Stepping into the large atrium at Grant Street Studios with its natural light, metal doors, exposed brick and giant vintage motel sign – it’s easy to feel a tinge of creativity, excitement and wonder.
“It’s got that cool factor,” said George Harris, facilities supervisor for the ASU School of Art in the Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts.
Harris watched this 100-year-old renovated factory transform into a state-of-the-art studio and gallery space for ASU graduate art students over the past year.
“When we needed to relocate, the burgeoning art community and increasing presence of ASU Downtown made this a really desirable location,” Harris said.
In addition to housing the Master of Fine Arts (MFA) student-run Step Gallery and a number of studio residency spaces, Grant Street Studios in the Downtown Phoenix Warehouse District is also becoming an arts and culture venue – hosting the September RadaiatePHX event on Tuesday.
Organized by the Downtown Phoenix Journal and Downtown Phoenix Inc., RadiatePHX celebrates the beginning of the fall arts and theater season with a free networking event and lecture series, while showcasing Downtown’s most innovative art space – Grant Street Studios.
Adriene Jenik, Grant Street Studios’ visionary and director of the ASU School of Art, is currently on sabbatical but wrote in an emailed statement that she dreamed of one day bringing the Step Gallery and MFA students under one roof, enriching their surrounding community and embracing public forums like RadiatePHX.
“We are buoyed by the excitement this project-in-progress has stimulated,” Jenik wrote.
In addition to opening for special events like RadiatePHX on Tuesday, Sept. 16 from 5-7 p.m., the Step Gallery is open First and Third Fridays and 12-5 p.m. Monday through Thursday.