Aspen Art Museum

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Aspen Art Museum
AAM Exterior.jpg
Established 1979 (1979)
Location 590 North Mill Street, Aspen, CO, USA
Coordinates 39°11′37″N 106°49′00″W / 39.19361°N 106.81667°W / 39.19361; -106.81667Coordinates: 39°11′37″N 106°49′00″W / 39.19361°N 106.81667°W / 39.19361; -106.81667
Type contemporary art museum
Director Heidi Zuckerman Jacobson

Founded in 1979, the Aspen Art Museum (AAM) is a non-collecting contemporary art museum located in Aspen, Colorado.

The AAM is currently located in a converted 9,000-square-foot (840 m2) former, hydroelectric plant at 590 North Mill Street, near downtown Aspen. AAM exhibitions include drawings, paintings, sculptures, multimedia installations, and electronic media.[1]

New Aspen Art Museum[edit]

The Aspen Art Museum (AAM) is due to open its new $72 million museum building to the public on Saturday, August 9, 2014. It was designed by Shigeru Ban is the winner of the 2014 Pritzker Architecture Prize.[2] The new AAM facility is his first US museum to be constructed. The 33,000-square-foot, three-story facility has walls of wood veneer planks and a rooftop sculpture garden with a panoramic view of Ajax Mountain.[3]


The Aspen Art Museum is accredited by the American Alliance of Museums.[4] The museum is a member institution of the Association of Art Museum Directors (AAMD), which represents directors of art museums throughout the United States, Canada, and Mexico.[5] In March 2009, the AAM joined other Aspen area businesses through becoming certified under a jointly run City of Aspen Environmental Health Department and Canary Initiative “ZGreen” program. Environmental efforts undertaken by the AAM through the ZGreen program include recycling, composting, and zero waste events.[6]

Mission statement[edit]

The following is the Mission Statement of the Aspen Art Museum.[7]

The Aspen Art Museum is a non-collecting institution presenting the newest, most important evolutions in international contemporary art. The AAM's innovative and timely exhibitions, education and public programs, immersive activities, and community happenings actively engage audiences in thought-provoking experiences of art, culture and society.


Exhibition programming presents contemporary art and provides access to artists. The AAM has an archive of all past exhibitions from 1979 to the present on their website.[8]

