CU Denver’s CMTC Earn Bonfils Foundation Grant Funding for Project that Combines Art and Technology

CU Denver’s Comcast Media and Technology Center (CMTC) is overjoyed to announce a generous contribution from the Bonfils Stanton Foundation (BSF) to support their work on the Five Points to Five Notes project.  BSF is renowned for its support of cultural organizations and continual investments that enhance the values, spirit, and diversity of Denver’s cultural community, has committed critical support for CMTC’s Design Innovation (DI) Team’s project.

Five Points to Five Notes (5PT5N) is a project created to honor the rich cultural heritage in some of the most vibrant and artistically significant areas in Denver, The well-known and culturally vibrant neighborhoods of River North (RiNo) Art District, Five Points, Cole, Elyria-Swansea, and Globeville.  These well-known and culturally vibrant neighborhoods of act as cherished cultural cornerstones for underrepresented communities in Denver.  Based on the rich heritage and opportunities for the future, staff at CU Denver’s CMTC have been able to turn a passion project into a funded community-based initiative that will aim to honor the history and enhance the future for this stall ward Denver location. 

Gentrification and development have significantly changed the ethnic landscape in neighborhoods like Five Points.  Displacement of the African American community, who have made the neighborhood their home for over a century, is a problem that we can begin to address through the open acknowledgment of the history and culture.  New York had Harlem, and for the first half of the 20th Century, Five Points was known as its equivalent in the West.  Five Points thrived as a center for business and culture as early as 1920 but saw degradation associated with suffering from discriminatory housing policies that existed in Denver through the early 1960s.  In the past twenty years, the neighborhood has enjoyed a return to the culture and business, albeit at the expense of tenured residents.  Some of the unfortunate impacts of this rapid growth have come at the expense of the cultural heritage.  Worsened by the COVID19 pandemic, the legacy of Five Points continues to slip into the past.  Through the 5PT5N project, we believe we have a solution.

Our vision is to enhance community connectedness by creating an inclusive participation and interaction platform that blends art and technology in a culturally rich context.  By leveraging the talent of CU Denver students, faculty, and staff, we propose a community co-created digital art walk and a large-scale public art installation that will span the entire Five Points district.  We believe in celebrating the complex history of Five Points as a diverse and thriving business and art community.  It deserves a monument that appropriately pays tribute to those roots and exists as an example of the changing cultural, racial, and ethnic influences that are the foundation of the city of Denver that exists today.  Contact us if you are interested in supporting this wonderful project.

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