Summer 2020 Quad Magazine

Page 1

Summer 2020








+ Photo by Micah Viccinelli

+ “Nature vs. Nurture” by Chayse Sampy, Black Men in America series






A Line in the Land, with Kevin Benham















Visualizing Genetic Relationships, with Courtney Bar r

Restoration Architect Elyse Mark s

Ti ge r s Sh are W hy

D e s i g nin g the B rain w ith Ma delyn R iche

Travel Sn ap shot s

Alumni News and Updates

For the Doctor of Design in Cultural Preser vation







Elizabeth Mariotti

Luisa Restrepo

Kevin Duffy Cover photo by Micah Viccinelli,



Courtney Barr, Associate Professor

Lynne Baggett

BFA candidate

Kevin Benham, Assistant Professor Madelyn Riche, BID candidate

D E S I G N & I L L U S T R AT I O N

Erika Witt, DDES candidate

Lindsey Henriques, BFA candidate Gabrielle Trupiano, BFA candidate

COPY EDITOR Ellen Mathis


+ Dean Alkis Tsolakis instructs students in the Design Paris program in France, fall 2019. Photo by Willie Goliday II, MArch candidate.

Letter from the Dean This issue of the Quad explores the LSU College of Art & Design’s rich history, and celebrates change – in our own institution of education, and in the fields of art and design. You will read about the life of Professor Julian T. White, the first African American professor at Louisiana State University and the second licensed black architect in the state of Louisiana. The following pages give a glimpse of the many lives that he touched, as an educator and highly regarded member of the architectural community. We honor him with the unveiling of the Julian T. White Atrium Mural, which celebrates his illustrious career. The College of Art & Design has been a leader in many ways, from welcoming diverse faculty, to adopting new technology, to challenging the status quo in art and design disciplines, which



inherently question what is, and what could – or what can – be. Meet some current students who are working to change the worlds around them through their craft, and find yourself inspired by alumni who fearlessly embark upon less-tread-upon career paths. They all show us how meaningful it is to be included in the classroom, on campus, and in the chosen field of their dreams.

Alkis Tsolakis, Dean


Kevin Benham holds the Jon Emerson/

installations that elucidate phenomena requiring

Wayne Womack Design Professorship at

careful observation through space and time. He

the LSU Robert Reich School of Landscape

has exhibited his conceptual work throughout the

Architecture. His research and work focuses

world, including exhibits at the Royal Institute

on landscape phenomena and the temporal

of British Architects, London, England; Zurich,

qualities inherent in the discipline. To that

Switzerland; and New Orleans, Louisiana.

end, he produces temporal and ephemeral

Q: What is the language of a line? A:

A line in the land is one of the simplest of gestures, yet it is empowered with the capacity for meaning and significance. A line suggests the human act of possessing the land, claiming ground, and marking territory. A simple line traversing topography is also imbued with the possibility of travel, discovery, hope, and opportunity. It holds within it the memory of past actions: as a recording of a physical act imprinted upon the surface of the earth. In the past few years, my work has capitalized on the power of the line as a datum and mark in the landscape through simple interventions of erasure that exploit the line as a temporal, transitory phenomenon and as a catalyst for advantageous ecosystem change. Broken Kilometer, a kilometer-long cut in the earth near Harlösa, Sweden, completed in conjunction with the EU project Sandlife and managed by the Swedish Fortifications Agency, acts simultaneously as land art and as a stimulus for increasing biodiversity in the area by exposing nutrient poor soils that foster the growth of rare plant species, which in turn attract extraordinary species of insects and birds.

+ Broken Kilometer, by Kevin Benham

Mile Long Burn, a more recent temporal land art project with the National Park Service in the Tallgrass Prairie National Preserve of Kansas, was conducted to maintain the health and vitality of endemic species in the prairie landscape. This particular project, developed over a three-year period, consisted of a controlled burn exactly a mile in length along the eastern edge of the Tallgrass Prairie National Reserve. The burn was allowed to naturally extinguish itself as the fire came into contact with natural fire-breaks, wet vegetation or gurgling streams. As a result, the act of burning left an artifact of the natural processes and forces that shaped the final work. The piece will continue to evolve as the seedbed is exposed and new plant material germinates and thrives. As my work and practice continues to evolve, I continue to think about actions to disrupt ecologies as a means of diversifying the complexity of species in the landscape through the use of unorthodox maintenance strategies that include the manipulation of soil surfaces, grazing, burning and other potential mechanical and natural means of alteration.



Four Minutes On...


We are familiar with textbook visualizations of scientific information, most often represented through carefully labeled diagrams and charts. We experience these diagrams in a scientific context—their purpose is to explain purely factual information about biology, chemistry, physics, anatomy, and so forth.

What if a visualization can provide more than facts? What if it can provoke an emotional reaction or be persuasive in some way? The answer to this question is where art and science converge.

personal DNA sequencing has only been made available to the general public in the past few years; people can now utilize a variety of online services to collect a DNA swab and learn about their genealogical connections, ethnic heritage, and genetic health risks. In fact, through DNA testing I was united with a relative who had been adopted and never knew her biological family until now.

Arguably the most widely recognized and significant scientific diagram of the last 100 years, Odile Crick’s drawing of the DNA double helix structure stands out as one of the few that provokes contemplation in a general audience. This elegant diagram stimulates self-reflection and a deep curiosity in our human origins, and it is this kind of impact that I seek to achieve in my own work. I create visual explanations that reveal insights and about human relationships, such as intricate genealogical and genetic connections. My intent is to transform the scientific diagram into a creative visualization that crosses the bridge between science and art; resonating beyond the scientific audience.

Due to public pressure, these online services have released previously inaccessible raw DNA data to their customers. Individuals can now download their raw DNA data, a spreadsheet of more than 700,000 lines of chromosome base pair positions of the human genotype. Without the assistance of a genetic consultant or analysis service, this data is relatively meaningless to the average user. However, when most see meaningless data, I see an opportunity. I began to explore how this dense information could be transformed into something both aesthetically fulfilling and informative.

