Work by Lindsey Ries
Work by Lindsey Ries

What does it take to be a top seller at the annual MCAD Art Sale? We asked Lindsey Ries, one of the best of the last two decades, to talk us through her experience and share her secrets. 

Lindsey Ries ’12, MFA, is a painter and teaching artist based in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Her personal work explores combinations of abstraction and realism to portray different takes on landscape and representational painting. 

What mediums do you primarily work in?

Painting. Primarily oil but also been exploring mixed media more.

What has MCAD meant for you in terms of launching your creative career?

MCAD has been a HUGE jumping off point for me—from the art sale, to show invitations, to getting connected with other people/artists—it’s been great. I still get notes from people who remember my work from past art sales or know someone who bought something from one of them. 

Where are you now in your career?

Still painting :), teaching some, and now represented by four galleries. Two in Minneapolis, one in Des Moines, Iowa, and one in Charleston, South Carolina.

Can you describe a memorable sale or moment from the Art Sale?

The most memorable moment for me was the year I sold out of everything I had halfway through Friday night. And I didn’t have anything at home to bring and fill my wall, that was it. 

What do you love about making art?

I love the connection people make with my work and that it sometimes reminds them of a place they’ve been or seen. That connection is great. 

Have you ever purchased anything from the Art Sale or done an art swap? 

I’ve swapped with a couple of friends. It’s such a great and fun thing to do. They’re amazing abstract pieces full of color! 

Is there any Art Sale work by alumni that has inspired you? Describe it!

I shared a wall one year with Ryan Hughes and that was fun. Ashely Peifer’s work is great, Kayla Plosz is crazy talented, so is Ashley Mary. It’s funny, a lot of the work that inspires me the most is abstract and nothing like mine, but I love the playful aspects of the work. I love to go back every year and check out the color palettes people are using. 

What Art Sale advice would you give to young MCAD artists?

Start as soon as you can and sell as long as you can. It’s such a huge opportunity to get your name out there. Show up to the sale, engage, be pleasant, hold conversations, and remember people. You as a person matter to the people buying your work, too. At least that’s how it’s been for me. 


Additional Top Sellers

*Note that the term "Top Seller" is defined both in sales and number of pieces sold.
will not have works for sale at this year's MCAD Art Sale; only current students and graduates from the past five years are eligible to participate.