After 14 years as Inside Out Art Studio and Semmerling & Schaefer Mask Studios, Sonja Schaefer having retired from the mask business and Disney having diluted the value of our assumed name for the Art Studio...... we have decided to take on a new name and build a new website that consolidates all the crazy Art Endeavors of Jeff Semmerling under one colorful upside down umbrella.
Currently located in Chicago's Portage Park neighborhood @ the "Six Corners," where we serve the local artists with classes and a huge Art Party space, and from where we serve serious maskers of the whole world, as Inside Out Art Studio we did the same in Chicago's Lincoln Square for 10 years. Jeff was a founding member of Mike Stark's first hand made MASK SHOP in New Orleans in 1982 and has sold and made masks since 1980. In the following pages, the "Mad Master Mask Maker" will expose the process of his latest works and projects.
To become a part of the work you can ~ Take one of Jeff's weekend workshops in Making Leather Masks (taught Quarterly) ~ Take a weekly class in mask making ~ join our "Halloween Gathering Club" making and parading giant message bearing imagery ~ Watch our Instructional videos ~ Visit our MASK SHOP (actual or virtual) and find the perfect mask for your next "Fun in Public" outing ~ See our quarterly, family friendly, variety showcase, "Vaudeville @ Six Corners!" ~ ALL ON OUR NEW WEBSITE or just write Jeff@maskartists.com for more information.
Jeff's first job, after years of serious childhood play with marionettes and puppets, was in a professional circus. Great America's Centennial Circus (1976) turned Circus Fantastic in 1977 & 78. There he went from usher to feature clown to ringmaster, picking up juggling, unicycle and other skills along the way. Then he graduated from Northwestern University after 4 years of training in the Theatre, where he never touched a mask. Upon graduation though his interest in mask was re-inaugurated by the need for masks in actual theatrical production. "If we needed to be old, or monstrous or more than one character, masks were the obvious answer. And the audience was entranced by the masks...."