Workshop Instructor Bios
A current PhD candidate at the University of York, England, Stephen Hartley earned his M.F.A. in Historic Preservation from Savannah College of Art and Design. He has participated in the restoration of more than thirty historic sites, winning awards from the Historic Savannah Foundation for his work. Steve has taught at SCAD and Armstrong Atlantic State University and lead the Historic Preservation and Restoration program at Savannah Technical College. He is internationally recognized for his work in the field and has served as a peer reviewer for the Association for Preservation Technology. Steve is also a member of the International College of Traditional Practitioners (ITCP), a branch of the Prince’s Trust for the Built Environment.Hartley is academically active, having presented at the International Association for the Study of Traditional Environments (IASTE) in Beirut Lebanon, International Trades Education Symposium (ITES) in Lincoln, England, as well as several conferences within the United Sates. He has also assisted in organizing major preservation conferences. In 2012 he was Workshop Chair for the Association for Preservation Technology’s International Conference in Charleston, South Carolina, where he led a post conference
workshop on stained glass restoration, as well as chairing a paper session.In 2013 Hartley won the Artisan Award from the American Institute of Architects, Savannah Chapter for his dedication to teaching and practicing historic preservation in Savannah and the low country.
His professional affiliations include:
National Trust for Historic Preservation
International Council for Monuments and Sites
Association for Preservation Technology
Preservation Trades Network
Timber Framer’s Guild of North America
Artist Blacksmith Association of North America
US Green Building Council
American Glass Guild
J. Kenneth Leap is primarily recognized for his achievements in the field of architectural stained glass. Working in a tradition that dates back to medieval Europe, Leap creates his pieces by hand-painting glass with vitreous pigments, fusing the color to the glass by firing it in a kiln, and assembling the glass into panels. His painterly work in stained glass has earned him numerous awards, including a fellowship from the New Jersey State Council on the Arts, a juror’s award of honor in the Philadelphia Museum of Art exhibition “Contemporary Philadelphia Artists,” and inclusion in the Corning New Glass Review. He is currently the stained glass Artist-in-Residence at Glencairn Museum and an adjunct professor at Bryn Athyn College.
Sasha Zhitneva is an award-winning designer and artist who has worked creatively with glass since 1995. She studied in Russia, Spain and in the United States. Her work has been exhibited in SOFA expositions in Chicago, Palm Beach and New York, and in numerous solo and group shows in United States and overseas. Primarily known for her “signature style” abstract fused panels, she has amassed a diverse body of work that ranges from stained glass and mosaic to an exquisite line of kiln-formed jewelry. Aside from her gallery artwork, she has also completed a number of architectural and lighting installations in both stained glass and kiln-formed glass.
As a master sculptor and carver with more than 20 years of experience, Jens Langlotz has worked with and mastered the major design building styles — from Romanesque, Gothic, and Renaissance to American Colonial and American Victorian. He graduated from Fachschule Fur Steintechnik in Munich. He has apprenticed under master sculptor Hans Kupe, one of Germany’s leading stone restorers, and under Al Walters, master craftsman in stone, metal, and wood. He serves as Head Stone Mason for both Bryn Athyn Cathedral and Glencairn Museum, and has also done work at many other sites, including the Philadelphia Museum of Art, Villanova University, Princeton University, Reading Terminal, and Philadelphia City Hall.
Simeon Warren is the Dean Emertus of the American College of the Building Arts in Charleston, SC. As a stone carver he learned his trade at Weymouth College, gaining an Advanced Craft Certificate in Masonry from the City and Guilds of London Institute. His first professional position was as an apprentice at Lincoln Cathedral, later becoming Deputy Yard Foreman at Wells Cathedral, where he worked on the central tower. He has also produced stone for a number of historic buildings including Buckingham Palace and The Houses of Parliament. At Glasgow School of Art he received a Fine Arts Degree in Environmental Art, which allowed him to create more contemporary conceptual work.
Simeon has served on the Board of Directors of both the Association for Preservation Technology and the Preservation Trades Network, and was instrumental in working with both organizations to advance collaboration and dialog through parallel annual conferences. That the conferences theme, “Cornerstones: New Foundations in Preservation” should spring from the inspiration of a stone carver is a testament to Simeon’s vision for a future in which the trades have a respected and valued role in the conservation of built heritage and the making of beautiful, useful and durable buildings.
