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Teaching Artists

Jim Bongartz  

James Bongartz began his passion for art during formal childhood lessons at the Carnegie Institute and continuing at Carnegie-Mellon University following a BSEd in art education from Edinboro State University of Pennsylvania. He has painted for over thirty years, exhibiting in galleries and juried shows throughout Pennsylvania and New Jersey. Many of his works are in private collections. Most paintings are responses and interpretation from his own photography. Mastering the use of color and brushwork as a form of processing imagery and evoking experiences are current inspirations. James is a member of Art+10, a Princeton based artist group and AOY. A portfolio of Jim's paintings and further details about current and past exhibits can be seen on his website: jamesbongartz.com.

Aida Birritteri

Aida Birritteri emigrated to the US in 1968 at the age of three. Her family settled in Elizabeth, NJ where she lived for 25 to 30 years.  She dreamed of becoming an artist at a young age. She began drawing, as children often do, and developed her visual art skills throughout her life. She attended Mason Gross School of the Arts at Rutgers University and New Jersey City University graduating with a BFA in 1990. Aida and her husband Anthony moved to High Bridge, a small town located in Hunterdon County, NJ in 1997. They have two daughters.

Aida teaches watercolor at the Artist of Yardley Art Center in Bucks County PA. She works en plein air and as a studio watercolor artist. She has been entering her watercolors into local and regional juried shows throughout the Delaware Valley in NJ and PA, for a number of years and has exhibited in gallery shows as well. She participated at the Tinicum Art Festival, Erwinna PA, receiving 3rd Place for Watercolor in 2015 and an Honorable Mention in 2017. She was accepted into the Stover Mill Gallery Annual Juried Exhibit in 2015 and 2018. Aida exhibited at the “Ellarslie Open 35,” Trenton City Museum, in 2018, and the “Tertulia,” exhibit at Ellarslie, in 2016, highlighting local and regional Latin Artists. Aida received a Merit award at the Annual Garden State Watercolor Society Juried Exhibit held at Ellarslie in 2016, and a 3rd Place award in 2017 for the “Quick Draw Plein Air Event,” held at the Gronendhal Farm by the Art & Cultural Council of Bucks County in Doylestown, PA. She was also awarded Best Watercolor in 2016 during a plein air event at the Hunterdon Art Museum in Clinton, NJ. 

Aida exhibited a complete body of work in a duo artist show during the month of June 2019 at the Stover Mill Gallery in Bucks County PA. She was part of a group invitational show in December, 2016 at the Schmitberger Fine Art Gallery, Frenchtown, NJ. Her paintings have been purchased by private collectors.

Renee Pelletier Egan

is an award winning artist and a founding member of the Artists of Yardley who recently retired from the New Jersey public school system where she taught art to Middle School and High School students for 18 years. Renee’s dedication to her students helped propel them toward success throughout the years, wherein; they won many awards in both county and state competitions.

During Renee’s early career at an ad agency in New York City, she worked as an art director for print ads and TV commercials. She was educated at the Paier School of Art in CT and the School of Visual Arts in NYC. Later on Renee went back to school and earned a degree in Art Education from The College of New Jersey.

Renee continues to show her paintings throughout Bucks County and eastern coast venues. Currently, she has several private students and teaches Teen Drawing and Painting at AOY Art Center on Thursday evenings.  www.eganpaint.com

Ann Gannon  

Anne was educated at the Traphagen School of Fashion, NYC and at the School of Visual Arts, NYC. Early on, she worked as an Illustrator for Well Being magazine in San Diego, then at Hammacher Schlemmer in NYC, where her drawings were published weekly in The New York Times and in the Wall Street Journal. She also designed licensing artwork for Merrill Lynch and other Wall Street firms. In 2003, Anne started teaching art classes while beginning a new career as a surrealist and an abstract painter. Recently she has had much success with her Encaustic work. Anne has been with the AOY since their inception in 2004, serving on the board and in various other areas of the organization. An award-winning artist, Anne’s work has been shown locally, in east coast states and abroad."

Barry Koplowitz

Barry Koplowitz, of Bucks County, Pennsylvania, studied with Lester Polokov at the Studio and Forum of Stage Design in New York City. He has taught classes at various Art Centers and privately. In his early career he worked in New York Theater doing sets for small Off-Broadway shows as well as doing murals in private homes. He participated in various Design Shows for his mural work. During this time, he also worked in fine art galleries in the Upper East Side and on Broadway. Barry moved to Pennsylvania long ago and now paints Landscapes and Figurative subjects, both in Plein Air and in his Chalfont Pennsylvania Studio. He shows his work in various juried exhibitions as well as participating in Juried Plein Air Events.

