In most winter destinations, lift tickets are nothing more than a means to getting on the mountain and making turns. In Aspen, they are works of art. Literally. Since 2005, Aspen Art Museum and Aspen Skiing Company—the company that owns and operates the Aspen area’s four ski mountains—have collaborated with established contemporary artists to produce unique wearable art in the form of lift tickets (which are now more like credit cards than actual tickets).
For the 2015-2016 season (which also marks the program’s 10th anniversary) renowned Japanese artist Takashi Murakami has created four unique images to be emblazoned on the ski passes for the area’s mountains—Aspen Mountain, Snowmass, Aspen Highlands, and Buttermilk. His lift tickets feature the colorful and playful images the artist has long been known for (you may recall Murakami had a long relationship with French fashion house Louis Vuitton that saw his bright designs on an array of the label’s accessories). Past years’ ticket designs from artists like Mark Bradford, Carla Klein, and Jim Hodges have become collectors’ items, so make sure to not toss yours at the end of the season.
The lift ticket collaboration is a facet of Aspen’s Art in Unexpected Places program, which also launched in 2005 in an effort to increase the artistic and cultural presence in the picturesque ski town. For more information on Aspen/Snowmass or this collaboration, visit aspensnowmass.com.