in residence // 2017 VCFA Alumni Magazine

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in residence VERMONT COLLEGE OF FINE ARTS / ALUMNI MAGAZINE-Beyond Borders / 2017


Resonance (Remains)

MOKSHA SOMMER (’17 VA) takes part in her live performance Resonance (Remains) during the MFA in Visual Art 2017 winter residency. Upon entering the darkened space, viewers had their hands washed by performers dressed in white. Sommer then led the performers in a series of choreographed movements that included sweeping the room with brooms and soaking cloth in buckets of water. She also walked amongst the audience performing various vocalizations–guttural chants and cries. The piece concluded with each performer hanging a piece of cloth printed with their individual portraits on a laundry line, dripping in the middle of the room.

:: WINTER 2017

vermont college of fine arts

Dear Friends


“Anchored on its historic campus in Montpelier, Vermont, VCFA is a global community of artists continuously redefining what it means to be an arts college. We measure our success by our ability to foster the excellence of emerging and established practitioners. We believe that the arts are central to the human experience and have the ability not only to reflect reality but also to create it.” Our new Vermont College of Fine Arts mission statement greets every visitor as they walk into the College Hall Gallery. It embodies everything we do here in preparing and transforming artists, writers, designers, composers, and filmmakers as they branch out into the world. And we really mean the entire world. Even though we’re based in tiny Vermont, in the quiet din of Montpelier’s small-town life, our reach has always extended far beyond the borders of the Green Mountain State.

On the Green 4 CAMPUS NEWS


And with the creation of VCFA’s newest MFA program, our reach will grow ever wider. In October 2017, the VCFA Board of Trustees unanimously approved the new International MFA in Creative Writing & Literary Translation program. I am so excited to announce this new venture and to partner with someone I have had the great privilege of working with before, former faculty chair of the MFA in Writing program, Xu Xi. Xu, along with translator and VCFA alumnus Evan Fallenberg (‘01 W) will jointly lead this program to bring VCFA’s legacy of writing excellence to an international audience. We foresee residencies in Asia, Europe, and North and South America. You’ll find more details on page 10.



Features 9 Vermont Book Award Gala 10 Going Global


Tim Simard


copy editor

Cathy Donohue

16 Faculty View



Sian Foulkes Foulkes Design


18 Life after MFA

contributing writers


Sky Barsch Ann Cardinal Breanne Cunningham Cathy Donohue Garrett Steele

20 Creative Process TAVIA GILBERT 18

Alumni Focus 3 President’s letter

On the cover: Kanga by Ziddi Msangi, pg.16

Beowulf Sheehan Stefan Hard Thatiana Oliveira Anthony Pagani Brittany Powell Paul Richardson Blake Rong

12 Facutlty news

In Residence

22 Class news


46 Report of gifts 50

contributing photographers

50 Juxtaposition

Volume 5, Number 1 © 2 0 17

36 College Street Montpelier, VT 05602

We’ve always been a global community of artists. In so many ways, we’ve always been a global community of artists. Just reading through our 2017 issue of in residence, I’m reminded that our faculty and alumni are taking their work beyond all borders—international borders, creative borders, genre borders. Our students are, too. In fact, the first recipient of the MFA in Writing & Publishing residential program’s Emerging Writer Scholarship—Samuel Kolawole—moved to Montpelier from Nigeria and is already a published author in Africa. He joins students from Israel, Indonesia, and England who are also in their first year of the program. VCFA’s enlivened international focus occurs as we prepare to celebrate our 10-year anniversary—a prime time to review and update a mission statement. Initially, we touted VCFA as a “national center for education in the arts.” That definition is too narrow today. Most recently—and especially during the last two years of a trying time in this country’s politics— “national” has been co-opted for almost myopic purposes far different from our own values. The world changes and so do we. Just like our new mission statement asserts, we are truly a global organization that mirrors the best of today’s world. As we prepare to celebrate 10 years and set our sights on an even brighter future, I have great faith that VCFA’s growing international artists’ community will continue to attract talented practitioners whose work will help shape the cultures in which they live.

With all good wishes, Thomas Christopher Greene President

I Love You. I Hate You. Don’t Leave Me.

on the green

During our annual Open House Weekend, we held an exhibition entitled I Love You. I Hate You. Don’t Leave Me. Open to alumni in all VCFA programs, it featured artwork, music, poems, and short films based around the universal theme of heartbreak. 5


Vermont College of Fine Arts campus is from across every program in a shared experience, even though our alumni live and work all over the world. VCFA alumni embody the spirit of the College no matter where they create their art.

New programs, new alumni VCFA’s two newest programs celebrated their first graduating classes this year: the residential MFA in Writing & Publishing program and the Graduate Studies in Art & Design Education program. The first class of MFA in Writing & Publishing students began their VCFA experience in the summer of 2015, breaking in a brandnew residential program at a College that previously only offered low-residency education. Two years later, six students culminated their VCFA experience during a College Hall Chapel graduation attended by family, friends, and faculty. In similar fashion, we graduated 10 students from our Art & Design Education program—six with a Master’s of Art in Teaching and four with a Master’s of Art in Art & Design Education. The ceremony took place in Alumni Hall amidst an art exhibit entitled Everything Changed, which included studio work and reflective documentation about summer teaching experiences with local elementary and middle school-aged artists.

Not only was this on-campus exhibition a success with the Montpelier community, but also with prospective students visiting campus. Based on the success of I Love You. I Hate You. Don’t Leave Me., we plan to hold another alumni exhibition next year.

WCYA community of artists Darrow Lecture Series During the summer residency, the MFA in Writing for Children & Young Adults program kicked off the Darrow Lecture Series, which both recognizes longtime faculty member SHARON DARROW’s amazing contributions to the program and celebrates and promotes the achievements of WCYA alumni. Sharon, who has worked with the program in nearly every capacity since its beginnings in 1997, will retire in January.

Top: Our first graduating class of MFA in Writing & Publishing students. Left and above: The first class of students in our Graduate Studies in Art & Design Education also graduated this year.

VCFA created the Darrow Lecture Series as an annual opportunity for WCYA students to gain inspiration from and engage with successful graduates. The program invited alumna JULIE BERRY (’08) to launch the series. Author of the historical thriller The Passion of Dolssa, which was named a 2017 Printz Honor book among many other notable awards, Julie gave an amazing lecture on the topic of voice and narration. Every seat in the Chapel was filled with current students, faculty, and alumni, and it was a highlight of the residency. We’re looking forward to the next Darrow Lecture in 2018.

Announcing our Art More Than Ever podcast This fall, we debuted our first-ever VCFA podcast featuring lengthy interviews with faculty, alumni, current students, and visitors. The breadth of artists VCFA brings to its campus is, in many ways, unparalleled. Art More Than Ever will tie our programs together in a podcast that we believe will gain notice in the arts world. Local podcast host Erica Heilman has spent much of 2017 interviewing writers, artists, filmmakers, and musicians from across nearly all of our programs. Erica’s background in broadcast journalism and in the art of the podcast has led to deep and meaningful interviews, all conducted within the warm confines of VCFA’s Gary Library. Among them, Erica spoke with MFA in Film faculty member TILL SCHAUDER about how deep a documentary director must get with his subject; MFA in Graphic Design student ADAM DELMARCELLE about how art and design can bring demanding attention to the nation’s opioid crisis; and MFA in WCYA alumna CORI MCCARTHY (’11 WCYA) about her approaches to writing for the YA genre. Art More Than Ever is hosted on Look for new episodes as we roll them out throughout 2018.

WCYA alumna Cori McCarthy and Art More Than Ever host Erica Heilman.

vermont college of fine arts

campus news

More than 25 VCFA artists examined the culture of break-ups, its messiness, heartache, and triumph. They expanded the definition of what it means to end a relationship. Much of the artwork was deeply personal and, as always, highly creative. Specials thanks to our admissions crew for putting this wonderful exhibition together!

As our alumni know very well, the a special place. It connects graduates




MFA in Visual Art

on the green

MFA in Writing

musicians, and designers from around

MFA in Writing’s winter residency was chock-full of visiting authors, as well as returning faculty and alumni. Poet KYLE DARGAN, author of four poetry collections, including Honest Engine, and poet/translator J. KATES, held poetry lectures. Alumni guests included RICHARD MICHELSON, author of More Money than God and the first alumnus to receive a master’s in poetry at Vermont College, as well as JERICHO PARMS, author of Lost Wax and associate director of the MFA in Writing Program at VCFA. Former faculty chair XU XI also returned to campus as a distinguished visiting faculty member.

the globe. Many were alumni returning to campus to meet and work with current students. Here are some of the highlights.

We also hosted Artist-in-Residence MILDRED BELTRÉ and her collaborator at the Brooklyn Hi-Art! Machine, OASA DUVERNEY. The Brooklyn Hi-Art! Machine is a collaborative public art intervention that explores art-making as a community-building tool. We also welcomed ESHRAT ERFANIAN as the summer Artist-in-Residence. Eshrat is an Iranian-born, Canadian artist and longtime friend of VCFA. Visiting Artist PAUL JOHNSTON also joined us this summer, discussing how deaf artists and designers have evolved since the development of American Sign Language (ASL).

With our MFA in Writing & Publishing students on campus for much of the year, public events and readings take place nearly every month. Some of our guests included poet SHERWIN BITSUI and author ALEXANDER CHEE, as well as MFA in Writing alumna ROBIN MACARTHUR.

MFA in Music Composition Eshrat Erfanian discusses a student’s work during the summer residency.

