Thank you for your interest in the Art Studios at Mesa Arts Center! We feature 14 state of the art custom designed art studios in performing, visual, and literary arts, and now online classes too!
Use this webpage as your destination for all things studios including online class info, parking, ways to save on classes, and general info. Our Box Office currently has limited operating hours, Tuesdays- Fridays from 12-5pm. You can also email ArtStudioClass@mesaartscenter.com at any time to ask questions.
When will I know if my class is cancelled?
Classes are reviewed 3 business days in advance of the start date. Classes without enough student enrollment will be cancelled. Students will be contacted and refunded, or students may be given the option by Box Office staff to switch to the same or similar class at a different time and date. If you do not receive a call from the Box Office, you should assume your class is running.
What should I bring on the first day of class?
Please check the class description or your email inbox to know if materials are required on the first day or if your instructor sent you a materials list. Students are given access to tools and equipment in the studios, and beginning classes may provide some initial materials. However, all students are responsible for providing their own supplies. Instructors can provide recommendations for where to purchase. If you haven’t received any word from your instructor, you are welcome to contact them directly or to contact ArtStudioClass@mesaartscenter.com.
Dance classes shouldn’t require any materials and generally require loose or comfy clothing. Specific clothing and/or shoes are not required by any of our movement courses.
Do you have a waiting list for classes?
Yes, most classes will have waiting lists available for you to join. If a class is sold out, you can add yourself to the waiting by filling out the following form. CLICK HERE. Waiting list is first come, first serve. Box Office & Registration staff will contact you if a slot becomes available.
Is there an elevator access to the second floor?
Yes! The main elevator is located parallel to Center Street in between the two studio buildings opposite the theater buildings.
Are there any online classes offered?
As of Fall 2021, Mesa Arts Center is no longer offering virtual classes.
What parking is available?
There is ample free parking at Mesa Arts Center and the surrounding streets. Mesa Arts Center open-air parking lot is located on the northeast corner of Center Street and 1st Avenue, one block south of Main Street and Center. Mesa Arts Center is located at 1 E Main Street. Surrounding streets with free parking include Center Street, 1st Avenue, Main Street, and Sirrine.
Students with accessibility needs or who would like a security escort at night are encouraged to call the Security office 30 minutes prior to the time you would like to be picked up at (480) 644-6630. Please allow 10 minutes for pick-up.
Can I request a refund for my class or workshop?
Refunds are processed up to 1 week after the first day of class to ensure your satisfaction with our programming. After which, refunds are not generally processed. However, you can appeal to the studios manager in specialty cases. Please contact ArtStudioClass@mesaartscenter.com or call (480) 644-6500 to request a special refund. Not all requests can be accommodated.
Workshops are non-refundable.
Partial refunds are not made for students who miss class. However, in the case of illness, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Mesa Arts Center will refund the cost of a single missed class to a student who is ill or suspects they may have COVID-19. Please do not enter the Mesa Arts Center campus if you are unwell or have been exposed to someone with COVID-19 for longer than 15 minutes. Thank you.
I need to communicate a concern to the Studios Management.
Please communicate any and all serious concerns or challenges to the studios manager, Laura Wilde, at email@example.com .
What is a consumables fee?
The consumables fee was formerly called a “shop fee” and covers the cost of consumable materials that inherently get used during class time. This includes things like gas (oxygen, acetylene, etc.), investment, wax, etc. A consumables fee only applies to glass, welding, blacksmithing, and jewelry classes.
I haven’t taken a course at Mesa Arts Center before, but I’m not a beginning student. Can I sign up for an intermediate course?
Yes, we encourage you to talk to the instructor ahead of time to ensure you have permission and that they can assess your ability and ensure you have the best classroom experience. Youth under the age of sixteen and are at an intermediate level can also request to be enrolled in a beginning adult class. Please contact the Box Office at (480) 644-6500 to place this request.
Mesa Art Center classes are taught by experienced, enthusiastic and professional instructors who encourage the development of creativity. Students work in studios with state-of-the-art equipment. Offerings include Acting, Ceramics, Dance, Drama, Drawing, Glass, Jewelry, Metals, Music, Painting, Photography, Printmaking, Sculpture and more. Fall, Winter/Spring, and Summer sessions run from a few weeks to 16 weeks.
Welding, Blacksmithing, Glass Classes:
Welding, Blacksmithing and Glass Blowing have clothing requirements such as natural fiber clothing (jeans/cotton), hair restraints and closed toed shoes. Glass and Metal classes typically have additional materials costs. Many instructors will have those materials available for purchase.
Private Music Classes:
About one week prior to start of Private Music class, the instructor will contact patron to set the time and place for lessons. Be sure there are good phone numbers and email address on file.
