A light filled studio cultivating a community of artists in the heart of Chevy Chase
Artsy Beast Owner and Operator Art is one of my earliest memories. At just 2 years old I recall creating sculptures with yarn at my mom's feet while she was sitting on a sofa, chatting with grandma over coffee. Great times, family, art, coffee. Well, as life would have it, such natural passion for creativity did not come forward for me until many decades later. My two degrees from UNC Chapel Hill in International Politics and Psychology, helped me establish a successful career in: Finance! Go figure, I can hear my parents' eyes rolling as I write this. I spent fifteen years in the financial sector. Built a beautiful family and home life. Supported my husband with his endeavors in restaurant business. All the while I was painting when I could. Taking refuge in creativity and bringing balance to hardships and challenges via art. Long before I knew what Art Therapy was, I had been leaning into art as my remedy. I paint mostly in oil but love watercolor and charcoal as well. Covid-19 disruption, which set off big changes and challenges for many of us, thrust me into a crossroad. It was here that I decided to take a huge leap of faith, leave my established career in finance and truly lean into my natural self and step onto the stage in the art world. Artsy Beast was conceptualized in summer of 2021, and created in 2022. As Pablo Picasso so eloquently said, “Art washes away from the soul the dust of everyday life.” It is my wish and goal to make this studio a place where our community comes together to enjoy the beauty and color in life, and rise above the challenges of today’s unbalanced work and life environment. I hope it is a welcoming and warm place for all, and I look forward to seeing you there.
Jill Ross Meltzer
Ceramics Instructor Jill is nothing short of passionate about clay. She has been a professional clay artist for over 20 years and has taught beginning to advanced wheel throwing and hand-building for over twelve years. Before moving to DC, she was an Associate at The Clay Studio in Philadelphia and a professional member of the Potters Guild in Wallingford, PA. Jill graduated with a degree in Ceramics from a cooperative program at The George Washington University and Corcoran School of Art and, over the years, has attended many clay workshops around the country. In her previous life, Jill was a practicing attorney in DC. Jill’s primary interest is in making functional one-of-a-kind serving pieces with a bent towards the decorative. She finds it an inspiring challenge to harmonize the demands of utility with those of imparting a measure of magic to everyday things.
Ceramics Instructor Amy is an Art History graduate student at American University and a ceramics instructor in DC. She grew up in the Chicago suburbs where she learned ceramics from her father and her local studio, making her a second generation ceramics artist. She graduated from Truman State University in 2020 with a minor in Ceramics. Amy specializes in wheel throwing and functional stoneware. She welcomes all beginners and everyone of all abilities and backgrounds to try ceramics.
Ceramics Instructor Tucker Mandigo was born in 1999 in Washington D.C into a family that likes to make things and lived a childhood of creativity and experimentation. The yearly cardboard boat race held by my moms' side of the family is a classic and a great example of this, in which we all try to build boats out of duct tape and old cardboard found in people's recycling and at dumps, and race them across a channel and back to see whose boat can make it the furthest:) He began working with clay on the wheel in 2012 at Glen Echo Park in Bethesda, MD. He continued classes there through high school and attended Snow Farm Craft School during the summers where he expanded his knowledge of other 3-dimensional art forms like glass and metal. He graduated from Alfred University Cum Laude with a BFA in 2022. While he works in many mediums his passions have remained with clay for a while now and seem likely to continue to do so. He is currently living in Bethesda, working from his home studio, and now starting to teach part-time:) He is available for commission by request with his past works visible on his Instagram @tuckermandigocraft.