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Textile designers return to visual art for in-class workshop

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

LAWRENCE—Since graduating together in 2007 from KU’s Department of Visual Art Textiles/Fibers program, Lisa Beier and Samantha Bennett have gone on to successful careers with Target in Minneapolis and Martha Stewart Living in New York City respectively. They will be returning to the halls of the Art & Design building this week to share their experiences in the textiles industry, review student portfolios and demonstrate their work processes.

“Having recent alumnae back in the classroom provides our current students a great perspective on the transition from KU to the professional world and how their education at KU propelled them to success at well-known companies that design and produce commercial textiles,” said Mary Anne Jordan, chair and professor of visual art. “These types of networking opportunities are so valuable for our students as they try to connect their coursework to real life experience.”

The alumnae will conduct a special project for an intermediate course, Textile Design 404, which focuses on industrial textile design. The project is intended to give students a glimpse into the challenges and opportunities faced daily by textile design professionals and to ask them to consider how their coursework at KU could be shaped to benefit them in the textile industry.

Samantha Bennett is currently a bedding designer for Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia in New York City.

Lisa Beier is a textile designer for children’s apparel at Target in Minneapolis.

The Textiles/Fibers program provides an immersive academic experience in which students master the fundamentals of working in the textile medium for art making and designing for the professional textile industry. Through advanced coursework, students explore the nuances of artistic avenues that best complement their professional and creative goals.

The Department of Visual Art is one of four departments in the School of the Arts. As part of the KU College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, the School of the Arts offers fresh possibilities for collaboration between the arts and the humanities, sciences, social sciences, international and interdisciplinary studies.