The winter residency marked the program’s 20th anniversary! DON TATE, noted children’s author and illustrator (The Amazing Age of John Roy Lynch; Poet: The Remarkable Story of George Moses Horton) returned as a visiting writer. Author KATHRYN ERSKINE (Mockingbird) also visited campus. We also hosted a special Martin Luther King Jr. Day event—faculty member CYNTHIA LEITICH SMITH interviewed fellow faculty member and alumna KEKLA MAGOON (’05) about her book X: A Novel that she co-wrote with Ilyasah Shabazz. The summer residency included the first Darrow Lecture Series event, led by alumna JULIE BERRY (see page 4). Students also heard from children’s book publisher and author ANITA SILVEY (100 Best Books for Children), Métis writer and Canadian poet KATHERENA VERMETTE (North End Love Songs), and author/ illustrator MINI GREY (The Bad Bunnies’ Magic Show). Chanelle Aponte

Much like our MFA in Visual Art residencies, our MFA in Graphic Design students take over campus with their incredible work. In the spring, guest designers ANDREW BLAUVELT and OLIVER KLIMPEL visited, taking part in crits and holding lectures throughout the week. In the fall, we welcomed guest designers DR. DORI TUNSTALL, SIBYLLE HAGMANN, and RANDY NAKAMURA.

MFA in Writing & Publishing

The summer residency also hosted many noted writers and poets and each held public readings over the July 4 weekend. They included creative nonfiction writer MARY CAPPELLO (Life Breaks In: A Mood Almanack), poet ADA LIMÓN (Bright Dead Things), fiction and nonfiction writer EMILY RABOTEAU (Searching for Zion: The Quest for Home in the African Diaspora), and fiction writer VICTOR LAVALLE (The Ballad of Black Tom). Alumna and 2017 Vermont Book Award finalist ROBIN MACARTHUR (Half Wild) also returned to campus.

MFA in Writing for Children & Young Adults

MFA in Graphic Design

MFA in Film Each MFA in Film residency brings some of the best filmmaking talent to Vermont, with guest lectures on campus and screenings at Montpelier’s Savoy Theater. In April, guests and screenings included filmmaker CHANELLE APONTE PEARSON (ONE NINE FIVE LEWIS), writer ANNIE HOWELL (LITTLE BOXES), filmmaker MIKE DAY (THE ISLAND AND THE WHALES), Academy Award-winning sound editor SYLVAIN BELLEMARE (ARRIVAL), and video artist RYAN TRECARTIN (PRIORITY INNFIELD). In October, we featured guest lectures and screenings from director JULIA SOLOMONOFF (NOBODY’S WATCHING), filmmaker DAMON DAVIS (WHOSE STREETS?), and filmmaker ALAN BERLINER (FIRST COUSIN ONCE REMOVED), among thesis and faculty screenings.

Our MFA in Music Composition residencies continuously bring incredible musicians to campus. In the winter, we welcomed four visiting ensembles—the SPEKTRAL STRING QUARTET, THE CITY OF TOMORROW, the TALUJON PERCUSSION TRIO, and the CROSSOVER QUINTET. In the summer, we heard from the returning STRING TRIO, the BROOKLYN BRASS QUINTET, TRANSIENT CANVAS, and the newly formed ANNA’S GHOST QUARTET, named after VCFA’s resident spirit. Each group played music composed by our students—a highlight for so many each residency. Most concerts are live streamed. If you can’t make it to campus, visit our website each residency for links to the shows.

vermont college of fine arts

artists community

Victor Lavalle

Once again, VCFA hosted a number of visiting writers, artists, filmmakers,






The highlight of each residency is the current and graduating student exhibition held in Alumni Hall and College Hall. Many artists and alumni visited campus this year to critique student work and engage with the VCFA Visual Art community. They included alumni DAMALI ABRAMS (‘08) and NILS KARSTEN (’03); visiting artists SUZY SPENCE, RODRIGO VALENZUELA, and JOHN WILLIS; and visiting scholar UJJU AGGARWAL.





vermont book award gala

Year of Giving/Vermont Book Award Gala

on the green

YEAR OF GIVING The Vermont College of Fine Arts community has always been strong and generous, and this past year was no different. Thanks to this incredible community, we were able to hit our goals for the VCFA Fund, which supports all we do here at VCFA, and the Artists Development Fund, which directly supports scholarships for our students. Additionally, support for the VCFA Young Writers Network—our community outreach program that connects alumni to children least likely to meet authors—greatly increased. We also secured grants from the Vermont Community Foundation, Vermont Arts Council, and Historic Preservation. We are so appreciative of the significant support from our alumni, faculty, students, staff, and friends. VCFA also received its second $1 million gift to the Artists Development Fund from an anonymous donor. As President Tom Greene said upon receiving this gift, “This new support ensures VCFA’s commitment to giving artists the opportunities to expand their practice and broaden their experience.” VCFA hopes to raise $5 million over the next five years for the Artists Development Fund. For more information about the fund and ways to give, please visit http://vcfa. edu/support-vcfa/artists-development-fund. As we finish out 2017, we hope you’ll continue your support of VCFA and keep an eye out for our end-of-year appeal. For a complete list of donors from this past year, please turn to our Annual Report of Gifts beginning on page 46.

third annual


Our third annual Vermont Book Award Gala was the biggest one yet! On September 23, 2017, more than 225 people were on hand in Alumni Hall when author Jensen Beach took home the Vermont Book Award. Beach won for his short story collection Swallowed by the Cold. It was a lively evening all around, with music performed by Kat Wright following the awards ceremony. The Gala also served as the first announcement of the Phoenix Books Howard Frank Mosher Scholarship. This $10,000 award will be given to a Vermont writer in his or her first year of the MFA in Writing & Publishing program. It honors the life of the late Howard Frank Mosher, a beloved Vermont author, a 2015 Vermont Book Award judge, and friend to VCFA. Special thanks to Phoenix Books of Vermont for helping to establish this scholarship.

2017 VERMONT BOOK AWARD WINNER Jensen Beach (middle) won for his book Swallowed By The Cold. He’s joined by 2016 Vermont Book Award winner Major Jackson (left) and VCFA President Tom Greene (right).

International MFA in Creative & Literary Translation—in November 2017. The international master of fine arts program is an exclusively global program for writers and writing, with a focus on literature in translation.

To help launch and direct this program, VCFA is turning to two longtime friends of the College—XU XI and EVAN FALLENBERG. Xu is a former faculty chair of the MFA in Writing program and will be returning to that same program as a visiting faculty member at the upcoming 2018 winter residency. Evan Fallenberg is a 2001 alumnus of the MFA in Writing program and has since returned to campus as a visiting translator. “We’re both really excited to be heading up this new program. Our residencies will rotate globally, with a curriculum that focuses on international writing and literature, as well as translation. The literary world is global and writers need to broaden their perspective beyond their own borders through immersion in other cultures and languages, and through interactions with writers from other parts of the world,” Xi and Fallenberg said. The program will offer three areas of study—fiction, nonfiction, and literary translation—taught at brief residencies and by distance mentoring. Students will be required to attend a total of four residencies over the course of their degree—three international and one at the VCFA campus in Montpelier, Vermont. Students must also complete four semesters of creative and critical writing, during which they will work one-on-one with a faculty mentor by distance, followed by a final creative thesis in the fifth semester.

International program faculty SYBIL BAKER (fiction/nonfiction) JASON GRUNEBAUM (literary translation) ROBIN HEMLEY (nonfiction/fiction) TABISH KHAIR (fiction/nonfiction) MARK POLIZZOTTI (nonfiction/literary translation) JAMES SCUDAMORE (fiction) IRA SUKRUNGRUANG (nonfiction/fiction) MADELEINE THIEN (fiction)

The International MFA in Creative Writing & Literary Translation program will begin accepting applications in January 2018. Residencies for the 2018-2019 academic year include Iceland in September 2018 plus Hong Kong and VCFA Montpelier in March and August 2019 respectively. More international locales are in the works for the subsequent academic years. The excitement on campus about the International MFA is electric, and we’re looking forward to expanding the global reach of VCFA’s unique brand of writing excellence and creativity. The world awaits!

MFA in Writing students toured Slovenia during the overseas summer residency in 2017.

Our thoughts are with you Puerto Rico We watched in anguish as Hurricane Maria wrecked beautiful Puerto Rico in September. The images that emerged in the hours and days after the storm moved off the island were almost too much to take in. Our immediate thoughts went to our friends and colleagues who rode out the storm and are now going through the process of putting their lives back together. Puerto Rico is a magical place for VCFA. Since 2010, we’ve held a winter residency on the island, bringing the best aspects of a VCFA residency to this beautiful tropical setting and receiving so much in return. We’ve met extraordinary writers, such as HECTOR FELICIANO, a creative nonfiction writer who, while writing his groundbreaking book The Lost Museum, was personally responsible for the return of 2,000 pieces of Nazi-appropriated art to the original owners. And YOLANDA ARROYO PIZARRO, an award-winning novelist, short story writer, and essayist whose work has broken many a boundary in literary circles and whose marriage to fellow writer and activist ZULMA OLIVERAS VEGA was the first same sex marriage on the island. We’ve walked the blue cobblestone streets of Old San Juan talking about colonialism and literature, and read poetry and sung madrigals in the small stone chapel in El Morro fort. We’ve held workshops by waterfall-fed pools in El Yunque National Forest, and given lectures to the background music of the coqui, the Puerto Rican tree frogs.

