LSU Art Students Farris and Wright Awarded for Surreal Salon 15

Reclined figure, collage-like background

“Forgive Me Father,” oil on waxpaper, 48″ x 48″ by Vincent Wright.

Works by BFA seniors Amanda Farris and Vincent Wright were selected for the prestigious Surreal Salon 15 exhibition at Baton Rouge Gallery, from hundreds of international submissions. Farris’ piece “Bird House” and Wright’s piece “Forgive Me Father” were selected to be included in the exhibition through a blind jury process by juror Marco Mazzoni. Wright’s piece was awarded third place winner and Farris received Honorable Mention.

Additionally, works by several LSU School of Art graduate students, including MFA candidates Caleb Gridley, Thrasyvoulous Kalaitzidis and Rachel York, were selected for inclusion in the exhibition.

The Baton Rouge Gallery is partnering with the LSU School of Art in the annual Surreal Salon show, which was curated by visiting artist Mazzoni, of Milan, Italy. Surreal Salon 15 features the work of more than 62 artists representing 21 states and nine different nations. Artists from all over the world apply for the exhibit, which culminates with the Surreal Salon Soiree, when awards were presented January 21, 2023.

“It is very unlikely for an undergraduate’s work to be chosen from among worldwide entries by professional artists, and that their work was awarded is exceptional,” said Kelli Scott Kelley, professor of art/painting. “I am very proud of these students! Our high achieving painting seniors are graduating in May.”

“Bird House,” charcoal on paper, 40″ x 52″ by Amanda Farris.

“I am so grateful my work got to be a part of the Surreal Salon 15!” Farris said. “There were almost 500 submissions for this show and I placed honorable mention, which is wild. Words cannot express how excited and honored I am!”

Capra-Ribeiro, Brisson, Streete Awarded LSU Provost’s Fund for Innovation in Research

Fabio Capra-Ribeiro

Fabio Capra-Ribeiro

Assistant professors of architecture Fabio Capra-Ribeiro, Irene Brisson, and Annicia Streete were awarded the LSU Provost’s Fund for Innovation in Research 2023 for their project to create a Caribbean Spatial Justice Lab to connect scholars and communities working to advance coastal protection and restoration as well as sustainable energy and food production.

Irene Brisson

Irene Brisson

The Caribbean Spatial Justice Lab (CSJL) is a transdisciplinary collaborative center for research and design focused on the greater Caribbean, a frame that joins together The Caribbean Sea and the Gulf of Mexico. The CSJL’s main objective is to create a transdisciplinary network of scholars, professionals, and organizations focused on coastal protection and restoration, sustainable energy, and food production, addressing three of LSU’s five key areas.

Annicia Streete

Annicia Streete

“This network will facilitate knowledge production and exchange between coastal communities and institutions adjacent to the Caribbean Sea and the Gulf of Mexico and serve as an important resource for universities, local governments, and other organizations in the region,” said Brisson, Capra-Ribeiro, and Streete.

“As one of the first steps, the School of Architecture All-school Workshop in February 2023 will bring together architects, urbanists, and scholars of the built environment in the greater Caribbean to discuss more sustainable and just futures and initiate cross-disciplinary conversations among scholars and practitioners.”

The Caribbean Futures workshop and symposium February 8-11, 2023 will gather scholars, practitioners, and students at the LSU School of Architecture to investigate and imagine actionable ideas to meet the challenges of escalating inequality and accelerating climate change in greater Caribbean, including the Gulf Coast. 

“Architecture students will represent a possible future scenario in a Caribbean site tutored by a broad panel of experts at the workshop. On Saturday, February 11th, the results will be exhibited and discussed in a symposium with the expert workshop leaders, LSU and regional faculty, and students. Throughout the workshop, a curated Caribbean resource room including books, multimedia, and digital resources will be set up in the Clark and Laura Boyce Gallery,” the workshop organizers stated.