This line of inquiry grew from my long-term research into my own family genealogy. I have traced some of my ancestral lines beyond the 1700s, while other ancestral lines come to a dead-end after one or two generations. To fill these gaps of information, much of my research has been conducted using online genealogy communities such as Affordable and fast access to

Visualizing Genetic Relationships is a series of creative information displays that makes visual comparisons of genetic data between individuals. I am currently working with the DNA sequences of my own family members; comparing my own sequence with that of

my family members reveals where we share genetic matches, offering a visual affirmation of a connection only visible on the molecular level. To create this work, I had to develop a tool for efficiently translating the thousands of characters in a text-based genetic sequence into color-coded symbols. I created a custom color font called DNA Loops, which allows a user to transform the base pairs A (Adenine), C (Cytosine), T (Thymine), and G (Guanine) into a set of visually compelling graphic symbols. This tool facilitates experimentation with a variety of visual forms. The potential for this visualization method is exciting; I envision the possibility of developing a system of DNA visualizations that can be uniquely customized to the individual, for a multitude of end-products, from fine art prints to custom DNA textiles. Recently I have expanded my subject matter to include animal DNA, in order to bring attention to extinction threats. How and where should this kind of creative work, that straddles art and science, be shared? This has been a challenging question to resolve. By seeking opportunities to share my investigations and exhibit my work, I discovered

the “SciArt” community. The SciArt movement is propelled by a growing community of artists that are inspired by scientific concepts. Organizations, art museums, and galleries that recognize the merit of science-inspired and data-driven art are growing in number and influence. One such entity, The SciArt Initiative, is a New York-based group that produces SciArt Magazine and offers programs, grants, artist residencies, and facilitates a community network for collaborations. In 2018 I had the opportunity to exhibit my work in a SciArt related exhibition at Northern Illinois University Art Museum. In 2014, I began teaching a special topics course on information design in the LSU School of Art. This interdisciplinary course included junior, senior, and graduate level students from graphic design, landscape architecture, and architecture. This course was originally developed for graphic design majors, but opening it to multiple areas gave me the opportunity to format an interdisciplinary course that met the needs of students with varying interests and creative goals. The fundamental principles of information design are relevant to students in all design disciplines. Teaching a course directly related to my area of research was extremely rewarding and allowed me to fine tune my approach to information design as a focus of investigation. I hope to convey through teaching that a creative visualization has the potential to reveal accurate and emotionally compelling scientific information. Courtney Barr is an associate professor of graphic design at LSU who uses visual explanations to reveal new understandings.






+ Photo by Micah Viccinelli 6


In 1953, when Julian Thaddeus White was nine

the LSU Department of Architecture, where he worked for 33 years.

years old, on a drive with his family along

After a long successful career in education, he retired in 2003. He

Louisiana’s River Road, he spotted Louisiana

passed away from cancer in 2011. This year the LSU College of Art

State University’s campus from the car.

& Design unveiled the Julian T. White Atrium Mural in his honor, memorializing his incredible legacy at LSU.

“I’m going to go there one day,” he informed his family. “I’m going to LSU.”

It was not an easy road, relayed Loretta White, Julian’s wife. The question Julian asked her repeatedly throughout his life was: “do

“No you’re not,” replied his grandmother. As an

you think they will accept us?” The answer was not always yes.

African American, he would not have been When Julian took the Louisiana state architecture license exam,

accepted to the state university at the time.

held on LSU’s campus in the 1960s, a white man taking the Ultimately Julian was right, and though he went

exam that day asked the instructor that Julian sit in a different

to the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign

room to take the test. He was segregated from the other test-

for his undergraduate and graduate degrees, he

takers – all white men – and was told to take the exam upstairs.

later came to LSU as a professor of architecture.

Incredibly, that room became part of his life again when he returned to LSU as a faculty member.

Julian White was the first black professor at LSU and the second licensed black architect in the

“That very same room, where he was told he had to take the

state of Louisiana. In 1971 he joined the faculty of

exam, became his office for many years,” Loretta said with a grin. “It was actually a great office, in my opinion. It had a good view of the campus.”

“That very same room became his office for many years.” Julian became the second licensed black architect in the state (the first being Dickie Thurman, his cousin by marriage.) He worked for the renowned architectural firm Caudill Rowlett & Scott (CRS) for 3 years, and taught at Tuskegee University in Alabama, and at Southern University in Louisiana. He started his architecture practice in Baton Rouge, which he maintained throughout his life.

First black female

LSU Board of Education

First black

enrolls first black student


student to graduate

at LSU (Roy S. Wilson,

student enrolls at LSU

from LSU (Pearl Andrews,

Law School)

(A. P. Tureaud Jr.)

Masters of Education)

First black student to

First black

earn a degree from LSU

student to graduate

(Charles E. Harrington,

from LSU Law School

Masters of Education)

(Ernest N. “Dutch” Morial)





There were times when he didn’t feel comfortable

Today, Professor White’s former students are in architectural firms

as the only black professor on campus, Loretta

throughout Louisiana and across the country. One of his many

said. “In the early years he never went to campus

students, Steve Dumez (BArch ’82), a partner in the New Orleans

by himself at night,” she shared. “If he needed

architecture firm Eskew+Dumez+Ripple, remembers Professor

to go get materials from his office after dark, I

White as an engaged and demanding professor. “He required our

would come with him – we would take the kids,

best work and challenged us to produce just that,” Dumez said.

pile into the car, all go over there together. He didn’t say it, but I understood that he didn’t

Dumez said Professor White had a formative influence on his career,

want to go alone.”

but also a subsequent influence as a mentor. “I would continue to

Even as a professor who proved to be an ex-

he said.

seek his opinion on my work when he was no longer my teacher,” cellent instructor and garnered respect from his students and fellow faculty members, there

“Julian was the most ethical, self-possessed man I have ever known,

were still times living in Baton Rouge in the

and has always been an inspiration to me,” former LSU architecture

1970s when he was rejected because of race.

instructor Cymbre Raub said. “I was profoundly fortunate to be

“One time I remember, a country club wouldn’t

able to teach with him at LSU in the 1990s. He was always honest,

allow him to give a talk there, Loretta said. “His

often funny, and kind beyond words while holding to clear and

students were so upset. They tried to show him

unassailable principles.”

how much he meant to them, that he was so much more.” Julian, however, always carried himself with tremendous dignity, and over time became well-respected by his peers at LSU. “He was kind, but tough as a faculty member,” said Ken Carpenter, professor of architecture. “Yet I think his students all understood that he cared about them. He knew them individually.”

+ Photos courtesy of the White family

First black student to

First black

First black LSU

LSU professor

varsity football players

First group (6) of black

earn her Ph.D. from LSU

(Julian T. White,

(Lora O. Hinton, Jr. and

students enroll at LSU

(Pinkie Gordon Lane)


Mikell Williams)

First black female

First black LSU


baseball player

for black students

to attend LSU

(Henry LeBoyd)

was established

(Freya Anderson Rivers)

First meeting space

(Harambeé House) First black LSU Student Government President (Kerry Pourciau)



Julian taught countless students over three decades, and over the years saw the program evolve and grow into its own School of Architecture in the College of Art & Design.