Simeon has played a pivotal role in the development of the American College of the Building through its formative years as the School of the Building Arts, through the graduation of its first four year college graduates in 2009, and pursuing accreditation. He has worked tirelessly, frequently in the face of immense obstacles and difficulties, to ensure the future success and sustainability of the ACBA program, and to inspire and support its students and graduates.
Warren Holzman studied sculpture under Phoebe Adams at Kutztown University, where he received his BFA in 1994. He was awarded blacksmithing assistantships at Peters Valley Craft Center and Penland School of Crafts. He has also worked as an industrial fabricator, refining his metalworking skills and dedicating himself to his craft. In 2000, Warren opened the Iron Studio Ltd., a custom blacksmithing shop in Philadelphia known for its sophisticated craft. Warren was recently commissioned by the City of Philadelphia to build a piece of site-specific public art for Hawthorne Park in South Philadelphia. He has served as an adjunct sculpture and large metals teacher at Moore College of Art and Design. He also teaches forging at Bryn Athyn College and University of Pennsylvania.
John J. Rais has been engaged in the field of metalsmithing and object design for the past two decades. After earning a BFA in Sculpture from Massachusetts College of Art and an MFA in Metalsmithing from Cranbrook Academy of Art, he served as the Department Head of Blacksmithing at Peters Valley Craft Education Center. John has maintained his own studio business since 1998, where he creates one-of-a-kind furniture, sculpture, and architectural metal work. He has designed and created works for a Frank Lloyd Wright home and a Louis Kahn home, among many others. His work has been featured in a number of magazines, including Departures, Ritz-Carlton,Metalsmith, American Craft, and Artscope. He has been featured in several books and has taught at a number of universities and schools, including Penland School of Crafts, SUNY Purchase, and SUNY New Paltz.
Mike Rossi studied blacksmithing at Northern Michigan University and Cranbrook Academy of Art. Additionally, he apprenticed to several metalworkers around the country. He has exhibited nationally and abroad, at the Houston Center for Contemporary Craft, the National Ornamental Metals Museum in Memphis, and the Target Gallery in Alexandria, Virginia, in addition to several private galleries. He has taught at Penland School of Craft, Kalamazoo College, and Ox-Bow School of Art, and has been a resident artist at Haystack Mountain School of Craft and at Penland. Mike is the principal of Rossi Metal Design, an architectural metalwork and sculpture studio based in West Philadelphia.
Jeb Wood is the founder and owner of Independent Casting, Inc., a Fine Art foundry and fabrication shop in Philadelphia specializing in one-off castings from small scale to monument. Independent Casting was born out of Jeb S. Wood’s desire to offer artists a foundry that elevates the craft itself to a fine art. Jeb began his career at Johnson Atelier, during that time he met many of the metalsmiths that would later join him as he created his own vision of what foundry can be. Today Independent Casting’s work is shown around the world and boasts a client list containing some of the art world’s most elite – many of whom have been with him since the beginning.
Carol Stirton-Broad holds a BFA from Temple University’s Tyler School of Art, and has also studied at Glasgow School of Art (Scotland), Orsoni (Venice, Italy), Scuola Arte del Mosaico (Ravenna, Italy), and the Chicago Mosaic School. Carol has taught ceramic and mosaic workshops at the Philadelphia Museum of Art, the Institute of Contemporary Art (Philadelphia), Fleisher Art Memorial (Philadelphia), Main Line Art Center (Haverford, PA), and Abington Art Center (Jenkintown, PA). Carol’s work has been exhibited at many locations, including The Magic Garden, The Clay Studio, Ariana Gallery (Royal Oak, MI), the Bath House Cultural Center (Dallas), Abington Art Center, Fleisher Art Memorial, Main Line Art Center, Philadelphia Art Alliance, and Tyler School of Art.
Yakov Hanansen is a well known mosaic artist, designer and co-founder of Unicorn Art Studio in New York City. Yakov has been creating large-scale mosaic murals since 1975. Yakov has a BFA from Kaunas Applied Arts College, Lithuania and a Masters of Fine Art degree from the famous design school – Moscow State Textile University in Moscow, Russia. Yakov has been teaching art and design studio classes since 1970. The studio has been working on broad range of commissions for public, commercial and residential spaces for over 30 years. Their award-winning mosaic art is exhibited both nationally and internationally and is represented in private, public and corporate collections.