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Happy City
by Stuart
Semple

Denver, Colorado

Region
  • Mountain West
Quick Facts:
  • Established a top-secret “Happiness Headquarters” in Denver’s Dairy Block Alley, which became accessible to the public at 12am on June 1st.

  • Hosted art-making activities, installations, and an inflatable dance floor to promote happiness through creativity and community.

Press/Media
  • Happiness HQ Brings Holograms, Giant Inflatables, and Teddy Bears to Dairy Block 303 Magazine

  • All the delightful and confusing things you’ll see as “Happy City” pops up around Denve Denverite

  • The Denver Theatre District Releases “Happy City Denver” Experiment Report in Partnership with “Happy City” Author Charles Montgomery Denver Theatre District

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The
Story

Happy City was a 6-week art intervention in Denver that took place from May to June of 2018 and aimed to dismantle social barriers and promote individual and collective wellbeing through arts-oriented programming. NINE dot ARTS collaborated with renowned British artist Stuart Semple and our partners Sage Hospitality Group and McWhinney to host the high-impact “Happiness Headquarters” at Denver’s Dairy Block Alley. The HQ was free and open to the public with the sole purpose of bringing surprise and delight to visitors through art and community. 

The headquarters featured 4 large-scale, interactive installations and Stuart Semple’s first showing of his holographic video artwork, a projection of himself entitled, “IMPERFECT HUMAN.” One installation even featured an above-ground pool filled with stuffed animals. Visitors were invited to dive into the pool and bring their own teddy to contribute and donate. 

The HQ also boasted the world’s largest coloring book, where participants filled in oversized paint-by-numbers pages with custom paint colors created specifically for the city of Denver, including Red Rocks Red, Big Sky Blue, Casa Bonita Pink, and Electric Herb Green. Stuart Semple also developed limited-edition, interactive woodcut panels (signed by the artist himself) so that visitors could create their own crayon rubbings in collaboration with the artist. Designs included smiley faces, happy clouds, and rainbows to stimulate creativity and imagination. 

The closing party at the Happiness HQ included a 30×30-foot inflatable dance floor, placed amidst music and colored lights in the artistically vibrant Dairy Block Alley. Our team was proud to facilitate these arts activities and installations to demonstrate the importance of creativity and community in nurturing lasting happiness. Learn more about Stuart Semple’s Happy City here.

Images below are courtesy of Stuart Semple.

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