In 1983, a small group of central Arizona artists and community leaders met with the goal to create a place of inspiration, where artists of all skill levels could learn from the best working artists in the country. Thanks to their vision, and the financial support of Scottsdale Artists League, Scottsdale Artists’ School was founded. Starting with just one studio, the first workshop was held that September. A decade later with student, donor and civic support, the School expanded and moved into historic Loloma elementary school (first class pictured above), tucked in the heart of the Scottsdale Arts’ District.
Scottsdale School District opened the Scottsdale Grammar School in September 1928 on the southwest corner of Second Street and Marshall Way. Local architectural firm Lescher and Mahoney designed the one-story stucco building in the Spanish Colonial Revival style. Mr. Garland White was the school’s first principal. During its first year, 594 students attended grades one through eight. During the early 1950s, when the Scottsdale School District was growing by leaps and bounds, the School District decided to name its schools with Native American names. The Scottsdale Grammar School became the Loloma Elementary School. It closed as a school at the end of the 1980-81 school year, then housed various commercial entities, including Scottsdale’s first cable television provider. In 1993 the Scottsdale Artists School moved into the building which is currently listed on Scottsdale’s Historic Register.
Over time, the School has evolved into one of America’s foremost independent art institutions, offering a robust slate of art programs for adults; and a youth academy for teens and children. The School’s curriculum is grounded in fundamental art theory and practice, but also embraces innovative genres and methods.
The success of the school is due to the quality of our instructors, all of whom are professional working artists. Many noted artists have taught or studied here. Harley Brown, Scott Burdick, Sherrie McGraw, David A. Leffel, Eugene Daub…the list of notable painters and sculptors that have walked our hallways is lengthy. Many of them are represented in galleries, museums and pages of art magazines and publications world-wide.
The School also has a dedicated faculty of talented local artists who enrich our curriculum and have made the School what it is today. Scottsdale Artists’ School is where established artists come to hone their skills, but is also a haven for the novice to study in a welcoming atmosphere. Careers have been started here and life-long friendships formed in our studios.
We are proud to serve as creative magnet for all who aspire to learn and grow artistically. Come join us for a lecture, demo, weekly class or workshop and celebrate over 35-years of artistic enrichment. We look forward to seeing you at the School!