Director, MFA in Curatorial Practice; Thesis & Practicum Professor
José Ruiz is a Peruvian-born curator and creative laborer who lives and works between DC, Baltimore, and New York. He received an MFA in New Genres from the San Francisco Art Institute and a BA in Painting and Latin American Studies from the University of Maryland. His projects have been exhibited in New York, Miami, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Philadelphia, Washington, DC, and internationally in countries including Egypt, Ireland, Mexico, Japan, Slovakia, Germany, Hungary, South Africa, South Korea, and the Netherlands. Ruiz has recently curated exhibitions for the Queens Museum, Bronx Museum of the Arts, El Museo de Arte de El Salvador and the Incheon Biennial. His practice has been the subject of various publications, including The New York Times, The New Yorker, The Wall Street Journal, ARTnews, Arte Al Día, Artnet, and The Washington Post. Ruiz is the founder of FURTHERMORE, a post-studio research, design and production company in DC and New York. He is also the co-founder, co-director, and co-curator of Present Company—a Brooklyn-based gallery and curatorial collective. Starting this fall, Ruiz will serve as the Director of the Curatorial Practice MFA program at the Maryland Institute College of Art.
Founder, MFA in Curatorial Practice; Curator-in-Residence Emeritus
George Ciscle has mounted groundbreaking exhibitions and taught courses in the fine arts and humanities for over 45 years. He was the founder and director of The Contemporary, an “un-museum,” which challenges existing conventions for exhibiting art in temporary non-traditional sites. In 1996, he introduced and taught MICA’s Exhibition Development Seminar until 2008—an undergraduate exhibition-making course that still runs to this day. From 1997-2017, he served as MICA's Curator-in-Residence, consulting on the development of community-based and public programming focused on exploring new models for connecting art, artists, and audiences. From 2011-16, Ciscle directed and taught in the MFA in Curatorial Practice program, developing new models for connecting art, artists, and audiences.
Thesis & EDS Professor
Jeffry Cudlin was born in 1972 in Durham, North Carolina; raised in Lynchburg, Virginia; and currently lives in Washington, D.C. Cudlin works as an artist, critic, educator, and curator. He serves as full-time Professor of Curatorial Studies and Practice at MICA, where he teaches the first-year Practicum course in the Curatorial Practice MFA program, in which students develop collaborative exhibitions with the direct participation of residents from diverse communities within central Baltimore’s Station North Arts and Entertainment District. Cudlin also teaches Exhibition Development Seminar, a two-semester undergraduate course in which students make all important leadership decisions in the creation of a major contemporary art exhibition. His writing has appeared in The Washington Post, The Washington City Paper, and Sculpture Magazine. Cudlin received his MFA from the University of Maryland College Park, and his undergraduate degree in Studio Art from the University of Virginia.
Natalie Campbell is an independent curator, art historian and arts worker active in DC and New York. She studied Art History at Hunter College CUNY and has curated exhibitions at venues including Smack Mellon, Brooklyn; Nicole Klagsbrun Gallery, New York, the Center for Book Arts, New York, as well as numerous temporary, collaborative, and publication-based projects outside of traditional exhibition spaces. As a project manager for contemporary artists and galleries, she has overseen complex video, performance, installation, and print productions, coordinating the expertise of numerous performers, technicians, fabricators, and designers. Forthcoming projects include a public art action outside the White House (October 2016); an exhibition of contemporary abstraction at American University Art Museum (January 2017); an exhibition of experimental approaches to weaving at the Center for Craft, Creativity and Design, Asheville NC (May 2017); and an alternative history of Washington-area art practices at Washington Project for the Arts, Washington DC (September 2017).
Christopher K. Ho
Seminar & Intercultural Practices Professor
Christopher K. Ho (b. 1974, Hong Kong) picks up threads of 1990s identity politics and weaves them into unlikely new patterns. His solo show Grown Up Art (2016, Present Co., NY) explored the political potential of parenthood. Demoiselles d'Avignon (2013, Y Gallery, NY) refracted Western abstraction through the eyes of a future class of refined Chinese princelings, while Privileged White People (2013, Forever & Today, NY) examined the sensibility of artists who grew up during the affluent Clinton presidency. He has had additional solo exhibitions at Winkleman Gallery, NY (2010, 2008); FJORD, Philadelphia (2013); and Galeria EDS, Mexico City (2009). His work has been reviewed in the New York Times, Art in America, Modern Painters, Artforum, LEAP, Hyperallergic, RanDian, and ArtReview. He participated in the Incheon Biennial (2009), the Chinese Biennial Beijing (2008), and the Busan Biennale (2008), and produced site-specific pieces for Storm King (2013) and the Cranbrook Art Museum (2011), where he was the 2010 Critical Studies Fellow. Forthcoming is a project about Asian diaspora and transnational racialization at the Bronx Museum (October 2018), and an augmented reality piece for Art Production Fund (Summer 2018).