Private Dance Classes:
Dance class, unless otherwise specified, will need comfortable fitting clothing that allows freedom of movement.
Jewelry classes will typically have additional materials costs. Many instructors will have those materials available for purchase.
Clay and ceramic tool kits are available to purchase through the Box Office. Once purchased, please present receipt to the ceramic instructors for pick up.
Painting and Drawing:
Advanced Painting and drawing class often have supply lists that are extensive and specific towards brand. Please allow yourself time to purchase necessary supplies.
No refunds for Workshops unless workshop is canceled by the Mesa Arts Center.
The City of Mesa reserves the right to dismiss a student from the program for inappropriate conduct if necessary. This includes unsafe use of equipment, materials, or supplies. Dismissal/permanent removal at the discretion of faculty.
Students may utilize and/or combine class discounts or promotions up to 20%.
PRIVATE LESSONS AND HOT SHOP RENTAL
One-on-one, semi-private lessons or Hot Shop studio rentals are available upon request. Students as young as 7 are permitted in some private lessons. Contact Studios Manger, Laura Wilde: Laura.firstname.lastname@example.org to schedule.
DESIGN A PRIVATE CLASS
Do you have friends who would take a class with you if it fit their schedule, or would you like to create a unique fun family experience or a team building retreat for your co-workers?
Many MAC instructors are happy to work with you to create a private class or workshop based on your particular interests and availability.
Contact Studios Manger, Laura Wilde: Laura.email@example.com.
Mesa Arts Center is committed to making its programs and facilities accessible to all our patrons. If you need to request an accommodation to attend a class or workshop in the Arts Studios, please mention your request to the registration agent during the time of registration or call 480-644-6520.
Not seeing your class? Not all classes will have posted syllabus information. Some Instructor will discuss what is needed during the first class session, or posted the necessary information in a email prior to the first class. Please make sure your email was provided during registration. If you have any questions please give us at call. Class Registration Desk: 480-644-6520.
FEE ASSISTANCE & SCHOLARSHIP INFO
Fee Assistance is available year-round to Mesa residents ,who meet income requirements, and reduces the cost of the class by 50%. Fee assistance may also be granted to youth in foster care or social service organizations, or to families who are at or below 200% of the Federal Poverty Level. Scholarships differ from Fee Assistance as scholarships cover 100% of the class cost and are limited and available based on funding from the Nancy Wolter Scholarship Fund. Proper qualifying paperwork must be submitted with your application to be considered for either a scholarship or fee assistance.
Fee Assistance Application - Paper
Thanks to generous funding from the Nancy Wolter Scholarship Fund, Mesa Arts Center is proud to offer full scholarships for youth classes, workshops and camps! Please fill out the scholarship application online or download a physical copy. Applications must include proper documentation to be accepted. Please include the best email to contact you in case we have questions. If accepted, the Box Office will contact you to enroll.
Criteria for Scholarships:
- Please submit all paper applications to the Box Office open from 12-5pm Tuesdays - Saturdays or mail to 1 E Main Street, Mesa, AZ 85201 Attn: Studios Department
Completed forms can be mailed to Mesa Arts Center Studios Dept. 1 E Main Street, Mesa, AZ 85201.
Interested in saving on class registration? Members can receive 10% off classes. Learn more about the benefits of Mesa Arts Center membership here.
Ceramics: Clay and toolkits are available for purchase in the Mesa Arts Center Ceramics Studio the first day of class. Additional class supplies may be required and will be discussed the first day of class, or prior to class in an email from your instructor.
Glass Fusing/Stained Glass/Flame Working/Glass Blowing: All materials will be discussed on the first day of class – students need not pre-purchase supplies. Appropriate clothing required – natural fiber fabrics (cotton, silk, linen, wool), leather closed toe shoes.
Jewelry: Students will receive a syllabus and materials list from the instructor via email prior to the class start date.
Lapidary: Students need not purchase supplies.
Welding/Blacksmithing: First day of class no materials are needed! However, please only wear all cotton clothing and closed toe shoes. Students will be required to purchase their own gloves, safety glasses, and helmet but there is a class set for the first day available.
Painting/Printmaking/Photo: A limit number of basic art materials will be made available for student use on the first day of class, and students will be given a supplies list on the first day of class.
The Mesa Arts Center’s Ceramic Studio is an 8,000 square foot state-of-the art, well lit, inviting, efficient place to learn all aspects of working with clay. The ceramics studio is fully equipped to meet the needs of every level of potter, from beginner to professional, child to adult. We offer classes from morning to evening, Monday to Saturday. The studio has two main classrooms with over 30 wheels, 3 slab-rollers, 8 electric kilns, and 5 gas kilns including soda/salt, raku, and a 100 cu. Ft. car kiln for reduction. Instructors cover a vast variety of techniques including cone 10 stoneware, maiolica, low-fire, raku, and soda -fired stoneware.
