Hamilton family gives $250,000 to University of Denver
February 28, 2011
By: Kristal Griffith 

Frederic and Jane Hamilton have donated $250,000 to the University of Denver in order to strengthen the link between DU’s School of Art and Art History and the Denver Art Museum.

The money will be used for a program designed to advance students’ understanding of how artists and museums work together to present important international installations to the public.

The gift will fund two visiting artists per year for five years. Selected artists will prepare an installation at the museum and participate at DU through class projects, guest lectures, demonstrations and workshops.

“We are fortunate to have these two important institutions working to grow the visual arts in our community,” Hamilton says. “It is our hope that this donation further engages students and the public in the creative process of artists working today.”

“The University of Denver has a long-standing relationship with the Denver Art Museum — we have closely aligned educational missions,” says M.E. Warlick, chair of the School of Art and Art History. “This is very enriching for our students who want to meet professional artists.”

The first Hamilton Visiting Artist will be video artist Steina, whose work will be featured at the museum as part of Blink! Light, Sound and the Moving Image. The museum’s first large-scale exhibition devoted entirely to electronic and time-based media, Blink! opens March 13.

Steina’s work has been exhibited extensively nationally and internationally for more than four decades. She will be in residence and install her work at the museum from Feb. 14–28. The Iceland native now resides in Santa Fe, N.M. She will work with students in classes, do critiques and present a performance at DU.

In April, DU and the museum will welcome renowned ceramic artist Walter McConnell, professor and chair of the Division of Ceramic Art at New York State College of Ceramics at Alfred University in Alfred, N.Y.

McConnell is known for his unfired, apparitional installations of moist clay housed in plastic enclosures. The artist will be in residence April 4–16. His work will be featured in the exhibition, Overthrown: Clay Without Limits.

Earlier contributions from the Hamiltons funded the Hamilton Gymnasium in DU’s Ritchie Center and the Hamilton Family Recital Hall in the Newman Center for the Performing Arts. Frederic Hamilton is chair of the board at the museum, and Jane Hamilton is a member of DU’s Board of Trustees.

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