About Us

Old Town Artisan Studio, a 501 (c)(3) nonprofit organization, provides a warm and inviting place where people of all ages can reveal their creativity through clay, fused glass, painting and other artistic mediums. Individual private instruction, classes for children, adults and seniors, as well as independent studio use is blended with fee exempt instruction offered to numerous charities in the Coachella Valley.

Our Mission

Old Town Artisan Studio is committed to providing positive art experiences for all people despite age, disability or financial disadvantage. We believe art is healing and has an everlasting positive impact on each of us and the world around us.

Our Goal

With increased Studio classes and our unique Mobile Art Van, allowing us to partner with local schools, senior centers and a wide variety of local non-profits, we expect to reach our goal of serving over 8,000 art experience this year!


Help provide over 9,000 art experiences a year!



Our Instructors

Thomas Burns

Executive Director

Kristi Pierson


Kevin Saenz

Kiln Tech

Ivanna Diaz Hansen


Stephen Mangione

Studio Manager / Instructor

Stephen Mangione is a studio artist from Palm Springs. He received a MFA from San Diego State University in 2013, a BFA from California State University Chico in 2007, and an AA in Culinary Arts Management from College of the Desert in 2003. Stephen has attended a number of workshops at Haystack Mountain School of Craft, Arrowhead School of Art & Craft, Watershed Center for Ceramics, and California State University Fresno Summer Arts. Before joining our staff, he worked as an Adjunct Professor at Southern Oregon University, and Palomar College in San Marcos, and as an Assistant Art Technician at San Diego State.

Stefania Ford

Senior Instructor

Stefania Ford is a sculpture artist, currently living and working in La Quinta, CA. After attending courses at College for Creative Arts, she graduated with a BFA in Sculpture from Washington University in St. Louis in 2010. Stefania has worked and studied with sculpture and ceramic artists such as Regan Wheat, Arthur Gonzalez, Debra Fritts, Greg Kennady, Catherine Magel, and Richard Burkett. Before joining Old Town Artisan Studio, Stefania worked for other non-profits such as Idyllwild Arts and Tools for Tomorrow. Stefania directs our Community Outreach Program and shares her ceramic and sculptural knowledge during in-studio classes where she teaches students of all ages.