“Young people want to see themselves in their professors, want to believe that their dreams are attainable.” As an architect he designed buildings with social purpose, including educational facilities and churches across the country. His clients included the East Baton Rouge Parish Recreation and Park Commission, Baton Rouge Medical Center, East Baton Rouge Parish school system, and both Southern University and LSU. He Over the years, Professor White was a major

was a member of the American Institute of Architects and served

influence in the lives of his students.

numerous years on the regional board of the National Council

“Professor White was an outstanding teacher,

Architectural Examiners, ensuring that future architects received

and a phenomenal mentor,” said Kasia Zaruska

fair treatment during review.

of Architectural Registration Boards and the Louisiana Board of

Gallo (BArch ’97, MLA ’00) when she learned of his passing. “My son is named Julian in his honor.”

He leaves behind a legacy through buildings around the region that he designed, and in the many architects he taught. “He

“I remember very few professors in the same

holds an important place in the university’s history by breaking

cherished way as I remember Professor Julian T.

the color barrier as its first black professor,” LSU Chancellor Mike

White,” said John Radionoff (BArch ’80). “He was

Martin said upon Julian’s death. “He also leaves behind a strong

kind and treated students with the utmost dig-

impression with his fellow educators and the students who he

nity. I am very thankful that he represented LSU

taught, as well as a lasting legacy in the architectural community.”

and that he will always be such a huge part of the university.”

First black quarterback

First black

First black LSU

First black LSU

Golden Girls

dean of an

for LSU (Carl Otis Trimble)

female tennis player

(Paula Jackson and

academic college


(Kyle Copeland Muse)

Saundra Mims)

(Carolyn Collins)

First black LSU

First black LSU

First black LSU

basketball player

female tenured

female gymnast

(Collis Temple, Jr.)


(Debra Ross)

(Christine Minor)





“Young people want to see themselves in their professors, want to believe that their dreams are attainable,” said Casey Phillips, The Walls Project Director, the firm the College partnered with to manage the mural’s implementation. “When you see someone who looks like you, that you can identify with, that’s powerful. By simply being their teacher, he inspired students of different backgrounds, showed them they could achieve their goals.”



Julian’s painted image seems to look down on everything – and everyone – in the Design Building below. The atrium is the bustling hub of the college, filled with students and faculty members day in and out, who glance up at the colorful mural on the walls with keen interest. It’s breathtaking. “There were those who would have liked to push him out, simply because he wasn’t white,” Loretta said. “But it didn’t work.” She laughed, glancing with pride toward the mural honoring her husband. “And now they get to look at it.” Above all, Julian was a family man. He had five children, 13 grandchildren, and was married to Loretta for over 50 years. As dedicated as he was to his life’s work, he did it all for his family. “All I want is for my grandchildren to know I have been here,” Julian told Loretta before he died. Now we all do. + Mural plan illustration by artist Robert Dafford.

The Julian T. White Memorial Scholarship Fund supports full-time bachelor of architecture students, considering financial need. The fund will help future students for years to come.

First black LSU

Minority Services is established (In 1993, it


female soccer players

becomes the Office of

of the LSU

(Fallon Buckner and

Multicultural Affairs)

Women’s Center

Somalia Lindsay)

First black female


First Vice Provost

First black LSU Boyd

president of the LSU

of the LSU

of Campus Diversity

Professor is named

Union Governing Board

African American

is appointed

by the LSU System

Cultural Center

(Gregory Vincent)

(Isiah Warner)

and Programming Council (Nicole Moliere)

Safe Space Campaign begins



ATRIUM MURAL The three-story mural honoring Julian White is

Palazzo Medici Riccardi in Florence,

painted in the atrium of the LSU Design Building,

Italy. The mural artist Dafford worked

1,075 square feet and visible from numerous

with Julian’s family to capture his

vantage points. Renowned muralist Robert Dafford

likeness, sharing family photographs

was selected to execute the project, and site

and stories. The painted scene is

installation was directed by The Walls Project, a

joyful, a celebration of his life.

nonprofit that implements large-scale murals across Baton Rouge. The College of Art & Design

The artistic aim of the mural is to

mural serves as a testament to Julian, symbolizing

portray how Julian opened the

how his perseverance paved the way for racial

doors for all those who followed,

equality at the university.

according to the artist Dafford. It’s

“Julian White is the person that opened the doors,


a story, a narrative of the steady of progress

over time.

led the way to free LSU from segregation,” said Alkis

Interspersed among the figures

Tsolakis, Dean of the College of Art & Design. “In this

are images that have personal

sense he is an icon to our community.”

meaning to Julian’s life, such as the scene of Professor White teaching in a classroom, looking out from the

The mural depicts Julian leading a procession of

balcony window of his infamous office, and buildings that he designed

students and faculty through stately live oaks that

layered along the promenade. The piece revels in the evolution of LSU.

evoke the LSU campus. Those following behind him are individuals of different races, men and women,

“In photographs, Julian has a kind intensity in his eyes from a young

people from all walks of life. Among them walks

age,” said Casey Phillips, Director of the Walls Project. “That kindness

Isiah Warner, the Boyd Professor and Philip W. West

is captured in his rendering in the mural.”

Professor of Analytical & Environmental Chemistry. “This project means everything to me,” said Dean Tsolakis. “It means The mural draws inspiration from a diverse variety

another step in freeing LSU and making a home for everyone.

of sources, from street art in New Orleans to the

Another step in what Julian White did for LSU, for Louisiana, and for

“Procession of the Magi” fresco by Benozzo Gozzoli at

the world.”

First black (male

First LSU student to

or female) British

First black

Marshall Scholar at


LSU (Ebony Spikes)

First black LSU

be named as a Morris

Men’s Basketball

Black Faculty

K. Udall Scholar

Head Coach

(Courtney Rawls)

Association forms

(Nita Anne Clark)

(Trent Johnson)

First black female

First black LSU Women’s

First black (male or

Corp Commander

Basketball Head Coach

female) to complete

of the E.J. Ourso

for the LSU

(Dana “Pokey” Chatman)

the LSU MBA/

College of Business

Corp of Cadets

JD joint program

(Eli Jones)

(Daphne LaSalle)

(Natasha U. Francis)

First black Dean









EXPLORING AFRICAN AMERICAN HISTORY THROUGH DESIGN: TAYLER HARRISON Fifth year architecture student Tayler Harrison had the internship

In 2018, she served as lead organizer for the

of a lifetime: working at the Smithsonian National Museum of

museum’s three-day symposium, “Shifting the

African American History & Culture (NMAAHC). The monumental

Landscape: Black Architects and Planners,

museum in Washington, D.C., which opened in fall 2016, is the only

1968 to Now.” Wilkinson holds a 2020 Harvard

national museum devoted exclusively to the documentation of

Loeb Fellowship.

African American life, history, and culture. During the internship Harrison had the opport“It was inspiring to work in the presence of the people who

unity to research and write an article for the

helped to build the museum,” Harrison said. The building itself

Smithsonian website, prepare a grant proposal

is amazing: the physical space reflects the messages that the

for the Smithsonian Women’s Committee, and

exhibitions convey, she noted.

visit local sites of interest such as NPR’s headquarters and the Glenstone Museum.

