Linda Mensch – Feb AOTM Interview – Part One!

More about Linda ~ handcrafted jewelry!

linda sepia

SAC ~ How did you come to make jewelry? Where did this creative adventure begin?

Linda ~ “Dance was always my “thing”. My sister was the ‘work with your hands’ person. I believed I was not able to create with my hands. When I was teaching dance at The Gowanus Arts Exchange in Brooklyn, Elise Long (the director) told us we were going to have a Christmas craft fair and said, “everyone go home and make something to sell”. I thought, “Oh boy, I don’t know how to make anything but dances.”

Linda Mensch Jewelry

“I was in a fun, funky toy store and saw this beautiful jar of marbles and found myself wishing I could wear them as jewelry. Mentioning that, the owner of the store asked if I would like her to call a findings company and ask them what we would need to make them into jewelry. She did, and ordered the supplies for me. I sold out at the craft fair and also got lots of orders for Christmas. From that small craft fair and subsequent orders, grew Linda Mensch’s Lost Marbles.”

“My jewelry was in Country Living Magazine, Victoria, and the movie Object of My Affection. My friend’s store, Plain Jane, was selling my jewelry at their Manhattan store – I was selling it wholesale. Realizing my hands could do creative work and seeing how much fun it was to make things, I have made jewelry ever since. I have taken classes, I love experimenting with different elements, objects, etc. My jewelry can now be found in Warwick at Newhards The Home Source, Conscious Fork, Whole Foods in N.J., Maria Louisa Boutique in Nyack and directly through me.”

game bracelet

SAC ~ Do you have a favorite jewelry designer or crafts-person?

Linda ~ “I don’t really have a favorite jewelry designer. I have very eclectic taste in the jewelry that I buy. I love re-purposed jewelry as well as fine jewelry.”

SAC ~ What, or who, influenced your work?

Linda ~ “The work I am doing now started when I was living in the UK. I bought a piece of jewelry at a flea market. It was an image behind glass. I always wanted to learn how to do this. Later, in Warwick, I noticed someone was selling this type of jewelry at Apple Fest and I asked if she would teach me. She told me to take a stained glass class and I would understand how to make it. I took a class the very next week.”

Bakelite poker chip earrings

SAC ~ What is the most difficult part of the process?

Linda ~ “Sometimes soldering gets to me, I am not fond of the smell.”

SAC ~ What about the process is the most fun?

Linda ~ “I love coming up with new images or ways to change what I have already started doing. I have also been learning how to sew. I have been making some fabric jewelry and working on handbags, of which I am a collector.”

SAC ~ What inspires you?

Linda ~ “I am always looking at what people are wearing. Pinterest has become a new source of inspiration, along with books, magazines, and junk drawers.”

Iconic Image Pendants on display
Iconic Image Pendants on display

For jewelry info or acquisition, contact Linda via her Facebook page:

You can see more photos of Linda’s handcrafted jewelry from her Facebook page here:

COMING UP… Our interview with Linda Mensch, part two: It’s all about DANCE!


February Artist of the Month: Linda Mensch

The Many Creative Faces of Linda Mensch

Linda Mensch Collage

 There are many ways Linda Mensch is known here in Warwick, N.Y. She is the owner, artistic director and teacher at The Moving Co. Dance Center. She creates handmade jewelry. She and her husband, Glen, foster dogs on their way to good homes. She is a neighbor and a friend. When I think of her, two words come to mind; creative movement.

Dancer, choreographer ~ Linda’s dances can often be seen out-of-doors – walking by Railroad Green…

Water Dance, Railroad Green, Warwick, NY
Water Dance, Railroad Green, Warwick, NY

or sharing a picnic at Scheuermann Farms during the Warwick Arts Festival. The Moving Co. recitals held at Seligmann Center make creative use of the grounds…

two from Seligmann recital

along with other spaces in and around Warwick. Main Street landmarks like the old Gilvan’s building (when it was Port Of Call) ~ or the Carriage Path steps ~ or in front of Village Hall ~ or at Winslow Therapeutic Riding Center ~ all places you could find Linda’s choreography expressed through her dances.

Jewelry maker ~ Linda’s handmade pieces are available now at Newhards on Main Street and at Consciousfork on Railroad Avenue. Sharp Arts Community will feature more about her jewelry interview in a later post…stay tuned…

Linda Mensch Jewelry

Love and fostering ~ more to come about this labor of love for Linda and Glen…

Linda Glen Puppy Love

 Sharp Arts Community  has so much more to tell you about Linda Mensch – stay tuned for more! Up next: an interview with Linda about dance!

