Finding Beauty in Hidden Places

‘Duct-Work: Transforming the I-70 Viaduct

Working in the creative field alters the way you see things. To some, the I-70 viaduct was a dark, shadowy and sometimes intimidating area, but to CIG, we saw the beauty… the future… the possibilities. That vision became known as ‘duct-work — the collaboration of more than 20 local artists, one creative team, one connected curator, one diligent non-profit, one open-minded government agency, nine generous sponsors and a $6,000 grant from the Denver Urban Arts Fund that made it all possible.

In late-September, ‘duct-work vision became reality as 20 local artists unleashed their creative minds on the blank concrete walls of the I-70 viaduct in northeast Denver. Within a few days, the area was transformed into bright, energizing and breathtaking art.

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Gamma Acosta exaggerated the current condition of the pillars beneath I-70 through aerosol paint.

Works (L to R) of Thomas Scharfenberg, Detour and Paige Madden line the walls along East 46th Avenue in northeast Denver.

Hundreds of visitors attended the community event on Saturday, Oct. 1.

That energy intensified on Saturday, Oct. 1, when hundreds of visitors watched the final transformation take place at a community event. Local vendors chatted with community members and offered their own art projects. Music filled the air throughout the event and kids practiced their urban art skills on a wall set aside just for them.

Denver took notice of the welcomed change and what was once a dark and shadowy underpass is now a bright and colorful gallery.

The intent of the event was to transform the viaduct before the demolition in a few years, raise awareness about the area, celebrate with the community around the viaduct and, ultimately, make something beautiful.

See more photos here.