News and update from the Department of Art and Design - University of Wisconsin - Stout.
Spring 2010

NEW FACULTY — Fall 2009
The new full-time faculty who joined the Art and Design Department in Fall 2009 are Tim Tozer (Foundations), Kevin Pontuti (Multimedia), Fei Huang (Graphic Design), and Ellery Connell (Multimedia).

Connell is a Multimedia Design professional, specialiazes in 3-D. Connell graduated from the Academy of Art in San Francisco. Before he came to Stout he taught seminars and made recordings. He specializes in teaching 3D classes and is very pleased with the work that his students have come up with. Even though students have different varying levels of commitment to classes he says his students have been surprising him. He says he gets some great work from unexpected places. His philosophy is that he needs to be out in the field working and updating his knowledge in order to keep his students updated. Ellery has worked with a variety of clients from the Bellagio and Caesars’ Palace, to the Star Trek Franchise. He is interested in a long term teaching career.

The Visual Arts Classic is a competition held for high school art students, wherein the artists are judged on pre-created pieces, as well as artwork created the day of the competition. Each year, students are given a theme, and research 12 artists whose work represents this theme. Teams of 12 students can compete in any of the 11 studio categories. UW-Stout hosts the competition for the regional level, and students who make first place are advanced to the State competition. The competition focuses on collaboration, and gives talented high school students exposure to the college art environment, as well as relationship-building opportunities should they choose to pursue higher education at Stout.

Tectonic industries is a collaborative art partnership of the Danish artist Lars Jerlach and the British artist Helen Stringfellow. The members began collaborating in 1999, while pursuing their MFA’s in Sculpture at Edinburgh College of Art, Scotland.

In 2001 they relocated to the USA, and they currently live in the Twin Cities. The fellowship was awarded to support their project transcribing the work of talk-show host Oprah Winfrey. From the artists: “For the duration of 2010, tectonic industries will transcribe from spoken word to text, every new episode of the Oprah Winfrey show and publish the results online every weekday, with summaries posted to Facebook and Twitter. For the Art(ists) on the Verge 2 exhibition, we would like to stream the transcripts into a physical space, to play simultaneously, creating a cacophony of instruction, information and entertainment. By transcribing the show we are removing all drama and visuals for the audience. The stream of words will reference media events, celebrities and wellness tips, forming a time capsule of sorts of the collective preoccupations of the year 2010, as reflected through the media empire of Oprah Winfrey. In this way, we want to communicate the necessity of re-examining that which we take for granted, by giving viewers the opportunity to examine our aspirations from the mundane to the fantastical.”

The International Expo, held in the Student Gallery 209, featured the art of students who had the opportunity to study abroad. The exhibit – which ran from February 15 – February 27 showcased pieces by Alicia Riehele (India); Elena Griggs (Hildesheim, Germany); Jeff Carpenter (Wanganui, New Zealand); Derek Huber (The American University of Rome, Italy); and Amy Ewing (Color Studio, Paris, France). Artist Amy Ewing’s statement reads: “There is no better way to learn about how an artist, such as Matisse or Monet, worked with color, than in the very places that they lived and worked every day. It was surreal being in locations such as Monet’s garden where he did his famous water lily paintings.” Besides providing a forum for the students’ works, the exhibit also focused on the personally transformative nature of study abroad, and how the experience impacted the way the artists perceived life after having been abroad.

Student Linnea LONDBORG makes a DIFFERENCE
Senior industrial design student Linnea Londborg was awarded $350 in financial assistance for developing her design of an assistive technology chair for the Senior Industrial Design Studio 431. Her chair was designed to help people with Muscular Dystrophy to complete the seemingly simple action of sitting and getting up from an office chair. The NISH Ability One design Challenge is a national contest for the development of assistive technology.

Twenty-four faculty members from UW-Stout’s Department of Art and Design displayed their work at the department’s Furlong Gallery. The exhibition ran from December 10, 2009 – February 5, 2010. The show featured pieces in many different media including: painting, printmaking, sculpture, metals and ceramics. In addition works, from various design areas – including Industrial Design, Interior Design, Graphic Design, Multimedia Design and Foundations were on view. The show gives faculty the opportunity to display their works in an excellent venue, while giving their students the chance to see samples of their instructors’ work – and learn by example.

Student Kayd Mustonen designs caringBridge website
As an intern at CaringBridge headquarters in Eagan, Mustonen designed 50 website templates for patients using the site. Each new template gives patients another option to personalize their page and help express themselves during a trying time in their lives. Mustonen designed pages that appeal to various groups of patients, including children, women and men. Among her many colorful themes were unicorns, ladybugs, hunting and such intangibles as hope, joy, laughter, peace and love.

Multimedia Student Nick Sorrentino is hired by Sears Subsidiary
Well before graduating from UWStout in Spring 2009, dedicated student Nick Sorrentino did not find it difficult to get a job at ServiceLive in Illinois, as a multimedia designer. He completed his senior project under the supervision of Uttam Kokil, entitled "LifeSync: A Personal Information Managemnet System," which was accepted as a research (poster 106) and presented on Research Day at UWStout in April 2009.

Immediately after graduation Nick started working as a designer for a wholly owned subsidiary of Sears Holding called ServiceLive, which is located at the Sears Headquarters in Hoffman Estates, IL. Nick Sorrentino enthusiastically shared his work experience as an interactive designer in an online interview.

“We are an online market place to connect people with service providers. We have both a business-to-business platform that many big companies like sears use for installation and maintenance of their products. We also have a consumer site that we just launched which is a project that I spent a good part of the last 9 months working on. Our process included wireframing user flows, which was then user tested. After this we learned from our tests and I created designs for every page within the site calling out all the interactions while working with Product Managers to document the site. Once this was complete we created another round of tests and tweaked the designs to meet the user's needs,” Nick explained.

His role includes front-end development. He covers a great deal of XHTML, CSS, Flash, and Javascript for the site to deliver to the developers.

“At my job I have to be very well rounded and adaptable in many areas. I am constantly given many projects that require skills in HTML, CSS, Javascript, Animation, Video, Illustration, Graphic Deisgn, Wireframing, managing dynamic system triggered emails, and web design. I have taken lead roles on many projects and have been given a lot of responsibility considering my age and experience. Overall it has been a positive experience and I enjoy the work I am doing.”
Nick further added.

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Department of Art and Design
University of Wisconsin-Stout
Menomonie, WI 54751
Phone: 715/232-1097 Fax: 715/232-1669