“It felt like the internship was tailored to my experiences as a black design student,” she shared. “Working at the museum

“The internship was such a meaningful exper-

strengthened my interests, and now I have a clearer lens of

ience,” she said. “I was able to genuinely

what I want to do.”

contribute and learn more about the history of

Harrison interned with Michelle Joan Wilkinson, PhD, a NMAAHC

of the works of black architects, such as the

black architects in the U.S. I studied drawings curator and acting associate director for curatorial affairs, where

work of Julian Abele who was born in the late

she is expanding the museum’s collections in architecture and

1800s and became one of the chief designers

design. She co-curated two inaugural NMAAHC exhibitions: A

of Duke University’s campus.”

Century in the Making: Building the National Museum of African American History and Culture and A Changing America: 1968 and Beyond.

“It felt like the internship was tailored to my experiences as a black design student.”

+ Smithsonian interns. Image courtesy of Tayler Harrison.



The Smithsonian internship was an inspirational experience, working with influential people in the nation’s capital, she said. “One day Colin Powell came to a staff meeting! I felt I was in the midst of greatness,” she shared. She also enjoyed working with other student interns with interests in different areas of study, who came to Washington, D.C. from universities across the country. She interned alongside students of art history, engineering, music, and design disciplines. “It was interesting to see the work other students are doing, and how we were all able to tell the story of the journey of African Americans through different lenses.” In Washington, D.C., she also had the opportunity to observe professionals trained in architecture that are using their degrees in different ways, providing inspiration for potential career possibilities after graduation. In the future Harrison would love to go into curation and bring together her interests in black architecture, urbanism and museum education. Throughout her studies at LSU, Harrison has found herself drawn to the intersections of

+ Tayler by the the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History & Culture.

design, art, and history. “I want to use my architecture education in a way that explores

Harrison, who is originally from New Orleans, is focusing her

art, culture, and communities,” she said. “I’m

final project on urban design in her home city. “I’m translating

interested in curating, and am drawn to exhibit

what I’ve learned, and bringing it back to New Orleans,” she said.

and museum design. I’m exploring urbanism now

“I’m passionate to work on solving problems in my home city.”

in my research, and my internship experiences

Reflecting on her internship experience: “I’m so grateful for the

are influencing the work I’m creating now

opportunities I’ve had so far.”

in studio.”





CONFRONTING CHANGE: CHAYSE SAMPY the second place prize in the LSU Discover Day 2019 Juried Art Show contest for her series Black Men in America. In her current work, Sampy confronts issues that she describes as disregarded in the past, which have become a catalyst in recent years. She aims to focus on racism, xenophobia, a lack of environmental consciousness, mass violence, patriarchy, and a flawed education system. Children are the primary figure in this series. “Placing children in unbelievable situations and + Chayse Sampy with piece “Modern Day Lynchings”

odd places that seem to juxtapose modern-day reality,” she said. “I intend on this series being

BFA student Chayse Sampy is an artist dedicated to creating art-

my senior project, and I believe it will commu-

work that both entices and challenges her audience. Originally

nicate issues that unite us all as Americans, as

from Houston, she came to LSU to study art and hone her craft to

well as exhibit the skills I have acquired in my

communicate about pressing issues in American society.

academics at LSU.”

“I got into art at a very young age, drawing silly family portraits and on the walls, as most children do,” she said. “But no one could have predicted how big this passion would grow over the years,

“My primary goal with my artwork is to force uncomfortable but necessary conversation.”

which has led me to LSU to pursue a BFA in studio art.” Her work aims to confront the realities of racShe chose to study art at LSU because “it was the only thing I

ism and stereotypes. “I would describe my art as

could envision myself doing,” she explained. “I didn’t want to have

necessary,” she said. “Most people don’t want to

to force myself to get up every morning and go to a job that I hate.

talk about politics, most people don’t want to

I was lucky enough to have a mother that believed in me enough

talk about racism — most people don’t want to

to fund my art education.”

talk about anything negative. I think that it is the job of artists to make art that reflects on the

Sampy aims to bring to life societal woes, racial issues, and key

times that we live in.”

aspects of the urban culture in realistic, pop art style paintings and drawings. “I give a voice to those that have yet to find their

“My primary goal with my artwork is to force un-

own.” Her mediums range from pencil and acrylic paint to lino-

comfortable but necessary conversation,” she

leum carving.

said. “Early on, we are taught that America is this global superpower, a safe-haven where

She has had her work featured at the Museum of Fine Arts,

anyone is welcome and offered a chance to

Houston and displayed in local and national art shows. She won

prosper. As I grew up, being a black female,



I realized that there were structural flaws in the

Sterling and Philando Castile, both of whom were unarmed black

foundation of my country. My work is simply a

men shot by police officers; Sterling was killed in Baton Rouge.

reflection of the issues I see in my community and America as a whole.”

“The fact that police officers can get away with it,” Sampy said in an interview Study Breaks, “and that there are no repercussions

“My work is simply a reflection of the issues I see in my community and America as a whole.”

and it’s happening so frequently — it’s kind of like a modern-day lynching. These people can go back to their regular lives after. There’s no accountability.”

Her paintings are inspired by racial justice

Throughout her work made at LSU, Sampy intends to keep

and social justice — any issue, she says, that

challenging the status quo, sparking conversations with her work

has a social consequence. Sampy asserts that

to ignite a crucial dialogue about change needed in the United

because racism in particular is such a deeply

States. “I believe we inherited this glorious country but forgot to

entrenched, underlying issue in American society,

address its dark side. So as a ‘millennial,’ I will question everything!”

it’s a challenge to get people to pay attention to it over time.

In the future, Sampy wants to bring about societal change by creating spaces in urban communities for children to discover art

In her piece “Modern Day Lynchings,” a tree

and develop their own abilities. And, of course, she intends to

grows out of a police car. Three black men hang

keep creating. “There are so many issues out there, I’ll probably

from the tree. Sampy made the painting in the

never run out of things to paint.”

immediate aftermath of the deaths of Alton + “Beware” by Chayse Sampy Black Men in America series

From Great Heights Elyse Marks studies the façade of a historic building, inspecting the walls for cracks. Hundreds of feet below her, the city streets of New York buzz, a distant blur. Tethered to the side of a skyscraper, Elyse scales a window many stories above the ground, trusting her harness and ropes. “I always get a rush of fear and excitement every time I go over the roof parapet of a new building – it is an incredible experience,” she shared. “The first time I went on a scaffold I remember being terrified the whole time, but at the same time I found it exhilarating. Over the years it has actually become one of my favorite parts of the job, because it means I get to see the city from a very unique perspective that not that many people get to experience.” Elyse received a bachelor of architecture from LSU in 2010 with a minor in architectural history. She received a master of science in historic preservation from Columbia University in 2012. From there, she has worked in several architecture and engineering firms within the New York City area that specialize in the restoration and rehabilitation of exterior building enclosures. She is now Project Manager / Studio Head at CANY Architecture + Engineering, DPC. Over the past five years, her work has mainly been focused on exterior façade restoration of historic and landmarked buildings within New York City. So far she has worked on several historically significant buildings in New York City, such as The City Bank Farmer’s Trust Building, The Plaza Hotel, The Coty Building, The Crown Building, and The Flatiron Building. 18






