A Collaboration Between a Broad Spectrum of Art Genres & Related Sciences




Laying Groundwork for Westmoreland County's First Artist Retreat


The natural beauty of Southwestern Pennsylvania often takes visitors by surprise. But for the artists who call it home, the rivers, mountains, and change in seasons are inspiration. Travel Lemming patrons named our region the 3rd most beautiful globally. Country Magazine called out one of our small towns as 2nd best in the nation. It is what motivated River Art Works to seek out property as a place for artists to gather and create.

TODAY'S CREATIVES: Our Future in the Technology Age

Incredible young men and women are leaving this region to find a better quality of life. This is your children and grandchildren who are leaving for other states. The exodus of students and young families are what Reimagine Westmoreland Comprehensive Plan of 2018 (section 2.2)* called the county’s most alarming statistic.  The last three years Westmoreland County has experienced an escalation in a continuous downward spiral in population decline. River Art Works' goals include reversing this statistic.

Artistic communities have been the most successful tool to revitalize for over 150 years in the USA. Our goal is to build the hub that connects our region's existing art culture, dramatically strengthening it. River Art Works is to share knowledge between professional artists and related sciences in order to broaden their concept and knowledge of creative opportunities. Related sciences (STEAM) include, but are not limited to holography, robotics, digital, artificial reality, artificial intelligence, and laser sciences. Time away from daily distractions will allow the artist to not only further broaden their skills, focus their energy, but also use the retreat time to connect with other arts and sciences to collaboratively develop creative businesses and connect to the local creative tech community. Artists shape their own creative lives in a broader sense as well as contribute to our region's development.

An art retreat of this magnitude would provide the gathering space and collaboration points needed for continuous, inspirational support of our creatives.  It is a massive project that will take continued preparation and efforts to turn around the downward spiral that has gained momentum though the last decades of outward migration. Please support this impactful project with continued support; be it through donation or volunteerism. You will become a part of our much needed solution.


River Art Works is a 501c3 and EITC tax status with great potential to:

increase tourism, quality STEAM employment training, 

reverse population decline and be the first artist retreat in Westmoreland county. 

CNN has listed River Art Works as one of a 1000 Points of Light.

Our Goals

To create a space for artists of all mediums to come together to

create, teach/learn, perform, exhibit, sleep, and eat.

To increase regional tourism though the retail of art.

To bring the arts and science together to learn from each other.

board members

Jane Altman


Jane has a history of making history. As an artist she is written in the antique journals as formative
artist for Libby Glass Division in Mt Pleasant, Pa. In the antique world she began a symposium that
was later enveloped by the Southern California Collector Conference as a foundation to educate novice buyers on forgeries.
As home and building restoration specialist, she was featured on HGTV for West Coast renovations
and gave back to her Pennsylvania hometown by restoring the town’s most prominent blight (on the
town’s square). In the fashion industry she introduced futuristic printing process and helped innovate the technology as needed to be utilized in the fashion industry and create a base income for artists.

Jane has also been a business advisor and influencer for a broad range of industries and school
related committees, veterans advocate. Graduate of Art Institute of Pittsburgh and University of Utah.

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Jane Altman
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Rosalind Panda
Laura Johnson


Laura is widely recognized in the regional community not only as a dedicated volunteer, but as a fitness industry leader.  Laura has been trained extensively in all forms of dance. She is the 2015 dance instructor of the year and a competitive dance champion.  Laura has been, and continues to be, a vital part of many community and regional fundraisers throughout her adult life.

Laura Johnson
Roberta Pfeiffer Altman

Secretary & Legal Counsel

Roberta is most known in the Pittsburgh region as lawyer for Commonwealth in the Department of Labor and Industry and Education Director for the Allegheny Legal Institute.

Roberta has also served as a business teacher in high schools, proprietary business schools, and in colleges in PA, WV, TN, and OH.  Her volunteer time includes acting as legal counsel for the Tea Party and Pregnancy Crisis Center. Her work history also includes entrepreneurial endeavors.


Roberta has agreed to join the River Art Works board because

“ I think River Art Works has the ability to help revitalize our region with a thriving arts community under Jane’s direction.”