We hope to do all of this—and more—again, but in response to this natural disaster VCFA will not hold a winter 2018 residency on the island. There is no question that we will return to Puerto Rico and we’re doing what we can to help support relief efforts. There will be fundraising events during the winter Montpelier residency, and VCFA will donate the money normally allocated to the staff holiday party to this worthy cause. We expect to return for a residency in winter 2019, but for now we ask that you keep our our Puetro Rican friends friends in your hearts and prayers.

vermont college of fine arts

International MFA

program—the world’s first low-residency

While we currently host overseas residencies in Slovenia, Puerto Rico, and England for our MFA in Writing and MFA in Writing for Children & Young Adult programs, this new academic venture is a completely international undertaking for VCFA!



VCFA announced its newest academic

“VCFA is a global community of artists continuously redefining what it means to be an arts college.”

The International MFA in Creative Writing & Literary Translation brings together the high quality and prestige of VCFA’s graduate education excellence, with the opportunity to engage in creative writing and literary translation in a wholly international context. The international MFA program truly embodies our new mission statement: “VCFA is a global community of artists continuously redefining what it means to be an arts college.”




faculty news class news Art & Design Education

NIKKI JUEN (‘16 VA) and Brick x Brick joined with other artists for Art Rising: Take Trump Tower on June 14. artists-stage-protest-performances-intrump-tower/

Film MARYA COHN was invited for a month-long screenwriting residency at Jentel in Wyoming.

DAN SCHRECKER worked as visual effects supervisor on Darren Aronofsky’s 2017 film MOTHER!, which stars Jennifer Lawrence, Javier Bardem, Ed Harris, and Michelle Pfeiffer. Dan has worked on the visual effects for many of Aronosky’s films. He also screened the film during the fall 2017 MFA in Film residency.

MATT MONK (who also serves as VCFA academic dean) presented at the conference “Ideas of Revolt: Stationing ideas of revolt within contemporary graphic design education“ in Sheffield, England in September. Matt’s presentation was titled “Rethinking Graphic Design Education at Vermont College of Fine Arts.” SILAS MUNRO won TWO of the coveted STA 100 awards this year for his beautiful work for fine artist Mark Bradford!

BETHANY KOBY’s company, Technology Will Save Us, ran a successful Kickstarter campaign for a new series of interactive project kits for children. Called Electro Dough, “kids are introduced to Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Mathematics (STEAM) principles through one of the most fun, universal and satisfyingly squishy materials—electronic play dough. Yes, that’s right—dough that conducts electricity!”

The Radius Ensemble released their debut recording, “Fresh Paint,” on September 1, 2016. The album features works commissioned and premiered during their 15th anniversary season. Among the works included is JONATHAN BAILEY HOLLAND’s “Synchrony”—a work that is about the duality of living in the age of the first African American President of the United States, while simultaneously experiencing everything that has led to the need for the Black Lives Matter campaign. Jonathan was also interviewed on WBUR’s (Boston) ARTery program. The story was titled: “Horror And Hope: A Local Composer Responds to Violence Against African-Americans;” a written article and recording of the interview are available at: artery/2016/12/23/jonathan-baileyholland RAVI KRISHNASWAMI wrote a four-part blog series about his work that was published on New Music Box ( Ravi and Garrett Steele (’16 MC) took home the Best Original Song at the 5th Annual AMP Awards for Music and Sound on May 23rd in New York City. The winning entry was the Fallout 4 “Nuka World Official Trailer,” created by Bethesda Game Studios, and written by Garrett and co-written/arranged by Ravi. It features a fun, campy and periodaccurate jingle for a fictional theme park called “Nuka World.” This marks the fifth straight year that Ravi’s company COPILOT has won at the AMP awards.

Visual Art

JOHN MALLIA received a 2017 Artist Fellowship Award from the Massachusetts Cultural Council. The $12,000 cash award is in recognition of exceptional work based on anonymous portfolio review and does not carry any project requirements. John was one of four award recipients in the Music Composition category. John was also a featured performer at the North Country Electronic Music Festival, which took place during the South End Art Hop in Burlington, VT. MC Alumni Craig Pallett (’15) and Chris Breault (’15) also performed.

DIANE MOSER was the featured pianist and composer on a new recording titled “For My Mother,” a collective effort with bassist Mark Dresser, saxophonist Hafez Modirzadeh, and drummer Vijay Anderson. The title of the new recording is also one of Moser’s featured compositions, along with several of her Birdsong compositions. In other news, Diane’s Composers Big Band celebrated their 20th anniversary with a special concert at Trumpets Jazz Club (Montclair, NJ) in March. Diane has also been very busy recording her new Birdsong Trio. Currently in post-production, the recording features Diane’s Birdsong compositions from her residency at the MacDowell Colony. The recording will be on the Planet Arts label and is due to be released in late 2017.

DALIDA MARÍA BENFIELD collaborated with Diasporas Críticas & Migratory Times/the Institute of (im) Possible Subjects in Barcelona, Spain on Exercise in Radiofonization. This workshop was directed at transfeminist artists, activists, and poets with the aim of sharing research around the process of enunciation and the practices, histories, and metaphors associated with radio. Part workshop and part performance of a radio recording-studio, the session put into practice a range of pedagogical and affective techniques in the fields of voice, enunciation, and reading. CAULEEN SMITH took part in an exhibition called Triangle Trade at Toronto’s Gallery TPW beginning in September. Cauleen worked with artists Jérôme Havre and Camille Turner on a project created during a year of cross-border conversation on specific relationships to land and belonging. The three collaborated on a new short film, which featured three puppet avatars— performing the selves of Havre, Smith, and Turner—navigating distinct worlds that at once isolate them and offer them the possibility of transformative connection. As they move through their respective landscapes, Havre, Smith, and Turner’s puppets reflect on blackness as a state of becoming, a mode of experience that reaches simultaneously into multiple futures and histories. Cauleen also exhibited her series of drawings called Human_3.0 Reading List at the Art Institute of Chicago in the summer and fall.

VIÊT LÊ was featured in a lengthy spotlight interview in Sum of Parts in September ( resources/soparts-spotlight-vit-l). Lê also contributed to a July 2017 curated exhibition Queer Horizons at the Center for Art + Thought in Los Angeles.

vermont college of fine arts

faculty news

ANDRES HERNANDEZ was chosen to serve on the exhibition design team for the Obama Presidential Center, and to represent the United States as a co-exhibitor at the 2018 Venice Architecture Biennale. This past year, Andres was also the inaugural artist-in-residence at Curie Metropolitan High School as part of the MCA Chicago’s School Partnership for Art And Civic Engagement (SPACE) program. Earlier in 2017, he received a Public Studio Artist in Residence award from the Chicago Cultural Center. Chosen from an applicant pool of nearly 200 artists, Hernandez was awarded a $6,000 artist stipend and three months of studio time to further his practice while inviting public participation.

Three posters by HAMMER, the Zurich design studio run by DAVID SCHATZ and SEREINA ROTHENBERGER, won the 100 Best Posters Germany, Austria, Switzerland 2016 competition. LORENA HOWARDSHERIDAN visited the Rare Book Collection at the Benson Library at the University of Texas in Austin to review Mexican Incunabula. Lorena shared her research with faculty and students.

MARLA MCLEAN was one of the 23 women artists in the “Art in the Age of Injustice” exhibition presented by the Women’s Caucus for Art (WCA), Philadelphia Chapter. The exhibition took place throughout April 2017. DAIN OLSEN led the advocacy effort for Media Arts Education in California, which resulted in specific legislation to promote Media Arts Education and development of Media Arts Standards in the VAPA standards revision process. Dain also co-authored the Teacher’s Guide for the California Alliance for Arts Education’s Student Voices Campaign, which supports the student vision for local school budgeting for media arts, video production, and civic engagement.

Graphic Design

Music Composition



KELLY GROSS, also a faculty co-chair, presented a paper, “Representation, Re-presentation, and Representin’ through Graphic Novels,” at the first international conference on disability studies and art education, Aalto University, Helsinki, Finland. Research on the representation of disability in graphic novels and visual media are discussed. Several graphic novels for students in grades K-12 that feature protagonists with disabilities are analyzed.

HAWLEY HUSSEY (’99 VA) debuted new artwork at Alley Cat Books in San Francisco, CA. Hawley and her partner and fellow artist Bill Brovold’s latest exhibition was titled “Inside Out(Side).” Hawley’s new large-scale watercolors intersect someplace between botanical study and loving portrait of known and unknown specimens from the land she and Bill purchased in 2012. The work is dedicated to the gardener she never met who worked their land for 40 years. Hawley was also a Grant Juror for Lower Manhattan Cultural Council’s 2017 Creative Learning Program.

IAN LYNAM published Cannibals, a 92-page booklet comprised of a handful of new essays about design, education, hope, dread, delight, misery and, of course, sex. Lovingly printed in three offset colors, Cannibals is part innately relatable pop narrative, part irreverent mythology, and part searing critical analysis of design culture today.” Ian was also a featured speaker at “CONVERGE: Disciplinarities and Digital Scholarship,” AIGA Design Educators Community Conference in Los Angeles in June. Current GD student Heather Quinn also gave a talk.



Faculty co-chair KIM COSIER won a Stonewall Award from the American Library Association for co-editing the book Rethinking Sexism, Gender, and Sexuality, which was designed as a manual for classroom teachers to help them talk about issues of identity around gender and sexuality.