The drawing and painting studio offers many choices of classes in all levels taught by professionally qualified instructors. Choose from offerings like beginning to advanced drawing, colored pencil, figure, and portraiture study. Painting classes include watercolor, acrylic, and oil. The beginning classes all stress an academic approach to painting where continuing classes support any kind of painting style. All drawing and painting classes have a free 3-hour open studio and are also available through private instruction. Beginning and advanced study printmaking studio classes offer a variety of techniques including stencil printing, single plate monotype, collagraphy, monoscreen printing, and many more. All printmaking classes have a free 4-hour open studio and are also available through private instruction.
The Glass Studio offers various length classes and workshops in flameworking, glassblowing, paperweights, fusing, sand casting, cold working, stained glass and kiln casting. Classes are offered 7 days a week, morning, afternoon and evening. All skill levels are accommodated. Classes are ages 16 and up except Beginning Flameworking (13 and up) and private lessons (10 and up). The studios are available for rental and private and semi-private instruction. Students enrolled in classes are given 4 free hours per week of Open Studio time to work on their projects independently. Non-students may rent time during Open Studio for two times the student hourly rate.
JEWELRY AND METALS
Two studios house fully equipped facilities for jewelry and non-ferrous metal fabrication, casting, enameling, holloware, stone setting, metal clay, cutting cabochon stones, faceting gems and much more. Beginners learn the art and craft of metal work while accomplished artists and a stimulating environment where they can explore new techniques and develop and share ideas with other artists. The Jewelry and Metalsmithing Program was designed to teach traditional and ancient techniques as well as contemporary innovations using a combination of technology, history and art.
The Dance Studio offers various length classes and workshops in American tribal belly dancing, contemporary/Jazz, ballet, ballet/tap, and hip hop. It is equipped with stage lighting, a wall-to-wall mirror, and may be used as a performance space. With a hardwood sprung floor that makes it conducive to movement, the studio provides an active space for its dancers.
The Photography Studio is a full black and white processing lab. We offer beginning through advanced classes and workshops in black and white, digital and specialized processes such as photographing 2-D and 3-D artwork, pinhole, cyanotype and 19th century processes.
Students master techniques while creating work that explores visual history, human-made forms and the natural world. The Sculpture Studio and Terrace provide a fluid indoor/outdoor space ideal for creating in a variety of media. Classes and workshops currently include welding, blacksmithing, knife making, bronze foundry and making Damascus steel.
The Drama Studio offers various length classes and workshops in acting for adults and children, ranging from improv technique to stage combat. Classes are offered morning, afternoon, evening, and by appointment. All skill levels are accommodated. Classes are ages 3 and up and private lessons (13 and up) are also available. The Acting Studio has a particle board sprung floor with a marley on top and is equipped with stage lighting and a tech room.
Workshops are available in all subject areas and are conducted by both local and visiting artists.
YOUTH ART CAMPS
Our Arts Camps run year round and have classes in Dance, Drama, Music, Puppetry and Visual Arts and so much more.
These classes are for students who have no prior experience or for students who could still benefit from a refresher or more practice time learning foundational skills and techniques. This class is not for students who are advanced but wish to stay in a class for the time slot offered. Beginning classes start off with a safety orientation on the first day, as well as a guided project over the course of a few weeks. Or a beginning class may cover a new topic each week, and provide a demo at the start of each day and subsequent completed project each week. Beginning courses are integral to understanding more complex and advanced techniques and projects in the future. Your instructor will let you know when you're ready to advance!
These are for students who have mastered the basic techniques and are ready for more challenging projects. Classes may be focused on a single advanced topic (like Cold Connections in jewelry, Nerikomi in ceramics, or Silkscreen in Printmaking), or leave it up to you, the student, to determine your own projects and goals. Demonstrations will still be a regular part of class, but time between demos for students to work will be increased, as the steps at an intermediate or advanced level require more time to complete.
Independent Studio vs. Open Studio
Independent studio classes are for intermediate and advanced students only who have unique and individual projects they want to pursue, but may still need expert guidance from an instructor. These classes may have demonstrations each week, but do not have guided projects. Open Studio is a free session available in select studios for enrolled students to get extra practice in or to use the tools and materials in the studio to finish projects.
The Mesa Arts Center visual art studio departments, each semester, may offer Open Studio to currently enrolled students. Students not currently enrolled in classes are not permitted to use open studio time for free or for payment at this time. We apologize for the inconvenience.
