About Us / Your Team

Kirstyn Van Patten

Image: Kirstyn Van Patten Client Director for SmartSitting

From an early age, I had a love of all things artistic. Whether it be putting on a play in my garage or choreographing dance routines to movie soundtracks with my younger sister, I loved expressing myself through new and varied artistic avenues. I went on to study Art History at CSU Long Beach for my Bachelor’s Degree. There, I was inspired to start traveling the globe when an art historical tour of Greece was offered by one of my professors. The travel bug in me was awoken and I set out to discover the art and cultures of the world.

While studying abroad in Paris, France for two years, I nannied for an English family. The children and I would spend our free time exploring the many parks, historical sites, and museums of the city. I shared my love and knowledge of art with them and they shared their unguarded opinions and thoughts about the art. I also spent a year as an assistant teacher in a French high school. My time spent there exposed me to an education system where the arts were considered a core subject and I saw the positive impact this left on the students. This inspired me to go into arts education and strive to strengthen our own education system.

Following my time in Paris, I received my Master’s Degree in Art History at Brooklyn College. I spent a year as a SmartSitter with an amazing family in the city who embraced my love of art. We spent countless hours creating, imagining, and talking about art. A life-long bond was created with my SmartFamily during that time and I still see them quite often. Then, I spent a year as an artist’s assistant for the Learning Through Art program with the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum. We worked in several 3rd grade classes teaching technique, creating works, and talking to the children about art. I also worked at The Museum of Modern Art where I was able to see world-renowned exhibitions and get an insider’s take of their education programs. Each of these experiences fostered a growing passion for arts education that carries over into all my pursuits.

  • Image: Dara Epstein Executive Director for SmartSitting

    Dara Epstein

    Executive Director

  • Image: Suzie Zeldin Director of Operations for SmartSitting

    Suzie Zeldin

    Director of Operations

  • Image: Kirstyn Van Patten Client Director for SmartSitting

    Kirstyn Van Patten

    Client Director

  • Image: Emily Palmer Director of Temp Placements for SmartSitting

    Emily Palmer

    Director of Temp Placements

  • Image: Emma Davis Director of Recruitment for SmartSitting

    Emma Davis

    Director of Recruitment

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