Current and Upcoming Exhibitions
Name Title Dates
Amy Sillman February 14 - May 18, 2014
Ernesto Neto June 6 - September 2, 2014
Past Exhibitions
Name Title Dates
Young Curators of the Roaring Fork: Escape January 25, 2014 - February 2, 2014
Trapping Lions In The Scottish Highlands November 15, 2013 - February 2, 2014
Holt Quentel November 15, 2013 - January 19, 2014
Teresita Fernandez November 23 - September 2, 2014
2013 Roaring Fork Open October 4–27, 2013
Lorna Simpson July 26 - September 22, 2013
Hayley Tompkins July 26 - September 22, 2013
Rob Pruitt An American Folk Artist May 3 - July 14, 2013
Thea Djordjadze May 3 - July 14, 2013
Tom Sachs Miffy Fountain and My Melody February 20 - September 8, 2013
Morgan Fisher December 14, 2012 - February 3, 2013
Dave Muller November 22, 2012 - July 1, 2013
Young Curators of the Roaring Fork Plugged In January 26 - February 3, 2013
BLOCK, PILLAR, SLAB, BEAM December 14, 2012 - January 20, 2013
Monika Sosnowska February 15 - April 21, 2013
Kathrin Sonntag Green Doesn't Matter When You're Blue February 15 - April 21, 2013
Mark Grotjahn February 17 - April 29, 2012
Ian Kiaer Melnikov Project February 17 - April 22, 2012
Young Curators of the Roaring Fork Re- April 27 - May 4, 2012
Jay Heikes Buried in the Bright February 17 - May 3, 2012
The Residue of Memory May 11 - July 15, 2012
Simon Denny Full Participation May 18 - July 15, 2012
Kay Rosen Construction Zone June 2012 - May 2013
Mungo Thomson Levitating Mass July 2012 - September 3, 2012
Lucio Fontana Ceramics July 27 - October 7, 2012
Amelie von Wulffen 2012 Jane and Marc Nathanson Distinguished Artist in Residence July 27 - October 7, 2012
Continental Drift October 19 - November 25, 2012
Mark Manders Parallel Occurrences/ Documented Assignments February 18 – May 1, 2011
Young Curators of the Roaring Fork May 6, 2011 – May 15, 2011
The Anxiety of Photography May 13, 2011 – July 11, 2011
Cathy Wilkes May 19 – July 17, 2011
Haegue Yang 2011 Jane and Marc Nathanson Distinguished Artist in Residence July 29 – Oct 9, 2011
Stephen Shore July 29, 2011 – October 9, 2011
Roaring Fork Open 2011 October 21, 2011 - November 20, 2011
Slater Bradley December 9, 2011 – February 5, 2012
Huma Bhabha December 9. 2011 – February 5, 2012
Mamma Andersson December 10, 2010 – February 6, 2011
Roger Hiorns December 10, 2010 – February 6, 2011
Susan Philipsz December 12, 2010 - February 21, 2011
Mark Bradford
Louise Bourgeois, Berlinde de Bruyckere, Robert Gober, David Hammons, and Kiki Smith Disembodied
Dave McKenzie
Young Curators of the Roaring Fork Person
Allora & Calzadilla, Pawel Althamer, Marc Bijl, Lara Favaretto, Geof Oppenheimer, Lars Ramberg, Frances Stark, and Mark Wallinger. Restless Empathy
Marlo Pascual 2010 Jane and Marc Nathanson Distinguished Artist in Residence.
Sergej Jensen A collaborative exhibition with 7 local arts organizations: The Red Brick Arts Center, Carbondale Clay Center, CMC Ceramics Studio, Glenwood Center for the Arts, Aspen Chapel Gallery, and SAW Gallery and Studio. October 21 – November 28, 2010
Jim Hodges
Mai-Thu Perret
Peter Coffin 2009 Jane and Marc Nathanson Distinguished Artist in Residence
Doug Aitken, Bas Jan Ader, Marcel Broodthaers, Guy Ben-Ner, Trisha Donnelly, Nancy Graves, Henrik Håkansson, David Noonan, Paul Pfeiffer, and Diana Thater. No Sound
Harrell Fletcher 2009 Old Fashioned Fourth of July AAM Float Artist
Fred Tomaselli
Roaring Fork Open
Claire Fontaine
Kris Martin
Jeremy Deller Marlon Brando, Pocahontas, and Me
Yan Lei
Catherine Sullivan, Cao Fei, A.L. Steiner + robbinschild and Saskia Olde Wolbers. Four Thursday Nights
Friedrich Kunath Rising vs. Setting
Aida Ruilova The Singles 1999−Now
Imaginary Thing
Sanford Biggers, Anne Collier, Jesper Just, Tim Lee, Euan Macdonald, Susan Philipsz, Ugo Rondinone, Melanie Schiff, and Wilhelm Sasnal. Unknown Pleasures
Phil Collins soy mi madre 2008 Jane and Marc Nathanson Distinguished Artist in Residence
Lisa Anne Auerbach
ARAC @ AAM Anderson Ranch at the Aspen Art Museum
Walead Beshty, Alexandra Bricken, Ceal Floyer, Tom Friedman, Felix Gonzales-Torres, Wade Guyton, Wolfgang Liab, Robert Morris, William O'brien, Mitzi Pederson, Dieter Roth, Robert Ryman, Fred Sandback, Anna Sew Hoy, Gedi Sibony, Rudolf Stingel, Lawerence Weiner, Jennifer West, and Erwin Wurm. Now You See It
Chiho Aoshima, Polly Apfelbaum, Hernan Bas, Sarah Cain, Ernesto Caivano, Tony Feher, Torben Giehler, Henriette Grahnert, Mark Grotjahn, Trenton Doyle Hancock, Uwe Henneken, Jim Hodges, Byron Kim, Peter McDonald, Kelly McLane, Elizabeth Peyton, Brett Cody Rogers, Mindy Shapiro, Jessica Stockholder, and Andro Wekua. Like Color in Pictures
Tonico Lemos Auad
Kota Ezawa, Deimantas Narkevicius, Pawel Wojtasik, and David Hammons. Four Thursday Nights
Nicole Wermers Masse und Auflösung
Koo Jeong-A 2007 AAM Distinguished Artist in Residence
Nicolau Vergueiro 2007 Old Fashioned Fourth of July AAM Float Artist
Avner Ben Gal Sudden Poverty
Matthew Barney, Anne Chu, Keith Edmier, Teresita Fernández, Jorge Pardo (installation artist), Tobias Rehberger, Thomas Scheibitz, Kathy Schimert, and Ricky Swallow. Sculptors Drawing
Lily van der Stokker and David Shirgley. To the Wall
Roaring Fork Open
Karen Kilimnik
Richard Tuttle A Room for 3 People
Simon Evans How to get about
Yutaka Sone X-Art Show
Laylah Ali, Janine Antoni, Matthew Barney, Anne Collier, Marlene Dumas, Lella Essaydi, Ellen Gallagher, Christopher Garrett, David Hutcher, Adam Helms, Chris Johanson, Annette Kelm, Jim Lambie, Mariko Mori, Wangechi Mutu, Yositomo Nara, Kristin Oppenheim, Ugo Rondione, Kay Rosen, Sterling Ruby, Thomas Scheibitz, David Shirgley, James Surls, Fred Tomaselli, and Chris Vasell. Having New Eyes
Malik Gaines, Jade Gordon, Andy Ouchi, and Alexandro Segade. My Barbarian
Diana Thater, T. Kelly Mason, Yang Fudong, and Johanna Billing. Four Thursday Nights
Doug Aitken A Photographic Survey
Nathan Mabry 2006 Old Fashioned Fourth of July AAM Float Artist
Pedro Reyes Recyclone
Slater Bradley, Paul Chan, Sarah Charlesworth, Adam Chodzko, Julie Mehretu, Brent Steen, and Artur Zmijewski. Belief and Doubt
Javier Téllez 2006 Jane and Marc Nathanson Distinguished Artist in Residence
Amy Adler Make Believe
Markus Schinwald


