Since artist cooperatives don't charge commission on sales, they're good spots for finding affordable art, because you're starting with what amounts to a 50 percent break over commercial galleries. But times have gotten tough for this city's alternative spaces, so the cash-conscious collector has fewer options. That makes Spark and CORE, two co-ops that have long shared an address, real standouts. The artists at Spark, the city's oldest arts co-op, are more established than those at CORE, so the prices are usually a little higher. But you can still find bargains at both spots, with small- to mid-sized paintings, prints and photos sometimes for sale for as little as $100 each — and rarely is anything over a couple thousand dollars. As you contemplate the price tag, remember: Not only will you be buying a bargain to hang over the sofa, but you'll be helping out Denver's beleaguered DIY culture. Now go buy another piece or two.
Readers' Choice: Affordable Arts Festival