Marissa Hernandez, Executive Director
Marissa Hernandez grew up in Northern California and started her life in a dance studio. She studied ballet, tap, jazz, hip hop and belly dance until she found modern dance in college. From there she spent 15 years as a company dancer, associate choreographer and studio manager for The Movement Alliance Dance Theatre Company. She eventually found her way to creating the Bow-tie Beauties Burlesque Troupe and joined the Beyond Fire Tribe, a fire performance collective, where she met her husband, singer-songwriter-artist-farmer; Jeffrey Wanzer Dupra. Marissa has worked for several non-profit organizations including The Center for the Arts, Grass Valley Downtown Association and the Miners Foundry in Nevada City. In 2014 she became ITT Pilates certified and managed the Center of Movement Functional Fitness studio until 2019. Marissa has produced many types of events including but not limited to street fairs, concerts, dance performances and theater productions. In the summer of 2019 Marissa, her husband and two kids relocated to northern new york and now reside in the Adirondack Park. She owns, with her husband, Little Big Farm in Sugar Bush, teaches dance at The Dance Sanctuary in Saranac Lake and is the newly appointed Executive Director of BluSeed Studios a community arts center also in Saranac Lake. She has been at BluSeed since May of 2020.
Jazen Reuss, Ceramics Studio Ambassador
Jess Ackerson, Print Studio Ambassador
Adirondack mountains of New York. A lover of nature and the exciting possibilities of color and texture that can be found within it, she finds inspiration for her work in natural beauty of the wilderness. Her works range from large abstracted figural sculptures to small intimate works, including finely detailed jewelry. Most recently, her work has explored the use of mason stains to create colored clay bodies that are marbled together to create beautiful color-scapes. Jazen is set to graduate with her BFA in ceramic art through SUNY Potsdam in May 2022, and is the owner of Dirt Nap Ceramics.
Jess Ackerson has a BFA in Printmaking from Maine College of Art and is a local printmaker, art educator and fiber artist. As one of the owners of ADK ArtRise, art education, especially introducing students to the wide world of printmaking, is a passion. Seeing individuals connect to a medium and light up continues to be one of the guiding forces in her own life and art practice. She is currently the Print Studio Ambassador at Bluseed Studios where she continues to steep herself in various aspects of printmaking. Her own creative practices use relief and mono printing to explore ideas of place, mysticism and the cycles of life and death.
Martha Jackson, Bejeweled Textile/Fabric Studio
Designer and Founder of Restored By Design, Martha Jackson has always loved clothes and accessories. Her Mom taught her how to sew when she was 11 and off she went making most of her clothes. So began her library of fabric, collected treasures..., each piece found inspired her to create something unique. Studying textiles and gold smithing in college, gave her an arsenal of techniques to explore her passion for creating. She went on to spend most of her professional career designing in the fashion jewelry industry, once again exploring different materials.
Brittany Sternberg, Web Designer
Brittany, aka Grasshopper, is a local art teacher and web-designer. She attended SUNY Brockport where she majored in B&W Photography and also delighted in Arts for Children and Gallery Management. After she graduated, Brittany spent a decade working at a hardware store and making very little art. Then one day she was invited to put together a collection of photos to show at BluSeed Studios, and her passion was reawakened! Brittany left her day job to return to the arts as one of the owners at ADK ArtRise. She enjoys taking on way too many things, including website design and the occasional commissioned art work project.
Winosha Steele, Social Media Manager
My introduction to art came about on a small island in the Caribbean. Growing up, primarily, all I knew was art. Aside from the stereotypical mindset of children wanting to be a doctor, or a lawyer, or any of those mainstream jobs, I knew at a very young age that art was something that would be with me for the rest of my life. At the age of about six, I understood that art was something anyone was capable of doing. What I hadn't yet understood was the passion, determination, and vitality it took to hone that skill. I first began to take my art career to the next level in the tenth grade. Those earlier years were filled with bliss and creative adrenaline. I was a powerhouse, constantly producing and executing whatever came to mind. My journey consistently evolved as I began to take art more and more seriously. As I progressed, I absorbed everything that encompassed art. I had opportunities that provided me with the privilege of being mentored by some of the most amazing professors and instructors. They assisted greatly in molding me to become the woman and the artist I am today. I overcame trials and frustration through long hours of crafting a forever-determining work ethic.