Online since 2004.  This page last updated Jan 2017

Upper School Visual Arts Department

Meet the FIS Upper School Visual Arts faculty members and learn a little about what they do both in the art studios and outside of school.

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Darren Trebel joined the faculty at FIS in 1995 and has been Head of the Visual Arts Department since 1999. He holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts from Syracuse University (NY) where he studied art history, painting and art conservation techniques, completing the last year of his undergraduate studies in Florence, Italy in 1989. He was awarded a Masters in Art History (Italian Renaissance Art and Contemporary Theory) from the University of Virginia in 1992 and has taught art and art history for twenty-three years. Mr Trebel is a painter and has been fortunate to have had several recent solo exhibitions in the Frankfurt area. He also was an avid foil fencer and taught beginning fencing at FIS for fourteen years, both as an elective and as an after-school activity.  Mr Trebel also serves as the elected faculty member of the FIS Board of Trustees.


Mr Trebel teaches grade 8 Visual Arts, grade 9 Visual Arts, Printmaking, grade 10 Foundations Art and IB Diploma level Visual Arts classes and has also taught Theory of Knowledge. He is a Senior Visual Arts Examiner for the IBO and has been the IBO's Chief Examiner for the Diploma level Art History program for four years. Mr Trebel can usually be found in room 352 on the Main Campus.




William Owen joined the art department in 1997. He has a BA in Fine Arts (with Honors) and received his Art Teacher's Diploma with distinction. Although Mr Owen started his career in 'normal' schools, he enjoyed the multi-cultural experience of teaching Chinese students so much that he went on to teach in an Arab school and then in the Frankfurt International School. He has prepared students for O/A level, GCSE, and IB Diploma level art examinations. His after school art clubs are popular and have increased from 1 to 3 sessions per week. Mr Owen is an exhibiting painter and has taken part in over 40 art exhibitions in several countries and his paintings are in private collections across the world.  In addition to his teaching at FIS, for nearly ten years now,  Mr Owen has been responsible for the foundation and running of a childrens' home in Nepal.


Mr Owen teaches grades 6 through 9 Visual Arts classes. He can usually be found in room 347 on the Main Campus.




Yuki Hirao joined the Visual Arts Department in 2014.  She is originally from Tokyo, Japan and moved to the USA for her university studies.  She earned a Bachelors degree from San Diego State University, California with honors and a Masters of Fine Arts from Rhode Island School of Design, also winning the Charlotte Perriand Award from the Division of Architecture and Design.  She began her career working as a product and furniture designer for several years at prestige firms in Los Angeles, California, but discovered that she missed the magic of exploration and learning that can only be found in the classroom.  She returned to college as a professor of design at the Savannah College of Art and Design in USA.  Fired up in her desire to instill a better understanding of art, she wanted to work with younger students with international backgrounds like herself.  She has taught at international schools in both Tokyo, Japan as well as Rome, Italy.  Her own art works have been exhibited in solo and group shows all over the USA, Asia and France.


Ms. Hirao teaches grades 6 through to the IB Diploma Visual Arts classes, including the new 3D elective classes she developed, based on her strong 3D background.  She can usually be found in room 351 on the Main Campus.



Jessica Russo Scherr will join the FIS Visual Arts faculty in August of 2017.  She holds a BFA in Experimental Studios from the University of Hartford and a MA in Art Education from Boston University. In August of 2007, Jessica was awarded a Fulbright Distinguished Teaching Awards Grant by the US State Department and spent the duration of her scholarship teaching in the Josef Vydra School of Applied Arts in Bratislava.  For the past eight years, she has been the visual arts instructor at the International School of Florence, where she has taught primarily middle school, high school and Diploma level visual arts classes.  She is also a Visual Arts Examiner for the IBO.  Jessica is an accomplished painter and collage artist and has won many awards and recognition for her work, including Best of America award at the Florence Art Festival in 2009 and Best in Show at the same event in 2102. She had her imagery published in the World's Calyx Journal of Art and Literature by Women in Winter 2003.

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