Gretchen Gasterland-Gustafsson earned a PhD in comparative studies in discourse and society. Her dissertation was titled Design for Living: German and Swedish Design in the Early Twentieth Century.
She has a Fil.Lic. in art history from Lunds University in Sweden, where she focused on contemporary art and social consciousness, specifically in the work of Adrian Piper, David Hammons, and Glenn Ligon. She was brought to Sweden on a Fulbright scholarship for a project centered on Swedish Emigration to Minnesota.
Gasterland-Gustafsson is currently the head of costume design for Out on a Limb Dance and collaborates with local artists on various projects involving both writing and making.