The Jane and Marc Nathanson Distinguished Artist in Residence Program[edit]

The Jane and Marc Nathanson Distinguished Artist in Residence Program was established in 2008. The Aspen Art Museum’s annual artist in residency program brings artists to Aspen, Colorado, where they work on creating a new body of work, which will ultimately be exhibited in one of the AAM's galleries. The AAM has a goal of engaging the larger community with contemporary art through artist contact. Artists in residence hold a gallery walkthrough and a lecture during their residency.[9][10]

Fourth of July[edit]

Each summer, the Aspen Art Museum works with a contemporary artist to produce a float for Aspen’s Old-Fashioned Fourth of July Celebration and Parade. Following the town parade, the AAM hosts a community picnic on the museum grounds.[11]

Education Programming[edit]

The AAM provides educational and public programming, including community-based programming through art workshops, art programs in regional schools, free public lecture events, guided tours of museum exhibitions and private collections,[12] and member art trips.[13]

Exhibition in a Box

Launched as a pilot program in 2007, Exhibition in a Box is tied to National Standards of Learning and focuses on object-based learning, the creative process, visual literacy and critical thinking skills. The program is available to all public and private elementary schools located within a 2-½ hour drive of Aspen. Following a museum representative’s visit to the classroom, the program continues with a museum field trip where students tour the facility, meet museum staff, and see in-person the works of the artists discussed at their school.[14]

Education Workshops

Over the course of nine weeks each summer, and during the month of December, the AAM offers art workshops for children using museum exhibitions as a foundation.

Young Curators of the Roaring Fork

The AAM’s Young Curators of the Roaring Fork program brings together high school students from Aspen to Rifle, Colorado, to curate an exhibition of artwork by their peers. Participants in the program learn the process of exhibiting contemporary artwork—from identifying a theme and soliciting work, to promoting and installing a museum-quality exhibition. Throughout the academic year, the Young Curators meet with museum staff, attend museum functions, and visit with artists to gain the knowledge necessary to curate and administrate their own exhibition.[15]

The Questrom Education Fund

The Questrom Education Fund was established early in 2012. The QEF both creates a foundation for existing education programs as well as providing vital funds for future expanded education-based outreach programs as the AAM plans its move to a new facility in 2014.[12]

Family Workshops

Offered on select Sundays, families with children of all ages are welcome to look,share, and create hands-on art projects together.

