About the Experts

Much of the information provided on this website was drawn from interviews, conversations, and site visits with three area experts: liturgical artist, Nancy Chinn, liturgical consutant,Larry Hoy, and the liturgical art committee at First Presbyterian Church in Hightstown, NJ. Their willingness to share their time, their techniques, their experience, and their enthusiasm for this topic exemplifies the innate generosity and joy in practice of the liturgical artist.

Lawrence R. Hoy is the founder of Lawrence Hoy Studios, a full-service liturgical design firm located in Westport, CT. Larry holds a BFA from Pratt Institute, Brooklyn, NY, with concentrations in contemporary design and historic preservation. Larry has wide-ranging professional design experience and is recognized nationally as one of 40 Liturgical Consultants by the Federation of Diocesan Liturgical Commissions (FDLC). Larry has built his reputation on creating worship environments that are both timely and timeless, aesthetically beautiful and idea-driven. He is dedicated to solving design challenges innovatively, yet respectful of tradition and context. With over 400 projects to date, from small chapels to huge cathedrals, Larry continues to gain national recognition for his designs , winning 25 awards for his work. In addition, he’s created the furnishings for three Popes: St. John Paul II, Pope Benedict XVI and Pope Francis. Before founding Lawrence Hoy Studios, Larry was co-founder and President of Renovata Studios, located in Port Chester, NY.

Nancy Chinn is a multimedia artist who is both a painter and a creator of large, seasonal and site specific liturgical spaces.  Often this work is aerial, architectural in scale, and made from ephemeral materials for particular seasons or feasts. This mother of three now adult children and grandma of two began her liturgical work 30 years ago. The impulse was provided by frustration with imageless, symbol- impoverished, word-dependent worship in Protestant traditions. Today her work and her teaching is widely acclaimed by many Christian denominations and Jewish communities. She thrives on diversity, and has developed skills of dialogue that can build bridges across mistrust and fear. She has proven ability to listen and clarify, and provide structure for goals and priorities of hundreds of clients within the church ecumenical.  Ms. Chinn’s professional life was utilized in religious settings, creating liturgical art, serving as adjunct faculty in the Graduate Theological Union, Berkeley, and as artist in residence in various churches and seminaries. She is a lay feminist theologian. https://www.nancychinn.com/

First Presbyterian Church, Hightstown, NJ

Dave Teich has been a commercial artist for 25 years, beginning his career at the dawn of the digital age. He is a graphic designer, photographer and animator currently employed as a packaging designer. He started the Art Ministry at First Presbyterian Church in Hightstown three years ago and continues to serve on the committee. In addition he is responsible for the church’s electronic weekly newsletter, animated presentations for services, and provides additional graphic support and training to the church. http://home.comcast.net/~dteich/artministry.html   Contact Dave at artministry.fpch@gmail.com

Anne Willis received her BA in Art History with an emphasis on studio art at Colby College in Waterville, Maine in 1968. She attended graduate studies in printmaking at the University of Wisconsin, Madison, 1968-69, and studied tie-dye techniques at The Museum of the Palace of the Legion of Honor, San Francisco, 1971. Anne is the owner and chief designer of Locke Manor Collections, producer of shibori silk scarves, quilts, pillow covers and garments, as well as cotton dresses. She was one of the founding members of Art Ministry at First Presbyterian Church in Hightstown, and is the resident expert on fabric.  She has been chair of the committee since March, 2014.

Dave Petrenka credits his love for installing liturgical art to a memory of a movie he saw as a boy, in which a wood carver’s young apprentice helps build an altar. Being invited to join First Presbyterian’s liturgical art team three years ago was a dream come true. His love for art, which he studied in college, combined with professional knowledge in mechanical engineering makes him uniquely qualified to design, build and educate others on creating systems for installing liturgical art. Always ready with a sketchbook, Dave’s knowledge of sculpting, woodworking, and knots and lashes has made many creative installations over the years possible. Contact Dave at dpetrenka@verizon.net.