Our program has helped many students to attain a level of professionalism that has allowed them to be admitted to some of the best graduate schools in studio art, art history, and architecture. Some alumni have started successful businesses: video production companies, graphic design studios, photo studios, and multi-media production companies. Many students have also gone on in other fields such as psychology, journalism, and the law.
Many Art & Art History majors remain in the Boston area and continue to have contact with the university and individual faculty members. Many also maintain their interest in art, attending exhibitions and lectures at local museums and arts organizations, with those inclined toward studio practice continuing to make new art. Some have even returned to teach at the university. All of this is evidence of the impact an arts education has on the lives of our students. It is something that they will have perpetually, a touchstone that allows them to fulfill the Department’s concern for developing critically aware, intellectually supple members of society.
Students continue to develop from the foundation they built in the Art & Art History major. Our students have gone on to study for the PhD in art history at the Courtauld Institute of Art in London, Oxford, Brown, Columbia, Berkeley, and New York University. Others have pursued the MA in art history at Williams College, Brown, and the University of Munich and in film history at New York University,. Students have also pursued training at the masters level in fields related to art history: in Art Business at Sotheby’s Institute of Art in London, in Arts Management at Boston University, and in Art Education at the Massachusetts College of Art. They have gone on to work as university professors, gallery directors, museum curators, archivists, librarians, and secondary school art teachers. One recent graduate is a junior curator at the J. Paul Getty Museum in Los Angeles. Another is a curator at the American Museum of Folk Art in New York. Yet another is the director of the highly regarded avant-garde art gallery Hallwalls in Buffalo. Some graduates work in art conservation; one alumna is paper conservator at Harvard’s Fogg Art Museum, while another is a senior archivist in the Harvard University Archives. One graduate is the art librarian at John Cabot University in Rome. Another is developing the data for the Central Registry of Information on Looted Cultural Property, 1933-1945.
Students also go on to study studio art at the graduate level. Students have received the MFA from the School of the Museum of Fine Arts, Cornell University, Cranbrook, the San Francisco Art Institute, the Tyler School of the Arts, School of the Art Institute in Chicago and the Massachusetts College of Art. A few have completed professional degrees in architecture and in historic preservation, arts administration, and art conservation. They have become photo-journalists, videographers, multimedia artists, and film-makers, museum preparators, muralists, lighting designers, as well as artists working and exhibiting in Boston and beyond; some of our alumnae have become studio faculty at colleges and art schools.
A major in Art & Art History opens opportunities in many fields. Critical thinking skills honed in our studios or classrooms serve students going on to careers in arts-related fields and beyond. Some of our graduates choose to continue their studies in graduate school, including some of the country’s most prestigious institutions. The Art Department strives to maintain connections with our graduates, including through an Art & Art History Department Facebook group, which encourages continued networking. The department organizes periodic roundtable discussions with alumni, which provides current students a sense of the diverse career paths available to them.
Yasmeen Abdallah graduated magna cum laude from UMass Boston in 2013 with a double major in Art (studio focus) and Anthropology, along with a minor in Women’s and Gender Studies. In 2012, she completed an Honors thesis in Art, which culminated in an exhibition at the Harbor Gallery. While at UMass Boston, Yasmeen also was a student curator of the 2013 UMass Boston Film Series and completed archaeology field schools in North Stonington, CT (in partnership with the Eastern Pequot Tribal Nation) and in the Hassanamesit Woods in Grafton, MA (with the Nipmuc Nation).
After graduating from UMass Boston, she attended the Pratt Institute in New York City, receiving a MFA with distinction in 2015. Since graduate school, she worked at various galleries and as a studio assistant for several artists. She has also been an instructor at One River School of Art + Design in NJ, Open Source Gallery: Koko, and at Project Art, serving as Resident Artist for the Art & Social Practice Residency program. At Greenspace NYC, she has taught workshops, delivered artist talks, and exhibited her artwork. She has also given artist talks at Columbia University Teaching College, Pratt Institute, and Sarah Lawrence College.
Yasmeen currently works as an artist, educator, and independent curator, examining aspects of history, ephemera, tangibility and space. Finding potential in discarded materials, she applies her anthropology background to her artistic process, treating these remnants as artifacts of our immediate present and transforming them into reanimated objects. Her work has been exhibited at various venues, including the Elizabeth Foundation for the Arts, El Museo de los Sures, Space 776 Gallery, and K&P Gallery. In 2016, Yasmeen was selected for the 2nd Annual Pratt Alumni Exhibition. She has recently begun working as an independent curator, co-curating exhibitions at Brooklyn's Up Projects and Long Island City's Local Project.