January Artist of the Month: Melinda Marks Burgard

Why sing alone…when you can sing with Melinda!

The story continues…..

melinda red t

Focus and Credentials

Melinda’s current focus is working with people who have Alzheimer’s Disease or other types of Dementia. She is a CMT – Certified Music Therapist having completed her music therapy degree along with 1200 internship hours. She received her Masters Degree from NYU and her credentials also include New York State LCAT – Licensed Creative Arts Therapist – granted to creative arts therapists who complete an approved educational program and 1500 hours of supervised post-graduate clinical experience. Melinda is licensed to practice psychotherapy and is one of the state’s licensed mental health professionals.

Melinda’s music/creative arts therapy technique uses music and musical activities as a vehicle to achieve non-musical goals with her clients such as decreasing stress, increasing speech, socialization, and emotional expression along with increasing cognitive well-being. Melinda’s Music is affiliated with the Alzheimer’s Association and hosts annual fund-raisers supporting the continuation of the association’s free programs.

Watch the video of a recent fundraiser here:

Where is Melinda?

The Alzheimer’s Association Music Social Program is a free program designed for family caregivers and their loved ones suffering from Alzheimer’s and other forms of Dementia. This program is offered the 2nd Friday of every month at Glen Arden in Goshen, NY. and on the 3rd Friday of each month at New Harvest Christian Church in Vail’s Gate, NY.  Call for more info: 1-800-272-3900. Register early!

Melinda can also be found at the Greenwood Lake Public Library – Music with Melinda is a fun and engaging ‘caregiver and me’ program for children ages infant to preschool,  happening the first Friday of each month. Schedules for the next three months as follows: Feb. 6, Mar. 6 and April 3 at 10:30 am. Call for more info: 1-845-477-8377. Register early!

melinda team

melinda red kids

Melinda also sees private clients – in their homes and nursing facilities – for either 30 minute, 45 minute or 1 hour sessions. Contact her for appointments.

Here is the link to an informative article that can also be found on Melinda’s Music Facebook page, about the benefits of music/dance for Alzheimer’s patients:

For more information about Melinda’s Music programs, contact Melinda directly: 1-845-477-0451. Visit her website: or you can contact her through her Facebook page here:

January Artist of the Month: Melinda Marks Burgard

Why sing alone when you can sing along with Melinda!

melinda w guitar promo pic

Melinda Marks Burgard makes people smile, people of all ages and persuasions, life styles and life situations. She is one of our Warwick creatives and has shared her talents for many years – from age 2 winning a poolside contest (she wanted the prize!) to ‘Melinda’s Music’ (a music/creative arts therapy program) based in Warwick, NY.

melinda child piano

Melinda and kids

Melinda’s Music website offers information about her work:

melindas music

Follow Melinda’s Music on her Facebook page:


Melinda’s Story

Classically trained in violin, attending elementary to high school in a Long Island district that supported the arts, Melinda’s youth was rich in musical experiences. Her summer at a sleep-away camp at age 10 found her encouraged by counselors to take guitar lessons. She received her first guitar as a Bat Mitzvah gift, which became her main instrument.

melinda's first guitar

In college, Melinda majored in music taking oboe lessons with a local engineer who played in community symphonies. Lesson time was spent learning the oboe and talking out life’s challenges and issues, giving Melinda her first taste of ‘music therapy’. Melinda also minored in dance as she loved movement, which would also figure in to her future musical endeavor.

melinda three instruments b&w

melinda and guitar

Next week’s post: More about Melinda and her musical path… stay tuned!

More from Hannah Louise!


Hannah is not just a talented artist (view recent blog entries for drawings, bags and cards) she is also a brilliant musician. Her father is James Emery, a jazz composer and musician. He wrote “Emery Double Concerto” as a duet for Hannah and himself. Read about this here:

Watch this beautiful performance here:

December Artist of the Month ~ Hannah Emery

Greetings from Sharp Arts!

December is almost upon us! The quick slide into the winter holidays happens fast with this late Thanksgiving. Sharp Arts will feature a local creative person each month starting this December! Each week will feature an aspect of their creativity. Introducing Hannah Louise Emery!

Hannah and more 011

In my recent email interview with Hannah she filled me in on how these drawings came about ~ I asked her what motivated her to draw:

“I began drawing these particular designs over the summer, after graduating from college. I found the absence of structure and “work” in the traditional sense to be incredibly liberating and fulfilling. I engaged in creative expression daily during college through playing music, yet I wasn’t able to find the time to draw while in school. Thus, the infinitely accessible and multidimensional artistic freedom that I began experiencing after graduation is somewhat different. I began drawing because I simply felt like doing it, and it made me really happy. It’s a wonderful feeling!”

