News from the School of Art and Art History
News from the School of Art and Art History

School of Art and Art History Newsletter

The students, faculty, and alumni of the School of Art and Art History at the University of Iowa create extraordinary art and scholarship. Our monthly newsletter will keep you up to date.

Please submit your news and images for consideration for the SAAH newsletter. We'd love to share your accomplishments!


Javier Espinosa Mómox

Javier Espinosa Mómox (MFA Ceramics student) received a Stanley Award for International Research for his project “Herencia Means Heritage.”

This summer, Mómox worked with artisans in a Talevera workshop in Puebla, Mexico, creating opportunities to showcase their work and bring increased international awareness to this rich tradition. Learn more in a CLAS feature article.

Follow Mómox's work on Instagram.

Suleyman Aslan

Suleyman Aslan (MFA 3D Design student) is a 2023 LIT Lighting Design Award Winner for his Bremen Lamp. This prestigious award celebrates creativity and innovation in the fields of lighting products. 

In the embrace of Vietnam's mesmerizing rice fields, Bremen Lamp found inspiration as a collapsible hanging lamp design, seeking to capture the perfect harmony of layered serenity and seamless flow.

See more of Aslan's designs on his website and Instagram.

Leila Arnaut

Leila Arnaut (BFA Graphic Design student) wants to keep art human amid the growing use of artificial intelligence. 

Her recent BFA show “Byte The Dust” humorously displayed robots going to art school, referencing how AI Image generators use machine learning to produce fake pieces of art. 

Arnaut graduates this winter and dreams of becoming a video game illustrator. Learn more about her art in a Daily Iowan feature article.


Garchen Mila Buddhist Center

A sacred Buddhist sand mandala was constructed in the Levitt Gallery last semester.

Drupon Thinley Ningpo Rinpoche, a master in the art of sand mandalas, guided the process, generously sharing his extensive knowledge with students and community members about this ancient practice.

Printmaking professor Anita Jung functioned as a liaison between the Garchen Mila Buddhist Center and the UI.

Learn more in the Daily Iowan.

Alumni News

Karen Elizabeth Milbourne

Karen Elizabeth Milbourne (PhD Art History 2003) has been selected as the new J. Sanford Miller Family director of the Fralin Museum of Art at the University of Virginia following a national search.

An innovative leader and curator with more than 20 years of experience in the museum field, Milbourne will guide the Fralin’s efforts to provide rigorous, inclusive, and inspiring encounters with works of art. She is currently a senior curator at the Smithsonian National Museum of African Art. Read the full story in Artdaily.

Nina Kintsurashvili

Nina Kintsurashvili (MFA Intermedia 2020) recently held a solo exhibition, Mute Things, at Gallery Artbeat in Tbilisi, Georgia, featuring recent paintings and an installation with works on paper.

For her, color, line, materiality of paint, the speed of a brushstroke, humor, the deceptive nature of human memory, and even the concept of time become tools applied to her process of image-making.

Explore Kintsurashvili's work on Instagram.

Ben Gilbertson

Ben Gilbertson (BFA Ceramics and BBA Accounting 2022) was recently featured as the cover story for the Iowa Ledger, where he talks about his BFA show, "The Art of Business," and how his Ceramics and Accounting majors are intertwined.

Gilbertson will begin as a business valuation analyst at Deloitte in Minneapolis this January. He plans to join an artist studio to continue making ceramics in a creative environment.

Denise Venteicher

Denise Venteicher (BFA Graphic Design 2005) worked as a Lead Graphic Designer for MarathonFoto for 10 years, designing products for some of the world's largest marathons. She now teaches Digital Arts at Xavier High School in Cedar Rapids.

Recently she illustrated a children's book titled Toad and Timberdoodle: Leaving Winter Behind, in collaboration with the naturalists at Jefferson County Park in Fairfield. See more of Venteicher's designs on her website.

Juan Correa

Juan Correa (MFA Printmaking 2022) has been awarded a 2023 1st Grant from the Elizabeth Greenshields Foundation, one of the most prestigious and substantial grants for emerging representational artists.

See more on Correa's website and Instagram.

Kimberlee Rocca

Kimberlee Rocca (BFA Metal Arts 1991) is in the two-person exhibition Uncontainable Meanderings and Affinities at the Octagon Center for the Arts in Ames through January 13.

Rocca's passion for color, process, experimentation and reclamation merge to translate her love of nature and modern lines into vibrant, textural 2D and 3D abstract works and play sculptures. See more on her website.

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