Semmerling & Schaefer Mask Artists Studios

Bringing you the finest in comfortable, handcrafted art masks since 1986.

Semmerling and Schaefer
Mask Artists Studios
4041 N. Milwaukee Ave. Suite 302
Chicago, IL.  60618
(773) 697-5012

Bird Mask
Wolf Mask
Trout mask
Puppy Posers
Lion_and_devil masks


Inside Out Art Studio

Inside Out Art Studio is the home of Semmerling & Schaefer Masks, where Jeff Semmerling offers art classes, including classes and workshops in mask making for all ages. There are always hundreds of the finest, most comfortable, handmade masks in our studio gallery. See our site or visit in person:

    6 Corners/Portage Park
    4041 N. Milwaukee Ave.
    Suite 302 in Chicago

Jeff Semmerling's Revelatory Masks
By Sarah Terez-Rosenblum, a Chicago Sun-Times, Our Town blog entry on Jeff Semmerling's mask making.

    November 15 & 16 ~ 1:00 to 4:30 PM

    Learn the Semmerling and Schaefer methods for shaping leather masks. You will make and finish three to four leather masks and leave with sources for materials and tools.
    Tuition is $300 all materials included.

Reserve your space now by calling Jeff at (773) 697-5012 or writing to


    “By the Seat of Your Baggy Pants,”Masks and Physical Comedy!

    Join us for a fun, action filled workshop in mask performance. Our featured performance artist, Jacob Mills, will showcase his collection of over 25 masks from around the world. Through the mask, unleash and explore the comic vitality of physical comedy, Vaudeville, and Circus. For the skilled performer or interested novice, these skills will improve your understanding of performance, presence, and public speaking.

    Saturday September 20th, 2014 2:00 PM to 5:00 PM at the Filament Theatre Rehearsal Space, 4041 N. Milwaukee Ave. Chicago, Illinois.
    Tuition is $35 ~ Call to reserve a spot 773- 697-5012

    Vaudeville at Six Corners FALL Showcase!

    Features Four of Chicago’s Finest Variety Performers, Our Host Brad French, “That Juggling Guy,” The Semmerling Mask Players, Music, Dance and more in a Family Friendly Format.

    Sunday September 21st, 2014 3:00 PM @ the Filament Theatre, 4041 N. Milwaukee Ave. Chicago, Illinois.
    Kids and Seniors $5 ~ Adults $10 ~ Call to reserve a spot 773- 697-5012

    The shows are preceded by a workshop with a pro from the show. This Fall, Jacob Mills “Behind the Mask” will train you in mask performance. From 1:30 to 2:30 PM~ All Ages $5.

    Costume Con!

    Artists and craftspeople who make their own masks, hats and costumes will show their work at this Mask and Costume Market! Find just the right handmade thing to wear this Halloween or just the right artist to make it for you. Hosted by Inside Out Art Studio and Mask Shop!

    October 11th, 1:00 to 6:00 PM. At Inside Out Art Studio FREE!

    October Encore- Vaudeville Across the Generations.

    As part of Chicago Artists’ Month we will remount some of your favorite bits and skits from our first two shows and have a special guest or two.

    October 12th, 7:00 PM ~ Kids and Seniors $5 ~ Adults $10

College of Lake County Alumni News Article
Artist Behind the Mask, a profile of Jeff Semmerling

Chicago Actor Ben Muller took our weekend intensive in 'Shaping Leather Masks.' Then he wrote this great article for Jerome Ludwig's, "Culture Vultures" in the Chicago Reader.

Learning the Art of Mask Making at Inside Out Art Studio
Center Square Journal, by Jason Kreke
Presents our philosophies in this enthusiastic article about Inside Out Art Studio and Semmerling and Schaefer Mask Studios.

Semmerling Smile on "The Tonight Show with Jay Leno."
Here is a glimpse of Jeff's renown "Smile Mask" worn brilliantly by Jane the Phoole at a Ren. Fair.

"You and Me in the Morning."
Mask Artists, Inside Out Art Studio featured on WICU's, Aly Bockler in Lincoln Square segment, May 3, 2012.

"Mask Artists 2011, The Many Faces of Jeff Semmerling"

A Gallery Showing of the Masks of Jeff Semmerling.
Opening reception features Filament Theatre Ensemble.

Opening Reception October 14th 2011 from 6-8 pm show runs through November 13.

YouTube video on Inside Out Art Studios and Semmerling and Schafer Masks Artists featured on Chicago Revealed. Jeff Semmerling explains the philosophy of masks and his mask making.