Nelly Kouzmina 

Fiber Artist & Instructor, Feltinelli LLC, Member of International Association of Feltmakers IFA,U.K, Member of Northeast Guild of Feltmakers, U.S. and Member of Surface Design Association, U.S. I am a self taught fiber artist working with natural fibers and dyes creating variety of pieces from wall art to wearable art exploring the broad possibilities of felt making. All of my work is original and one of a kind. It is my passion, hobby and love. I share my knowledge and experience with students of all age groups. I participate in various juried art shows in New York City, New Jersey, Pennsylvania. http://feltinelli.blogspot.com, email: feltinelli@gmail.com .

Elaine Morales 

Elaine's main priority as an artist is to express a deeper connection between works of art and their admirers. She believes that artists are never done learning, therefore her passion for art has been flourishing since she first picked up a pencil at a young age. Art has always been a part of who she is and to this day she continues to cultivate her skills in multiple media forms. She studied Multimedia Arts and Animation at the Art Institute in Philadelphia where she then went onto freelancing and teaching art classes to all ages. As an artist Elaine has acquired many skills both digital and traditional. Aside from digital artwork and animating, Elaine also enjoys working with all types of paints, creating ceramics, sculpting with cut paper, printmaking, airbrush art, mixed media, graphic design, drawing and illustrating, character design, and anything else she can get her hands on. Her love for visual arts has her constantly thriving to learn more as she shares with others the unconstrained possibilities of the art world. Feel free to visit her website for samples of her work: www.elainemorales2d.weebly.com

Jo-Ann Osnoe 

holds a BFA from Parson’s School of Design and is celebrated for her watercolor work. She moves effortlessly from still life to landscape to florals and local scenes. Expanding recently into oil painting, she has gained recognition in this medium as well, winning First Place in a recent Bucks County art competition. She finds inspiration in nature and her Bucks County surroundings, where she has made her home for the past fifteen years. A dedicated and focused artist, she has exhibited in over one hundred local group shows, including over a dozen juried regional and national exhibitions. www.jo-annosnoe.com

Joanne Donnelly Seglem 

Joanne is an award winning artist and photographer. For many years she has worked as Teacher, Art Director, Book Designer and Gallery Manager. She currently has the good fortune to create full time. Joanne's painting and photography has garnered recognition and awards throughout the United States. Her work can be found in private and public collections in Europe, Australia and the United States. Joanne continues to explore new artistic territory with continuing education and exploration. She believes that everyone can unleash their artistic potential and free their imaginations by letting go of self-imposed rules and restrictions. Her collage class aims to do just that with a variety of tips and techniques offered in a fun and carefree manner. www.joannedonnelly.com

Donna Sheehan

Donna Sheehan is a graduate of the Fashion Institute of Technology, with two degrees focused in general illustration and graphic design. In her early career as a graphic designer, Donna designed marketing materials for malls around the country while working at Pembrook Management in Long Island, New York. With a move to Yardley, Pa in 1993 and taking time to raise her children, Donna transitioned to a fine arts career with commissions to paint hanging murals for the St. John the Evangelist Community Center and St. John Evangelist rectory. Versed in a wide variety of mediums, she enjoys oil painting using direct and indirect methods, choosing subjects from life and her own photography. Donna shows her work in juried and local shows and continuously grows and explores as an artist, drawing inspiration from teaching students from her in home Yardley studio and at AOY in beautiful Bucks County Pennsylvania.

Nancy Shill

Collage and Collage/Mixed Media to Oils, I find new ways to create dynamic relationships between colors and shapes. I interweave discards with paint, new paper, ink, charcoal etc searching for something new and compelling. I create my unique vision of motion, form and space. Web site www.shillart.com .

Jill Tressel

Jill studied studio art while an undergraduate student at Muhlenberg College, PA. She focused continuing studies on her preferred medium: watercolor. A thirty year resident of Bucks County, PA, she earned an MAT from the College of New Jersey. After a teaching career in public schools, Jill became a member of Artists of Yardley by way of a thoughtful retirement gift from her children. She studied with AOY’s teaching artists and mentors, Anne Gannon and Jo Ann Osnoe. She recently participated in PAFA’s Master Class with watercolorist, Eileen Goodman. Jill is an Open Studio artist at AOY. She enjoys painting with a talented group of members and shows her work locally. Jill teaches “Exploring Watercolor Painting” for beginning students. She hopes to encourage others to explore this lovely transparent medium.

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AOY Art Center

949 Mirror Lake Road
Yardley, PA  19067
215.493.1205

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