MFA AC+D At SOFA Chicago

October 25, 2017

Heidi Schwegler, MFA in Applied Craft + Design Chair, has curated an exhibition of AC+D students and mentors past and present to be exhibited at The Sculpture Objects Functional Art and Design (SOFA) Fair in Chicago on November 2-5, 2017.  In the true spirit of AC+D, the exhibition is being planned and designed by a group of alumni, with all gallery fixtures being flat packable, shipped to Chicago and then assembled for action. The exhibition is accompanied by a collaborative essay and a panel discussion that focuses on mentoring in academia and the broader community. 


MFA Applied Craft + Design: Thinking Through Making

Encouraging a cross-disciplinary studio environment in which the workshop is a lab to collaboratively explore design and making processes, the mentor-based MFA Applied Craft + Design Program welcomes students from a wide range of creative backgrounds to make original work with an applied purpose. Connecting design thinking to design doing, Oregon College of Art and Craft and Pacific Northwest College of Art have collaborated to create a unique MFA Program grounded in hands-on making, entrepreneurial strategies, and social and environmental engagement.

With a curriculum focused on the development of a strong artistic voice, the realization of work for a specific community or client, and entrepreneurism that connects making a living with making a difference, the MFA in Applied Craft and Design is the only graduate program of its kind. Thinking Through Making showcases a few of the characteristics that make this graduate program truly distinct: its Design Build Intensive, the mentor/student relationship, Creative Entrepreneurship, material exploration with wild abandon and the hybrid potential of a studio practice.

Presented by MFA Applied Craft + Design (Oregon College of Art and Craft and Pacific Northwest College of Art, Portland, Oregon; curated by Heidi Schwegler, Chair, MFA Applied Craft + Design (OCAC/PNCA). 

Click here to read the full essay.


Learning is Doing
Friday, November 3 | 1:00PM-2:00PM
Lecture Room B

Mentoring, a relationship focused on the development of skill and self, has become more prevalent and pertinent in the academic world of art and design. Designed to ease the transition from student to practitioner it can be utilized to refine skill, expand practical knowledge and promote real world experience with a practicing professional. This panel will discuss the benefits and potential challenges of mentoring in academia and look at community engagement as an alternative form of continuing education.  Moderated by Amy Santoferraro, Program Manager, MFA Applied Craft + Design (OCAC/PNCA). Presented by the MFA Applied Craft + Design (OCAC/PNCA) in conjunction with the SOFA CHICAGO Special Exhibit “MFA Applied Craft + Design: Thinking Through Making.”


More about the event from the SOFA CHICAGO website:

The Sculpture Objects Functional Art and Design (SOFA) Fair in Chicago is the premier gallery-presented art fair dedicated to three-dimensional art and design. On par with Art Basel and TEFAF Maastricht, SOFA is produced by Urban Expositions, a Clarion Events company.

Critically acclaimed and continuously running since 1994, what distinguishes SOFA from other top art events is its focus on three-dimensional artworks that cross the boundaries of fine art, decorative art and design.  SOFA is noted for its exceptional presentation, with an elite selection of international dealers presenting for sale one-of-a-kind masterworks in handsome, custom-designed gallery exhibits.

SOFA is held annually in the fall at Chicago's major destination, Navy Pier, with an average of 80 dealers and 35,000 people attending. Sales at the fair are estimated at 15-20 million dollars per show.

With a strong educational emphasis, SOFA CHICAGO includes an acclaimed lecture series and special exhibits exploring the artworks on view and surveying new trends in the art world.  A VIP program includes exclusive events tailored to high-profile gallery clients and collector/museum groups.