“A fabulous instructor, gorgeous venue, wonderful staff, great fellow artists...what's not to love?”

Our gallery and workshop spaces are in the historic Benicia Arsenal in Benicia, California. The arsenal is a large area comprised of many former military buildings, and the building we inhabit is a stately brick structure built in 1878. Spend a few hours or a whole weekend with us in Benicia, where you’ll find plenty of dining options, shops and antique stores on Benicia’s waterfront First Street, just a 3 minute drive from the historic Benicia Arsenal.

Upcoming Workshops


Feb 14, 15 + 16 / Dietlind Vander Schaaf: Encaustic + Metal: Shimmer, Luster, Depth

Feb 14, 15 + 16 / Dietlind Vander Schaaf: Encaustic + Metal: Shimmer, Luster, Depth


A 3 day art workshop in Benicia, California taught by Dietlind Vander Schaaf.

Friday, Feb 14, Saturday, Feb 15 and Sunday, Feb 16 / Each day 10:00-5:00 with a one hour lunch break

Doors open at 9:30


If you are drawn to things that glitter and reflect light, this workshop is for you. Learn how to incorporate small pieces of found metal and rust into encaustic. Working with the full range of R&F encaustic paint, including the metallic colors, we will create work that shimmers and has depth. The application of metallic pigment sick, artificial metal leaf, and real silver and gold leaf, as well as the creation of rusted and patina surfaces will be demonstrated as ways to finish work, add shine, and enhance metal surfaces. You will learn control in both application of paint and fusing, and each student will have 1:1 time with the instructor.

Materials Fee: paid to instructor first day of class: $50.00

About the instructor: Dietlind Vander Schaaf holds an MFA from the University of San Francisco and an MA from the University of Southern Maine. Her work has been described as the transformation of “disparate objects into elegantly simple compositions of pattern and grace” (Artscope). She has exhibited nationally and was featured in the April 2016 Maine Home + Design magazine’s profile “One to Watch” on standout artists in Maine.

Vander Schaaf is a Core Instructor for R&F Handmade Paints and the former president of New England Wax. She has taught at Haystack, Castle Hill, Penland, Snow Farm, South Shore Art Center, New Hampshire Institute of Art, Maine College of Art, R&F, The Encaustic Center, and internationally at Zijdelings in The Netherlands. Vander Schaaf is the recipient of grants from the Maine Arts Commission and International Encaustic Artists, as well as a Tending Space Artist Fellowship from the Hemera Foundation. In addition, she is a 200 hr Kripalu yoga teacher working on her 500 hr certification.

“I create pieces that embody the dynamic interplay between chaos and order; that convey an emotional tone through texture and pattern; and that use mark making as a way to communicate what I find most lovely, haunting, and curious about the human condition. My work references teachings from Zen Buddhism, Christian mysticism, the poetic traditions, and contemplative practices including yoga and meditation. I am influenced by writings on meditation and quiet by Pico Iyer, Jon Kabat-Zinn, David Hinton, and Gordon Hessler, as well as the minimal work of artists Agnes Martin, Hiroyuki Hamada, and Zarina Hashmi.  

The Japanese word jikan refers to the silence between two thoughts. In this vein, my work is an attempt to render temporary, fleeting moments of beauty, balance, and stillness visible. Some of my paintings rely on forms observable in the natural world, which I have distilled to geometric patterns and then further deconstructed. Others are responses to field studies involving physical experiences and sound recordings. I think of my work as inner landscapes that, when placed together in multiples, engage in a form of communion with one another. “ —Dietlind Vander Schaaf

Learn More: Instructor’s Website


Free and unlimited coffee, tea and bottled water. Bring your carafe!

Lunch Options: 1. Bring your own lunch and store in our refrigerator if needed, 2. drive 3 min away to quaint downtown Benicia and choose from a huge variety of restaurants (we provide map and recommendations), 3. Place your order with us in the morning of class from a limited menu from our restaurant of the day and have it delivered to the studio (lunch and delivery is $20, payable upon ordering). For those with allergies or food restrictions, we recommend bringing a sack lunch as we cannot accommodate special requests. On nice days, join us on the leafy patio by the fountain for dining al fresco.


By purchasing this workshop, I agree with the Waiver of Liability, Medical Release, Photography/Videotape Release and Indemnification Agreement and fully understand its contents. I am aware that this is a release of liability and a contract between myself and Okey Dokey Inc/Jen Tough Gallery, and that I do it of my own free will. I also understand the Refund Policies and the potential consequences thereof, set forth by Okey Dokey Inc/Jen Tough Gallery and agree to such terms. found here.

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