TILL SCHAUDER’S 2017 documentary WHEN GOD SLEEPS has received critical acclaim this year. Till screened his film at the Tribeca Film Festival in May, and it won the International DocFilmMusic Competition—the Golden Heynal Award—at the 57th Krakow Film Festival. WHEN GOD SLEEPS was also an official selection at the inaugural DocLands Documentary Film Festival in California. Till also screened the documentary during the fall 2017 MFA in Film residency. WHEN GOD SLEEPS follows exiled Iranian musician Shahin Najafi as he struggles with his personal life and professional career in Germany, all while living under a fatwa issued against him by hardline Iranian clerics.

faculty news class news

CONNIE MAY FOWLER launched her latest book, A Million Fragile Bones, during VCFA’s Novel Retreat in May 2017.

WILLIAM ALEXANDER’s new book, A Properly Unhaunted Place, is “a swashbuckling middle-grade fantasy about haunted libraries, Renaissance festivals, and our shifting relationship to history.” Released in the fall, it has received two starred reviews and is a Junior Library Guild selection.

LOUISE HAWES released the paperback edition of The Language of Stars.

AMY (A.S.) KING released Me and Marvin Gardens, her first novel for the middle-grade audience. It earned several starred reviews, was a Junior Library Guild selection, and was reviewed positively in the New York Times as well as other national newspapers. Her newest novel, Still Life with Tornado, was published in October 2016 and received six starred reviews, landed on many 2016 Best Book lists, and was a New York Times 2016 Notable Children’s Book.

LINDA URBAN’s book Weekends with Max and His Dad, illustrated by Katie Kath, is the winner of the 2017 Gryphon Award for Children’s Literature. The award, which includes a $1,000 prize, is given annually by The Center for Children’s Books.

MARY QUATTLEBAUM’s Hero Dogs! True Stories of Amazing Animal Heroes, a narrative nonfiction chapter book, was published by National Geographic.

MARTHA SOUTHGATE offers free thoughts on “Hamilton,” race, and the nature of fandom in an essay published in The American Scholar, September 16, 2016. https://

DAVID JAUSS released his latest book, Nice People: New & Selected Stories II, in November.

CYNTHIA LEITICH-SMITH was featured in Our Story Begins: Your Favorite Authors and Illustrators Share Fun, Inspiring, and Occasionally Ridiculous Things They Wrote and Drew as Kids. She “shared a childhood poem and related, reminiscent reflections on it.”

MARTHA BROCKENBROUGH published Love, Santa, a picture book “based on letters my daughter and I exchanged when she wanted to know the truth about Santa.” To accompany the book’s release, her daughter—now 16—recorded a holiday album, including an original song. Sales of the album will benefit

UMA KRISHNASWAMI received the South Asia Book Award Honor from the South Asia National Outreach Consortium for Book Uncle and Me. This is a yearly book award “to call attention to outstanding works for young readers on South Asia.” Uma also received the Social Justice Literature Award from the International Literacy Association’s Literacy and Social Responsibility Special Interest Group.

JULIANNA BAGGOTT was named Faculty Director of the MFA in Writing & Publishing program. Julianna has written and published more than 20 books under her own name, as well as pen names Bridget Asher and N.E. Bode. Her book, Harriet Wolf’s Seventh Book of Wonders, was a New York Times Notable Book of the Year (2015). Her novel Pure, the first of a trilogy, was also a New York Times Notable Book of the Year (2012) and won an ALA Alex Award. Her essays, stories, and poems have appeared in numerous anthologies. JENSEN BEACH won the 2017 Vermont Book Award for Swallowed by the Cold. See Page 9. ELIZABETH POWELL and MARY RUEFLE were also finalists. SEAN PRENTISS won the Utah Book Award for Nonfiction, and the New Mexico Book Award and Arizona Book Award for Biography, for his book Finding Abbey.

LIZ GARTON SCANLON published two picture books in 2017: Bob, Not Bob, co-written with Audrey Vernick and illustrated by Matt Cordell, and Another Way to Climb a Tree, illustrated by Hadley Hooper. In addition, three new books will launch in 2018. TIM WYNNE-JONES announces the publication of his picture book Secret Agent Man Goes Shopping for Shoes. He also released his latest young adult novel, The Emperor of Any Place, which received seven starred reviews.

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faculty news

MARK COX received a North Carolina Arts Council Artist Fellowship Award for 2017-2018. The $10,000 award supports creative development and the creation of new work. Mark’s newest book of prose poems, Readiness, is slated for release in 2018.

SUE WILLIAM SILVERMAN’s essay, “The Ten-Year Wake,” was featured in’s 20th Special Anniversary issue, Fall 2017. Her essay, “The Qwertyist,” appears in the anthology From Curlers to Chainsaws: Women and Their Machines (Michigan State University Press). Her poem, “If the Girl Considers Revenge,” is included in Nasty Women Poets: An Unapologetic Anthology of Subversive Verse (Lost Horse Press), and another poem, “If the Girl is a Horror Movie Starlet,” appears in Red Sky: Poetry on the Global Epidemic of Violence against Women (Sable Books).

Writing for Children & Young Adults

Writing & Publishing ::



TOMÁS Q. MORÍN’s latest poetry collection, Patient Zero, was released this spring.

ALAN CUMYN won the Vicky Metcalf Award in September 2016 for his body of work for young readers. In the citation for the $20,000 prize, the jury praised Cumyn’s novels for “burst[ing] the molds of fiction for the young.”

KEKLA MAGOON (‘05 WCYA) received The Eugene and Marilyn Glick Indiana Authors Award given by the Indianapolis Public Library Foundation. The award honors Indiana-based (or Indiana-raised, as in this case) writers for excellence across their body of work. The National Author category honors a writer whose work has been well received on a national level. The award comes with a $10,000 prize. The second book in her Robyn Hoodlum Adventures, Rebellion of Thieves, was published. The series features Robin Hood reimagined as a biracial teenage girl saving her dystopian city from a dictator.



Light Work, a nonprofit artist organization in Syracuse, NY, presented the photo collage work and video art of SUNÉ WOODS at the Katherine O. Ellis Gallery. Suné’s exhibition, To Sleep With Terra, ran from August 28 - October 19, 2017.

T. GERONIMO JOHNSON won the $50,000 Simpson Family Literary Prize, a new award given to writers in the middle of their careers. The prize is overseen by the Simpson Family Literary Project, a private/public partnership of the Lafayette Library and Learning Center Foundation and the English Department at UC Berkeley. The project is named in honor of Barclay and Sharon Simpson and their family, philanthropists who help artists, students, and underserved children.

an interview with

Ziddi Msangi, GD WHEN TEACHING THE PRINCIPLES OF GRAPHIC DESIGN, Ziddi Msangi encourages his students to look to close, personal sources for inspiration. As a founding faculty member of the MFA in Graphic Design program, he often challenges his students with: “How does design function in the spaces and world you inhabit?”

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faculty view

The cultural and political design of Kanga



Faculty View



Msangi’s interest in the kanga has turned him into somewhat of an art historian on the subject. In his quest to design and produce his own kanga, he did a deep dive into the garment’s history. Through this, he learned that in Tanzania’s push for independence from Great Britain in the 1960s, the kanga was used among women to share messages about the liberation mindset. They were strategic—because the sayings were in Swahili, and sometimes obscured due to the way the wrap was folded, the British couldn’t quite read the messages. Kanga have been worn ever since, not just in Tanzania, but throughout East Africa. They are an informal garment measuring 100x150 cm, each with a larger print in the middle, an ornate border, and a message in Swahili. Depending on the message, the kanga might be celebratory, inspirational, for a specific event such as a wedding or funeral, or they might come with a warning or cutting remark. They are given like greeting cards in some instances, and they are contemporary, changing, and often reflect a current event (such as when President Obama visited, Obama kangas were created).

It’s advice that guided his own research when on sabbatical in Tanzania in 2011, and has spurred a specialization of sorts on the subject of a particular East African garb. Msangi, who was born in the East African country and lived there until age 6, found himself drawn to kangas—wraps that women in East Africa wear as a form of visual communication. These vivid, colorful, singular pieces of cloth, each bearing a saying in Swahili, so intrigued Msangi that he ultimately shifted the focus of his sabbatical show— originally to feature political posters—to the kanga. “Kanga is a form of visual communication indigenous to Tanzania, that uses both text and image to convey meaning to a broader audience,” Msangi says. “It is very accessible, and has a long history in the culture.” Msangi’s mother and grandmother wore kanga—it was his grandmother’s main outfit—and images of his mother in kanga played a large role in his childhood memories. His connection to Tanzania, of which the kanga is part, would shape his interest in design and study throughout his life. “I remember as a sophomore at San Jose State wanting to do an independent study connected with travel I had planned to take to visit Tanzania during my summer break,” Msangi says. “The professor I was meeting with didn’t see the utility in the project, because from his perspective there was nothing to study in Tanzania. I didn’t know how to frame the question, to create an independent study. So, I suppose, it’s been in the back of my mind all these years.”

Msangi looked to create a kanga of his own, representing himself and his life. He designed and had screen printed eight kanga to hang for his sabbatical show, which was held at the University of Massachusetts’ Dartmouth University gallery. (Msangi teaches graduates and undergraduates at UMass Dartmouth as well). As Msangi delved into creating his own kanga, he wondered, “if I offered them [to wear], what would they look like?” It was more theoretical, he explained, because the kanga he’d produce for his show weren’t actually going to be worn. “I thought about voice and authorship, especially on garment and apparel,” Msangi says. He also considered the way others would see and interpret his kanga designs. “Graphic design, with text and images, works with this understanding that yes, there’s this intended message, but each person comes with their own life experiences; they will bring to it what they will. So we (graphic designers) are fairly used to, or comfortable with, that uncertainty. The goal is to work toward clarity.” Msangi’s study of the kanga fits into his broader interest in graphic design and what he strives to bring to VCFA each residency: inclusive design, branding, data visualization, and community engagement projects. “Clarifying what you value, understanding the larger context that work will be experienced within, and developing agency are emphasized in this program,” he says, “and have helped me clarify my practice.”