Story Art

Held once a month at local libraries, this program introduces children to the basic foundations of art through engaging storybooks, looking activities, and hands-on art projects.

Arts Club

The Aspen Art Museum partners with the Aspen Youth Center to offer six free in-center art classes held after school hours. The classes conclude with a student-hung installation and family-and-friends gallery reception at Aspen Youth Center.

Teacher’s Workshops

Designed especially for educators, these workshops introduce current exhibitions and provide the tools necessary to integrate contemporary art into any classroom.

Arts In The Schools

In collaboration with Aspen Elementary School, the Aspen Art Museum offers Arts in the Schools, a program of six in-school art classes held after school.Activities include drawing, collage, creative writing, illustration, sculpture,and painting.

Public Programming[edit]

The Questrom Lecture Series

Questrom Lecture Series events afford the museum the opportunity of presenting lectures and public discussions with visiting artists, important scholars, curators, and critics.[12]

Art Matters! Television Program

“Art Matters!” is the AAM’s bi-weekly half-hour television program aired on Aspen’s GrassRootsTV12 local community television access station. “Art Matters!” episodes include in-studio conversations with renowned artists, curators, and arts professionals, virtual tours of galleries, private art collections, art fairs, and artists’ studios, as well as being available in streaming video and video-on-demand formats on the GrassRootsTV12 station web site.[16]

“Art Matters!” shows have included such guests as artists Doug Aitken, Lisa Anne Auerbach, Walead Beshty, Phil Collins, Harrell Fletcher, Jim Hodges, Friedrich Kunath, Yan Lei, Julie Mehretu, Jason Middlebrook, William O'Brien, Mai-Thu Perret, Catherine Sullivan, Fred Tomaselli, Richard Tuttle, and Mark Wallinger, architect Shigeru Ban, curators Ian Berry, Peter Eleey, Massimiliano Gioni, Sylvie Gilbert, Paul Ha, Jens Hoffmann, and John Hanhardt, as well as other art-world professionals.[17]

Architecture Lecture Series

The AAM Architecture Lecture Series brings internationally recognized architects to Aspen to discuss the role of public architecture in our society and how its form, style, and purpose impact our engineered landscapes.

Art In The Outdoors

The AAM offers a series of programs for the culturally curious to explore art outdoors.

Collaborations and Outreach[edit]

The Aspen Art Museum collaborates with other Aspen area non-profits, businesses, community institutions and organizations, including: Anderson Ranch Arts Center,[18] Aspen Center for Environmental Studies, Aspen Historical Society, Aspen Institute/Aspen Ideas Festival, Aspen Music Festival and School, Aspen Writer’s Foundation, Aspen Young Professional Association, City of Aspen Community Development Department, Colorado Mountain College, GrassRoots TV12,[16] Pitkin County Jail,[19] and Pitkin County Library.

It's The Ticket!: In 2005, the AAM and the Aspen Skiing Company partnered with the goal of bringing contemporary art to new audiences by selecting contemporary artwork for each season’s lift-tickets.Artist-participants for the project are: Yutaka Sone, Peter Doig (2006/07), Karen Kilimnik (2007/08), Jim Hodges (2008/09), Carla Klein (2009/10), Walter Niedermayr (2010/11), Mark Grotjahn (2011/12), and David Shrigley (2012/13).[20]

Special Events and Annual Benefits[edit]


Held each summer, ArtCrush is the AAM’s annual summer benefit and related events are attended by art collectors, wine connoisseurs, artists, gallery owners,curators, celebrities, and global business leaders. During the ArtCrush dinner,AAM CEO and Director,Chief Curator Heidi Zuckerman Jacobson presents an annual artist honoree with the Aspen Award for Art. The award is given to an artist who has either exhibited, or will exhibit, at the museum. Aspen Award for Art honorees include: Teresita Fernandez (2013), Tom Sachs (2012), Roni Horn (2011), Marilyn Minter (2010), Fred Tomaselli, Ed Ruscha (2008), Jim Hodges(2007), Tony Feher (2006), and Richard Tuttle (2005).[20] [21]