“I get to see the city from a very unique perspective that not that many people get to experience.” “Contributing to the history of these significant structures has been a great honor to me, not only as a lover of architectural history with a passion for preserving the iconic New York City skyline, but also because it is extremely satisfying to see a project come to completion,” she said. “I know that I have participated in some small way to furthering the life of an existing building so that it may be appreciated by future generations.” Her journey towards a career in preservation started when she was an undergraduate. “About three years into the architecture program, I started to realize that although I loved the freedom and creativity of designing new buildings, I wasn’t as in love with the idea of how much waste is created by new construction projects, not to mention the displacement within cities that can come from new development,” she said. “My grandmother was an antique dealer, and she instilled in me a great appreciation for antiques and historic buildings.”

For an undergraduate assignment at the LSU School of Architecture, students were tasked with designing a building of their own choosing, and Elyse asked a professor if she could pick an existing building on the proposed project site and create a new use. “It was my first exposure to the concepts of restoration and adaptive reuse,” she said. “Though at that point my understanding of the field was limited, the experience planted a seed in me and I began to look into alternative architecture careers outside the realm of new construction.” “I was set to graduate in 2010, during the height of the recession,” she said. “I knew I wanted to pursue a master’s degree, but was unsure about what field of study would be best suited to my talents and interests. A teacher whom I greatly admire and respect advised me to look into Columbia’s historic preservation program. After a visit to the campus in the fall of 2009, I began to realize how many career paths could be open to me. Once I was accepted into the program and began attending classes, I was exposed to so many other people with different backgrounds who felt the same way I did towards restoration and historic buildings.”

“When I discovered the world of restoration, it was the first time I envisioned a career path for myself where I could provide a significant contribution to society.” Projects generally begin when building deterioration is noted, posing public safety issues. Elyse and her team conduct a comprehensive building investigation, visiting all roofs, terraces, balconies, setbacks – “every nook and cranny of the building.” For the parts of the building that can’t be accessed on foot, such as the exterior

+ Photos courtesy of Elyse Marks.

façade, investigations are typically conducted via rope access, which must be performed by a SPRAT or IRATA - certified rope access technician. As a SPRAT-certified rope access technician, Elyse is able to gain access to all areas of a building to perform close-up inspections, with the purpose of identifying and evaluating deteriorated components of the structure’s façade. From there, she can develop a repair scope to address the deficient building conditions before they become hazardous. Elyse has received recognition as a female succeeding in a formerly male-dominated field. Last year, she was the subject of a weekly career profile as part of a series published by Madame Architect, an online platform profiling and cele-

brating women in architecture from different generations, countries, and corners of the industry. “I was interviewed on such subjects as how I got my start in architectural restoration, my path towards becoming a licensed architect, and on my experiences with trying to successfully navigate a male-dominated industry.” She was also featured on The Today Show, along with several of her female colleagues, on her experiences as a SPRAT-certified Level I rope access technician. “One of my proudest moments was finishing the first full facade restoration campaign where I was involved in every step of the process from initial investigation through closeout,” she said. “Being able to witness and have a hand in bringing a beautiful historic building back to its former glory was a revelatory experience for me — it really confirmed that I had chosen the right career path and that I could see myself doing this kind of work for a long time.”





New York City may seem a world away from Louisiana, but Elyse said she always knew that she wanted to go to LSU, and it ultimately led her to the “city that never sleeps.” “What it really came down to was picking a field of study that was both interesting and challenging to me, which is where LSU’s architecture program came into the picture,” she said. “After visiting as a senior in high school and falling in love with the welcoming and diverse atmosphere of the program, as well as the passion of its teachers and students, I knew it would be a good fit for me.” “My architecture degree was invaluable towards giving me a head start when I got to Columbia and started the graduate level curriculum,” she said. “Because my LSU professors had given me a strong foundation of knowledge on building systems, structures, and architectural history, I already understood the fundamentals of building and design – so it wasn’t like I had to start from scratch, as many of my classmates did.”

“My career thus far has been a world away from what I even knew was possible when I started out, and I am so grateful for that!”

Though her particular focus is in the preservation of historic buildings, there is actually much more to the field of building restoration than meets the eye, Elyse explained. “Though the opportunity to work on these well-known buildings has been important to my career, many of the smaller, less ‘impressive’ buildings I have worked to restore have provided me with more opportunities to learn more about various repair trades and methods of restoring various architectural elements than I ever expected. At this point in my life, I am still acquiring new skills and advancing my technical knowledge almost every day. In that way, every project has defined my work in some small way, which I am sure will continue to be the case throughout my career.” “While in architecture school, I had a hard time envisioning the type of career I wanted to have because I figured out pretty early on that I was not particularly inspired by the traditional career path of new construction, so I worried about how I would find my place in this industry,” she said. “In fourth year, we were assigned to read Jane Jacob’s The Death and Life of Great American Cities. This book really opened my eyes to the importance of investing in the existing built environment, and from there I just never looked back. The evolution of my career path has been organically driven by my primary interests in history and in the continued preservation of our existing building stock for future generations to enjoy.”

+ Female team members featured on The Today Show.



+ Elyse at work inspecting historic building façade in New York City.

“I am interested in the continued preservation of our existing building stock for future generations to enjoy.”

Why LSU Art & Design



NICK BERTUCCI - Architecture + Why did you choose LSU? I chose LSU originally due to my family connection. Both of my brothers attended LSU, which meant we spent many weekends up here visiting them and going to football games. I fell in love with the campus and the whole atmosphere surrounding it. When I later decided I wanted to pursue architecture, I was happy to hear that LSU had a well-respected program with so many opportunities and meaningful connections.

+ What drew you to your chosen field? My first exposure to architecture was through my oldest brother. While he was enrolled in LSU’s School of Architecture, I was exposed to all of his work; the drawings, models, and images, all of it fascinated me. When I started to look more into the field, the implications of these drawings and models and how they shaped what our built environment around us might look like, there was no going back.

+ Why did you choose the College of Art & Design? Architecture is the study and creation of meaningful spaces. The idea of being able to create a space that can both physically and emotionally move someone has always been something I wanted to study and professionally pursue.


