Gallery of Artists & Their Work

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Our 9 Resident Artists
Andre & Virginia Bally
Andre and Virginia Bally, contemporary artists in ceramics, glass, paper, and metal, joined Gallery 195 in April 2018.

The artists, who founded Bally Studios in 1994, have been greatly influenced by the cultures and design motifs of traditional Japanese Potters, as well as North American Indian Potters. These influences are reflected in the design and finishes of Virginia’s and Andre’s work. Their backgrounds in art and design, as well as long hours of research and trial-and-error testing make each piece they produce completely unique.

The Ballys' intriguing, stylized ceramic masks are on display now at Gallery 195. The pieces begin with alginate castings of a living person. This becomes the mold from which a ceramic mask is formed. Each mask has a unique halo made from cast glass or etched glass or ceramic. Various techniques of glazing, sandblasting, and etching create the finished masks.

In addition to the masks and bowls on display, the Ballys feature retablos made from found objects and embossed copper, rock n roll icons mounted on a hand painted wood base, in the style of Mexican folk art.

Virginia Bally received her Associates Degree in Fine Arts, with honors from North Harris County College, after winning a Fine Arts Scholarship on the strength of her ceramic work and being featured in the 1991 Juried Student Art Exhibit.

Andre Bally has been researching and experimenting with ceramics, glass, metal and paper for over forty years. Recently his primary focus has been on developing a sandblasting/etching technique which can be used on ceramic or glass.

Together they have pieces on exhibit in private collections in Canada, Europe, Northern Africa and the United States.

I loved painting and drawing all through school, but majored in something "practical" in college. Being a stay-at-home mom for three little girls and the wife of a career Air Force officer (who was often away for months at a time) kept me happy and too busy to think about art. 

My family and I eventually settled in Austin TX, and I had a long career with a financial company. As my retirement approached I began to think that if I ever wanted to paint seriously, I'd better get started.

A series of night classes in oil painting through the Art School at Laguna Gloria in Austin was the start of my painting adventures. 

At retirement we moved to San Antonio, and I began studying with Sydney Sinclair in Boerne, TX.   In addition I have taken workshops through the Coppinni Institute in San Antonio, studying with Carol Marine, Susan Carlin, and others.  A workshop with Nancy Bush took me to Panderes, NM, and I traveled to Kansas for a workshop with Kim Casebeer.  What great opportunites to see our beautiful country while learning new painting ideas and techniques from wonderful teachers! 

Landscapes and still life scenes are my primary subjects.    I love painting with oil paint because of its luscious buttery texture and forgiving nature.  Time at my easel brings me some of the happiest times of my life. 
 ​​Jim Heupel is a second-career professional nature and wildlife photographer, after his first career as a trial judge in the United States Air Force.

He has photographed professionally all over the world, having travelled to all seven continents as well as beyond both polar circles. He has photographed grizzly bears in Alaska, polar bears in the Arctic, bald eagles in Alaska, wild animals in Africa, hummingbirds in Ecuador, puffins in Iceland, and penguins in Antarctica.

He loves the landscape opportunities in the southwest United States, and of course, the Texas wildflowers in the spring. His favorite place to photograph? Wherever he’s photographing at the time! His favorite subject? It has to be grizzly bears—he’s spent over 6 weeks in the field photographing them over the past several years. Most recently he was at sea for three weeks in the Southern Ocean, photographing at South Georgia, the South Orkney Islands, and Antarctica (his third trip to Antarctica).

His images have garnered numerous national awards, including most recently both a coveted Judges Choice Award and a Showcase Image Award from the 2016 North American Nature Photography Associate. He has won two Showcase image Awards in previous years and been a finalist numerous times.

Mark's interest in photography began in the 1970’s.  He started with black & white film, shooting with a Canon AE1, and processed his own prints utlizing a bathroom as a makeshift darkroom.  This gave him even more opportunities to get creative while developing and printing his work.

Mark's favorite subject matter is landscape-- especially in the Texas Hill Country-- though he has many scenes from locations around the world.  He often shoots architecture, macro, animals and more, turning photos into "digital art" by giving them a "painterly" look, adding, removing or changing various elements in the scene or creating an entirely new work of art from various components.

Mark's work has been used for several magazine covers, articles and pages, and calendar covers.  His work has received numerous awards from local, state, and multi-state competitions.  In April 2017, he  was featured in a half-page spread in Shutterbug Magazine which is published worldwide.

Check out more of his work on his website  and visit our gallery here to see other works.

Visit his  Facebook page for regular updates on his activities.
 Grady’s paintings are influenced in great part by having grown up in West Texas. While attending Texas Tech and majoring in architecture, he became acquainted with watercolor media, which he used in his project design presentations. After graduating from Tech, Grady moved to Dallas, where he was a partner in an architectural firm for many years. After retiring to the Texas Hill Country, it was quite natural that he picked up the paint brush and joined a friend in an advanced watercolor class in San Antonio.

