What better place to find cutting-edge works by up-and-coming artists than at the schools that they attend?
ShopSCAD Atlanta; Lacoste, France; Savannah When the Savannah College of Art and Design opened its store in 2003, no one expected it to be so successful that the school would introduce satellite shops at its campuses in Atlanta and Lacoste, France. It certainly keeps director Amy Zurcher busy. "I meet with artists five days a week," she says, "so we always have new things in stock." Some of her best sellers are made by alumni, including Gogo Borgerding's colorful cuff bracelets ($155) and the functional-yet-fun carpet bags that Claire Sanchez sews from vintage fabrics ($65). 340 Bull St., Savannah, 912/525-5180, shopscadonline.com.
GSA Shop Glasgow, Scotland Art nouveau master Charles Rennie Mackintosh, the Glasgow School of Art's most famous alum, would have been proud of the new shop housed in his 1896 building. The space looks like an intimate loft, with the same clean lines that were a benchmark of Mackintosh's work. "It really allows the products we sell to speak for themselves," says assistant manager Annie Murphy. Among her favorites: geometric necklaces crafted from leather and acrylic beads by textile-design graduate Caitlin Urquhart ($105) and fanciful cards embroidered with bright letters and hearts by alumni Betty Fraser Myerscough ($10). 11 Dalhousie St., Glasgow, 011-44/141-353-4526, gsa.ac.uk.
RISD/works Providence With graduates like glass artist Dale Chihuly and former faculty such as Cuisinart creator Marc Harrison, the Rhode Island School of Design has a reputation for innovation. And now, it's got an avant-garde store that does it equal justice: Pritzker Prize–winning architect José Rafael Moneo designed the new Chace Center building using an eclectic mix of acid-etched glass, aluminum, and red brick. "The ultramodern space is a perfect venue for our funky products," says shop director Matthew Johnson. The wares include toys and tees by Family Guy cartoonist Seth MacFarlane (from $32), a RISD grad, and fun kitchen gadgets such as a chopper that dices onions into tiny squares, by former student Sascha Kaposi ($18). 20 N. Main St., Providence, 401/277-4949, risdworks.com.