Aspen Art Museum. (2012)


Held every year on December 28 at the St. Regis Resort in Aspen, Freestyle is an après-ski benefit.[20]


The AAM is a member institution in the North American Reciprocal Museum (NARM) membership program, which offers membership privileges at nearly 400 participating museums.[22] Effective January 1, 2010, additional reciprocal privileges are also in the Modern/Contemporary (Mod/Co) reciprocal member program of 39 internationally recognized institutions.

Aspen Art Press[edit]

Through the Aspen Art Press, the AAM publishes artist catalogues and monographs, archiving the AAM’s exhibitions and artist projects.[23]

Aspen Art Museum Bookstore[edit]

The Aspen Art Museum bookstore sells contemporary art books and publications, artist's limited editions, museum t-shirts, hats, mugs, children’s toys, and story books.[24]

Hours of Operation[edit]

The AAM is open Tuesday through Saturday from 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m., Thursdays from 10:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m., and on Sundays from Noon to 6:00 p.m. The aamSHOP is open on Mondays from 9:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. Galleries are closed on Mondays. The AAM is closed on major holidays.[25]


  1. ^ Sobel, D. (2004). One Hour Ahead: The avant-garde in Aspen 1945 – 2004. Aspen, CO: Aspen Art Press.
  2. ^
  3. ^ Kelly Crow (July 17, 2014), Aspen Art Museum Readies New Building Wall Street Journal.
  4. ^ "Alliance Accredited Institutions". American Alliance of Museums. Retrieved 6 April 2013. 
  5. ^ American Association of Museum Directors. (July 2011). AAMDMembershipList7-11.pdf. Retrieved from
  6. ^ Pitkin County. (2012). Aspen Art Museum. Retrieved from
  7. ^ Aspen Art Museum. (2012). Mission. Retrieved from
  8. ^ Aspen Art Museum. (2012). Archive. Retrieved from
  9. ^ Crow, K. (July 30, 2011). Giving the Humdrum Its Glory. Retrieved from
  10. ^ Oksenhorn, S. (August 20, 2012). Yang at Aspen Art Museum: Moving Parts, Travel Logs. The Aspen Times. Retrieved from
  11. ^ Aspen Art Museum. (2012). Other Events. Retrieved from
  12. ^ a b c Chayka, K. (March 15, 2012). Aspen Art Museum Scores Big Gift to Amp Up Its Education Offerings. Retrieved from
  13. ^ Aspen Art Museum. (2012). Workshops. Retrieved from
  14. ^ Villarreal, J. (March 26, 2012). Aspen Art Museum announces new $1.5 million gift from donors Allen and Kelli Questrom. Retrieved from
  15. ^ Miracle, M. (2010). Rising Stars. Aspen Sojourner, Midwinter 2010. Retrieved from
  16. ^ a b GrassRoots Television. (2012). Art Matters. Retrieved from
  17. ^ Aspen Art Museum. (2012). Video Archive. Retrieved from
  18. ^ Villarreal, J. (2008). Historic Collaboration Between the Aspen Art Museum and Anderson Ranch Arts Center. Retrieved from
  19. ^ Museum Publicity. (April 14, 2011). Aspen Art Museum Partners with Pitkin County Jail to Bring Art Education to Inmates. Retrieved from
  20. ^ a b Aspen Art Museum. (2012). Freestyle. Retrieved from
  21. ^ Aspen Art Museum. (2012). Join the AAM. Retrieved from
  22. ^ North American Reciprocal Museum (NARM) Program. Retrieved from
  23. ^ Aspen Art Museum. (2012). AAM Publications. Retrieved from
  24. ^ Aspen Art Museum. (2012). Shop. Retrieved from
  25. ^ Aspen Art Museum. (2012). Contact. Retrieved from

External links[edit]