Fall Fashion includes masks. So says Today's Chicago Magazine. Check out our masks in their photo spread

Semmerling & Schaefer Mask Artists Studio on Outside the Loop Radio hosted by Mike Stephen
Youtube video

"Jeff Semmerling on the WGNtv Midaday Fix"
On October 22nd 2009 Jeff took some masks to our local "Super Station" and did a nationally broadcast interview with Allison Payne of WGN's "Midday News." Here is a link to where it is posted on their site. Midday Fix: Mask Making

"What does a mask maker do after Halloween? A visit to Semmerling and Schaefer Mask Studios"
An article by Bonnie Jean Adams of Chicago Culture & Events Examiner.
Article link

Jeff Semmerling's "Inside Out Art Studio" -- Masks in Chicago
This Youtube video by Maren Kasselik is a great Slide Show/Article done 2009 in the Chicago Studio. Great images of our gallery and a lot of information packed in. They really capture our cultural mission. Check it out."

Clown Noses of Bolaroja
See their Youtube video. Most of the noses on these wonderful Bolaroja clowns in the video are made by Jeff Semmerling of our studio in Chicago.

Jeff Semmerling's residency at McKenzie Elementary School in Wilmette Illinois
Jeff Semmerling did a two week residency at McKenzie Elementary School in Wilmette Illinois this Spring. The article McKenzie students learn the art of mask-making in the Chicago Tribune's Voice of the Town describes his delightful visit with photos. Why not get him to come to your school for customized, projects and residencies with the "Artist in the Classroom?

Hosea Sanders w Jeff Semmerling ABC7 News at 11:00

Interview with Hosea Sanders ABC 7 Chicago News at 11:00
Watch Jeff Semmerling's interview with Hosea Sanders about Mardi Gras, Theater and Semmerling and Schaefer Masks at

"Made in Chicago: Inside Out Art Studio"
The above link takes you to an interview by News Radio 780 WBBM's Steve Miller which features Semmerling and Shaefer Mask Artists Studio and Inside Out Art Studio.

"The Magic of Masks"
The above link takes you to a website and video montage of Jeff Semmerling’s 2008 project funded by the Oppenheimer Family Foundation: Jeff created a 50 minute performance about the captivating power of masks and how they function in cultures the world over. You can book this show in conjunction with workshops in making masks or performing in masks. After the show your audience can do a performance, exhibition or have a parade of their own. Contact us to get things started.

"Mask-maker lives for double takes"
Mar. 31, 2008, Chi Town Daily News article by Jack Newell
Featuring Jeff Semmerling and Semmerling & Schaefer Mask Studio
Chi Town Daily News Article Link

"Masks For the Inside Out" by Kaiti Nicastri
An article about our Inside Out Studio and mask making in the Northwestern University Independent. Link to article

The Ash Girl
The Vittum Theater’s The Ash Girl Learning Guide for Educators features Jeff Semmerling of Semmerling & Schaefer Mask Studios. "Spotlight On Jeff Semmerling Mask Maker". The Interview of Jeff Semmerling and editing is by Lisa Barker; transcription by Jana Liles.

Ash Girl Masks

Vittum Theater’s production of The Ash Girl, . We were proud to be involved with this project which features many masks designed and created by Jeff Semmerling for the show. We are also proud of the Vittum Theater:

    “Originally conceived as a magnet for community involvement in the arts, the Vittum Theater was opened in 1998 to aid in community building and to foster the personal growth of members of the Northwestern University Settlement House. Since that time, the theater has developed into a regionally recognized resource for quality arts programming for youth. Its annual Season for Young Audiences currently accommodates 13,000 school age children from over 120 schools in Illinois, Indiana, Michigan and Wisconsin.”

Mask Maker
Mask Maker
Make Me a Mask,

an article by Paul Segedin, appears in the summer 2004, Chicago Learning Guide. See the PDF of the article.

The article showcases Jeff Semmerling*, Semmerling Schaefer Mask Studio, and Inside Out Studio. It focuses on Jeff's mask making classes.

"As one of the few instructors anywhere in the world currently teaching mask making, Semmerling attracts students from all over the country to his workshops. He also visits theaters, schools and park districts as a resident artist 'to promote masks as tools for teaching empathy and awareness.' "

*Jeff Semmerling, master mask maker, twenty years of professional experience, earned a B. S. in Theatre at Northwestern University in 1981. He has done graduate studies in anthropology and post graduate training in art, art history and art theory. In 2000, he traveled to Russia with the clowns of Patch Adams M.D. In 2001, he traveled to Macedonia and Italy to teach mask making and performance. With art teacher, Donna Lurie Semmerling, he has founded the Inside Out Art Studio in Chicago's Lincoln Square neighborhood, where they teach art as serious fun for artists of all ages.

All images and designs at this site ©1986-2012 Semmerling & Schaefer Mask Artists Studios
All rights reserved