Click here to see Yasmeen's website
reviewed Summer 2017
Jeremy Ackman graduated with a BA in Art (studio focus) in 2012. Originally from Cincinnati, Ohio, he served in the Ohio National Guard in order to fund his study of art at Bowling Green State University. However, his education was put on hold during deployments to New Orleans, Kosovo, and Iraq. In 2009, he and his wife Rachel moved to Boston, where he enrolled at UMass Boston. In 2016, Jeremy received a MFA in Photography at the New Hampshire Institute of Art. During graduate school, he exhibited his black and white photography in galleries in New York, Boston, and Minneapolis. Most recently, his work has been featured in shows at Boston's Panopticon Gallery and Scollay Square Gallery, Chicago's Filter Space, and the Phoenix Art Museum. His work has also been featured in "Black and White" magazine; and he has produced artist books, including "Subway Portraits" (2014).
updated Summer 2017
Click here to see more on Jeremy Ackman's photography
Amanda Bock graduated summa cum laude in 2006 with a BA in Art (art history focus) and a minor in Anthropology. In her senior year, she was the recipient of the Paul Hayes Tucker Prize for art historical research and writing. In 2007 she began her graduate studies in art history at Princeton University, where she specializes in the history of photography. In 2010 she was awarded the prestigious four-year Horace W. Goldsmith Curatorial Fellowship in Photography at the Philadelphia Museum of Art, where she researched and catalogued a newly-acquired archive of over 3,000 photographs by the American modernist Paul Strand. She also co-curated a major retrospective exhibition of Paul Strand’s photography and film which was on view at the Philadelphia Museum in the fall of 2014 and is presently traveling to the Fotomuseum Winterthur (Switzerland), Foundation MAPFRE, Madrid (Spain), and the Victoria and Albert Museum, London (UK). She was co-author and editor of the exhibition catalogue of the same title, Paul Strand: Master of Modern Photography, published by Yale University Press. She also curated several smaller exhibitions at the PMA, including Artificial Light: Flash Photography in the Twentieth Century (2014) and Family Portrait (2013). Amanda is presently completing her dissertation, Staging the Social Document in the Progressive Era: Jacob Riis, Frances Johnston, and Lewis Hine, and is a part-time research assistant in the Department of Photographs at the Princeton University Art Museum.
For the New York Times review of the Paul Strand exhibition co-curated by Amanda, Click here
Gillian Canavan graduated summa cum laude with a BA in Art in 2010, focusing on art history and printmaking. She interned at the Peabody Essex Museum and Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, before moving to New York, where she began writing for the Guggenheim Museum. In 2015, she graduated with an MA in the history of art from the Institute of Fine Arts, New York University. As an MA candidate, she presented at the Institute's 2014 China Project Workshop symposium; traveled to South Korea on a research trip with the support of a Shelby White and Leon Levy grant; and presented a paper at Concordia University's 2015 Art History Graduate Student Association Annual Conference in Montreal. Her graduate thesis explored artist recreations of architectural spaces in soft material, identifying the structures as sites of nomadic habitation and containers for a fluid concept of belonging. Gillian currently works at Pace Gallery in New York as a Staff Writer in the Research and Archives department, where she writes research-based texts in support of the gallery's artists and for exhibitions. She was recently involved in collaboratively writing the winning submission for the Illuminated River International Design Competition, a major public art project for the River Thames in London. Gillian also works as a freelance writer and editor, and continues to pursue her visual arts practice.
reviewed Spring 2017
Charlie Jo Crowell
Charlie Crowell graduated magna cum laude in 2013 and is a visual artist living and working in New York City. He has done cultural production and arts intervention work as a production coordinator for VOLTA NY 2016 and as a production assistant for Creative Time in 2015. Additionally, he has worked at Pace Gallery, MoMA PS1, Institute of Contemporary Art, Boston, and the Harvard University Graduate School of Design doing preparator and art handling work. As an arts producer, Crowell has worked very closely to realize many large scale artworks with artists and curators ranging from Nato Thompson and Simone Leigh to Derrick Adams and Mary Walling Blackburn, among others. Crowell takes great pride in supporting the work of artists and arts institutions championing positive social change and promoting free and accessible arts programming. As a practicing artist, Crowell works across media, focusing on the interplay of time, memory and the evolution of emotions.
reviewed Spring 2017
To learn more about Charlie Crowel, visit his website at lookcharlie.com.