BLAINE SWANZY - Interior Design + Why did you choose LSU? I am from California and I was looking to branch out and find a school that not only provided great academics but great student life as well, and LSU showed me that. + Why did you choose the College of Art & Design? I have been interested in design since I was young. First it was fashion design, then it was graphic design, and now it’s interior design. I have always loved the beauty of things as well as the



beauty of places and the College of Art & Design will provide me with ways to turn my passion into a career! + What drew you to your chosen field? My mom actually owns an interior design studio back in California, and when I started working with her over summers, I became more and more interested in the process of turning an empty room into a masterpiece.

BETSEY PETERSON - Landscape Architecture + Why did you choose LSU? When considering graduate programs, I weighed cost and scholarship opportunities, proximity to family and a support system, and looked at the collaboration opportunities at the institution, in addition to the specific program I was considering. LSU made sense for a well-rounded life during graduate school for all these reasons, not just the stellar program to which I had applied. Not to mention it’s a beautiful, inspiring campus! + Why did you choose the College of Art & Design? I chose the College of Art and Design, specifically the Robert Reich School of Landscape Architecture, for several reasons and am constantly uncovering more reasons why I am glad I ended up here. I initially was drawn to the program’s history of excellence (it tops the charts of the best landscape architecture programs in the country consistently) and the wide net of alumni that take pride in this institution. The thing I value even more, now that I know more about the profession, is the balance between preparing students for professional practice and pushing the bounds of design that this program offers. The staff come from various backgrounds and students truly get a breadth of exposure to this diverse field. Finally, the professors’ willingness to be here

for the students, going above and beyond to give their time to students, to conduct research that pushes the field forward, and to constantly improve this program is incredibly unique. + What drew you to your chosen field? I had been drawn to issues of sustainability, community-building, and equity for a while and finally discovered landscape architecture, which grapples with all these issues and more. The field is a tangible way to shape spaces to improve the health of people and the environment, foster connections, and design inspiring spaces that offer rest or exercise for us. I think we are all hyper aware of our spaces at home and the local public parks and trails as we go through this quarantine / social-distancing period together. I’m thankful more people are realizing the value of these spaces and am hopeful we will continue to value them once we come out on the other side of this unprecedented time.


KAYLA HALL - Studio Art + Why did you choose LSU? It’s a great place for me to explore, go on various internships, and prepare for graduate school. + Why did you choose the College of Art & Design? I chose the LSU College of Art and Design to do what I love most-create art. I’d rather spend my years learning/doing something that truly makes me happy and constantly challenges me rather than settle for mediocrity.

+ What drew you to your chosen field? I love to create! After graduation I’d love to work as a story board artist for Disney animations or Pixar, and / or go on to work at a smallscale design company, and once I gain years of experience, become an art director.



+ Images courtesy of Madelyn Riche

I Made That! M A D E LY N R I C H E

Interior design students in professor Matthew Dunn’s class created models of human brains that were displayed at TEDxLSU 2019, a day filled with interactive exhibits and talks across a variety of academic disciplines. The TEDxLSU theme was “illuminate” – a prompt that challenged students to “illustrate what you know and what you want to know within your ‘head.’” There are some things we know, and others that appear only through a glass darkly to us, operating just beyond the forefront of our consciousness. How do we reach through that darkness to grasp new meaning and expand our understanding? We seek to illuminate that which is still only dimly within our grasp. Illumination is a reciprocal process; what to you is fully illuminated can be only a spark of an idea to another person. To spread that idea, we take care to illuminate our own knowledge for others, and to receive and spread the spark of knowledge that those around us offer. With that illumination comes a deeper sense of clarity, and from there… Illuminate il·lu·mi·nate /i’loom nāt/ Illustrate, embellish, throw light on, enlighten, elucidate — TEDxLSU 2019 Theme Students were posed with the questions: “What do you know, what do you not know and what do you want to know? How do you illustrate / visualize knowledge or lack thereof? How would you visually differentiate between the two? How would you express what is most important and illustrate a hierarchy of knowledge?” Using text cut from magazines, illustrate what you know and what you want to know within your “head.” You are not confined just to the “brain cavity”…





Here, BID candidate Madelyn Riche explains her design process: + Step 1: Design Concept

The first phase of this project involved mapping my brain and using words and short phrases to describe what my brain looks like to me. I created a visual collage of words clipped from magazines to quickly map the things that I thought took up the most space and “processing power” in my brain. I looked at other artists’ work to gather some inspiration, and the word collage evolved into an isometric drawing of the inside of my head, complete with rooms and circulation of information. I created a factorylike environment where information flowed in through the five senses to a “knowledge dump” in the base of the head. From there, knowledge and information flowed through pipes to the other specialized areas for processing and storage. Excess, unnecessary information found its way out through a release spout in the top of the head.



+ Step 2: Building the 3D Head

Once I was happy with the concept work I had done, it was time to start building the thing. Using PDF templates, I cut out and assembled the head. I attached the templates to cardboard with rubber cement so that the paper could be cleanly removed once the pieces were cut out. Assembly involved cutting notches into interconnected pieces of the head and making sure they fit snugly with no noticeable gaps. I built the two sides of the head separately so that I could work on the interior space easily without having to disassemble the head. + Step 3: Designing the Interior

Now that I had my head built and knew precisely what the interior dimensions were, I could move on to designing the interior space. I decided I would recreate the knowledge dump from the map of my head and got to work. To recreate the liquid information at the base of the space, I used a waffling technique with chip board. Much like the assembly of the head itself, the waves in the pool required precise measurement of curves and dips to make the model read as liquid in motion. The pipes coming from the nose, ear, eye, and up from the spine were also made of long strips of chip board which I formed around pencils and secured with tacky glue. Once they were sturdy, I made rings out of silver wire to attach at even intervals to give them an industrial look. Finally, I included a battery powered LED light that I wrapped in vellum to illuminate the interior space.

+ Step 4: Finalizing the Exterior

With the interior done, I moved on to adding the structural and aesthetic elements on the exterior of the head that would clarify and secure my design. I added funnel shapes made of chip board and rimmed with the silver wire to represent the external inputs that feed into the knowledge dump. To allow people to see into the interior of the head, I installed a peep hole (like the one in your front door) into one of the eyes of the head. To secure it, I cut a circle out of cardboard and punched a hole into the middle to feed the peep hole through. I was then able to attach the cardboard to the head and the flange of the peep hold to hold it in place. I finished it off by adding a silver wire monocle around the cardboard brace to add character. I used small hidden binder clips to hold the two halves of the head together, and was finished!

+ Photo by Heather McClelland Photography.