“Clarifying what you value, understanding the larger context that work will be experienced within, and developing agency are emphasized in this program, and have helped me clarify my practice.”

Her book, Unpacked: From PEI to Palawan, which grew out of this experience, was published this summer. It’s a travel memoir that takes the reader on an exotic and sometimes harrowing journey through unfamiliar places and cultures and landscapes, detailing the relentless work of packing and unpacking (literally and metaphorically) along with her young daughter and husband—while grieving the loss of her stillborn daughter. “It was an amazing adventure, and a special way to process this grief,” Mo said. Mo says she wasn’t “a writer” before the trip. She studied English Lit and Scottish Lit, and earned a degree in education. “I loved teaching English, but didn’t do a lot of writing,” she said. She kept a travel journal, and had a lot of postcards and photos to return to when she began to work on the book about a year after settling back into life on Prince Edward Island in the Canadian Maritimes. “It was hard work. I hadn’t written a lot since high school and all of the stories from that time had to reach a resolution in the end!” Initially, she saw it as a travel book; the rich, vibrant travel parts were what she was excited to write about. It was during her VCFA program, which she began in 2012, that faculty Sue Silverman and Patrick Madden encouraged her to dig deeper into this story which became her thesis project, “to explore the interior narrative where there was tension and to move toward that tension”—the exterior chaos of the market scenes and travel with a toddler and the undercurrent of

For Mo, the publication of Unpacked has also been transformative: “I’m a writer now!” With one book published, other options are opening up, and she’s busy putting proposals together about her next project (non-fiction about global motherhood) and garnering some agent interest. “I didn’t know I would get there, so I’m quite pleased!” She says her VCFA experience was “so positive and helpful, and gave me so much confidence as a writer.” Her advice for those just starting out: “Keep going, keep going! Build up a thick skin and don’t be worried about rejections.” In response to the “Good luck placing your work elsewhere” line that often accompanies rejections, Mo says to “find where the ‘elsewhere’ is for you. If you want to be a writer, you have to believe there is an ‘elsewhere’ waiting for you.”

Outside of film, he’s accomplished as a jazz performer, composer, arranger, and New York studio pianist, having played on many commercials and records. Hal Leonard has published several of Richard’s jazz band arrangements, orchestral arrangements, and more than 20 jazz piano transcription books of the recordings of Bill Evans, Bud Powell, Oscar Peterson, and Herbie Hancock, to name a few. His composition “Tuzz’s Shadow” was a mainstay of Steely Dan tours for years. But the scoring business was his career focus, and it came at a price. Over time, Richard was being asked to ape other composers more and more. Producers weren’t necessarily interested in his own ideas. He spent a lot of time riffing on classic themes for the sake of comedy sketches. He was taking cues from directors who wanted their score to sound like whatever composer was hip that year. Richard was paying the bills with his art, and being heard in millions of homes. But he felt confined; he wanted to break down his own boundaries of what he felt was possible with his music. Around this time, Richard started noticing a trend in films like THERE WILL BE BLOOD and BIRDMAN. Auteur directors were seeking composers with unique voices. They were using music to enhance the mood of a film, without hammering on the plot beats the way a traditional score does. Richard felt he had it in him to be a concert composer first, and a media scorer second. “There’s an authenticity there,” he says. “There’s a freedom for these composers.” It was exactly the approach he’d always wanted to take, and he could see that it was about to have its moment in the spotlight. But after years of being asked to mimic others, he wondered what his own, authentic voice sounded like—or whether he even had one. Richard was looking at getting a composition teacher when a friend pointed him toward VCFA. “It wasn’t until I got there that I really realized the magnitude of how idyllic it was. I’ve been doing this for many years; I’ve grown very careful about how my time was spent. But this sounded like it would be perfect for me.” After two years at VCFA, Richard graduated with his MFA in Music Composition this summer. “I came out of it with a lot more courage, and a lot more investment in the music itself, rather than sculpting

the music to fit what I think will work in the business. I’ve started trying to approach things from a more organic place, and in consideration of my voice instead of what someone else would do in my situation.” It’s started getting him noticed. “One of the people on the board of directors for the Roger Wagner chorale heard the concert music that I did at VCFA. They’ve been around since the early 1900s. They’ve toured all over the world, and now they’re looking at becoming less traditional, and performing more cutting-edge, progressive concert works.” They asked Richard to arrange a Japanese song for their tour of Japan and Korea. “I’ve been trying to maintain the integrity and character of it, but doing it through my own voice. Which is more of a challenge, but from what they’ve heard so far, it’s what they want. They want my voice.” He’s also noticing strong reactions from his friends in the television world, as he sends them cues that he describes as a departure from what he was doing before VCFA. “I’m getting very good reactions, so relying on my own creativity is definitely starting to attract some attention.” It may be paying dividends, but Richard isn’t slowing down any time soon. “Once you fall in love with your work, you’re kinda screwed. If you start thinking, ‘Oh, this is a beautiful, wonderful thing,’ you stop questioning. And it can lead to complacency. You say ‘I know how to hit this scene; I’ll just hit it,’ instead of asking how it can work better.” His work ethic brought him to and through VCFA, and it won’t fail him now.

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It wasn’t Mo’s first international adventure; she had always been drawn to travel and experiencing other cultures. But this trip was different, and transformative in every way.

“Even when we travel, we carry the weight of our experiences with us,” Mo says. “We become seekers. But what are we seeking? Why do we go on these big trips to find ourselves?” Cargo offers an avenue to explore the depth of the travel process, a process that’s much more than the act of physical travel, she says.

Well before Richard Tuttobene had even heard of VCFA, his film and television scoring career would have made many composers envious. Over the years, his work has shown up on ESPN documentaries and in the feature film AFTER IMAGE with John Mellencamp and Louise Fletcher. He was also the go-to composer for Tollin/Robbins Productions, which means that he scored a ton of classic Nickelodeon shows from the ‘90s. All That, Kenan & Kel, and The Amanda Show all featured Richard’s music.

life after mfa

life after the MFA

Sitting in a dusty restaurant in the Philippines, across from the airport of Caticlan with the tiny runway, children running all around, waiting for the small plane to take them to Manila—that’s the moment Mo Duffy Cobb had the idea to write about the scenes they were part of on their journey through Southeast Asia.

Like VCFA, she says, Cargo is open to all of the forms—essays, immersion journalism, poetry, even Twitter feeds between Brussels and London! But most published work is about a moment of clarity or revelation, pieces deeply rooted in place and the transformative psyche, the travel psyche, she says.

Has found his voice



Unpacks her journey

Travel and personal growth are front-and-center in another aspect of Mo’s work as well: she is the founder and editor-in-chief of Cargo Literary, an online literary magazine dedicated to both. She started it as she was preparing to graduate from VCFA. “I was already so lonesome for the VCFA tribe, the teachers that inspired me, and the general collective, that I wanted to do something to stay connected with this community.” Faculty member Doug Glover inspired her to do it. “He told me to ‘follow your gut,’ start it and figure it out later.” The premier issue of Cargo Literary was published in February 2015, and she’s working on issue 11 now. “I get to work with fantastic editors, and it really raises the bar on your own work when you’re reading amazing submissions all the time.”

Richard Tuttobene (’17)



Mo Duffy Cobb (’15)

life after mfa

chaotic grief. “She (her daughter) was perfect; she wasn’t ill. She had a cord knot, and she flipped and flipped and flipped—until she was gone.”

TAVIA GILBERT is capable of voicing

an interview with

Tavia Gilbert (‘13 W)

The understory is that I was born with deformed feet and had my first surgery at seven months old. I’ve had over a dozen corrective foot surgeries in my life and always dreamed of being an actor even though doctors were saying that’s just not a possibility. They were saying: desk job, sedentary life, lots of pain, lots of immobility, lots of disability. But I wanted to be an actor, so I pushed my body very, very hard—way beyond what doctors ever imagined I would be capable of. Which is a lesson—to not let other people set your maximum for what you are going to achieve. Voice acting and audiobook narration combine my love of literature, my love for writing and desire to become a writer, and my acting aspirations, but still allow me to be flexible, depending on whether I am fit and able or not.


In the past decade, I’ve narrated around 500 books, so I’ve immersed myself in literature. I read books twice, once to prepare and once to perform, and I am completely immersed in the mind of the writer. It’s my job to translate the brain of the writer into a performance and that gives me a deep intimacy with the writing. Practicing the craft of writing helps me see more opportunities on the page—the choices the writer is making, being sensitive to shifts and fine details— because I recognize the choices that other narrators might not have the awareness to recognize, as I didn’t before I got an MFA. Now I’m writing and publishing and narrating and producing work, so the lines between “I am a narrator” at this moment or “I am a writer” at this moment are blurring and I’m becoming an artist; a performing artist of literature. WHAT IS THE CREATIVE PROCESS FOR TURNING A NOVEL INTO AN AUDIOBOOK?

When I get cast, a PDF file is delivered, which I annotate on my iPad with various colors of highlighting, particularly the characters and what the writer tells me about them. It’s important for me to know a physical description because that will influence the choice I make in how someone is going to sound. I am mining the text for every bit of information I can pick up about who that character is. Then I research my script for unfamiliar terms, which might be a point where I check in with the author. Say it’s a science fiction novel and the author has created a world with unique names, I’ll check in to see how they want those names pronounced. Or anything medical, legal, any kind of terminology, I research pronunciations so I’m prepared to go into the studio. When I start to record, I have my work on my iPad and it takes about two hours to record one listening hour. If the book is ten hours long, it takes about 20 hours to record at home, or about fifteen hours to record in studio with an engineer. What I am eventually uploading to my publishing clients is a one-take, chapter-by-chapter performance of the book. They take those chapters and edit them, proof them, do all the post-production, then send me a list of mistakes I made.

