Meet Our Graduate Students
"I question our need to conceal unseen systems and our compliance with forceful self-categorisation. Through subtle alterations of documents, images, and spaces, I displace normative expectations and evaluate the systemic bias and hierarchy within such institutional systems. In doing so, my practice relies heavily on the materiality of institutional space and works to make invisible labour visible. Currently, I am on a quest to understand and critique why, within the structure of these systems, we are expected to check a box or fill in a blank that determines our identity. When unable to do so, we are forced to misrepresent ourselves."
"I am invested in the process of generating novel geographic concepts--and expressing them-- through visual media, focusing on photography, video, and interactive web design. There is a raw, direct connection between the speculative types of “spaces” conjured in the mind’s eye by geographical writers and the articulation of those spaces in visible forms. Full comprehension of these invisible spaces that we live in cannot be achieved with words alone."
"I have spent the last two decades at the intersection of art and social practice, focused on radical healing, as you can see with my creation of “Art Church” and “Harvest Feast”. Radical Healing is a process of unlearning the internalized ideas that keep us from imagining new possibilities. My practice is the means to unlock these issues."
"I am a visual artist whose work explores the structure and life cycles of systems. I begin with the premise that my art practice is a self-contained system that can give insights on the nature of other things we observe and are a part of. Time is an important point of focus in my work because it is through the passage of time that we experience changes in systems. My aesthetic interlocks nostalgia for the forgotten past with anticipation for an imagined future."
“In printmaking I find a back door to image making. As I work, I am paying attention to what happens as I ink the plate, as two plate marks overlap, or as the pressure from the press wrinkles a newsprint mask. I am on the lookout for errors, following, cultivating some and eliminating others. There is an ongoing tension between wear and care in relation to printmaking matrices and sculptural objects. I am drawn to the moral ambiguities of sanding, polishing, oxidation, and stains. My images tend to be partial, isolated fragments that, because of their intimate scale and means of selection, suggest a wider field of information. In the relationships between visual fragments or objects, I am looking for a certain balance point, a tension between resemblance and difference which resists closure.”
"Non-objective artwork is the culmination of pure and raw emotion, which is why I choose to create in this way. My forms reflect lost memories, these memories still exist, but are not as accessible as they once were; creating art helps me access these forgotten situations, ideas, and relationships."
"I often find my art practice as a balance between attempts to preserve and yielding to decay. It is aided by collecting organic ephemera, photos from discarded family albums, scraps of material. We refer to such objects to uphold the memories we want to keep. I’m interested in reclaiming images that someone had chosen to discard at some point—perhaps someone’s face is blurred in the photo, or the people are long forgotten. I find that these castoffs tend to disrupt the narratives that we form about the past. Through prints and installation, I resituate these objects and build new narratives that evoke a sense of nostalgia."
"I am fascinated by movement and stasis in bodies and systems, and the forces that act upon them over time. I make films that consider the implications of these forces, such as how the body at rest is simultaneously pathologized and desired, or how the politicized body is conscripted by larger social systems into labor or forced migration."
"For the last year my work has been primarily shaped by botanical and historical research in Africa and the Americas. The research-oriented and social practices of artists Kapwani Kiwanga, Mary Mattingly, Fritz Haeg, Jennifer Rubell, Rirkrit Tiravanija and Mierle Laderman Ukeles inspire me. I also draw inspiration from farmers and chefs who reclaim their culture’s plants and cuisines like Liberian farmer Morris Gbolo, Peruvian chef Virgilio Martinez Veliz, Oglala Lakota chef Sean Sherman and my mom Rosalind Lindquist who founded the first West-African restaurant in LA."
"Through painting and collage, I connect fragmented storylines, considering multiple versions of the same moment. As these multiple timelines converge, recognizable features and ambiguous marks attempt to recall a moment that exists somewhere between intimacy and anxiety. Torn pieces of paper, layers of paint, and shifts in color allow time to collapse onto itself. Scattered bits of collage, paint, and figuration become complex images that drift between varying points of view. This tension between perspective, narrator, and time is ever present, further blurring the line between memory and reality, truth and lies, past and present."
"Broadly speaking, I’m interested in material that humans create. My practice has developed from connecting with architecture and the built environment to asking more specific questions of human processes and resource use. The forms I create pose the question: what becomes of the fruits of our labors after the labors themselves cease?"
Kevin O'Meara is a Minneapolis-based photographer. After graduating from Augsburg College with a BA in Screenwriting, Kevin refocused his work to still imagery, particularly silver-based processes. His first book was released in 2016 on A Love Token Press and explored self-identity and regionalism. His work has shown in Minneapolis, Chicago and Los Angeles.
"I am an interdisciplinary artist. I sniff out, paw at, bite on, and then finally, work in many divergent art concentrations. Switching up media and trying new things is part of my art DNA. For all the variety within my practice, sketchbook drawing is consistently at its core. Recurring symbols of teeth, tongues, vermin, and domesticated animals are echoed across other media as signifiers of consumption and primal urges. These symbols continue in my print and installation work where I value the power of dissemination and the surreal nature of multiplicity."
"In my work I try to imagine an existence beyond the corporeal. Mapping both experienced and imagined confluences of energy I search to locate vehicles of life force. As a multiracial artist, identity is central to my practice. While investigating it through artistic process, I also seek freedom from the more limiting aspects of it."
"My comics are heavily symbolic and occult visual stories, presenting mysteries and confronting the readers with more questions than answers. Within the panels, my art explores magic as knowledge and vice versa, internal versus external worlds, and the mundane fabric of human life as intrinsically metaphysical. Magic is a beautiful subjectivity that paints my work, as well as a mental and spiritual tool within the narrative worlds for characters to enact violence, offer peace, or alter their reality."
“Fit is a constant, reoccurring theme in my work. I feel that dress (in all its complex elements that extend far beyond garments) never seems to fit me in all of the ways I need. Further, I have little context for how I am interpreted and how I should interpret my own identity. I exist in space and have to navigate through it, so I need to see and understand my body, as I want it to be, in the context of space. Art allows me to create that space to observe myself, whether it directly incorporates my own body or uses a proxy.”
"In my work, I investigate meaning making, memory creation, and technology in the context of a changing sociopolitical landscape, with specific focus on the intersection of the current state of surveillance and our cultural impulse to publicly self-curate individual identities as well as specific moments in time."
Erika Terwilliger works primarily in ceramics, fibers, and printmaking to craft multi-work installations that investigate collections as sites for rotation, stagnation and protection. Her work relies on time and labor intensive making processes to explore relationships between the human and the natural, the organic and the inorganic.
Born and raised in Eau Claire Wisconsin she is influenced by a childhood spent planting, harvesting, and preserving produce from her family’s large garden. She attended St. Olaf College and received her B.A. in studio art with distinction in May of 2016. She took part in St. Olaf’s 5th year emerging artist program and is currently pursuing her MFA at the University of Minnesota.
"My work takes a critical look at societal, political and cultural divisions as seen through the lens of someone who has experience in multiple parts of government. The Army, Photojournalism and Law Enforcement communities play a huge role in our everyday life. However, one must be apart of these communities to fully understand them. My work attempts to peel back the curtain between these communities and the greater population."
"Through Hnav Hmoob, I am able to formulate and ask different kinds of questions relating to what constitutes Hmong identity, culture, gender, and sexuality. The wearing of Hmong dress has been challenging because I am always aware of gender and cultural performativity. Questions such as, how are Hmong subjecthood produced, who creates Hmong culture and how do we grieve what has been forgotten or lost is what Hnav Hmoob seeks to explore."