Field Notes


Interior Design +


39 third-year interior design students traveled to Chicago, where they visited Stantec and Cannon Designs, and toured DIRT, and OFS, Steelcase and Herman Miller showrooms. “Having the opportunity to visit Chicago and experience different parts of the design community was valuable in reassuring our class as to who we are as designers and who we want to grow to become. Between firm visits and showroom tours, I couldn’t have asked for a more inspiring trip.” –Brannon Hardy, BID candidate


Architecture Panama

Architecture students in the “At the Border in Panama City” interdisciplinary option studio traveled to Panama to explore infrastructure and investigate the geographic line that historically demarcated the eastern border of the Panama Canal Zone from Panama City, the apex of the isthmus that ecologically links North and South America. “Being given the opportunity to travel back to my native land of Panama, view my country of origin through an architectural lens, and to also be able to work with fellow Panamanians has been a highlight of my architecture experience at LSU. I was given once in a life time chance to merge my love for architecture with my national identity and I couldn’t be more grateful to have had that chance.” –Oscar Almengor, MArch candidate 30


Landscape Architecture



In fall 2019 design students in assistant professor Brendan Harmon’s “Giant Panda Studio” designed a new national park for giant panda conservation and tourism in the wilds of Sichuan Province, China. They traveled to China to conduct fieldwork in the Fengtongzhai National Nature Reserve, and worked in partnership with Sichuan Agricultural University (SAU)’s College of Landscape Architecture. “I didn’t expect to experience a taste of what it must be like to be a college student in China. We lived on campus, had breakfast and lunch at the school canteen, and went to class in different buildings to learn Chinese language, native plants, tea culture and ink painting. I never thought that I would meet landscape architecture students and teachers in a different country, and in Asia.”




Andy Shaw, associate professor of ceramics, envisioned and launched the Mid-Atlantic Keramik Exchange in Iceland, which held its inaugural meeting in June 2019 at the studios of Myndlistaskólinn í Reykjavík (MIR), The Reykjavik School of Visual Arts. Artists from Europe and North America participated, including LSU students and alumni. “It was my first time ever visiting Iceland and I was blown away by the landscape and the otherworldly feel of the scenery. The experience of making work alongside other artists in another country was inspiring and creatively very fruitful. It was a chance to engage in conversation with other artists coming from Europe and other parts across North America.” –Jessi Maddox, MFA candidate SPRING/SUMMER ����


Class Notes


80s +

70s +

Trahan Architects, a global architecture firm based in New Orleans with design studios in New York City and Chicago, founded by VICTOR F. “TREY” TRAHAN III BArch 1983, FAIA, was named as the #1 Design firm in the U.S. for 2019 by ARCHITECT 50, a national ranking of architecture firms published by ARCHITECT magazine.

PHILL EVANS BFA 1973 manages Phill Evans Sculptural Design in Carmichael, California. He has produced more than 75 sculptural chairs over the past 30 years. STEPHEN PLUNKARD BLA 1977 FASLA, is senior principal at Q4! Associates PLLC in Cavendish, Vermont. He has practiced planning, urban design, landscape architecture and public engagement for 40 years. The majority of his work has been in the United States, but on occasion he has worked on projects in the Middle East, Europe, Canada and Africa. Projects he has worked on have won awards from the American Society of Landscape Architects, American Institute of Architects, Urban Land Institute and the National Trust for Historic Preservation. During his career, he has had a successful consulting firm and has been in leadership positions in international firms. He has been a lecturer and critic at more than a dozen universities and colleges. He was invited to the White House as SBA Small Business of the Year. Recently he completed a prototype master plan for the New Start school and orphanage in Waterfall, Zimbabwe. While living in Canada, he prepared a master plan for the First Nation, Blood Band of the Blackfoot Nation in Alberta. He is currently working on preparing plans for a Native American heritage river trail in southern Vermont. CHRISTOPHER UPTON BArch 1977 is senior facilities program manager at Parkland Health and Hospital System. He specializes in hospital design with a focus on pediatric care, and has designed hospitals in multiple U.S. locations and many international sites.



MARY ELIZABETH CIAMBOTTI BFA 1985, sculpture concentration, is an OSINT Hunter/ OSINT For Missing Persons CTF Events/ Drone Pilots for SAR. She is based in Lake Charles, Louisiana.



MARK PREVOT BArch 1990 is president of Prevot Design Services, APAC and currently lives and practices in Shreveport, Louisiana. Upon graduation from LSU he launched his career in Dallas, TX to work on some large civic projects. Mark relocated to Shreveport, LA in 1992 and has practiced there ever since. The firm offers architecture, interior design, planning and graphic design across the United States. His practice is focused on commercial projects, but he has recently enjoyed delving into the residential world.

PAUL MARTINEZ BFA 1991, graphic design concentration, is executive creative director for the travel + leisure brand and departures brand at Meredith Corporation, a media and marketing services corporation in New York City. He was named to Ad Week’s 2019 annual “Creative 100 List: The Most Fascinating People in Marketing, Media and Culture” and won a 2019 Ozzie Award for Best Typography.

JILL TRAYLOR BID 1998 has been named director of interior design at architecture, interiors and urban design firm Eskew Dumez Ripple in New Orleans. Traylor was an associate and has more than 20 years of national expertise in the design of interiors, having practiced in Manhattan, Dallas and her hometown of New Orleans. She joined Eskew Dumez Ripple in 2014.

Le Museede Kaplan hosted exhibition “Making Architecture” by JAMES TRAHAN, AIA BArch 1993. He is the founder of 180 Degrees Design + Build, an architect-led design and construction firm specializing in modern architecture. 180 Degrees + Build’s work has been published worldwide and has won numerous design and construction awards. AIA honored them with the Contractor of the Year in both 2006 and 2016. He is a registered architect and a general contractor in Arizona.

DAVID HOOVER BArch 1999 is an architect at Gasaway Bankston Architects in Hammond.

MIKE LANAUX BLA 1994 was elevated to the American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA) class of Fellows in November 2019; he received his nomination in “works” from the Louisiana Chapter. Early in his career, he had the opportunity to participate in a work-study program at the Life Planning Office in Tokyo, Japan. His exposure to Asian sensibilities, reflected in ancient temples, landscapes, and contemporary Japanese residential work, has led to an appreciation of the power of simplicity in design. His awards include the Shangri La Botanical Garden and Nature Center in Orange, Texas; the Indian Springs School/ Landscape Laboratories in Birmingham, Alabama; and the St. Landry Parish Visitors’ Center in Louisiana. He is a partner, senior designer and project managerat CARBO Landscape Architecture in Alexandria, Louisiana. ROB GRAY BLA 1997, PLA, EED AP, was made partner at Hoerr Schaudt landscape architecture studio. He directs business development firm-wide, and has a vast range of experience in large-scale urban planning in design, including streetscape design, campus and community planning, healthcare, public parks, botanical and zoological gardens, resorts and theme parks. He lives in Kansas City.



