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(a brief history)

In September 2007, Kira and Pete opened the doors to Hootenanny Art House on15th Street in Park SlopeThe vision was of a community Art House with a swinging screen door and a porch, with kids and grown ups coming and going…singing, playing ukuleles, making art, eating pie, and making friends.


By 2018 their Art program was outgrowing the space and Hannah Kasper Levinson joined them to create the Hootenanny Art Annex on 7th Ave. Hannah’s vision for the Art Annex was to create an art studio where children come to create, explore, and experience themselves through art. She values open ended materials and employs an approach that values the creative process over a uniform product.

In the spring of 2021, Hannah moved to Ohio. Christie had been teaching art in various schools and non-profits for the past 20 years or so, but had been daydreaming about one day running her own art studio. So she reached out to Kira and a new partnership was born!


With some neighborly negotiations and a promise to continue this awesome responsibility of bringing art to the community,  Kira and Pete handed over the keys to the Art Annex and Christie started putting into action all of the plans she had for the space. 

The mission of The Art Annex is to continue to embody Kira, Pete, and Hannah's vision of building a community of inspired, resilient and creative thinkers, while also expanding our programming to serve artists of all ages. 

Because everyone needs meaningful art experiences! 

We hope that you will send your children to come make art with us,

and that you will come make art with us too!

Please stop by, give us a call, or send us an email anytime.

our team

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Christie O'Brien

The owner of The Art Annex, Christie has been working with children for 20+ years teaching at public and private schools all over NYC, as well as various non-profits and museums. She has a BA in Theater and Dance with a Scenic Design concentration and Masters in Art Education from Columbia University Teacher's College.  

She also enjoys making all kinds of art with her own children, ranging from the more crafty (fabric dyeing with avocados and weaving with old shirts) to the more traditional (drawing, printmaking, and large scale collaborative paintings).

Her teaching style is always a process-based approach to an art curriculum, with a focus on the making over the final product. 

Christie lives in the South Slope with her family, and is SO excited to continue building this creative community! 



Samantha Hagan

Samantha was raised in Somers, New York, where she spent the majority of her adolescence drawing in the edges of her school notebooks. She attended NYU where she majored in Theatre and the School of School Arts where she studied Graphic Design and Illustration. She worked for 6 years as the Art Director of a children’s company, where her job was to think of products that would make kids smile. After having her daughter, Samantha started her own company, Thimbled and Threaded, where she makes kid’s art and handmade accessories and games. She has taught arts, as well as crafts to preschool and elementary age children.

When she isn’t working on her business or teaching, Samantha can be found painting, drawing, knitting, weaving, or learning a new craft. She lives with her daughter and husband in Ditmas Park, Brooklyn.

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MuÑoz Ledo rodriguez

Sara is an interdisciplinary artist from Morelos, Mexico. Sara graduated from The New School with a BFA in photography and a BA in creative writing. Before working at the Art Annex, Sara worked as a Teaching Assistant at the International Center of Photography and the Children’s Museum of the Arts. 


Sara believes that all children should have the opportunity to create their own narratives and experience themselves through art. 


In addition to teaching and making art, Sara loves biking, propagating plants, looking at birds, and eating mangos. 



Prior to teaching at The Art Annex, Susan taught art to young children for many years at Brooklyn Friends School. Before that she was a teaching artist at Studio in a School. Prior to  her teaching career, Susan was a freelance editorial and children’s book illustrator.

When Susan is not teaching you can find her painting in various places around NYC, especially in Brooklyn.

She loves to paint en plein air (outside), mostly painting in watercolors. Susan also loves drawing anything and everything. She says, “Drawing and painting the world around me helps me to feel much more connected to my environment.” Susan received her BFA at Pratt institute and her MA at Queens College.



Rosie is a drawer, painter and illustrator from New York City. She went to Oberlin College and has studied at the New York Studio School of Drawing and Painting.

