I received the keys to my studio in the 40 West Studios complex in an area of Lakewood, Colorado, yesterday. The area became a state-certified creative arts district last year, 40 West Arts, and plans are underway for an urban renewal centered around the artists and creative businesses. The area is along a stretch of Colfax west of downtown Denver two blocks from the new light rail and nearby stations.
There are 13 studios, there's only one left, and 3 workshop spaces. I've met a few of the artists already and they are diverse in age and the type of art. I'm excited, and proud, to become part of their community.
I had been investigating Artspace campuses around the country, but realized "wherever you go, there you are" and my sons and grand kids are here. If I was 30 again, it might make sense to pack up and move to a new city, but I'm 67. While I can still follow my dreams I must be at least practical. Somewhere my sweet husband Mark (who passed away in January) is saying "I at least taught you to be practical, you gypsy soul."
From the Artspace website:
"Artspace is America’s leader in artist-led community transformation. With headquarters in Minneapolis and offices in Los Angeles, New Orleans, New York, Seattle and Washington DC, Artspace runs a network of more than 35 affordable arts facilities in 15 states. Representing a $582 million investment in America's arts infrastructure, our facilities provide more than 1,300 affordable live/work units for artists and their families as well as a million square feet of non-residential space for artists, arts organizations and creative enterprises."
The good news is Artspace is coming to 40 West Arts in the next few years which will provide about 55 affordable work/live spaces for artists. My name will be on the list of applicants! In the meantime I will enjoy being part of a collaborative group of artists planning for the resurgence of West Colfax.
24/7 access, heat, a/c, communal kitchen, men AND women's restrooms,
Sweet Bloom Espresso Bar next door, and gallery space