Arts and Culture / Magazine Feature

Blue Bear sculptor to discuss public art at alumni symposium


Lawrence Argent's Big Blue Bear sculpture is now available in miniatures. PHOTO BY: Tim Ryan.

Unlike some public art projects, the Big Blue Bear outside the Denver Convention Center has captured the attention of most everyone who has encountered the 40-foot statue. DU alumni will have the opportunity to hear from the artist at the University’s inaugural alumni symposium Oct. 5–6.

Lawrence Argent, a DU art and art history professor, is the artist behind the bear, actually titled I See What You Mean. He also is known for his numerous other public art works in the Denver Metro area.  

Argent is one of 18 DU faculty members who will present at the symposium. His presentation on Oct. 6 will focus on the process of how art becomes “public art,” including the politics and funding involved.

As for his most recognized public project, anyone who wants their own version of the Big Blue Bear can now buy a Little Blue Bear.

Argent designed 5- and 8-inch miniatures of the original blue bruin. He traveled to China to oversee production of the bears, which are hand-painted the distinctive bright blue.

The little bears are on sale now at the Denver Convention Center, Denver Art Museum and the Denver Visitor Information Center. The smallest version is $12.99 and the 8-inch bear is $18.99.

The symposium is open to all alumni; the registration fee is $100 and includes attendance at both keynotes, faculty seminars and all meals during the event. Call 1-800-871-3822 for more information, or for a complete schedule, descriptions of the presentations and online registration.

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