JOHNATHAN LEE TRAPP BID 2000 is owner of Lee Trapp, LLC in Marquette, Michigan on Lake Superior. He earned his MFA at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 2003. After working in exhibit design (interning at the Field Museum and AIA Chicago Firm of the Year Architecture Is Fun), he taught interior design at Central Michigan University and Indiana State University, and recently launched his own residential interior design practice. ANDREW FOX MLA 2001 was elevated to the ASLA class of Fellows in November 2019. He received his nomination in “knowledge” from the North Carolina Chapter. Among his many achievements during his distinguished career, Andrew received the prestigious 2016 Excellence in Teaching Award from the International Council of Educators in Landscape Architecture; established the awardwinning NC State Design + Build Studio; and launched his department’s inaugural “Design Week” program, an exemplary educational engagement experience in keeping with the





land grant mission of NC State. His scholarship focuses on resilient design for coastal regions and green infrastructure, work that has had significant social outcomes for people in marginalized communities. Under his leadership, the Coastal Dynamics Design Lab, which he founded and co-directs, has become a national model for resilient design research and education. He is a professor of landscape architecture at NC State University College of Design, Raleigh, North Carolina. SATISH RAO VAYUVEGULA MArch 2006 is practice leader at Arch Wert Planners & Designers in Pune, India. WILLIAM DORAN BArch 2008, former LSU architecture instructor, is an architectural associate and community planner at Duvall Decker in Jackson, Mississippi. He received his architectural license with the Louisiana State Board of Architectural Examiners in October 2019. CAILAN MANG SILVA BID 2009 is an event coordinator in Nashville, Tennessee. BRAD SILVA BArch 2005 is Territory Sales Manager for John Deere in Nashville, Tennessee.

10s + ZANE BUSBEE BLA 2011 has been promoted to associate principal at SWA landscape architecture, urban design and planning firm in Dallas, Texas. QUINN MILLER BFA 2013, digital art concentration, is art director at SASSO branding & advertising agency in Baton Rouge. SHELBY PRINDAVILLE MFA 2013, painting and drawing concentration, is director of the Helen Levitt Art Gallery, and associate professor of art at Morning-side College in Sioux City, Iowa. She completed an invitational artist residency with BROTA in collaboration with the Buenos Aires Botanical Garden in Buenos Aires, Argentina in the summer of 2019. 34


DARREN SHARKEY BLA 2013 has been promoted to associate at SWA landscape architecture, urban design and planning firm in Houston, Texas. TYLER DETIVEAUX BArch 2015 is an architect at Corgan in Houston, Texas. He began work at Corgan Houston in 2015 in the education studio. His specialization is in K-12 schools and has had the opportunity to design several schools for ISDs across the state. MARCI HARGRODER SABOE BFA 2015 is senior graphic designer at Stuller, Inc. in Lafayette, Louisiana. ANDREW LAYMAN BArch 2016 is a technical designer at Amento Group in Seattle, Washington. ALEX MORVANT BLA 2016 is a landscape architect at Design Works in Charleston, South Carolina. TINA NARAGHI-POUR BArch 2016 is an architectural staff member at Corgan Houston. JUSTIN BRYANT MFA 2018, painting and drawing concentration, is a 2019 Interchange Fellow, awarded to southern regional artists whose work focus on social impact in the region. Bryant’s project Holman: A Living Archive is a community project that centralizes art and social engagement as a key component to the revitalization of the historically black Holman High School in Stuttgart, Arkansas. MICHELLE JONES JAMES BArch 2018 is an intern architect at Labarre Associates in Baton Rouge.



Equipped WITH ERIK A N. WITT Erika Witt is a doctoral candidate in the Doctor


University and a Master of Art in Museum Studies with a specialization

of Design in Cultural Preservation program with

in the traditional Arts of Africa from Southern University at New Orleans.

a research focus on traditional African art history,

Her doctoral thesis analyzes performativity of traditional African art

Egyptology, museology, and African American

verses the normative views on the performativity of traditional African

history and culture.

art in museum exhibitions. Erika is a 2014 Fellow in the Shafik Gabr

Erika is a curatorial specialist and museology

emerging leaders from the United States and Egypt to join forces to

instructor based in New Orleans. She received a

discuss critical issues of their countries and develop projects addressing

Bachelor of Art in Museum Studies from Tusculum

those issues.

East-West Art of Dialogue Initiative, a fellowship program for young

1. ARTIFACT: Ngaady A Mwaash mask, Kuba People, Democratic Republic of the Congo, 20th Century. 2. COTTON GLOVES: necessary to wear white cotton gloves when handling artifact to prevent finger oils and salts from contacting the surface of an artifact that could result in damage. These are known as the symbol for museum professionals.


3. MICRON BLACK PEN: this archivalquality ink pen is good for writing on artifact tags because it is waterproof and fade-resistant smear when dry. Writing on the artifact tag should occur away from the artifact. 4. ARTIFACT TAGS: strung on the artifact to display the name, ethnic group, and accessioning number. 5. NO. 2 PENCILS: can be used for writing on archival labels but mostly used on writing condition reports to erase and amend the information when needed.




ON THE COVER The photograph on the cover of this issue of the Quad, by BFA Micah Viccinelli, shows muralist Robert Dafford at work on the Julian White memorial mural on LSU’s campus, which honors the university’s first African American professor. The College of Art & Design and The Walls Project recruited Dafford, a master artist with nearly 500 murals completed, to paint the mural in the Julian T. White Atrium of the LSU Design Building. Globally known for his murals, Dafford has painted in a variety of places across the United States, as well as some in Canada, Belgium, France, and England. “When we were thinking about how to celebrate the naming of this space, we came upon the idea of doing a mural and not just a bronze plaque,” said Dean Alkis Tsolakis. “We thought that this man’s contribution that freed and opened the doors of LSU to everyone was great enough to be commemorated in a way just as exceptional as he - and his teaching – was.” Dafford installed the mural on LSU’s campus in February March 2020, and students had the opportunity to watch the muralist at work, as he painted from a raised platform


in the public atrium. For the LSU art and design students who will see the mural every day, Julian T. White’s impact is still being made.


“This project means everything to me,” said Dean Tsolakis. “It means another step in freeing LSU and making a home for everyone. Another step in what Julian White did for LSU, for Louisiana, and for the world.”

Thanks to Mural Sponsors:


Coleman Partners Architects

Rachel Emmanuel, Ph.D.

Buddy and Lauren Ragland

Michael Robinson and Don Boutte

Gary and Lisa Gilbert

A.P. Tureaud Sr. Chapter of the LSU

Dale and Diane Songy

Alumni Association

Tipton Associates

Laura Lindsay, Ph.D. and

Ken and Patricia Tipton

Wendell Lindsay Jr.

Trahan Architects

RHH Architects

Trey Trahan

SOMA Design Consultants Inc.

Kenneth Miles

Bryan Hudson



Louisiana State University 102 Design Building Baton Rouge, LA 70803-70101