to the Museum, and a full landscape plan for the surrounding site.

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Photo © John Boak

The project is not designed as a stand alone building but as part of a composition of public spaces, monuments and gateways in this developing part of the city, contributing to the synergy amongst neighbors large and intimate.

/Daniel Libeskind


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Photo courtesy Denver Art Museum
Model

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Drawing courtesy Denver Art Museum
Early concept watercolor sketch by Daniel Libeskind.

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Image courtesy Denver Art Museum
Steel Drawing


Facts about Frederic C. Hamilton Building

Total Museum area:

356,000 ft2
Hamilton Building area:146,000 ft2

Lead architect:
Daniel Libeskind

Joint Venture with:

Davis Partnership

Partner:

Brit Probst

Structural Engineers:

Arup

General Contractor:

M.A. Mortenson Company

Client:

Denver Art Museum

Last updated: December 19, 2013

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