What inspired you to make these drawings, these designs:

“I love African art as well as animals, so I suppose I subconsciously combined the two elements in these drawings. Furthermore, the Ebola outbreak in West Africa was a very important factor which inspired the development of these designs. I decided to make the drawings public as products for sale in an effort to raise money for UNICEF, as this organization is extremely active and effective in response to the epidemic. Of course I was still enjoying myself immensely, but now my art obtained an important purpose.”

elephant drawing cropped

Hannah and more 009

Hannah is offering her designs printed on off-white canvas tote bags and as note cards (see below). Great design, practical and pretty…but even better, part of the proceeds from each sale go to UNICEF. What a wonderful gift idea!

Lion Tote – $30 (tax included, add $5 shipping/handling)

Lion tote image and bag

Elephant Tote – $30 (tax included, add $5 shipping/handling)

elephant tote front and back

Note Cards: $20 – box of 8 cards (2 each of the 4 designs featured below) –

Elephant and Lion Note Cards

Monkey and Tree of Life Note Cards

View of cards boxed, front and back –

Note Cards front view

Note Cards back view

Contact Hannah to order at HanMade ~ email:

Or through her Facebook page ~

Hannah’s bags and cards will also be for sale at The Amity Gallery “Small Treasures’ Show which runs noon till 4pm every Saturday and Sunday from 12/1~12/21 ~ 110 Newport Bridge Rd. Warwick, NY. More info: 845-258-4655

More about Hannah….

Hannah Emery was born in New York City in August 1992, and is the daughter of James and Colleen Emery. Colleen serves as a community organizer for the Gerry Foundation, and James is a renowned guitarist and composer. They have lived in Warwick for nineteen years, where Hannah was a student in the PIE program at Kings Elementary School. She attended Mountain Laurel Waldorf School for middle school, and graduated from Oakwood Friends School in 2010. In May, 2014, she graduated Magna Cum Laude from Skidmore College, with a BA in French and Music. During her college career, she toured Italy with the Varna International Chamber Orchestra. She spent her junior year abroad in Paris, and at the conclusion of her senior year, she and her father were soloists in the world premiere of the Double Concerto for Clarinet and Guitar. Her father composed the piece for her and the Skidmore College Orchestra.

As a result of her enriching experience as a Waldorf student, she plans to obtain a Masters in Waldorf education while developing studies in clarinet performance. It was through the Steiner-based curriculum that Hannah was able to connect with and foster her creative self. She recently began creating African-themed drawings, which are printed on bags and cards. UNICEF receives a percentage of profits towards Ebola relief and aid. Hannah currently spends her time drawing, working as a textile conservationist, teaching and playing clarinet, and working as a teacher’s assistant at Green Meadow Waldorf School.

Thanks to Rooster Tees, Warwick, NY for the bags printing – visit them here:

Thanks to Warwick Press, Warwick, NY for the cards printing – website:


November Exhibit: Ian Sharp & Friends; A Gathering in Thankfulness

Ian’s work, carefully framed by his father, George Sharp, looked wonderful on the walls of the gallery. Well attended by friends, family and others who had heard about the exhibit, the reception was a terrific success! It was an emotional experience for me and I know others felt the same. To see his work for the first time since his memorial was difficult and incredible at the same time. Ian’s impact on his community was clear – he viewed life from a connected creative perspective that he never hesitated to share. Love – was everything, in all its forms, and was the basis for the way he lived and made art. We miss him – but we feel him near.

A small offering of his friends work also hangs nearby, as a tribute to how Ian inspired them. Words come with the submissions, bringing clarity to those whom he touched. There are many more who, but for the small size of the gallery, would be part of this show…but spring is coming and a new exhibit is in the works.

The show continues through the end of November, every Sat/Sun from noon till 4pm. at Amity Gallery, 110 Newport Bridge Rd., Warwick, NY. Reach the gallery from County. Rte. 1 turning on Amity Rd., follow to where Amity Rd. becomes Newport Bridge Rd. Gallery just ahead on right.

Ian Exhibit Nov 8th reception 2014 007

Ian Exhibit Nov 8th reception 2014 009

Ian Exhibit Nov 8th reception 2014 005

Ian Exhibit Nov 8th reception 2014 008

One Love, Ian.

Ian swirls light