About us

The Gilders’ Studio is comprised of a core group of highly skilled artisans and professionals with widely divergent backgrounds and training. When needed, we draw from a select group of talented gilders and artists from across the country, many of whom have worked with us for more than 10 years.

Our expertise ranges from conservation of monumental gilded sculpture to development of unique gilding and coating systems tailored for some of the most challenging environments on the planet.

The Gilders' Studio

Michael Kramer

President & Founder

Michael is the founder and President of the studio. He learned the trade from a master decorator while working his way through the University of Maryland in the late 1960s. In 1985 he formed the studio and has concentrated on broadening his horizons in decorative painting and all forms of gilding. Michael is a noted educator and author in his field, teaching for the Smithsonian as well as the Society of Gilders and is a Recipient of the Washington Building Congress’ Craftsmanship Award. A longtime member of the Society of Gilders, he served as president from 2006 to 2013

The Gilders' Studio

Lisa DaSilva

Master Gilder

Lisa graduated from the University of Maryland with a degree in Advertising Design. After several years in that field, she joined the studio in 1988 as an apprentice and has since moved up to become Executive Director. She is a master gilder and decorator with an extraordinary eye for detail. Lisa is a 2002 Recipient of the Washington Building Congress’ Craftsmanship Award.

The Gilders' Studio

Jill London

Master Gilder

Jill is a master gilder and educator, having over 30 years experience. She got her start in the field by serving a traditional apprenticeship after graduating from the Tyler School of Art at Temple University. A long serving board member of the Society of Gilders, Jill served as Education Chair for the Society for over 15 years and is a noted educator in the gilding arts across the country. She has studios on the East and West Coast, where she incorporates gilding into her paintings and vice versa.

The Gilders' Studio

Dennis DaSilva

Gilder

Dennis studied Art at the University of Maryland and the Corcoran. A talented sculptor and painter, he joined the Studio in 1996. Since that time, he has become an expert gilder as well as executing murals, building maquettes and decorative painting. Dennis is a 2002 Recipient of the Washington Building Congress’ Craftsmanship Award.

The Gilders' Studio

Alex Robinson

Gilder

Alex has worked as a gilder since high school and during his tenure at Colgate University, where he majored in Art, with Honors in Science.

Since that time he has continued to expand his expertise and knowledge in the areas of conservation and restoration of gilded objects and surfaces. He works on interior and exterior architectural gilding, eglomisé, decorative painting and also as an inventor.

The Gilders' Studio

William Holton

Gilder

William graduated from the University of Pennsylvania in 2003 with an MFA in Painting. He then moved to New York and first worked with the Gilders’ Studio on the gilding of the top of the New York Life building in Manhattan in 2007. He has been enthusiastically working as a gilder ever since.

William received a Southern Arts Foundation/NEA grant in 1996 and has shown his work throughout the US for 25 years.