I started narrating in 2007 and started at VCFA in 2010. My career became something busy right when I was trying to carve out hours to write at my desk. It was tough, but VCFA continued to support me and nurture my talent. I’ve had the honor of returning to teach new writers how to read their work aloud, and to talk about the intersection between performance and writing. I can talk about how to be storytellers in a live setting and what choices to make on the page because I have an awareness and sensitivity to performance. The work I’m developing now really draws on what I learned at VCFA, and it’s important as a performing, producing, publishing artist and entrepreneur. I’m developing a serialized audio drama, an American adaptation of a BBC radio show that focuses on domestic violence and coercive control. This is my most ambitious and passionate project to date and will draw on my experience and skill as an actor, director, and producer, as well as my work as a writer and editor. I could never have done this project without immersing myself in studies at Vermont College. I’m confident approaching the complex challenge inherent in translating a drama intended for British audiences to a uniquely American audience because of the writing craft I honed at VCFA.

“I can talk about how to be storytellers in a live setting and what choices to make on the page because I have an awareness and sensitivity to performance.”

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creative process

Acting It Out: Bringing The Written Word To Life

I finished my BFA at Cornish College of the Arts and was an aspiring actor. I was working as a litigation paralegal in Maine and doing professional theatre and on-camera work and dreaming of something… more. I thought voice acting would be something I might have talent and skill in and the interest and capability to do, so I set my sights on becoming a voice actress, and came into audiobook narration at a time when home studios were beginning to arise. I set out to read everything I could, learn everything I could about the industry. I networked and joined the professional trade association for more education. That’s the standard story with a logical progression.

I have a funny trajectory with writing, as I have a funny trajectory with acting. It doesn’t look like everybody else’s and that’s pretty cool, as long as I am aware that this is my path and it doesn’t need to reflect somebody else’s. We all have to remember that our path is unique.



Q&A Creative Process


Mostly, I am just efficiently telling the story and trying to create an emotionally authentic experience that reflects the subtext of the writer.



more than 100 different characters for a single project, transitioning from female to male, young to old, creating an entire cast of people with a single voice. She is the 2017 Best Female Narrator Audie Award Winner and narrator or conarrator of more than 500 audiobooks. She is a producer, a visual artist, writer, and co-founder of Animal Mineral Press. She earned her MFA in Writing at VCFA where she learned to combine her dream of becoming an actress and her passion for creative nonfiction writing. Exploring the boundary of how one art influences the other, she defied everyone who said her dream wasn’t possible.




From Patricia Spears Jones’ (’91 W) Jackson Poetry Prize, to Lucinda Bliss’ (’99 VA) Tracking the Border exhibition in Maine (right on theme for this issue!), to Ibi Zoboi’s (’14 WCYA) finalist status for the National Book Award, this has been a HUGE year for our community. And with the addition of the first graduates of the Graduate Studies in Art & Design Education and MFA in Writing & Publishing programs to our alumni ranks, the list of successes will only get longer. Before I close and leave you to share in the glory of your fellows, I’d like to offer a big thank you to Sabrina Fadial (’01 VA) who recently left the College after serving as the Director of Alumni Relations for three years. She has gone on to focus on her creative work and build a makers space at her Stevens Branch Studio in Barre, Vermont. We wish her great luck and success. As our mission states, VCFA’s success is measured “by our ability to foster the excellence of emerging and established practitioners.” So I give you these class notes as proof that, thanks to you, by this definition we are the most successful institution on the planet.

Yours in this crazy creative life, Ann Cardinal (‘07 W) Interim Alumni Relations Coordinator Director of Recruitment

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class news

What an honor it is to coordinate alumni relations this year, and working with you all has been the best part. I have so enjoyed meeting many of our new alums these last few months, talking about your experiences, and sharing baked goods. I’m grateful for the opportunity to introduce this year’s class notes, as it allows me to speak with you all again. Thank you for sharing your news! I always read this publication from cover to cover, and with each issue I’m newly impressed by the accomplishments and successes of my fellow alumni. And I especially love that this issue of in residence is “beyond borders” since our innovative programs were founded on the idea of breaking out of the traditional and redefining the world through our work.

VCFA’s success is measured “by our ability to foster the excellence of emerging and established practitioners”

ADAM DELMARCELLE (CURRENT STUDENT GD) released guerrilla projections around his hometown of Lebanon, PA as part of his “What Heroin Sounds Like” project. His work draws attention and starts conversations around the ongoing heroin and opioid crisis.



Greetings from College Hall 101, my fellow alumni/ae!

class news 1984

Willard Cook W Publisher of Epiphany, A Literary Journal, Willard welcomes VCFA students and graduates to become readers for Epiphany or submit work, and says “we continue to favor the under-published and less well-known writers.”

1988 Sarah Van Arsdale W announces the publication of her fifth book, The Catamount, a poem about the fabled Monster of the Northeast with her accompanying illustrations. She is also teaching with the Antioch LA low-residency MFA program, and has new poems coming out in Naugatuck River Review, Scoundrel Time, Transition: Poems in the Aftermath, and one of her poems is a finalist with New Millennium Writings. Sarah has an essay forthcoming in The Writer.

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class news Alison Hawthorne Deming W announces the publication of Stairway to Heaven, her fifth book of poems, and Death Valley: Painted Light, a collaboration with photographer Stephen Strom. Alison was named Regents Professor at the University of Arizona in 2017.


Rustin Larson W His chapbook, Pavement, was selected as the 2016 Blue Light Poetry Prize Winner.







Martha Christina W announces the publication of her second collection of poetry, Against Detachment. Individual poems have been published in Innisfree Poetry Journal, Naugatuck River Review, Red Eft Review, and the anthology Ice Cream Poems.


1990 Barbara Carlson W announces the release of her second book of poems, Once in Every Language (Kelsay Books).

Josh Koury debuts Netflix film at New York Film Festival Josh Koury (’15 F) premiered his new documentary feature VOYEUR at the 55th New York Film Festival in October. VOYEUR, a Netflix original documentary co-directed with Myles Kane, follows 84-year-old modern journalism legend Gay Talese as he prepares to publish his controversial creative nonfiction book, Voyeur’s Motel. Talese’s book is about Colorado motel owner Gerald Foos who secretly watched his guests through custom ceiling vents and an observation platform. Talese’s insatiable curiosity leads him to turn his own gaze to a man accustomed to being the watcher, exploring a tangle of ethical questions: What does a journalist owe to his subjects? How can a reporter trust a source who has made a career of deception? Who really is the voyeur? VOYEUR was Koury’s thesis film while attending VCFA. While he had shot much of the footage before embarking on his MFA, Koury credits the Film program’s faculty—including Nina Davenport and former faculty members Lisa Leeman, Jeremiah Zagar, and Jake Mahaffy—for focusing his project and ultimately helping him complete the film. VOYEUR was released on Netflix in December.

Michele Moore W received the Foreword Indies Gold Medal 2016 for Historical Fiction for her book The Cigar Factory. Sara Kay Rupnik W Her short story, “An Act of Mercy,” is included in a new anthology about guns titled Lock & Load: Armed Fiction (Univ. of NM Press).

Nan Hass Feldman VA, 1993

Her solo exhibition, JAM with Nan: Paintings from Japan, Australia, and Mexico, appeared at the Newton Free Library, Newton, MA. Nan also ran the Artist Loft on the Oceania Cruise Line—Barcelona to Israel to Greece, and also Rome to Venice. She was invited to exhibit in the 2017 Tour of America: Artist Invitational at the Cortile Gallery, Provincetown, MA.

William Walsh W is the Director of the MFA program at Reinhardt University where he teaches English and Creative Writing, as well as serves as the literary editor for The James Dickey Review. His seventh book will be published in 2018, a collection of poems titled Fly Fishing In Times Square, and his debut novel The Pig Rider has been accepted for publication for 2019. He has recently published or has work forthcoming in Literary Matters, The Kenyon Review, 2River View, The Georgia Review, The Blue Mountain Review, The Valparaiso Poetry Review, The Cardiff Review, and elsewhere.

1992 Susan Aizenberg W Three of Susan’s poems were reprinted in Nebraska Poetry: A Sesquicentennial Anthology 1867-2017: “Meeting the Angel,” “Mornings,” and “Georgic on Waking.” In addition, three new poems were published in the September 2016 issue of Numéro Cinq: “The Television,” “Lit,” and “Tea Boys,” and two new poems—“Shameka” and “Shift Reports”—appeared in the Fall 2016 issue of North American Review. Susan recently taught a workshop at The Writer’s Place in Kansas City, and also taught two workshops at the Iowa Summer Writing Festival, where she will teach again in 2018.

