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Top Art Studios In The Denver Area

Denver is full of emerging artists of every type. This growing art scene is home to many studios, and provide opportunities to see some truly impressive work. If you are new to the art scene, the best way to start your education is to check out Denver's First Friday Art Walk on Santa Fe. The Santa Fe Arts district truly comes to life on the first Friday of every month. Take a stroll down Santa Fe and wander in and out of all the art galleries, take in the sights and get a feel for the art scene. If you are looking to see truly special art, check out our picks for the Top 5 art studios in the Denver area.

Hours: Vary by event. View program and event information

Gratis Studio is located in the heart of the Santa Fe Arts District, and this is a truly special place. Its mission is to use art and art education to help children develop self-esteem, self-expression and other critical skills that are often no longer taught at many schools. Gratis Studio is also a full gallery, which brings in many unique artists and shows, including a homeless art exhibit with artwork from over 50 homeless artists. In addition, the studio also offers after school classes, weekend workshops, summer-camps, and other activities for at-risk and low-income youth.

Pirate: Contemporary Art
Pirate: Contemporary Art (credit: CBS)

Hours: Fri 6 - 10 p.m.; Sat-Sun noon - 5 p.m.

There is a small block of amazing little art studios nestled in the lower highlands area at 37th and Navajo. The most unique and interesting of them all is Pirate, a contemporary art studio. Pirate has been around for more than 30 years, and consistently brings in some truly unique and avant-garde artists. Perhaps one of the most notable artists who has been a member of Pirate was Stephen Batura, who was named Denver Post's Artist of the Year in 2004 and is one of the city's most well known abstract painters. If you are a fan of contemporary, edgy and prolific art, then definitely check out Pirate. It is a truly unique and wonderful space.

RELATED: Top Permanent Exhibitions At The Denver Art Museum

Plus Gallery
Plus Gallery (credit: CBS)

Hours: Wed-Sat 12 p.m.-5 p.m., or by appointment

The Plus Gallery has been a fixture of the Denver Art community since 2001, garnering rave reviews and attention from local media. The gallery relocated to a beautiful two-story location in 2009, and has since continued to offer true progressive contemporary exhibitions. The Plus Gallery has also offered an experimental and new media series since 2002, bringing an alternative venue for sound, film, and performance artists. Plus Gallery anchors the new River North Arts District and it has won several awards from every major news outlet in Denver. It's an excellent choice for art lovers and contemporary artists alike.

Schuessler Studios was opened by Michael Schuessler in 1996, bringing the spiritual and healing arts to this art studio. The studio gathers an interesting and diverse group of artists with a very unique vision. With everything from paint on canvas to bronze work, photography, and even fossil art, these creative artists have some wonderful work to share. You can browse all of their current offerings online.

(credit: Studio 12)

Hours: Mon-Fri 10 a.m.-6 p.m.; Sat 11 a.m.-4 p.m.; Open late until 9 p.m. First Fridays

Located in Downtown Denver at 2nd and Kalamath, Studio 12 is a wonderful space showcasing art, design and even custom framing. Many different types of artists will show their work here and there is often a tremendously varied selection of crafts to purchase. Studio 12 also offers many different workshops and events, so check the website often to see what it has to offer.

RELATED: Top Art Galleries You Won't Find On Sante Fe

Deborah Flomberg is a theater professional, freelance writer and Denver native. Her work can be found at

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