Art and Design

History Colorado's Art and Design collection contains over 70,000 artifacts. Artifacts in the collection include paintings, furniture, sculpture, architectural elements and finishes, fixtures, decorative arts and crafts, product packaging, dioramas, and posters. In general, the collection can be divided into three major areas: fine arts, decorative arts, and applied arts.

The fine arts collection documents Colorado's artistic community with works by prominent Colorado artists, as well as work by individuals pursuing art as students, professionals, or hobbyists. The core of the fine arts collection is art produced in the 1930s and 1940s as part of the New Deal: paintings, printing plates, prints, and dioramas, all made to preserve and visually convey Colorado history.

Decorative arts holdings in the collection are primarily from Colorado homes and show the evolution over time of style and taste in Colorado and the nation. These artifacts also speak of everyday household activities from 1860 to the present.

The applied arts collection provides materials evidence of industrial production in Colorado, reflects the daily life of Colorado's diverse population, and covers major movements and issues of the 20th century.

Many pieces from the Art and Design collection are currently on view in History Colorado's Community House Museums, including the Grant-Humphreys Mansion and the Center for Colorado Women's Studies at the Byers-Evans House Museum in Denver, the Baca House and Bloom Mansion in Trinidad, and the Healy House Museum and Dexter Cabin in Leadville.

Art and Design artifacts are also available to view online. Click here to search the History Colorado Online Collection, which contains items from the Art and Design collection along with other artifacts and photographs.

High-quality photographic prints of artifacts in the History Colorado collection are available for personal or commercial use. Please contact us at photos@state.co.us for more information.