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Spotlight! The Art Students League of Denver and Rachel Basye


Since opening in 1987, the Art Students League of Denver (ASLD) has invited the public to learn artistic practice in its creative halls at the hands of established artists. Offering classes and studios, ASLD has grown through the years, with programming for all ages and skill-levels.

We had the opportunity to correspond with Rachel Basye, Executive Director of ASLD, to get an inside look at what is on the horizon for 2016. In addition to her duties as Executive Director, Rachel also pursues a personal art practice. “I started out in photography, working in black and white. From there I moved into alternative processes and that led me to printmaking” (Basye). Prior to assuming the mantle of Executive Director in 2012, Rachel was a member of the ASLD Board of Directors from 2005 to 2011. Throughout her tenure as a Board member and now Executive Director, Rachel continues to enjoy many courses at ASLD under the tutelage of the excellent faculty.

Since Rachel began as Executive Director, ASLD has continued “to expand the media we offer and build on the excellent faculty” (Basye).  ASLD offers classes in arts practice and theory to children and adults alike in a range of media, including painting, ceramics, fiber arts, metalsmithing, and more. Recently, ASLD also added the Atelier program “which allows people to work with an artist in an in depth manner” (Basye). In a small group, individuals may take an intensive, six week long course led by a professional artist with a theme focused on content, technique, and more. This allows for an immersive studio experience. ASLD has also made strides in expanding their scholarship and outreach programs to make their excellent brand of arts education more accessible.

Of course 2016 promises a busy schedule for ASLD. Ever the printmaker, Rachel is looking forward to Mo’Print (The Month of Printmaking), a month celebrated by Denver scheduled for March of this year. ASLD will celebrate with a national exhibition juried by Colorado’s own Bud Shark of Shark’s Ink. Rachel is also looking forward to delecTABLE, a biennial exhibition, featuring functional ceramics. Both these exhibitions will be accompanied by visiting artists, programming, and special courses.  

Additionally, “in 2016, we have a number of exciting collaborations with other SCFD organizations” (Basye). ASLD will be working with the Clyfford Still Museum, RedLine, Boulder Museum of Contemporary Art, just to name a few.  ASLD uses connections with these other institutions to cross over into other artistic realms, creating a more integrative curriculum. For instance, ASLD will continue its partnership with the Lighthouse Writers Workshop to produce lectures connecting art with literature. These lectures occur on the third Thursday of every month. The next will occur January 21st at ASLD, featuring the book Hopper by Mark Strand and Edward Hopper’s painting, Morning Sun. To find more lectures, ASLD collaborations with other organizations, and classes visit ASLD’s Moxie Mobile page.

Keep your eye out for the Art Students League of Denver – a Colorado cornerstone for creativity and arts education.

Art Students League of Denver
200 Grant St.
Denver, CO 80203


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