The Da Vinci Initiative was created by Kara Lysandra Ross and Amanda Theis to provide atelier training to art teachers and students throughout the country and the world.
PRESIDENT & CO-FOUNDER
Mandy Theis (Hallenius)
Mandy Theis (Hallenius) is a certified K-12 art teacher and past Co-President of the Washington Art Education Association. She is a graduate of the four year program at the Aristides Atelier. She also studied classical drawing at the Corry Studio of Figurative Art, Mims Studios, and Ingbretson Studio. She has 10+ years of teaching experience, and leads professional development workshops for art teachers and artists all over the United States.
Frederick C. Ross
Founder and Chairman of the Art Renewal Center, Ross is the leading authority on William Bouguereau and co author of the recently published Catalogue Raisonné William Bouguereau: His Life and Works. Ross received his MA in art education from Columbia University. His speeches and essays are read by over 300,000 art professionals, educators, students and fans each year and have become required reading in countless classrooms. Ross is also a well known collector of 19th century European painting and Contemporary Realism. Art Educator/lecturer; President of Bouguereau Committee; Art Expert and Collector, Writer; Artist; Published Art Historian on the 19th Century; ARC Salon and Scholarship Judge.
CO-FOUNDER and FORMER CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER
Kara Lysandra Ross
Kara Lysandra Ross is the Chief Operating Officer for the Art Renewal Center, a non-profit educational foundation, since 2006. She was a Sotheby's intern and holds a BA in Art History from Drew University. She is a regular columnist in the arts section of The Epoch Times and is a contributing writer for Fine Art Connoisseur magazine. She is currently researching and writing the catalogue raisonné on Edmund Blair Leighton and is recognized as the world authority on that artist.
VICE PRESIDENT & CO-FOUNDER
Juliette Aristides is a Pacific Northwest painter who seeks to understand and convey the human spirit through art. She is the author of The Classical Drawing Atelier, The Classical Painting Atelier and Lessons in Classical Drawing with Watson-Guptill, NY.
Aristides is the founding instructor of the Aristides Atelier at the Gage Academy of Fine Art in Seattle, WA. She exhibits and teaches workshops both nationally and internationally.