Growing Up Fort Collins

Downtown Artery: A New Home For Van Co School of Art

By January 8, 2016 Local Spotlight

One of my favorite places in Fort Collins has moved into another one of my favorite places in town!

Van Co School of Art, which is owned and operated by classically trained artist Coleen Cosner, has moved into the Downtown Artery.

If you aren’t familiar with either one of these places, you’re kinda missing out.

VanCo School of Art

I first met Coleen when I took my (then) 5-year-old to her kid’s oil painting class. He loved it and once I learned she offered adult classes, I was also hooked.

The classes are small so she has the ability to spend one-on-one teaching time with each student. She takes students as young as 5 years-old which is appropriate because parents are expected to leave their kiddo at the studio for the hour.

Regardless of age, the first two paintings students work on are to help build skill. An apple and pear is the first painting and a vase is the second.

Depending on the student it takes about four – five classes to get through the two, but once the student is complete, the next painting is chosen by the student.

My son painted these cats. It’s so adorable because he’s allergic to cats, but loves them so much! These two live on my mantel in the living room.

Oil painting by Price Macon at VanCo School of Art

Oil painting by Price Macon at VanCo School of Art

Class schedule

Children’s Oil Painting

Monday: 4-5 pm  and 5-6 pm

Tuesday & Thursday: 5-6 pm

Teen’s Oil Painting

Tuesday & Thursday: 6-7 pm

Wednesday: 5-6 pm

Adult’s Oil Painting

Monday: 1-3 pm

Wednesday: 6-9 pm

You can check out the school’s calendar to learn more about the dates and times.

The Artery Cafe

The new school space is on the main level adjacent to the Artery Cafe.  The cafe offers coffee, gourmet toasts and pastries.

Artery_Turkey and gouda

Turkey and Gouda on cranberry toast topped with apples. So yummy. Photo: June Macon

The artery also serves wine and beer. Students 21 years and older can purchase refreshments during his or her class time and parents can relax while waiting for children.

It’s a win/win.

If you are interested in learning more, joining the teaching staff or if you are an art educator looking for a host venue for classes, you can contact Coleen at




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