The Studio

New space for making, learning, showing off art


Simply “The studio,” the Grant County Art Guild (GCAG) has opened a new space in an old building.

“The motto is ‘create, educate, exhibit’,” said JoAnne Thomas, GCAG president. “In this space you can look from the street and see that there is something wonderful going on. I think it will draw a lot of attention and rachet up the level of our exhibits because its such a beautiful space.”

Located in a historic building at 200 W. Market St. in Silver City, The Studio is a reimagining of the space previously called the GCAG Annex, which was located behind the main GCAG gallery at the “Hestor House,” at 316 N. Bullard.

The owners of The Studio building, who live upstairs, “wanted art there,” Thomas said. So now they are underwriting the Studio and the guild will manage the space for its members and for special art collaborations.

Thomas said the building used to house a Chinese person why ran a grocery store. The Y Toy grocery store opened in 1936 and operated until the 1980s. When the building was constructed, they used bricks from the old Tyrone train station that had been demolished, she said.

“It’s a really nice space,” she said. “It is for our classes and workshops and make-and-takes and special art shows.”

The guild plans to have more classes and shows than they ever had at the Annex.

“There will be art in the windows all the time,” she said. “With the tall ceilings, all the light, white walls and everything, it will show the art a lot better.”

Marsha Banas, the Open Studio facilitator, hosts drop-in open studios twice a month, from noon-3 p.m. every second and fourth Thursday of the month. Thomas said participants should bring a creative project to work on but if they don’t have a project with them, they can use the basic art supplies on hand.

“Visitors to Silver City are welcome,” she said.

The Studio will provide a venue not only for guild member shows but also for collaborative efforts with community projects and events. For example, at the Annex during Clay Fest last year (July) they held a show for a Western New Mexico University arts graduate student, and they would like to bring in more activity, Thomas said. Maybe one of the WNMU students could use the space to teach and then do a show of the resulting artwork.

There will be a retrospective show for guild members in the fall, she said. With some overlap between GCAG members and the and textile group they could develop some collaborative events. Visit for more information about upcoming events.