Liz Doles graduated summa cum laude in 2007 with a BA in Art (art history focus) and Japanese Culture. While at UMass Boston, she was the recipient of the Art Department’s Sam Walker Scholarship (2006) and the Ruth Butler Travel Scholarship (2006). When she completed her UMass Boston studies, Liz was a fifty-seven-year-old single mother in an empty nest. With nothing to keep her home, she set out with a pinhole camera to find and photograph places of spiritual significance. She has supported her travels with various grants and sometimes by teaching English as a Second Language. In 2009, she taught English to young Tibetan Buddhist monks at the Royal White Monastery in Kathmandu. She was artist-in-residence at Red Gate Gallery in Beijing in 2009-2010. In 2011, she went to Sri Lanka on a Fulbright Fellowship to document that country’s architectural heritage with pinhole photography. In addition, she made photographic portraits of Sri Lankans from all walks of life, a project which was exhibited at the American Center in Colombo (part of the American Embassy). These pinhole images have also been shown in Boston’s Open Door Gallery and the Permanent Mission of Sri Lanka to the United Nations in New York. In addition, they have been collected in a book entitled Resplendent Sri Lanka. In 2013, Liz settled down in Trenton, New Jersey. Currently, she is working on a photo essay about Trenton and teaching ESL at Latinas Unidas, a program assisting Trenton’s Latino immigrant population. Beginning in September 2015, she will depart for Morocco, where she will serve as a Peace Corps volunteer teaching art and English in that country’s Youth Development Program; and of course, she’ll be busy making photographs.
Nicole Farland graduated summa cum laude in 2011 with a BA in Art (studio focus) and a minor in Anthropology. During her final year at UMass, she completed an honors thesis that combined her sculpture, printmaking, and installation work, and culminated in an exhibition at the Harbor Gallery. Following graduation, Nicole attended the 3D Fine Arts graduate program at Massachusetts College of Art and Design and graduated in 2013 with an MFA. She has since taught classes in textile art processes at the School of the Museum of Fine Arts and the Eliot School. She has also worked in education and visitor services at a number of historic and cultural sites, including the Old North Church and Historic Site, the Old State House, and the Higgins Armory Museum in Worcester, MA. Nicole currently works as a professional seamstress and knitter, specializing in creating custom garments and repairing heirloom textiles. She also maintains an active studio practice, making sculpture and installation work that incorporates traditional textile processes and mass-produced objects, exploring connections between the handmade and the readymade.
reviewed Spring 2017
To see more of Nicole's work, visit her website at nicolefarland.com
Skyela Heitz graduated in 2006 with a BA in Art (studio focus). While a student at UMass Boston, she was director and curator at the Harbor Gallery from 2004 to 2006. After graduating, she worked at the front desk of the Institute of Contemporary Art in Boston. It was there that she became interested in the behind-the-scenes responsibilities of the museum’s Registrar Department, where she volunteered to help install various artworks by artists such as Tara Donovan and Rachel Perry Welty. These experiences led to her current position as Registrar at the Barbara Krakow Gallery, one of the most important galleries of contemporary art in Boston. The gallery features art in all media by emerging and established national and international artists, with a special focus on minimal and conceptual art. The gallery represents the estates of Sol LeWitt and Fred Sandback and regularly exhibits work by Josef Albers, John Baldessari, Tara Donovan, Mel Bochner, Alex Katz, Ellsworth Kelly, Julian Opie, Richard Serra, and many others. Skyela’s position involves a range of skills from cataloguing and writing condition reports to working with artists and clients. She especially enjoys the intimate, up-close access to artworks, many of which are by artists whom she studied while at UMass Boston. “Receiving artworks in the gallery is like receiving special gifts. I care for each one as it was my child -- very carefully and with a lot of love! My education in UMass Boston’s Art Department first opened my eyes to these artworks and gave me the ability to appreciate them fully.”
Click here, for more on the Barbara Krakow Gallery.
Maggie Kessel graduated in 2007 with a BA in Art (studio focus) and a minor in Anthropology. Before enrolling at UMass Boston, Maggie spent the majority of her life in Nigeria and Kenya. After graduating from high school at the International School of Kenya in Nairobi, Maggie moved to Boston to focus on her education in art. While at UMass Boston, she was the recipient of the Ruth Butler Travel Scholarship, which funded her artistic study of the Hindu culture of Bali, Indonesia. In addition, beyond her interest in studio art, she discovered her passion for Medieval and Renaissance art history. In 2012, Maggie received her Masters in Education from Montana State University, focusing on teaching Art for K-12 students. After living and working for five years in Kinshasa, Congo, she is now teaching at Colegio Maya in Guatemala City, Guatemala. The joy she finds in traveling and teaching art and art history to students of all ages has become deep a passion. Beyond teaching, she is busy raising her son Itamar and taking care of a variety of pets.
reviewed Summer 2017
Lisa Fishbone Leger
Lisa Fishbone Leger graduated UMass Boston in 2010 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Art-Art History track and a minor in Environmental Studies. After graduation, Lisa first worked in real estate as a supervisor in leasing, accounts and corporate sales, then At Sun Life Insurance as a small business sales coordinator. Recently, Lisa has shifted her career towards managerial work for nonprofit organizations. At WGBH she helped secure corporate sponsorship for educational programming. Currently she works at The American Cancer Society as the Senior Coordinator, Division of Mission Support and sits on the Advisory Committee of The Marble Collection, an arts nonprofit based at UMass Boston. In 2014, Lisa returned to school for her MBA in Nonprofit Management at Endicott College (Beverly).
