Our Denver Art Collection at The Oxford Hotel

The Oxford Hotel in Denver, CO is proud to feature some of the most impressive pieces in our Denver art collection. Artists inspired by the American West have long been welcomed at The Oxford Hotel. The historic hotel in downtown Denver’s LoDo (Lower Downtown) historic district maintains a compelling collection of western art dating from the late 19th and early 20th centuries, some of it acquired from the artists themselves as settlement for room fees. Boasting talent from well known to nearly anonymous – including George Vander Sluis, Charles Ragland Bunnell, and Denver resident Charles Partridge Adams – the hotel’s collection has been compiled to suit the western essence of The Oxford itself.

Artists seeking beauty and opportunity found both in the American West, sometimes encouraged by railroad magnates who commissioned dramatic interpretations of the land and its people. Of course, not every artist had such a cushy arrangement, and many exchanged original works to settle tabs at local hotels and saloons. John Perry’s dramatic Panoramic Landscape, which occupies space in The Oxford’s lobby, was acquired this way. The tradition actually endured into the 1970s at our downtown Denver hotel, when singer-songwriter Tom Waits crooned live to cover his tab.

While it focuses on the American West, The Oxford’s Denver art collection actually shows more breadth. Gracing the bar at McCormick’s Fish House are three large “cathedral glass” opalescent panels of Dutch village scenes, which were returned to daylight by the hotel in 1983 after nearly 40 years in storage and a once-over by the original artist’s grandson. In The Cruise Room, Art Deco panels by Alley Henson (c. 1930) are best viewed with a martini in hand, while Shipwrecked, a frothy oil on canvas by J.M. Fortenbury (c. 1905) presides over the Grand Ballroom.

Among distinctly Western works on display for your discerning eyes at The Oxford Hotel:

  • Sunset, Estes Park, Colorado – Charles Partridge Adams (1858-1942), oil on canvas
  • Mountains in Spring – George Vander Sluis (1915-1984), oil on board, 1944
  • Health Spa (Eldorado Springs) – Charles H. Harmon (1959-1936), oil on canvas, c. 1890
  • Panoramic Mountain Landscape – John Fery (1865-1934), oil on canvas, c. 1890
  • Garden of the Gods – Anonymous, oil on canvas, c. 1890s
  • Rock and Pines – George Vander Sluis, oil on board, 1946
  • Sunrise – Darlene Pearse, oil on canvas, c. 1980s
  • King of the Prairie – John Dare Howland (1842-1914), oil on canvas
  • Pike’s Peak – Charles Ragland Bunnell (1897-1968), egg tempura on board, 1931

For more information and imagery, please download our Art and History Brochure (1.3mb).