Step Back into the American West,
Where Art and History Come Together.
It is the mission of the American Museum of Western Art to promote the public’s understanding and appreciation of art depicting the American West from the early 1800s through the present day. The art presented is intended to give the public a better understanding and appreciation of the character, history, and beauty of the American West and the peoples, individuals, and ideas that transformed it over time.
The Anschutz Collection offers guided and self-guided tours of the museum on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays and tickets can be purchased in advance. In addition to guided and self-guided tours, The Anschutz Collection accommodates school tours and group tours on Tuesdays and Thursdays, which can be arranged using the forms provided in Visitor Information.
The Anschutz Collection offers educational programs including our monthly special topic conversations, Artful Insights. Please see our upcoming programs listing below or visit our Tickets page for more information.
Join Our Special Programs
The American Museum of Western Art strives to create educational and entertaining programs for our visitors throughout the year. Our Special Programs are designed to engage visitors in conversation, explore specific works and artists found in the collection, and cultivate the inspiration found all around us in the galleries. We invite you to browse our upcoming programs and join us in our adventures through the American West through art.
Colorado Day – FREE Self Guided Tours All Day
August 1st, 2017
AMWA will offer free self-guided tours all day in celebration of Colorado Day on Tuesday, August 1st. Whether artists were born here, worked here, or simply passed through, it is easy to see why Colorado’s Rocky Mountains, soaring blue skies, and sun-drenched plains made a lasting impact on their work. Self-guided tours are free of charge and include audio guides. Advance reservations are recommended due to limited capacity.
Artful Insight -
August 7th, 2017
George Catlin was the first of many painters to choose the West as his main source of subject matter. Beginning in the 1830s, he took many trips up the Missouri River to the Dakotas, observing first-hand the buffalo hunts, ceremonies, and rituals of the Mandan. During this Artful Insight we will discuss three paintings by Catlin which are in the Collection. Each one depicts an aspect of the Mandan’s social and cultural history, and serves as an extraordinary record of a tribe that was nearly decimated by Small Pox soon after they were painted.
Special Program with Music Historian Mark Lee Gardner
August 16th, 2017
Music historian Mark Lee Gardner will bring the art of the cowboy and outlaw era to life with stories, songs, period instruments, and a wealth of knowledge. Transport yourself to the Old West with an afternoon of music and conversation.
Artful Insight -
August 21st, 2017
Join us for a special conversation on Helen Frankenthaler’s Phoenix, 1976, and the advent of Abstract Expressionism in the West. Frankenthaler pioneered her trademark staining technique, by which paintings like the one at the American Museum of Western Art were created by pouring thin layers of paint onto unprimed canvas.
Writing the West
September 13th, 2017
AMWA partners with the Lighthouse Writers Workshop in offering monthly writing sessions in the museum galleries!
At Writing the West we write within the gallery space of the American Museum of Western Art. We respond to fun and interesting writing prompts and then read aloud what we wrote next to the paintings that inspired us. AMWA educators give brief “behind the scenes narratives” of chosen paintings and encourage questions.
Artful Insight -
September 18th, 2017
Join us for an Artful Insight featuring the life and works of Hudson River School artist, Thomas Moran. Find out why paintings like this one encouraged later generations of artists to travel west, and even persuaded Congress to annex the Yellowstone region as the first national park.