Open Studio times are subject to change with every new class semester and are monitored by studio leads, studio instructors, artists in residence or a combination of all three. This is a time for students to work independently on projects and not to receive individual instruction. Each student in visual art departments that are offering open studio are entitled to one open studio session per week per class.
For each class registered students receive one 3-hour open studio time per week. Additional open studio time can be purchased if a student would like to attend an extra open studio time that week. Additional open studio times must be used during designated open studio times:
Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday from 1-4PM and Thursday from 6-9PM
Additional open studio times available to currently registered students only. Please present receipt to Open Studio supervisor.
Tuesdays, Fusing/Stained Glass/Mosaics, 9:00am - 12:00pm
Thursdays, Flameworking Open Studio, 1:30-5:30pm
Saturdays, Flameworking Open Studio, 1:30-4:30pm
Wednesdays, 1-4pm (silkscreen not permitted)
Mondays, 6-9:00pm (casting and enameling not permitted)
Tuesdays, 1 -4:00 pm (casting and enameling not permitted) - Limited to 8/29/2023 - 10/3/2023
Metal Sculpture, and Glassblowing are not available for Open Studio. We recommend registering for the Glass Blowing Gaffer's Lab or Intermediate/Advanced Welding or Blacksmithing Independent Studio for students in these departments who wish to pursue their own projects.
The Mesa Art Center is committed to providing universal access to all of our events and classes. Please contact the Studios Manager at Artstudioclass@mesaartscenter.com or call (480) 644-6621 to request a disability accommodation. Advance notice is necessary to arrange for some accessibility needs.
The following classes have requirements of all participants:
- Students must have the ability to lift 20 lbs.
- Eyesight capable on a felt-pen-sized area for prolonged periods.
- Ability to stand for welding, hammering, and using a plasma cutter safely.
Please note: the welding and metal shop can trigger photosensitivity and auditory sensitivity. Additionally, the space is compact and participants must be able to step over or navigate over thick and multiple cords.
- Fine motor skills are used consistently in this class, including using pliers and hammers. Many jewelry components can be small, so students are encouraged to bring magnifying loupes, glasses, or use the magnifying optic accessories available in the studio.
- Mesa Arts Center studios are now using Enchroma Color Blind glasses and have set available for class use for adults, teens, and youth! Contact us to learn how to utilize these while in our studios! Contact ArtStudioClass@mesaartscenter.com or call (480) 644-6621 to reserve a pair for yourself, child, or teen, while in class at Mesa Arts Center!
When students register online, over the phone, or in-person they are agreeing to the following waiver & release:
As a participant, or parent or guardian of a participant, permission is granted to participate in the Mesa Arts Center studio programs. Participants understand and agree that they may be photographed and/or videotaped for the promotion of City of Mesa archives and for use in publicity materials. I understand that there are risks of physical injury to the participant(s). Considering all possible risks, on behalf of the participant(s) and myself, I voluntarily waive, release, discharge, and hold harmless the City of Mesa, its employees, supervisors, appointed officials, agents representatives and volunteers from all claims for all injuries to participant(s), no matter how severe. Furthermore, I give consent for emergency medical treatment to the participant(s), no matter how severe. This waiver does not extend to any such claim or liability that is caused solely and exclusively by the gross negligence of the City of Mesa or its employees, supervisors, appointed officials, agents, representatives, and volunteers.
Please Note: We require that parents or guardians drop off students under the age of 18 at the classroom door and pick their child up at the door promptly at the conclusion of class. If you are late picking up your child, we have instituted a fee structure: 5-14 minutes late: $5 | 15-24 minutes late: $10 | 25-30 minutes late: $20. Late fee must be paid at the time of pick up. The child will not be allowed to return to class until the fee is paid.
The City of Mesa reserves the right to dismiss a student from the program for inappropriate conduct if necessary. This includes unsafe use of equipment, materials or supplies. Dismissal/permanent removal is at the discretion of faculty.
Mesa Arts Center Art Studios are continuously growing and changing, and we are open to new classes, camps, and workshops for our students! Teaching artists seeking to submit class proposals to the art studios department can apply online at Teaching Artist Application (mesaaz.gov). All applicants are required to submit a resume, and 3 professional references. Incomplete applications will not be accepted. Please note that we may be hiring for every department or area. If we are not seeking teaching artists for your proposed classes, you will still receive a response via email within 3 business days and we will keep your application on file for the future.
Teaching artists are hired either as temporary workers or contractors. There may be positions for the Art Studios that are hired through the City of Mesa’s website here https://www.governmentjobs.com/careers/mesaaz.
Questions about City of Mesa positions should be directed to the Human Resources department at (480) 644-2365. Questions about temp or contract positions within the art studios department can be directed to ArtStudioClass@mesaartscenter.com or (480) 644-6621.