Instructor Spotlight: Daniel Villella

Prof. Dan Villella has been teaching in the Precollege program since 2015. He is an alumni of the BFA Interior Design program at FIT, and a Vice-President of the International Interior Design Association.
Professor Villella teaches:
Teaching Philosophy: I tell my students to be themselves, and encourage them to explore that as designers. What makes interior design so great is variety, and your unique perspective is something no one else can replicate. While we learn and refine new technical skills, we build up the student’s design sensibilities. I try to bring a creative element to even to technical lessons so they can make it their own.
On Precollege Programs: Many students come to us with no design background at all, and I guide them to be in touch with their creative skills. Helping them find their own process and teaching them how to apply that in new situations can be a challenge, but is the most rewarding thing I do. Creating a flexible designer is the key to their success.
Industry Experience/Recent Exhibitions:  Prof. Villella works for many major institutions, including Columbia University, NYU Langone Medical Centers, Queens Public Library, and New York Presbyterian Hospitals. He also also done work for Northwell Health, formerly NorthShore-LIJ, the Veteran’s Administration, and Health and Hospitals Corporation of NYC.
NY Vice Pres. of Advocacy
NY Board of Directors
Healthcare Forum Member
Professional Member
Board of Directors
IIDA Member Representative
NCIDQ Certificate #029111, 09/2012
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Instructor Spotlight: Barb Salzman

Barb Salzman knows inspiration can be found almost anywhere. Although, she was too young to know it she found her inspiration in a nest, next to her childhood home. Year after year she’d watch in awe, as life would miraculously hatch and later become the inspiration for her design company, Hatch Creative Studio as well as her former event space, Nest Event Loft and an eclectic prop rental company called Hatch Prop Shop.
Barb’s philosophy of design follows suit with her company name, Hatch. Authentic ideas that create inspiration and excitement for her clients and all those that get to experience her whimsical, thoughtful sense of style and laid back elegance.
After graduating with a BA from the University of Vermont, Barb went on to graduate Summa Cum Laude from FIDM, The Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising in San Francisco with a  degree in Visual Merchandising.

Prior to opening her own event design company, Barb had the wonderful experience of being a Visual Manager and on the store opening team at Anthropologie as well as a ghost designer for HGTV’s “Whats Your Sign Design”.

FUN FACT: Barb has a love for animals  and currently lives with 2 dogs and a frog. She is on the board and serves as operations manager and event producer for a non profit called Funny For Fido that produces an annual comedy night where comics “stand-up for homeless animals.”
Past comedians were Amy Schumer, Jim Gaffigan, Colin Quinn, Judah Friedlander and many more hilarious artists.
Prof. Salzman’s website:
Professor Salzman teaches:
HSX067 Fashionable Affairs: Events Made Easy
Teaching Philosophy:
Experience is always the best method for learning and this very hands on event design and planning class will leave students passionate about the world of events.  I have no doubt my students will never look at a table the same way again.

On Precollege Programs:

I’m excited about the chance to teach future designers about a unique way to be creative through event design and planning.  Sometimes it’s all about understanding possibilities and realizing that careers can be built from many talents.

InNadia_Eli-503dustry Experience/Recent Exhibitions:

Founder and Creator Director of Hatch Creative Studio, Barb Salzman and her team have inspired the limits of traditional event design and marketing for the past 10 years.Named one of The Knot’s Top 10 Most Inspiring People (2013)

Voted best Floral Designer 2011-2014 by The Knot and published in numerous publications such as In Style, NY Magazine, The Knot, Brides Magazine, Martha Stewart, Style Me Pretty and Biz Bash.

Hatch Creative Studio has left its mark on events such as:

The Samsung House
Creative Time Gala
Target Feed Launch
Super Bowl Media Event
The Brooklyn Half Marathon Pre-Party
The Office Depot Booth at The X Games
Prof. Salzman also orchestrated the Guinness World Record Award for The Worlds Longest Picnic Table for Hellmann’s Mayonnaise.
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Instructor Highlights: Anthony Capparelli

FIT’s instructors aren’t just a hit in the classroom, they also have projects of their own. Anthony Capparelli, is an FIT Adjunct Associate Professor in the Illustration Department. His exhibit, titled The Art of Sport, is a collection of paintings, oils, watercolors, and charcoals, with subjects ranging from The Garden itself, to many of the sports stars that  impacted the passionate and fiery sports world of New York City. The former Yankees’ shortstop Derek Jeter, as well as current New York Rangers Goalie Henrik Lundqvist make appearances. Below is a video of Professor Capparelli, discussing his art and the exhibit. His work is on display at Gallery FIT.

Museum hours: Tuesday–Friday, noon–8 pm; Saturday, 10 am–5 pm. Closed Sunday, Monday, and legal holidays.