1993 Dale Boyer W announces the publication of his new collection, Thornton Series, a companion to his debut novel, The Dandelion Cloud. Dale continues to write regular book reviews for The Gay & Lesbian Review Worldwide

Virginia Chase Sutton W Her chapbook Down River was published by Finishing Line Press, and her third book, Of a Transient Nature, was published by Knut House Press. Virginia’s poems have appeared in Comstock Review, Stoneboat Literary Journal, and Peacock Journal, among others, and an essay was published in r.kv.ry. Nick Papandreou W His short story, “The Influence of the Sixties on the Seventies,” was published in AGNI, Volume 86, Fall 2017. His short book, The Magical Path to the Acropolis, published in 2016, is a non-fiction extended essay which draws on the eccentric landscape (and new form of art) architect Dimitris Pikionis created in the 1950s when he made the intricate stone paths that lead up to the ancient monument.

class news

Susan Spencer Crowe VA, 1996

took part in The Ritual of Construction, “a group exhibition of artists working in a variety of media, using units of geometric design to create their work… The exhibition proposes that mindful forms of repetition can be linked both to spirituality and to the creative process.” The show was held at Byrdcliffe Kleinert/James Center for the Arts, Woodstock, NY. Susan also participated in The House of Sky group exhibition at the Westbeth Gallery, NYC.

Pete Driessen VA, 1998

was awarded a 2017 Minnesota State Arts Board–Artist Initiative Grant, as well as a 2017 Soap Factory Rethinking Public Art in MN award for his Trestle Support Systems public art project at the Northern Pacific Railyard, Brainerd, MN.

Nancy Lord W announces the publication of her first novel, pH: A Novel (Alaska Northwest Books). Nancy has also published three books of short fiction, five literary nonfiction books, and one edited anthology.

Pamela Post-Ferrante W was asked to write an essay for the book 25 Women Who Survived Cancer: Notable Women Share Inspiring Stories of Hope, edited by Mark Chimsky. All royalties from the book benefit cancer research and prevention. Vincent Zandri W announces the forthcoming publication of his new thriller, The Detonator, as part of a two-book deal with Polis Books. Vincent, winner of the 2015 ITW Thriller and PWA Shamus Awards for Best Paperback Original for Moonlight Weeps, was also the subject of a New York Times feature. The Detonator is being packaged as a major motion picture

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class news Dawn Reno Langley W announces the publication of her new novel, The Mourning Parade, which is up for consideration for the National Book Award.

Asia Freeman VA curated Decolonizing Alaska, a multimedia visual art exhibition featuring 30 diverse native and non-native Alaskan contemporary artists exploring and responding to Alaska’s history of colonization and its emerging influence on sustainability, both environmental and cultural. The exhibition toured Alaska and was shown at The Corcoran School of Arts and Design, Washington, DC.




1998 Denise Froehlich VA was interviewed for a feature article about the Maine Museum of Photographic Arts that ran in The Take Magazine; Denise co-founded the museum in 2010.



1995 April Ossmann W took part in a poetry reading with MFA in Writing Faculty Cynthia Huntington as part of the 2017 PoemCity celebration in Montpelier, VT. April read from her new collection Event Boundaries. April also took part in the 2017 Burlington Book Festival.

1997 Les Edgerton W announces the publication of Lagniape, his 21st published book. His book The Death of Tarpons was released in paperback (Betimes Books) and as an ebook (Endeavour Books, UK). Les also teaches an online novel-writing class— Les Edgerton’s Bootcamp for Writers.

Melody Mansfield W Four of her stand-alone stories were selected to be showcased and performed by professional actors in The New Short Fiction Series at The Federal Bar, North Hollywood, CA, in September. The four stories were “The Woman Who Wouldn’t Die,” “Boxes,” “Fertilizer,” and “The Bulk of Men’s Brains.



Lucinda Bliss VA exhibited work from her yearlong project Tracking the Border at Common Street Arts, Waterville, ME. The project, supported by a Kindling Grant from the Warhol Foundation, focused on her navigation of the 611 miles that make up the Maine-Canada border. The resulting work took many forms, including installation, drawing, and photography.

Muriel Angelil VA took part in Othering, a juried exhibit by the Berkshire Art Association at the Liechtenstein Center for the Arts. She also exhibited an encaustic (wax) monotype entitled “Gray Day” in a juried exhibition organized by the Monotype Guild of New England at the Saco Museum, ME.

Lynn Imperatore VA was selected to participate in a collaborative residency program in Nekolln, Berlin with the Centre for the Study of Substructured Loss during September/ October 2017. Her project used drawing to interrogate the conversation of personal and collective loss within the sites, artifacts, and collections within the city of Berlin.”

Bruno Capolongo VA, 1998 exhibited Fade To Gold, more than 40 paintings spanning more than two decades of Bruno’s life, “focusing on a thread of consciousness leading to the artist’s most important and current Kintsugi-influenced work.” The show was held at The Joseph D. Carrier Art Gallery, Toronto, Canada.

Carmela Martino WCYA announces the publication of Playing by Heart, a young-adult historical romance set in 18th-century Milan. Her middle-grade novel, Rosa, Sola, is now available in paperback and ebook formats, and includes a new “Discussion Questions” section for classroom use. The novel was based on Carmelo’s VCFA creative thesis. Two articles were published in the 2018 Children’s Writer’s and Illustrator’s Market: “Working with Small Presses: Bigger Isn’t Always Better,” and an interview with best-selling picture book author Carolyn Crimi (’00 WCYA) .

Alexandra Brochess VA, 1998 was awarded a 2017 Rhode Island State Council on the Arts Fellowship Merit Award in Photography.

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Her middle-grade biography, Answering the Cry for Freedom: Stories of African Americans and the American Revolution, has received several awards: the 2016 California Reading Association Eureka! Silver Winner Nonfiction Book Award; 2016 NCSS Notable Social Studies Trade Books for Young People; a 2017 YALSA Nonfiction Award Nomination; and was named a Chicago Public Library Best of the Best Books 2016.

Mary Sesso W announces the forthcoming publication of her chapbook, The Open Window (Finishing Line Press). Onajide Shabaka VA spent much of August and September 2017 in Suriname researching subsistence farming of rice and other food crops.


April Pulley Sayre WCYA announces the release of her newest picture book, Full of Fall, sister book to Raindrops Roll and Best in Snow. April will be speaking at AASL in Phoenix, AZ, on a panel about nonfiction and science literacy.

Joan Hanley VA Her book, Art & Yoga, has been released in Mandarin, “opening up China and Taiwan for Art & Yoga Trainings.”

Lisa Anne (Dougher) Cullen WCYA announces the forthcoming publication (spring 2018) of her first author-illustrated picture book, Little Orange Honey Hood: A Carolina Folktale. Her second authorillustrated book, Three Wild Pigs: A Carolina Folktale,” will be published in fall 2018. Nancy Hewitt W Her poem, “The Secret of White,” was awarded the Editor’s Prize in the Spoon River Poetry Review contest, and was published in the December 2016 issue.

Wendy Taylor Carlisle W announces the publication of two chapbooks: Chap Book (Platypus Press) and They Went to the Beach to Play (LoCoFoChaps). In the past year, 52 of her individual poems have been published in 33 journals, including Cider Press Review, Josephine Quarterly, and Kentucky Review.


Joan Grubin VA, 2003 took part in two exhibitions: Paper Pushers at the Trestle Gallery, Brooklyn, NY, and Taconic North at LABSpace in Hillsdale, NY. Two of her critical reviews were also published: one on the conceptual artist Morgan O’Hara in the Brooklyn Rail, and one on the painter Daniel Heidkamp in the online journal Hyperallergic. Joan’s Detritus Series was exhibited at the Garvey Simon Gallery in late 2017.

Laurette Folk W announces the publication of Totem Beasts.

Carol Bachofner W announces the publication of The Boyfriend Project, a collection of poems about love, lost love, breakups, and reunions from kindergarten to marriage. Elizabeth Bisbing VA exhibited painted paper collages, drawings, and videos at the Soho20 Gallery, Bushwick, Brooklyn.

Shelagh Shapiro W Her author interview radio show and podcast, “Write the Book,” has been chosen by Writers Digest as one of the best websites for writers for the second year in a row. The show, which airs in Burlington, VT, is almost 10 years old, and more than 400 interviews (many of which feature VCFA faculty and alumni) are archived on the podcast site:

Rick Lynn Carraway VA announces the opening of Pinqsaq Art Gallery, an online gallery curated by three VCFA alumni. Rick writes: “Fresh, new shows every two months. Please submit your work!” Esther Fine W has published four books related to educating children in alternative ways in pursuit of healthy community and peaceful interactions to solve problems. Her most recent book, Playing the Bully, is a fully illustrated chapter book for children in elementary school. Three titles are for adults: Raising Peacemakers, Alternative Schooling and Student Engagement: Canadian Stories of Democracy Within Bureaucracy, and Peacemaking and the Search for Home in Dark Times.

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class news Gretchen Woelfle WCYA, 2000

2003 Hannah Barnaby WCYA announces the publication of two picture books: Bad Guy, a picture book about imagination, big plans, and sibling rivalry; and Garcia and Colette Go Exploring, about two friends who go exploring—one to the sea and one to space.



2002 Lisa Lynn Biggar W has published five short stories recently: “Blank” on The Other Stories Podcast, Fall 2017; “On the Hard” in The Delmarva Review, vol. 10, Fall 2017; “Colony Collapse” in The Human Touch literary journal, vol. 10, Summer 2017; “Voyage” in The Literary Nest, Winter 2017; and “The Way It Was” in Newfound Journal, Fall 2016.

Beth Walker WCYA Her book Princess Monori won a Bronze 2017 IPPY award in the Multicultural Children/Young Adult category. The book is a retelling of an ancient Marma folktale in both English and Marma, an endangered language of the people of the Chittagong Hill Tracts in Bangladesh.



Maggie Kast W was interviewed by fellow alumna Shelagh Shapiro (’03 W) on “Write The Book,” the Burlington, VT radio show about writing. Listen to the podcast here: maggie-kast-interview-432-122616/ A story from her novella in progress was published in Howlarium , and a review she wrote was published in the “Stories We Love” section of the Fiction Writers Review.