From there, the CSJL anticipates growing to include additional colleagues and foster more international collaborations, starting with four universities that have been already contacted: University of Puerto Rico Río Piedras Campus (Puerto Rico), Universite Quisqueya (Haiti), Universidad Central (Venezuela), and Universidad de la Costa (Colombia). The network will allow the CSJL to develop a series of targeted grant applications related with the different topics that are being focused to produce publications and exhibitions, as well as symposium and colloquiums, that will spread the knowledge generate in this international network.

“This initiative boldly advances LSU’s Scholarship First agenda,” according to the Office of Research & Economic Development.

In addition to the co-PIs, Traci Birch, assistant professor of architecture, is a contributing researcher, as well as Amirhosein Jafari, College of Engineering, Department of Construction Management; Helen A. Regis, Sarah Franzen, and Andrew Sluyter, College of Humanities & Social Sciences, Department of Geography and Anthropology.

Read more: LSU Announces Largest-Ever Investment in Seed Funding for Faculty Research

Sofia Alves and Willow Cook Named PAVE Student Design Competition 2022 Winners

interior design students hold PAVE awards

LSU School of Interior Design students Sofia Alves and Willow Cook were selected as winners of the 28th PAVE Student Design Competition, for their interior design project “Nest” addressing homelessness in New York City.

PAVE Global is pleased to announce the winners of the 28th Annual Student Design Competition in collaboration with City Relief, proudly sponsored by edesign group. The top 3 student-designed concepts were awarded $3,000 each. Additionally, the students attended the PAVE Gala in New York City on December 8, 2022, to be recognized for their achievements.

An excellent opportunity to gain “real-life” design experience, this annual international competition is geared toward undergraduate and graduate-level college students involved in retail planning, interior design, architecture, industrial design, visual merchandising, UX/UI design, graphic design, branding, and similar programs, with participating students representing 68 colleges, universities, and technical schools across 40 countries for the 2022 competition.

“Having the opportunity to create a project that has the potential to help the homeless communities across New York in collaboration with City Relief has been one of the most inspiring and enjoyable experiences I have had,” Alves said.

“When my teammate Willow and I visited one of City Relief’s sites in New York, we were able to see firsthand what could be improved and innovated to better provide services to the community through our redesigned ideas for temporary and mobile pop-up stations. Without an organization like PAVE to support students and connect us to organizations like City Relief, we would not be able to contribute as students to the betterment of our society in the way we have. We also would not have had the ability to meet so many professionals across the field were it not for the dedication that PAVE has shown in helping students and young professionals succeed in their fields.”

“It was such an honor for me and Sofia to be named one of the winners of the PAVE 2022 Student Design Award.” Cook said.

“As designers, it is our duty to better the world around us by coming up with new and innovative ideas. In this competition, we reevaluated and redesigned the City Relief pop-up, which provides resources for people experiencing homelessness in New York City.

Sofia and I really enjoyed designing this meaningful project, and we were so surprised and excited when we won. Going to New York City to accept the award was an amazing experience. It was a great networking opportunity with many professionals from many different fields in attendance–from architects and interior designers, to the window display designers at Saks, and even the CEO of L’Oreal. It was so fun socializing with everyone there and meeting our fellow winners.”

This was a remarkable opportunity for LSU interior design students, said Marsha Cuddeback, Director of the LSU School of Interior Design. Students are able travel to New York City and visit design firms for class field trips, and then traveling to the award ceremony in NYC was particularly meaningful.

“This is an experience I will remember and cherish for the rest of my life!” Cook said.

Alumni Spotlight: Petrouchka Moïse

Petrouchka MoiseDr. Petrouchka Moïse is the first graduate of the LSU Doctor of Design in Cultural Preservation program, adding to her growing list of “firsts” in her many accomplishments. In the spring of 2020, Dr. Moïse became the first doctoral graduate of the College of Art & Design.

As part of the inaugural Doctor of Design cohort, Moïse’s doctoral research focused on the identity and role of the Haitian artist. Her dissertation and exhibition are titled “Mitan-Morphic: The Evolution of the Contemporary Haitian Artist in Relation to Trauma.” Her work showcased contemporary artists who no longer allow the lens on the Haitian culture to be out of focus or limited in its range.

