FAI - Instructors

Thomas BakerThomas Baker

Thomas Baker graduated from the University of KY in 1999 with a Bachelor’s of Fine Arts.  During his time at the university he studied under Radu Damaceanu Bart, and worked closely as a teaching assistant to John Tuska for his portrait sculpture course at the Lexington Art League. Over the years, Thomas has continued to produce and exhibit his artwork locally and nationally, as well as teach both group and private lessons at local community art centers.






Dwayne CobbDwayne Cobb

After graduating with a degree in sculpture from the University of Kentucky, Dwayne Cobb found that he didn't have room to continue his welded steel work. So he scaled down his vision and taught himself to make jewelry -- wearable sculpture. “I use a variety of elements to achieve my work. By cutting and polishing stones, slumping and lamp-working glass, and fabricating sterling silver, copper, and brass, I control all aspects of my creations.”

An Exhibiting Member of the Kentucky Guild of Artists and Craftsmen and a Juried member of Kentucky Crafted, Cobb continues to explore the elements of sculpture in his work by hand-crafting animated wooden sculptures, musical instruments and custom furniture. 



Jeremy ColbertJeremy Colbert

Jeremy Colbert received his Masters of Fine Arts from Florida State University in sculpture and ceramics in 2002. He taught both sculpture and ceramics at FSU for six years and sculpture at the University of South Alabama for two years and is currently the Sculpture & Ceramics Technician and Lecturer at the University of Kentucky. Jeremy's philosophy on art is: "My work has always been about personal expression with basic levels of communication. For me the right material and image says the right thing. It is all about connecting to the viewer in a visual conversation."





Jill ColdironJill Coldiron

Jill Coldiron is a graduate of the University of Kentucky with a degree in ceramics and has been a professional clay artist for over 25 years. She was an adjunct ceramics instructor at UK for over 12 years and has given private clay lessons for over 25 years. Currently, she has been the art instructor at Lexington Montessori School for over 20 years in addition to instructing in the Fine Arts Institute, which she has done since its inception in 1993. In 2003, Jill was commissioned with sculptor Richard Stofer to design a 47-foot stainless wall with tile inlay created by her art students at Lexington Montessori School; this wall is featured in the reception area of the UK Children’s Hospital. Jill has owned Main Cross Gallery, a fine art gallery in Victorian Square featuring local artists, since 2000.

Photograph of instructor Jan Durham in a garden with a cute collie mix dog.Jan Durham

Jan Durham grew up in the mountains of Southeastern Kentucky and has lived in Kentucky her entire life. She is currently working as an artist in Lexington and is President of The Lexington Fiber Guild. She graduated with a Masters of Arts in Education from the University of Kentucky and taught school in Fayette County for 11 years. You can view some of her work at MS Rezny Studio/Gallery on Manchester Street. She believes that Art is essential to a happy life and as a girl was always allowed the freedom to be creative, to play. It’s that freedom to create and play that she wishes to share by teaching at the UK Fine Arts Institute.


Christine KuhnChristine Kuhn

Christine Kuhn is a working artist, muralist, art instructor and activist specializing in using art to empower non-artists, to express the aspirations of various communities and to promote social justice. She holds degrees in biology, chemistry and diplomacy and is a graduate of the Philadelphia Mural Arts Training Program.

Christine's gallery art focuses on expressing right-brain, non-rational experiences--emotion, passion, humor, fear, symbolism, in short, the magical and mystical elements of existence.  Her murals express the experiences, surroundings and attitudes of particular communities.  Christine's artwork has been exhibited widely throughout the Southeastern US, in Central America and in Bulgaria. She has received numerous grants from the Kentucky Arts Council, LexArts and the Kentucky Foundation for women.  Christine's murals can be found on streets and in schools and hospitals throughout central Kentucky.  In 2014, Christine was one of only 4 US muralists chosen to represent the United States through the State Department's Community Engagement through the Mural Arts Program. 

When Christine's not in the studio or at a mural site, she can often be found cycling the city streets and backroads surrounding her hometown, Lexington, KY. If you look closely, youʼll see her smile.

Lennon MichalskiLennon Michalski

Lennon Michalski's  two dimensional and digital works have exhibited in Asheville NC, Kentucky, Colorado and Washington DC. He has also displayed work in group exhibitions internationally in Mexico, Colombia, and China. He is on the Board of Directors for Creative Alliance for Art Education a nonprofit organization in Lexington. Lennon also participates with a number of other nonprofit art organizations in the Lexington area such as the Lexington Art League, Lex Arts, and the Living Arts and Science Center. His work is in the collection of the University of Kentucky Healthcare, Clark Regional Medical Center, Churchill Downs Executive Office, and Eastern Kentucky University.  Lennon has given artist lectures at Morehead State University and Transylvania University and had a solo show at The Cressman Center University of Louisville Kentucky 2012. Lennon earned his Master of Fine Arts degree in Painting and Digital Media from the University of Colorado at Boulder. He is now an independent Artist and an Instructor in the College of Art at University of Kentucky.

Heather StrattonHeather Stratton

Heather Stratton is an artist-educator working in lens-based media in both digital and analog technologies. Stratton earned her M.F.A. in Photographic and Electronic Media from the Maryland Institute College of Art in Baltimore, Maryland. She currently teaches darkroom and digital photography, and video at the School of Art and Visual Studies at the University of Kentucky. Stratton's work has been exhibited nationally and internationally.




Fine Arts Institute Instructor Lynn SweetLynn Sweet

For over three decades, Lynn Sweet has supervised woodshop activities and provided technical and aesthetic resources in the School of Art. Precision, imagination and tool safety are the bywords of his workshop policy. Beyond these, Lynn reminds us that, ”making stuff is fun”!

While overseeing Art Studio woodshop activities, Lynn has continued an investigation of woodworking processes, material manipulation and furniture design/fabrication that have developed from his early instruction in exacting late 17 th and early 18 th century furniture copies to his present work in Neo-Modernist furniture forms. His exhibition history stretches beyond four decades. You can see examples of his work at www.lynnsweet.net.




Laverne ZabielskiLaverne Zabielski

Laverne Zabielski, artist and writer, received her MFA in Writing from Spalding University. She studied fiber art with Arturo Alonzo Sandoval at the University of Kentucky. Her inspiration comes from hiking in the woods and trying to figure out how to capture the colors I see. My truly wearable art, made from all natural fabrics, includes serenity shawls, goddess capes, bolero jackets, poetry vests and skirts, riding coats, caftans and dresses." You can see more of her work at LaverneZ.com or visit MS Rezney Gallery in Lexington.