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Roberta Pfeiffer Altman
Secretary & Legal Counsel
Mohammad Hassibi


Retired Engineer: 1962-1975 Plant Engineer, Herbick and Held Printing Company, Pittsburgh

1975- 2016 Chemco Systems LLC Sr. Vice President, Sales and Marketing

Education:  Mechanical Engineering and Graphic Arts, Printing Management, Stained Glass and Woodworking

Co-founder: Pittsburgh Art in the Park
Three Rivers Arts Festival and faculty
Carnegie Museum Adult Education, member SW PA Woodworkers Assoc

Exhibited:  Three Rivers Arts Festival, Fair in the Park, Pittsburgh

Mohammad Hassibi
Alice A. Hassibi


Retired Art Educator: Art Teacher Brownsville Area School District, Brownsville, PA
Asst Principal,  Jefferson Morgan School District,  Jefferson, PA

Education: Edinboro State College: Degree in Art Education
Masters Degree in School Administration

Avocations: Batik and Fiber Arts, mainly quilting, taught Batik at Carnegie Museum

Exhibited at: Three Rivers Arts Festival, Exhibited at Fair in the Park, Pittsburgh

Alice A. Hassibi
Doug Chew


Commissioner Douglas W. Chew joined the River Art Works Board of Directors as Treasurer in December 2019. A Hempfield  and University of Pittsburgh graduate, University of Pittsburgh faculty member for 26 years in the Science Dept.  As educator: wrote grants, taught biochemistry, researched, and published over 50 scientific pieces. Doug is1999 Chancellor’s Distinguished Public Service Award winner.
Hempfield Township auditor Doug feels that the arts are what separates humans from the other animals; he brings a strong passion for music and all manner of arts to the Board.

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Doug Chew

Lynlee Nagy

Lead artist educator for the disabled at Friendship Community in Lancaster, PA. Under Linn’s tutelage millions of dollars were raised to continually support the disabled artists. Art produced earned national recognition for its’ quality workmanship.

Lynlee Nagy


River Art Works was established in 2018 to build our region’s first comprehensive art retreat for professional artists and students whose goal is an equitable career in the creative.  The retreat will focus on enhancing artists’ education with exposure to global influences from visiting experts, cutting edge STEAM, and a diverse collaborative setting.  This retreat will include a broad genre of arts and related sciences. Amenities will include solitary and collaborative work spaces, creative technology center, commissary, indoor performance and amphitheatre, gardens, and gallery.

Self-sustainability will be in the form of tourism. Opening the galleries, gardens, performance areas, and commissary to the public for income is the goal.












ARTIST INTERVIEWS:  https://www.youtube.com/embed/ucdvQFCvJZs


River Art Works will serve ALL acclaimed professional art forms and sciences that relate to arts bringing a positive energy to our region as well as its visitors. 


River Art Works will need a core group of citizens, businesses, and foundations to support the buildout of the retreat. Interested in supporting River Art Works?



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High School ArtTECH

River Art Works has begun development of a High School Extra curricula based on STEAM (Science, technology, Engineer, Arts, Mathematics) that prepares artists to:

  • broaden their skillset

  • introduce related technologies

  • digital, AR, laser and holography

  • learn basic art business skills.


 River Art Works uses the most artistically interesting technology to entice young artists to reach over the tech divide.

In other words, we offer artists a chance to develop the power of using both sides of the brain. Why business? It is a hard to find class even in colleges. 79% of artists are entrepreneurs. 

In turn they become more globally competitive in the arts.

Artist Sketching

Art Tournament

Summer 2022

There will be a total of three 20-minute rounds and 15 juried artists. FINAL ROUND includes the winners of the 3 rounds

1ST Place Winner takes home $250

2nd & 3rd Place takes home $100


All Art to be Auctioned at end of evening.

60% donated to River Art Works Building Fund

40% to the Artist


FOOD: by Food Trucks

TICKETS: $15 each, includes one beverage

ARTIST ENTRY FEE: $25, includes canvas and rent of easel

Artists responsible for supplying media

APPLICATIONS to be juried due by April 15, 2021

Painting Outside

Pop-Up Art Events

There will be a number of

plein aire events

during the warm seasons....

Pop-up in nature!

All Pop-Up Art events will take place in tourist driven locations. This allows artists opportunity to sell their creation and market themselves.

Ligonier Diamond events have ended for the summer. Indoor events are to come.

Artists must submit art examples

and be approved:


Artists may bring up to 6 paintings to sell, be prepared to produce art onsite. Supplies are responsibility of artists, including dropcloth.

easels available: $7/day.

remaining sites and dates to be announced




phone:  724-547-4121

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