2017 Biennial reveals notable names, tickets
Cultural, political and business leaders from more than 20 countries will return to Denver Sept. 12-16 for the fourth Biennial of the Americas, an arts and policy festival that seeks to unite many of the Western Hemisphere’s most vibrant thinkers and creators.
A good chunk of the programming for the 2017 Biennial, which was established in 2010 by Gov. John Hickenlooper (then mayor of Denver), is open to the public, with a mix of ongoing art exhibits, panels, symposiums and festival-ending cultural performances.
And if past Biennials are any indication, many of these sessions — modeled in part after the annual World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, the Venice Biennale and the Aspen Ideas Festival — will fill up fast.
“This year’s Biennial of the Americas promises to convene a diverse array of public figures, global topic experts, innovative artists and deep thinkers packaged into one riveting international festival,” said Erin Trapp, CEO and director of the Biennial, in a press statement.
The 2015 Biennial hosted more than 100 events and attracted 25,000 participants, according to Biennial officials.
Highlights of this year include four major art exhibits: the Latino-focused “Mi Tierra” at the Denver Art Museum; “Saber Acomodar,” an exploration of artistry and craftmanship in Guadalajara, Mexico, at the Denver Museum of Contemporary Art; video and still photography from renowned cinematographer Gabriel Figueroa at the McNichols Building; and “Penitents: World End Rituals of Faith,” featuring the work of Brazilian photographer Guy Veloso.
In addition to lunchtime panels featuring political and business leaders, including Denver Mayor Michael Hancock, one of this year’s biggest events is the Sept. 14 Americas Symposium at the Ellie Caulkins Opera House, which includes Pulitzer Prizewinning writer Dave Eggars, CNBC’s Becky Quick, LinkedIn’s Reid Hoffman and others.
The festival closes out with the Sept. 15-16 “Havana Nights” shows, featuring the first U.S. appearance of “Fábrica de Arte Cubano,” curated by Cuban rocker, rapper and filmmaker Equis Alfonso. The concert will include performances and exhibitions of dance, music and visual art at the new Denver Rock Drill project, at the intersection of the RiNo and Cole neighborhoods (within walking distance to the 38th and Blake RTD station).
The full lineup, festival registration and individual tickets are available at biennialoftheamericas.org. Tickets range from $10 for the symposium and “Havana Nights” to $50 for the lunch series. Full day packages are $125.
Members of the Lisa Trujillo Dance Academy perform during Mexico Night in Civic Center Park as part of the 2013 Biennial of the Americas.