She worked most recently at the Putney Art Program teaching Drawing and Book Arts to teens, and has worked for years with younger children, bridging nature with arts through child driven creative exploration.

Rosie loves to spend time in Prospect Park and on the subway drawing from life, and plays ultimate frisbee whenever she gets the chance.

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Janet Pedersen is a Brooklyn based fine artist and educator.

She has worked with both adults and children, and loves to teach! Earlier in her career, Janet illustrated children’s books and eventually authored a few of

her own.

Aside from studio painting, Janet enjoys painting on location (plein air) and is grateful for Prospect Park and the architecture of her Brooklyn neighborhood of

Park Slope.

She works in most mediums. She received her BFA from Art Center College of Design in California.



Hattie is an art teacher, visual artist, and math tutor based in Park Slope. She believes self and community empowerment are grounded in the nurturing of our creative selves.

In her teaching, Hattie combines the roles of mentor, artist, scientist, coach, and explorer. She aims to create a classroom environment where each student feels confident to try, fail, and try again.


When she is not making art or finishing her masters in art education, Hattie likes to ride her bike, host Shabbat dinners,

and learn how to sing. 



Eleanore is a mixed media artist from Cambridge, Massachusetts. She majored in Studio Art at
Oberlin College, where she explored her love of quilts, lamps, prints, and ceramics.

Before working at the Art Annex, she worked at a nature-based preschool in Chicago, IL.

She has worked with children for several years in child care centers, teaching after school art classes,
and creating spaces for play-based learning. Eleanore loves to bike around the city, make
dinners with her friends, and listen to audio books.


vic walsh

Vic is a dual-degree student in their final semester at The New School, studying Fine Arts (BFA) and “Art and the Mind” (BA in Liberal Arts).


They enjoy working with sound, painting with rust, and creating sculptures that encourage growth and decay. Much of their art-making begins with the question “what happens if…” Lately, their favorite materials are dirt and mold, and one could describe their studio as smelling “earthy.”

Vic also spends their summers as a counselor at Beam Camp, supporting campers in independent and camp-wide art and building projects. They volunteer regularly at the Dream House and love putting the chickens to bed at the Bushwick City Farm.

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Magali Wilensky

Magali is an Award-winning New York-based multidisciplinary artist, healer, teacher and mother of two. 
She moved from Argentina to Miami,  where she received a Bachelors in Fine Arts from The Art Institute of Miami 2006. There she developed her rolled fabric technique which she exhibited in galleries and other institutions in New York, Miami, and Buenos Aires.
In 2008 Her art took her on an inward journey to study the body, mind and soul. She became a massage therapist, a sound healer, a yoga and meditation instructor. She and her whole family founded and own a Wellness Center called Om’echaye.
Magali moved to Brooklyn, NY in 2013 to study and graduated from Brooklyn College with a Masters in Performance and Interactive Media Arts (PIMA). 

Magali created an art production company in Brooklyn called LifeandMatter.


Emilia DeVitis

Emilia has a BFA from The School of Visual Arts and has been involved in the visual arts both personally and  professionally for over 30 years.
She’s has been involved in group shows and solo shows both in the US and abroad as well as having her work featured in art publications. Having always had an interest in the discovery of materials and their outcome, Emilia unearths their possibilities through her abstract portraits. Being a multi media artist has given her the freedom to always pursue the endless possibilities of creating.

Emilia lives and has her studio in Bay Ridge, Brooklyn
You can view her work on Instagram @emiliadevitis



Sophia is an artist that naturally dyes fabric, marbles paper and illustrates. She has over a decade of experience as an early childhood teacher and graduated with her Masters in Early Childhood Education from Bank Street College of Education. 


She cares deeply about process art and giving kids and adults the space to explore materials freely. When she's not in her studio stirring dye pots and collaging she's digging in the dirt at her local community garden where she grows dye plants, flowers and vegetables.

want to teach with us?

We are always looking for enthusiastic teachers to join our team at the Art Annex!

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