Director of Exhibitions at MICA; Practicum Professor
Gerald Ross is the Director of Exhibitions at the Maryland Institute College of Art in Baltimore, Maryland. He was born in Laramie, Wyoming in 1965. He received a degree in Painting from the Kansas City Art Institute in 1989, where he was also a Yale scholar. In the 1990s, he collaborated on six public mural projects, receiving numerous awards. Ross continues to peruse his studio art and shows regularly in the region. He has also served as a juror for many fine art awards, including the Trawick Prize and the National Sculpture Residency Prize at Evergreen House. As Director of the Exhibitions Department at MICA, Gerald manages a diverse, energetic and vital program - installing over 100 exhibitions per year, campus-wide. Since 2003, he has curated exhibitions, established public programming and has worked with the community to bring a large variety of local, national, and international groups and artists to MICA.
Intercultural Practices Professor
Jackie Milad is a practicing visual artist and independent curator based in Baltimore City. She began her curatorial career as a co-founder of the Transmodern Festival, an artist-run performance art and experimental media festival. More recently, Milad served as the Chief Curator for The Delaware Contemporary in Wilmington, Delaware. She has also held the position of Gallery Curator for the Adele H. Stamp Student Union's Stamp Gallery at the University of Maryland in College Park. She earned her MFA from Towson University and her BFA from the School of Museum of Fine Arts and Tufts University.
Intercultural Practices Professor
Gee Wesley is a cultural organizer born in Monrovia, Liberia and based in New York. Wesley is the Program Director of Recess, a nonprofit art space in Brooklyn. From 2015 to 2017, Wesley was the Spiegel-Wilks Curatorial Fellow at the Institute of Contemporary Art, University of Pennsylvania where he organized public events and performances with artists including: Black Quantum Futurism, Andrew Durbin, Juliana Huxtable, Jacolby Satterwhite, Metropolarity, and SCRAAATCH. Prior to joining ICA, Wesley held positions at The Barnes Foundation, Lightbox Film Center, and Slought. Wesley is co-director of Ulises, a bookshop and curatorial platform dedicated to artists’ books and independent art publications.
Raquel de Anda
Intercultural Practices & Seminar Professor (AY17)
Raquel de Anda is an independent curator and cultural producer. Her work spans a variety of practices, including producing transmedia projects, organizing public interventions and mass mobilizations, and curating exhibitions at museums, galleries and alternative arts spaces across the country. She has curated and produced work at venues including Project Row Houses (Houston, TX), The Art Museum of the Americas (Washington, DC), The Brooklyn Museum, and the Tribeca Film Festival (New York City, NY). Her work has received numerous awards, including the Robert Rauschenberg Artist as Activist Fellowship and the National Association of Latino Arts and Culture's Transcultural Remittance Award. De Anda received an MS in Design and Urban Ecologies at Parsons, School of Design.
Lindsay Smilow is an artist, educator, arts administrator, and project manager. She has spent the majority of her career managing education programs at New York City institutions, namely, The Queens Museum and The Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum. She is a teaching artist for students of all ages and has presented nationally at museum and arts conferences. She is insatiably curious about humanity and what brings communities together, creating experiences for people to connect in and around works of art. Currently, Lindsay is consulting on new initiatives for nonprofit arts organizations and businesses. She received a BA in both Art History and Sculpture from the University of Maryland, College Park. Her personal work and MA from CUNY Brooklyn College investigates the intersection of art and stand-up comedy.
Writing Thesis Advisor
John Lewis is a curator, an award-winning writer, and editor-at-large at Baltimore magazine, where he’s profiled the likes of John Waters, and Ira Glass, shepherded pieces by David Simon, Anne Tyler, and Lucille Clifton into print, and explored possibilities for treating the publication as a curated space (most notably, with 2005’s See Hear multi-media project). Lewis has written for many publications, including The Oxford American and Rolling Stone and has been interviewed by media outlets such as NPR and USA Today. His work has been anthologized in both Europe (Histoires de Musiciens) and the US (The Oxford American Book of Great Music Writing, John Barth: A Body of Words). Lewis has taught writing courses at MICA as well as lectured at Goucher College and Johns Hopkins University.
Exhibition Design Thesis Advisor
Cory Bernat is an eclectic designer, curator, and educator who has worked with a diverse range of public institutions, including the San Francisco Art Institute, the National Park Service, the Library of Congress, and the Central Intelligence Agency. Her exhibition of war-era food posters at the National Agricultural Library, When Beans Were Bullets, led to her position with the Food and Wine History Project at the National Museum of American History, where she co-curated the exhibition, Food: Transforming the American Table, 1950–2000, and collaborated with the Smithsonian Institution's "Age of Plastic" research program. Currently, Cory is a freelance designer and teaches in the Exhibit Design MA Program at the Corcoran School of Arts + Design at George Washington University.
Graphic Design Thesis Advisor
James Huckenpahler is an artist, educator, curator, and lifelong Washingtonian. His laptop is his studio, and his practice firmly grounded in the digital realm. While contemporary technologies are generally considered a boon, his work encourages a critical assessment of the ways those tools can also limit our creative choices. He has taught extensively at The Corcoran School of Art and at George Washington University, encouraging his students and broader audiences to consider the ways in which off-the-shelf technology might be used other than the manufacturers intent, and even—echoing DC’s tradition of punk DIY—to build one’s own tools. His work is represented in Washington DC by Hemphill Fine Arts. He is a member of FURTHERMORE, a research and development lab for visual culture, a fellow of Provisions Research Library, and currently serves on the advisory board of Transformer, a non-profit, artist-centered organization that connects and promotes emerging artists locally, nationally and internationally.