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Gage Academy of Art

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Adult Education, Arts & Culture, Children & Youth, Education, Visual Arts, Youth Development

Mission: Guided by the belief that artists are made, not born, Gage strives to educate, enrich and engage artists and the community in the visual arts. Gage offers instruction in the principles of drawing, painting and sculpting and is dedicated to helping students of all ages and skill levels realize themselves as artists in contemporary society Gage Youth Programs offer practical art instruction in drawing, painting and 3-D design for 6 to 18 year old artists. Our curriculum encourages students to explore new materials and techniques, develop creative problem solving skills and celebrate self-expression. We are dedicated to providing professional teaching artists to present engaging, age-appropriate classes that empower young artists to "be seen and heard."

Results: In spite of the difficult economy, Gage has shown strong enrollment patterns this year with an increase of 12% in its adult classes.

Target demographics: Annually, Gage serves over 10,000 members of our community through educational and community programs in the visual arts. Our Youth Prorgrams engage young artists ages 6 to 18 and our open enrollment Adult Programs draw artists of all skill levels from beginners to professionals. Gage year-long ateliers provide professional training in drawing and painting to a core group of 40 artists who work in on-site studios under the mentorship of master teaching artists.

Direct beneficiaries per year: Each year, Gage awards $160,000 in tuition relief to over 300 deserving students.

Geographic areas served: Gage serves artists across the NW region

Programs: ADULT PROGRAMS - classes, workshops, ateliers, evening lecture series, national & international art tours. YOUTH PROGRAMS - after-school & Saturday classes, family programs & art tours, summer workshops, pre-college Teen Intensive, plus free, drop-in Teen Art Studios, running 50 Friday nights a year. COMMUNITY PROGRAMS - exhibitions, evening lectures, art competitions, public art events.

Community Stories

5 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters


Client Served

Rating: 1

I just received a mass email from the Instructor of the Classical Atelier at Gage to promote the activities of her own personal business. I never signed up for anything from this individual and this means that Gage has clearly released my personal contact information to a third party, knowing it would be used for promotions/spam.
Now this person must have an email list of many tens of thousands of names to engage in promotions which profit her personally.
This is truly appalling and is, I feel, a shameful breach of trust.
This activity, promoting the profit oriented business of a friend, is NOT what being a nonprofit is supposed to be doing.
Shame on Gage.

Client Served

Rating: 5

I studied at Gage for four years working through the Drawing Certificate Program. I found the classes and teaching of the highest level. I gained a strong foundation in the principles of art, in drawing and sculpture. The school also offers excellent workshops taught by emerging and established artists from around the country. One can tailor his own program to fit his needs from refresher classes to preparatory program for a profession in art. The open studio figure sessions, free talks and lectures are an added benefit along with the friendships one can establish with other artists. Gary Faigin and Pamela Belyea have done a wonderful job in guiding this school into becoming an important part of realist art movement in the Northwest. I highly recommend Gage to anyone wanting to study art.


Client Served

Rating: 5

Gage Academy of Art deserves community recognition and support because of its large and unique contribution to the arts in Seattle and the positive difference it makes in the lives of its students, as it has for 20 years. Gage takes all comers from age 6 to age 86, those who haven’t stopped drawing since pre-school and those who are only starting, prepared to nurture them to their full potential. Gage is not just Seattle’s premier school of realist art; it is also one of our nation’s best art schools. Gage is founded on the belief that artistic skill is learned, not innate, and they prove it daily with the quality of their instruction and the achievements of their students. Gage has greatly helped in the transformation of my artistic capability. In grammar school, I consistently got D’s in Art class. That experience left me with a belief I lacked any artistic capacity and I also lost any interest in art. Seventeen years ago I astonished both myself and others by deciding that I wanted to learn how to paint landscapes. I have been studying at Gage periodically ever since, because it offers a wide range of programs for different interests and skill levels all taught with exceptional competence. I have taken a dozen workshops out of state and I can testify that the learning experience at Gage is as good, or better, as that offered elsewhere. Gage has transformed many lives. In one of my first classes at Gage, I met a student who is now a professional artist in his own right as well as an instructor at Gage. In addition, Gage takes youths from the street, and people from all walks of life and stages in life, and makes them not just better artists but also more alive and active people. That is special. The free Friday night class for teens gives them a window on a new life. I watched it for a number of weeks, and found that it is led by extremely dedicated and skilled teachers! ThatFriday night class is one example among many of how Gage changes lives and creates a better Seattle. As well as spawning a rich artistic legacy in Seattle and beyond, Gage is building an artistic community. It starts with students who know, or soon learn, that Art is about development of the mind and the personal vision and discipline to be successful not just in creation of a work of art, but also to be successful in life. These artistic and life skills are taught continually at Gage and the result is that the Gage community of students, instructors and alumni exudes an ethos of eagerness to help one another succeed, to set high personal goals and to achieve them. This is the kind of institution Seattle needs to build great citizens and it is precisely the kind of institution that deserves civic note and financial assistance.


Client Served

Rating: 5

I love GAGE. They championed representational & figurative art years ago when it was not in vogue. And they did it "right" from the beginning: top-notch instructors, variety of media/classes & fun on-location workshops,not to mention incredible art tours all over the world. And the directors Pam & Gary have a passion for both art & education, I took numerous classes as a TA & work study that I could have otherwise not afforded. They want to help create great artists, not just pocket the cash like some other larger, less 'hands-on' art-schools.


Client Served

Rating: 5

My children have attended Youth Programs at Gage over the past decade, including their free drop-in Teen Art Studios. The programs are well taught, well organized and provide real educational value. In fact, the teaching artists at Gage are incredible! I have been impressed with their passion about arts education and the breadth and depth of their visual arts curriculum. Also, the summer workshops for kids combine a visual art with a movement-based class which makes perfect sense for developing both fine and gross motor skills. Kudos to Gage!