Dereck Stafford Mangus graduated magna cum laude from UMass Boston in 2005 with a BA in Studio Art and certificate in the Environmental Studies Program. After graduating from UMass Boston, Mangus continued working at his day job as a museum attendant at the Harvard Art Museums, a position which enabled him to take free courses through the Harvard Extension School where he received his MLA in Visual Art in 2013. Later, Mangus completed the MA program in Critical Studies at the Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA) in Baltimore. Since graduating from MICA in 2016, he has worked as part of the frontline staff at The Baltimore Museum of Art where he is regularly inspired by the permanent collection and various special exhibitions. Most recently, Mangus’ essay, "Feel the Color: Mark Bradford," was published in Full Bleed, MICA’s annual art and design journal, and his exhibition review, "Jack Whitten, ‘Odyssey: Jack Whitten Sculpture, 1963–2017,’" was selected as the winner of the Frieze Writer’s Prize 2018.
To see more of Mangus’ work, click here to view his website: www.dsmangus.com
Holly Moye graduated summa cum laude with a BA in Art (art history focus) in 2012. She completed a MA in Art History at Boston University in 2014. While in Boston, she served as the Director of Programs at ArtsBridge, a multi-disciplinary consultancy connecting students and performers with educational and growth opportunities in the visual and performing arts. In 2014, Holly was selected as the Executive Director of the Oklahoma Visual Arts Coalition (OVAC), a nonprofit organization that supports visual artists living and working in Oklahoma. Most recently, Holly has been named Director of the School of Visual Arts at Oklahoma City University, where she will oversee the school’s student-faculty experience, community engagement, and gallery visibility. Moye also co-chairs the Oklahoma Public Art Network and serves on the board of Midtown Rotary. For more information about the Oklahoma City University School of Visual Arts, visit okcu.edu/visualart.
updated Summer 2017
Minhae Shim graduated summa cum laude with a BA in Art (studio focus) in 2013. She began her undergraduate work at Dartmouth College. At UMass Boston, she was awarded the Chancellor's Scholarship and the Art Department Book Prize. In addition, she was a member of the Golden Key International Honor Society. After graduation, Minhae worked as an associate producer on several documentaries and feature films. She also edited and illustrated the film industry book The Independent's Guide to Film Distribution, which was published in 2014. She currently works at WGBH as a researcher for the PBS series Nova. In fall 2015, she will begin graduate studies in the Master of Architecture program at the University of Miami.
Romy St. Hilaire
Romy St. Hilaire graduated in 2016 with a BA in Art (art history focus) and a minor in French. She was born in Port au Prince, Haiti and immigrated when she was six years old to the United States, where she grew up in South Florida. While at UMass Boston, Romy served as Director of the Harbor Gallery and also interned at the Museum of Fine Arts Boston in the Volunteer and Community Engagement department for three semesters. This experience sparked her passion for engaging and educating people who may lack access or awareness of the opportunities available in museums. She is now employed as the STEAM Team Program Coordinator at the MFA Boston. The STEAM Team is a fellowship program for Boston teenagers that builds upon education platforms in Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Math within the context of museums to show the diverse careers available in art institutions. The program offers a unique way for teens to interact with staff mentors and professionals across the museum who are experts in each of the STEAM disciplines. This job has allowed Romy to combine her love for community outreach with her desire to feed her own creativity.
Nick Zaremba graduated with a BA in Art (studio focus) in 2001. His constantly evolving and morphing artwork ranges from small framed drawings to site-specific 3D installations and large scale commissioned murals. In addition, he often translates his handmade designs to digital graphics appropriate for products such as snowboards, apparel, and packaging. He combines an interest in psychology and semiotics with a lifelong enthusiasm for skateboarding, graffiti, and DIY culture. He has exhibited extensively on the East Coast (New York’s Gladstone Gallery) and globally from Hong Kong to Montreal. He was featured as one of the "40 Artists You Should Know" in the nationally juried publication New American Painters. His commercial design clients have included Toy2R, Converse, Neiman Marcus, and Pepsi. Since graduating from UMass Boston, Nick has also worked as an Art Handler at the MIT List Center, the Boston Athenaeum, the ICA Boston, and currently at the Barbara Krakow Gallery, where he is Head Preparator.
For more on Nick’s artwork, see: http://www.nick-zaremba.com/