His subject matter tends to be those things that have a connection to his regional experiences. He loves the old farm houses, barns, rusted out vehicles, small towns, water towers, and West Texas landscapes. Being an architect, his painting style tends toward realism, but he occasionally finds himself working on images depicting adaptive impressions of subject matter of his growing-up experience. His work has also been influenced by travels to foreign places, as well as the local and regional area of Texas.

Grady now feels he is ‘living the good life’…… that is, happily retired, enjoying his family, playing golf, and living in the Hill Country and painting in his studio at home – nowhere but Texas.

Laura Lawson Allee

Laura is an oil painter who paints both en plein air and in her studio. She creates landscapes, portraits, and still life paintings that capture the beauty of fleeting moments.

Laura has been painting since she was 5, but only in recent years has she become a full-time professional artist. Influenced by her culturally rich childhood in Laredo, Texas, where her grandparents moved from Mexico to the US in the early twentieth century, she is inspired by the stories and collections of her extended family.

Laura has studied with various artists including Matt Smith, Carolyn Anderson, Zhaoming Wu, Dawn Whitelaw, and Derek Penix. She has also participated in many workshops and in art conventions in Washington DC, California, and Arizona. One of the greatest influences on her art career has been her late teacher and mentor, Angie Banta Brown of New Braunfels, Texas.

Laura’s worldly travels and experiences are what make her art unique. She has visited Rome, Paris, Sydney, Madrid and London, and is inspired by the locales and the art she has seen in her travels, visiting museums, galleries, and studios.

Laura’s art has sold in galleries, through commissioned works, and is collected internationally.

The artist lives in the Texas Hill Country on her secluded ranch, where she paints frequently with friends.
 ​​Lombardi was born in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, New York. This beautiful and historic area has become a mecca for artists today. Lombardi’s work, consisting of oils and pastels, sheds light on the tranquility and serenity of nature in the world around us. Using bright, contrasting colors and an extraordinary mixture of textures and floral designs, he paints the world as he sees it, drawing the viewer immediately into a focal point with crisp, precise details. His luminescent use of color creates a sense of movement and light providing a treat for the senses as the world seems to slow down.

The range of his fresh, optimistic work can now be experienced online at his website,, where original paintings and beautiful limited edition prints are available.
To own a Lombardi is to be the recipient of the artist’s celebratory spirit and inspiration.

Bob Lombardi Exhibits
  *  Ridgewood Art Institute – Regional Juried Show – New Jersey
  *  17th Annual Stockbridge Show – one man show – Massachussets
  *  Women’s Association – Morristown, NJ – one man show
  *  The American Artist Professional League – Salmagudi Club – NYC        5th ave
  *  Helotes Garden Show – Helotes, TX
  *  BPA Show – Boerne, TX
  *  19th Annual Parade of Artists – Boerne, TX

Karen Smith-Mangold

Smith-Mangold is a native Texan who realized at a very young age that drawing came naturally to her. She says that  she knew from the time she could hold a pencil that she was an artist. "I didn't choose art, it chose me!", she says. 

Being raised in a ranching family in the Texas Hill Country around Kerrville, Smith-Mangold's favorite subjects to sketch and paint were horses and wildlife. She continues to honor those ideals today, with western scenes and wildlife being the focus of her art. 

During the years Smith-Mangold was raising a family, she mainly worked full time as a computer graphic artist. These days she paints with oils, enjoying the richness and color vibrancy the medium affords.  She uses multiple glazes, giving her paintings a rich depth.  Glazing creates a unique "shine through" effect that cannot be obtained by directly mixing paints together. The artist enjoys exploring the effects of light in her paintings, which can transform a two dimensional canvas into a three dimensional experience.  
I’ve always been a very visual and tactile person. That more than anything is what led me to pottery as my art of choice. My pottery is not about precision, but about movement, flow, and balance. Through my education and experience as a designer I’ve studied extensively about space, the use of space, the negative and the positive, for both indoor and outdoor. I’ve worked at translating these design principles into my pottery. The organic feel of something that is hand built vs wheel thrown has probably been the most driving factor in the evolution of my work from purely wheel thrown to mostly hand built and altered pieces.

I don’t have a lifetime of pottery behind me so I find my work is still evolving as I explore and experiment with different techniques in glazing, alternate firing methods, and sculpture over functional. My desire is to have someone want to pick up a piece of my work, enjoy its visual aesthetics, its weight, its texture, its balance, whatever it was that made me appreciate my end result. As a studio potter I enjoy the exploration of “what can I do differently this time”.