The Chicago Avenue Fire Arts Center offers an array of educational programs, open to anyone with an interest. Classes are typically geared towards adult learners, with summertime classes offered for youth.

Find current class details and register for upcoming sessions by clicking on the program area links below the calendar. If there's no link, it means we're not yet offering programming in that area.

For questions about registering, paying, finding us, and more, see "The Fine Print" link at the bottom of this page.

2014 SNAG Conference Workshops
Minneapolis is hosting the 43rd annual Society of North American Goldsmiths' conference, "From Grains to Gold," in April 2014, and CAFAC is proud to be offering three workshops in conjunction with the conference.

The art of blacksmithing has been practiced for thousands of years to create objects from horseshoes to furniture to swords. Blacksmiths heat iron in a forge and use tools such as a hammer and anvil to shape it to a desired form.

The electric spark creates numerous artistic opportunities such as LED, electrograf, and electroluminescent fiber.

Enameling is the process of fusing glass powder to a substrate such as metal, ceramics, or glass using heat which results in a smooth durable and attractive coating.

Encaustic is an ancient process in which colored pigments are added to heated beeswax, which is then applied to a surface. The technique has both painterly and sculptural aspects, using special tools and brushes as the wax cools to the surface.

Glass technology and artistry dates back 5000 years and today encompasses slumping, fusing, jewelry, sculpture, and stained glass windows. Glass artisans use fire, tools and ultimately light to bring a vibrant kinetic energy to their creations.

Fire art forms of jewelry fabrication include traditional metalsmithing, casting, and piercing, as well as new techniques using metal clay. Classes also cover patinas and coloration techniques.

Kinetic Sculpture
Kinetic sculpture is sculpture that contains moving parts or depends on motion for its effect. The moving parts are often powered by wind, a motor or an observer.

Metal Casting
Metal casting is an ancient process that is still widely used today. In a foundry, metal is cast into shape by placing it in a crucible and heating it until molten, then poured into a mold where it cools and solidifies.

Neon signage is becoming a thing of the past in commercial settings but it lives on artistic applications. Neon signs are produced by bending glass tubes, coated with phosphors on the interior, which are then filed with neon or argon gas and electrified.

Fire/LED performance is a group of disciplines that involve manipulation of objects glowing with flame or light. They are often performed to music and have been a traditional part of cultures from around the world for centuries.

SPARC: Studio Pass at Reduced Cost
Open shop time for intermediate/advanced students working independently on projects.

Welding & Metal Fabrication
Welding is a fabrication process used to create a strong permanent bond between metals and is a key skill needed for sculptural and functional projects. Classes also cover torch cutting, brazing, and metal coloration techniques.

Youth Classes
Fire arts classes for 13-18 year olds (age ranges vary by class - see class descriptions for specifics).

The Fine Print
Everything you need to know about how to register and pay for classes; applying for a tuition assistance scholarship; transfers, cancellations, and refunds; and other details related to class registration.