Check out the Precollege class taught by Prof. Capparelli: HIL 163 Human Anatomy


Instructor Spotlight: Max Goodman

Max Goodman
Prof. Goodman was born and raised in Philadelphia PA, and earned her BFA  with a double major in painting and jewelry/metals from the Tyler School of Art.  After graduation and inspired by a year studying in Rome, she moved to France and then Tuscany.  Finally landing in Brooklyn, she taught  at a number of community art studios, fabricated for big name designers and built her own art jewelry under the brand Moxy Metals.  In 2013 she launched her own studio for emerging jewelry designers called Happenstance Jewelry Studio, where she currently makes her work and hosts an intensive apprenticeship program.  In her other life she also rides horses professionally – themes of animals, natural forms, organic and alternative materials are signatures in her work.

Prof. Goodman teaches:
HJD 019  Jewelry Design Studio I

Teaching Philosophy:
In my studio everyone is an artist, everyone is equal.  Everyone is encouraged to express their own voice and vision.  However, as artists and craftspeople we are held to professional standards, and we are expected to produce exceptional work even when on a deadline.  My goal as an educator is to foster successful, skilled makers who are proud of each piece they produce, and prepared to move forward in their education or to launch a professional career in arts and design.  In learning to create and in producing great work students come to understand themselves more fully not only as makers but also as people.

On Precollege Programs:
This transitional period in many young peoples’ lives is when they first take tentative steps towards self identifying as an artist or designer.  Being there to watch this transformation and being the mentor that can offer growth and affirmation at this nascent stage is incredibly rewarding.
Industry Experience/Recent Exhibitions:
I have worked as a fabricator for many big brand designers, like Alexis Bittar.  In my personal design work I build almost exclusively on commission for private clients.  I am constantly impressed by my students whom I have helped to launch their own brands, such as Eva Marcus Jewelry, Laura Wass of WXYZ, Allie Schloss of AnnaLaya designs, Libby Klein of Libby BK and Candice Cox of CanDidArt, to name a few.


Timothy Treadwell Ring, Max Goodman


Orchid Pendant, Max Goodman


Magnolia Post Earrings, Max Goodman

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Wishbone Hinged Necklace, Max Goodman

Instructor Spotlight: Josef Zutelgte

1_Josef_Zutelgte_FIT copyProfessor Josef Zutelgte has been teaching in the Fine Arts Department at FIT since 2000, drawing, 3-D design and sculpture. He was born in Germany, attended the Westfaelische Wilhelms University and the Kunstakademie Muenster/Duesseldorf and received an MFA in 1983.  After moving to New York in 1986, he studied at The City College of New York and earned an MFA in Sculpture.  Zutelgte also collaborates with Phil Art Academy, preparing foreign students for U.S. undergraduate and graduate studies. Over the last several years, he has traveled to South Korea and China to coordinate intensive college preparation workshops. In the past, he has taught at Parsons and University of Pforzheim,Germany.

As a working artist, Josef Zutelgte has exhibited throughout the US and Europe, including the Corcoran Gallery, Washington DC, Jack Tilton Gallery  NYC, Roman Zenner Gallery, Germany, Konrad Moenter Gallery , Germany, Univerity of the Arts, Philadelphia, Hunter College, NYC , University of Hawaii.

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Sculpture by Prof. Josef Zutelgte

Awards include Triangle Foundation NYC (Residency), National Foundation of the Arts , Miami (Residency) , and  the Art Development Grant.


Prof. Josef Zutelgte Teaches:
HSX 021: Observational Drawing for Portfolios
HSX 022: Portraits for Portfolios 
HFA 148 55A Fine Arts Portfolio 

Teaching Philosophy:
In this age of globalization, digitalization, and climate change, the world (both natural and constructed) seems to change dramatically from one day to the next. It is my goal to help students hone their observational skills and encourage them to spend time looking at the world, question why things exist as they do, and propose alternatives in an ever-changing world.

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Sculpture by Prof. Josef Zutelgte

I view the classroom as a place for knowledge and inquiry, experimentation and discovery, failure and success. A successful art education allows and encourages the imagination to flourish. Through teaching, I have observed that as students develop their visual skills, they look more closely at their surroundings. As they find outlets for expression, they gain a deeper understanding of themselves—and this is the starting point for creatively engaging with our world. The creative process should be inviting, challenging, and fun. It is serious work, but we won’t find success if it doesn’t bring us pleasure.

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Sculpture by Prof. Josef Zutelgte

Advice for young students:
An important aspect of learning is to “play.” Art invites and encourages play and, in the process, you learn to take risks, solve problems, and find alternative solutions—all important things you can apply to other life situations.

On Precollege Programs:
It is absolutely awesome to work with many young motivated students and it is a great opportunity  for students to find others with similar interests and desires.

Artwork by Prof. Zutelgte

Artwork by Prof. Zutelgte


Sculpture by Prof. Josef Zutelgte


Sculpture by Prof. Josef Zutelgte