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Colorado New Deal Art

According to a newpaper article, “Remembering the forgotten Artists,” Empire Magazine, Denver Post dated October 21, 1979, the following works of art were produced under the Federal Art Project in Colorado.

  • Cole Junior High School, Denver – located in the library – WPA mural by Kenneth Evett
  • Fort Logan Military Base - easel paintings (missing)
  • Lowry Air Force Base - easel paintings (missing)
  • Fitzsimons General Hospital - easel paintings (missing)
  • The Beet Pickers” by Paul Pianfetti – (owned by artist’s family)
  • Morey Junior High School, Denver, CO – fountain statue located in the courtyard – “Neptune” by Marvin Martin – (missing)
  • Morey Junior High School, Denver, CO – mural located in front hall – “The Picnic” by Pascal Quackenbush – (missing)
  • Manual High School (old building) – Arthur Bradley murals – (missing)
  • University of Colorado - murals by Pascal Quackenbush and John E. Thompson – (missing)

Colorado’s Federal Art Projects, headed by Donald J. Bear, employed 116 artists, including three supervisors.

Thanks to Glen Martin for contributing this information!

Golden, CO
Thanks to Rob Witwer who contributed his article, “WPA mural a slice of History,” 1-5-05, The Canyon Courier. (see post office chart below)

Post Office New Deal Artwork -Most of the Post Office works of art were funded through commissions under the Treasury Department’s Section of Painting and Sculpture (later known as The Section of Fine Arts) and not the WPA.

“Often mistaken for WPA art, post office murals were actually executed by artists working for the Section of Fine Arts. Commonly known as “the Section,” it was established in 1934 and administered by the Procurement Division of the Treasury Department. Headed by Edward Bruce, a former lawyer, businessman, and artist, the Section’s main function was to select art of high quality to decorate public buildings if the funding was available. By providing decoration in public buildings, the art was made accessible to all people.” from “Articles from EnRoute : Off The Wall: New Deal Post Office Murals” by Patricia Raynor

Unless indicated, works of art are located in the US Post Office building.

New Deal/WPA Art in Colorado

Location Artist Title Date Medium
Delta Mary Kittredge “Cattle” and “Fruit” 1942 two plaster bas-reliefs
Federal Center
(transferred from Colorado Springs PO and Glenwood Springs PO)
Frank Mechau “The Corral,” “Indian Fight,” and “Wild Horse Race” no date oil on canvas
(funded by TRAP)
Main Post Office
Gladys Caldwell Fisher “Rocky Mountain Sheep” and “White Ram” 1936 stone
(funded by TRAP)
South Denver Branch
Ethel Magafan “The Horse Corral” 1942 tempera
Englewood Boardman Robinson “Colorado Stock Sale” 1940 mural
Florence Olive Rush “Antelope” 1939 tempera
Glenwood Springs Jenne Magafan and Edward Chavez decorative map no date (funded by TRAP)
(article by Rob Witwer)
Kenneth Evett “Building the New Road” 1941 tempera and oil
Grand Junction
(removed for restoration)
Louise Ronnebeck “Harvest” 1940 mural
Gunnison Ila Turner McAfee “The Wealth of the West” 1940 oil on canvas
Las Animas Gladys Caldwell Fisher “Kiowa Travois” 1939 wood relief
Littleton (now hangs in City Council Chamber, Littleton Center, 2255 W. Berry Ave.) John H. Fraser “North Platte Country against the Mountains” 1940 mural
(restored in 1985)
Longmont Arnold Ronnebeck “Ways of the Mail” 1937 three terra-cotta reliefs (missing)
Loveland James Russell Sherman “Industries around Loveland” 1938 tempera on gesso
Manitou Springs Archie Musick “Hunters, Red and White” 1942 mural
Rifle George Vander Sluis “Colorado Landscape” 1942 oil on canvas
Rocky Ford Victor Higgins “The First Crossing at Rocky Ford” 1943 oil on canvas
Walsenburg E. L. Blumenschein “The Spanish Peaks” 1937 oil on canvas

All mural images depicted on this site are used with permission of the United States Postal Service. All rights reserved.