“Haiti has always been presented as an island of ‘self-taught’ artists; however, the lens used to see and define the ‘Haitian artist’ has never been in focus,” she explained.

Petrouchka Moise and Professor Desmond in graduation robes“I myself am a self-taught artist and consider myself an outsider to the artistic establishment,” she said. “I struggled with my identity of being a creative; however, there existed no platform where I could analyze how my Haitian background influenced my artistic growth. Through my work in Haiti and the States, I have met other Haitian creatives that were working through similar shared spiritual and emotional upheaval as they try to find cultural validation within the Diaspora.”

Visual arts are the first step in how a community tries to remember the impact of a disaster, and all forms of art are utilized in the collective healing of trauma. “I witnessed this firsthand in my work with the Louisiana Office of Mental Health and the Governor’s Office of Community Programs during the recovery and the rebuilding of Louisiana after Hurricane Katrina,” she said. “Unfortunately, I also witnessed, during the aftermath of the 2010 Haitian earthquake, that the contribution of the Haitian art community was appreciated, but not seen as a form of healing or revitalization to the nation as a whole, unless through the means of tourism.”

Since the earthquake, Moïse worked with several diaspora-based organizations to affect change and maintain a collective dialogue. As a member of the Louisiana-Haiti Task Force and Cultural Crossroads, Inc., she questioned how to use the arts as a means of sustainability.

Post-graduation, her post-doctoral research focuses on contemporary art in consecrated Vodou spaces. Dr. Moïse was awarded a 2020 CLIR/Mellon Postdoctoral Fellowship in Data Curation for Haitian Visual Arts. Dr. Moïse is central in coordinating the Haitian Art Digital Crossroads project (HADC).

Now, she works jointly with the Grinnell College Library and the Waterloo Center for the Arts. The HADC aims to make the Haitian art collection of the Waterloo Center for the Arts, the largest publicly held collection of Haitian art in the world, digitally accessible as a preparatory study for creating a digital hub for a network of online resources in Haitian and Caribbean studies.

As of 2022, Dr. Moïse accepted a position as assistant professor and Cultural and Community-Based Digital Curator at Grinnell College. In her role, she looks to develop interdisciplinary initiatives to enhance the learning experience of the academic and cultural community. She also expands her scholarship as an artist/scholar by investigating the narratives surrounding identity through resin, wood, word, and water.

Dr. Moïse serves on the following: 1) Grinnell College Africana Diaspora Studies Department Steering Committee, 2) Haitian Studies Association – Executive Board Member, Communications Committee Chair, Emerging Scholars Committee Member, Art & Design Working Group Co-Chair, 3) CLIR’s Future Libraries, Archives, and Museums in Excavation (FLAME) podcast series.

As a Grinnell faculty member, she aims to continue her research and work with others in art, culture, and education.

Being treated as an outsider, “I understand how important it is for an individual to have a sense of ownership in their identity, agency, and expression of their truths.”



Newly Renovated Barnes Ogden Art & Design Complex Completed

The LSU College of Art & Design is thrilled to announce that the long-awaited renovation for the new Barnes Ogden Art & Design Complex is complete. Formerly the Studio Arts Building, the project, designed by Holly & Smith Architects and contracted by Ratcliff Constructors, transformed the historic building into a state-of-the art modern facility that incorporates functional art-making studio spaces while retaining historic charm.

“The completion of this renovation is a transformational moment in the life of our school. Students, faculty, and staff look forward to the second hundred years in the life of this building—now a world-class arts facility,” said Rod Parker, director of the LSU School of Art. 

For years the building was used by the LSU School of Art for studio arts; now renovated, houses modernized facilities for the foundations, ceramics, printmaking, and sculpture programs, as well as offices and art & design galleries. In addition to a total interior reorganization to meet the needs of the school, the renovation provides significant upgrades to air conditioning and ventilation systems as well as a complete interior finish upgrade.

Formerly called the Old Engineering Shops, the Studio Arts Building began its life in 1923-1924, as the first completed of the nine other buildings designed by architect Theo C. Link as part of the original master plan for Louisiana State University. Because the existing building is listed on the National Register of Historic Places, a complete historic renovation was undertaken to meet the Secretary of the Interior’s Standards for the Rehabilitation of Historic Structures.

