The city of Luverne, Minnesota has set up a series of arts-related events to celebrate the 100th anniversary of Minnesota author Frederick Manfred (father-in-law of Associate Professor Thomas Pope). Throughout 2012, Luverne will honor literature and the visual arts. Programs are designed for adults, children, and teens. Many artists, speakers, and old friends of Manfred are scheduled to speak or present their work.

Dr. Philip Larson (Professor, Liberal Arts) displayed his sabbatical painting "Mycenaeans Versus Minoans" in March 2012 in the MCAD Concourse Gallery. Larson used as inspiration for the work the rock, cobblestones, and rubble that he and his wife, Miriam, encountered on a June 2008 scholarly art-and-archaeology tour of Greece, the Islands, and western Turkey.

Dr. Thomas O. Haakenson (Liberal Arts Chair) was invited to speak at the Weisman Art Museum for WAM Chatter in March 2012, offered in conjunction with the exhibition, "Käthe Kollwitz: Making Human."

Heidi Hogden '08's MFA thesis exhibition "42.88°N, -88.01°W" was shown at Tufts University Art Gallery this past April. The show consisted of a series of graphite drawings on paper that investigate the area around her home in Franklin, Wisconsin. Through the process of drawing, Hogden revisits the landscape of her childhood as it was, as it is and as she imagines it to be.

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Five student finalists of twenty-four participants were chosen to be displayed at Room & Board’s Edina showroom. Product entries were designed to be environmentally friendly storage solutions for accessories. After a public vote, Room & Board's design experts consulted the vote result in their choice of the overall winner.


"Clutch" by Steve Listwon


Faculty member Dr. Murphy Pizza convened a section on Religion in America at the Upper Midwest American Academy of Religion: Society of Biblical Literature Conference 2012. The conference was held at the Luther Seminary in Saint Paul from March 29 to 30.

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"Heavy," Jospeh Rizzo

Joseph Rizzo '03 was commissioned and featured in the March 2012 issue of Twin Cities METRO Magazine. His illustration "Heavy" was TC Metro's March commission.

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Students of the Professional Practice for Illustrators Spring 2012 class collaborated with City Pages Art Director Mike Kooiman on a cover project assignment. Students were pitched actual cover articles, and their designed covers are now live on the City Pages website.One student, Alyssa Liles, was asked to create a City Pages cover illustration about the Vikings stadium debate.

Kristen Lowe '88 recently received a Research, Scholarship, and Creativity Grant to fund her documentary "Painting the Place Between." The documentary features four contemporary painters who work from a subject we all have in common, the land. In Fall 2012, Lowe and the four artists will discuss the making of the documentary and present in-progress footage at MCAD.


Illustrator Cindy Lindgren '82 was contacted by the St. Croix Cholocate Company to produce limited edition handmade chocolates featuring her ginkgo leaf illustrations. The chocolates come in a keepsake box also decorated by Lindgren.

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Media Arts Adjunct Faculty Matt Ehling (founder of Public Record Media) has been named this year’s recipient of the John R. Finnegan Freedom of Information Award. Ehling is being honored for two decades of engaging Minnesotans in the civic process.

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Spencer Ruskin '10 designed interactive animations for the Health Partners website. Check them out below.

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As part of Walker Art Center's "Discourse and Discord: A Public Symposium," Media Arts Professor Piotr Szyhalski gave a presentation on Class in Residence (CIR) this past April. CIR is a special topics class where MCAD students engage with all aspects of the Walker Art Center throughout the semester.

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Luke Ellison MFA '12 has been awarded a fellowship at Kunstverein WorkART Program in Neuenhaus, Germany. He will be living in Germany and working for the program for two months this summer.

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Twelve members of the MCAD community (nine alumni, one student, two faculty) have been recognized with Artist Initiative Grants from the Minnesota State Arts Board. Click below for award details.

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Rob Nelson '01 (Film), founder of MER Bags in Brooklyn, New York, designs and stitches unique messenger bags. The mission of MER is to make bags that are simply designed but highly functional. Nelson and MER were featured on The Birdweel in March.

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Amit Tishler MFA '12 won an Award of Excellence in the Student Film category at the 2012 Canada International Film Festival for her film "Haxx."

Adjunct Faculty Jennifer Danos and Assistant Professor Natasha Pestich held a show at the Seerveld Gallery at Trinity College in Palos Heights, Illinois this past March. The show was titled "Save us all from a Hope Tree that has lost the faculty of putting out blossoms."

Illustrations by Teagan White '09 were featured in the October 2011 issue of Wired Magazine. White has also been commissioned to create two more illustrations for an upcoming issue of Wired.

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Dr. Kris Belden-Adams (Assistant Professor, Liberal Arts) will be presenting the lecture "Seeing Without Being Seen: Why Susan Sontag Has Been Overlooked" with co-presenter Dr. Allison Moore and at the Southeastern College Arts Conference (November 9-12) in Savannah, Georgia.

Vadim Gershman MFA '12 and Ryan Powell released their video for the track "Sugar," by New York electronic music producer Phaseone in May 2012. Sugar tells a story of two ex lovers failing to reconnect via text message as one is moving away for good. 

Bethany Kalk Documentary in Papua New Guinea

Bethany Kalk MFA ’05 has traveled to Papua New Guinea for the summer to complete her documentary film and book Tumbuna: Traditional Arts & Crafts of the Sawiyano.

The documentary studies the Sawiyano who live the East Sepik Province of Papua New Guinea and how traditional objects are crafted and used from gathered supplies. By following the daily lives of families, it is an intimate view into the lives of a tribe in the midst of cultural change. Check out the project and donate below.

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Bob Dylan Illustration by Kate Worum

Recent graduate Kate Worum's illustration of the Minnesota Bard Bob Dylan was featured in the Twin Cities METRO March issue.

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Travis Cushion '88 celebrated his five-year anniversary as the art director at Three Wide Media in Independence, Iowa, for Dirt Modified and Dirt Late Model magazines. Cushion also launched his own firm, Two Buff Dudes Inc., which specializes in design, marketing, consulting, and PR in the motorsports industry.

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In March 2012, Melodee Strong '06 co-curated "Fade 2 Blaq," an exhibition showcasing sixteen local artists of color from all backgrounds. The show included MCAD alumni and students Jennifer Garza-Stork '95, Christopher Aaron-Deanes '96, Kelly Brown '05, Nadia Pereira '12, and AnaLaura Juarez.

During the event, participants collected money for the North Minneapolis Tornado Relief Fund and arts organizations affected by the disaster.