Renovation plans were drawn by Holly & Smith Architects and have been ready for implementation since 2013. Holly & Smith Architects specializes in historic renovation and adaptive reuse as well as master planning and interiors. Industrial hygienist Monona Rossol, founder of ACTS (Arts, Crafts & Theater Safety), served as a consultant to the architects to ensure the renovation meets all current national health, safety, industrial, and OSHA standards.

School of Art Director Rod Parker said the completion of the renovation will make a huge difference in the school’s recruitment efforts to attract even greater numbers of outstandingly talented students and faculty. It will also allow the building to operate during the summer, creating opportunities for continuing education and offering students more access to the facilities they need to work.

“The building will become the gateway to the historic part of campus, connecting the old campus to the new,” said LSU College of Art & Design Dean Alkis Tsolakis. “A greater public building will make the LSU Sculpture Quad more accessible and promote arts to the community.”

Lake Douglas Fall ’22 Commencement Speaker, To Retire

Douglas LakeLake Douglas, PhD, ASLA, is the LSU College of Art & Design fall commencement 2022 ceremony speaker. Associate dean of research and development and associate professor of landscape architecture at the College of Art & Design, Douglas has announced his retirement from LSU after over 15 years of service at the Robert Reich School of Landscape Architecture.

A licensed landscape architect, Douglas has published numerous articles; books and book chapters; critical essays; and reviews in national and international anthologies, professional journals, and popular publications about diverse topics within the design disciplines, and his writings have received national and regional recognition. Public Spaces, Private Gardens: A History of Designed Landscapes in New Orleans (2011) received honor awards from the American Society of Landscape Architects and its Louisiana chapter, together with the Williams Award from the Louisiana Historical Association. Recently published books include Steward of the Land: Selected Writings of Nineteenth-Century Horticulturist Thomas Affleck (2014) and Buildings of New Orleans (2018). Douglas is also series editor of Reading the American Landscape for LSU Press.

“When Lake was appointed as the associate dean for research and development, the college did not have an advanced doctoral program,” said Alkis Tsolakis, dean of the College of Art & Design. “It is due to Lake’s efforts and intellectual pursuits that we have this program now.”

“Sitting where you are now, 50 years ago, I could not have imagined where I would be today,” Douglas addressed the College of Art & Design graduates at the commencement ceremony December 16, 2022. “Savor the periods of growth and success, but don’t let artistic stability turn into creative stagnation. Remember: it’s not as much about reaching the destination as it is enjoying the ride, living in the moment, and learning from past success and failures as you chart a pathway forward.”

Douglas received a Bachelor of Landscape Architecture from LSU, a Master in Landscape Architecture from Harvard Graduate School of Design, and a PhD in Urban Studies/Urban History from the University of New Orleans. His dissertation investigated 19th-century horticultural commerce in New Orleans as an agency of community cohesion, and his current research involves documenting cultural landscapes of the Gulf South through investigations of public spaces, domestic gardens, people, and written evidence. Other areas of interest include enhancing communities through cultural development, using research skills to inform design strategies, and developing communication skills in design through effective writing.

Douglas is also actively involved in grassroots efforts to enhance and increase public open space in New Orleans.

Watch the ceremony speech:


Design Building Renamed Julian T. White Hall

Design Building

Julian T. White Hall, formerly the Design Building, has been renamed to honor Julian T. White, the second Black licensed architect in the state of Louisiana. White was also LSU’s first Black professor who began teaching in LSU’s Architecture Department in 1971. In 2020, the LSU College of Art & Design unveiled a three-story mural of White in the atrium of the Design Building, which will now be named in his honor.

“Naming the building after Professor White honors the momentous impact he had on so many students, and all of LSU,” said Alkis Tsolakis, dean of the College of Art & Design.

Man painting mural

Artist Robert Dafford works on Julian T. White memorial mural in the LSU Design Building. Photo by BFA candidate Micah Viccinelli.

Read more.