Kelly Lenox W announces the publication of her debut poetry collection, The Brightest Rock, and she also published new poems in Main Street Rag, Cider Press Review, Kakalak 17, EcoTheo Review, Visions International, and Summerset Review.

Shenaaz Nanji WCYA announces the publication of Ghost Boys, a story about child slavery. Leda Schubert’s WCYA Her picture book Listen: How Pete Seeger Got America Singing, a biography of the great Pete Seeger and illustrated by Raúl Colón, was recently published.

VCFA Young Writers Network Last year, VCFA launched the Young Writers Network to help bring alumni authors to high-need communities. In just over a year, WCYA alumni and faculty have met with more than 750 students coast to coast, with over 120 hours of programming! In Boston and New York (partnering with 826 Boston and Behind the Book, respectively), faculty and alumni—such as program director Katie Bayerl (’10), Julie Berry (’08), Marianna Baer (‘08), Coe Booth, Michelle Knudsen (‘10), Kate Hosford (‘11), Micol Ostow (‘09), and Jill Santopolo (‘08)—met with local students. In San Francisco, Katie Bayerl kicked off a new chapter with help from several Bay Area alumni and 826 Valencia. The VCFA Young Writers Network also held readings and workshops throughout rural northern New England. Thanks to grants from the Vermont Community Foundation and the Arts Alliance of Northern New Hampshire, Nicole Griffin (‘06), Tamara Ellis Smith (‘07), Erin Moulton (’07), and An Na (‘09) worked with students in Vermont’s Northeast Kingdom and New Hampshire’s Great North Woods. Looking ahead, the VCFA Young Writers Network will continue to be a strong presence in Boston, New York, San Francisco, and rural New England, with plans for new chapters as well. Ibi Zoboi (’14), Alicia Potter (‘05), Rita Williams-Garcia, William Alexander, Adi Rule (‘10), and Laura Atkins (‘16) have either met with students this school year or plan to do so by the end of the school year. We always welcome your alumni support. Visit to make a donation today!

class news Paula Cisewski W announces the release of her third and fourth poetry collections: The Threatened Everything and quitter.

Chivas Sandage W Her poem “Chopping Onions” was selected runner-up for the Southern Humanities Review 2017 Auburn Witness Poetry Prize.

Brad Birchett VA His documentary photograph and essay titled “Sight Point” was published in HERE (2), an occasional ‘zine publication of the VCFA VA program. The piece discussed the connection between art, teaching, and speed. Brad was also part of the juried exhibition and conference for “Tasmeem: Analogue Living In A Digital World,” the Biennial International Art and Design Conference, Doha, Qatar. He installed a sound art piece in the exhibition titled A Walk Across Pluto.

Nicole Griffin WCYA Her second Smashie McPerter book—Smashie McPerter and the Mystery of the Missing Goop—was published in paperback. She is “happy both about its existence and the fact that the trim size is very satisfying!”

Robin Oliveira W, 2006

announces the forthcoming publication of her new novel, Winter Sisters.

René Colato Laínez WCYA, 2005 announces the publication of his new bilingual book, Telegrams to Heaven: The Childhood of Archbishop Óscar Arnulfo Romero. His book Mamá the Alien/Mamá la Extraterreste was nominated for Best Bilingual Children’s Book, International Latino Book Award.

2006 Catherine Alene WCYA Her first young adult poetry novel, The Sky Between You and Me, was published by Sourcebooks. Bethany Silva WCYA After completing an Ed.D. in Education in Reading, Writing, and Literacy from the University of Pennsylvania in May 2017, Bethany joined the Education Department faculty at the University of New Hampshire as a Research Assistant Professor and Community Literacy Center director. She looks forward to reconnecting and collaborating with her VCFA friends in New England. Christopher Soden W His play, Every Day is Christmas. In Heaven, was produced as part of Nouveau 47’s Annual Holiday Play Festival, December 2016, Dallas, TX.

Janet Filomeno VA exhibited “The Sea Has Veins—Delaware Series no.5” in the selected group exhibition Death of Impressionism? Disruption and Innovation in Art at the James A. Michener Museum of Art, Doylestown, PA.

JC MacQueen VA announces the publication of 1917: The Perfect Game, a “book that breaks the historical borders of the sensational baseball game of May 2, 1917.” Martha (Patty) Oliver-Smith W Her essay, “My Mother’s Desk,” will be published in the anthology Writers and Their Mothers (Palgrave Macmillan), forthcoming.

Nicole Gulotta W published Eat this Poem: A Literary Feast of Recipes Inspired by Poetry. Twenty-five poems (from poets including Marge Piercy, Louise Glück, Mark Strand, and Mary Oliver) are accompanied by 75 recipes “that bring the richness of words to life in our kitchen, on our plate, and through our palate.” Stephanie Ledyard WCYA announces the forthcoming release of her debut picture book, Pie Is for Sharing, illustrated by Jason Chin. Christopher Maselli WCYA announces that his family is “taking their writing on the road”—taking their kids on a yearlong tour around the US as they write. Follow their adventure on

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2007 Stephanie Cassatly W announces the publication of Notice of Release, a memoir about “the power of forgiveness that proves how shedding the weight of the past can unlock a brave and beautiful future.”

Kate Harding W announces the publication of Nasty Women: Feminism, Resistance, and Revolution in Trump’s America, coedited with Samhita Mukhopadhyay.


Carolyn Walker W announces the publication of Every Least Sparrow, a memoir about her daughter who has a rare health syndrome and her quest to understand their redefined life.



Cynthia Cutting Robinson VA is now the Director of the Museum of the White Mountains at Plymouth State University, Plymouth, NH. Cynthia has been Curator and Exhibit Designer at Plymouth State, and she now “does it all, including community programming, which had been my goal during my Vermont College years!”



Tony Van Witsen W His short story, “Nowhere To Go But Up,” was published in the spring 2017 edition of Serving House Journal.

class news Patricia McInroy VA, 2007

Tyrone Shaw W announces the publication of Bastard Republic, a collection of “immersion essays in the tradition of literary journalism that take us inside two of the defining developments of the 20th century— the collapse of communism in Europe and the implosion of the Soviet Union.” Marcus Smith W Recent poems were published in Popshot Magazine, the Welsh (UK) Poetry Competition Anthology, and Stand literary magazine. Rocco Scary VA co-curated and participated in Building Books, an exhibition at the Therese A. Maloney Art Gallery, College of Saint Elizabeth, NJ. He also took part in New Jersey and You: Perfect Together, a group art show inspired by the Garden State and held at Village West Gallery, NJ.

Maggie Nowinski VA, 2007

received an individual artist grant from the Berkshire Taconic Foundation Artist Resource Trust for continued work in drawing and printmaking, and to produce a limitededition hand-constructed book. Recent shows include the solo exhibition Specimens, (W)holes and In-Habitats at Mt. Wachusett Community College, MA; work in the collaborative show LEX | SCENES with Katie Richardson (‘16 VA) at Easthampton City Arts+, and a two-person exhibition at the Jamestown Art Center, RI, with Natasha Harrison (’07 VA). In addition, Maggie’s photopolymer prints have been included in a number of exhibitions nationwide.

Dianne White WCYA announces her picture book, Goodbye Brings Hello, has been acquired by HMH. Written in verse, the book explores the ways a child must say goodbye to one moment or milestone in order to welcome the next.

Carol Brendler WCYA announces the publication of The Pickwicks’ Picnic, in which “community and cooperation turn an obstacle into an opportunity in this inventive counting book starring a pair of clever canine siblings.”

Rebecca Van Slyke WCYA Her book Lexie the Word Wrangler received starred reviews from Booklist, Publisher’s Weekly, and Kirkus and was featured in the New York Times (7/16/17). A second Lexie book is forthcoming.

Patricia Miller W Her memoir, Bamboo Secrets: One Woman’s Quest through the Shadows of Japan (2016), was named one of the Top Five Finalists in the Next Generation Indie Book Awards for 2017.

Robin MacArthur W, 2009 Her collection of short stories, Half Wild, won the PEN/New England award for fiction and was a finalist for the 2017 Vermont Book Award. Her novel, Heart Spring Mountain, is forthcoming. 2009

Elise Levine W Her novel Blue Field, workshopped during her time at VCFA, was published by Biblioasis, and two stories from her just-completed story collection—“Alice in the Field” and “Made Right Here”— were published in The Collagist and accepted for publication by The Gettysburg Review. Elise is currently the Director of the MA in Writing program at Johns Hopkins University. Jennifer Long W is working on a memoir about sexual healing and her career as a Dominatrix. Her essay, “How BDSM Helped Me Through a Traumatic Childbirth,” was published in Cosmopolitan.

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class news Rachel Reynolds Z VA Her work appears in New American Paintings, Midwest 2017 Edition, and has been exhibited at the Flint Institute of Art’s Art School Gallery and at the Grosse Pointe War Memorial for the Grosse Pointe Art Association’s exhibition highlighting teacher and student work. Rachel collaborated with her husband, Robert Zahorsky, for Print Works at the Simone DeSousa Gallery, Detroit, MI, and she served as Juror for Metro-Highlights at Lawrence Street Gallery, Ferndale, MI.


:: Kerry Muir W Her long-form creative nonfiction “Blur” was published in Riverteeth: A Journal of Narrative Nonfiction, Issue 18:2. Her essay, “Styles of Communication,” was published in Issue 42 of Ruminate: Forming One Another.

2008 Mary Atkinson WCYA announces the publication of her middle-grade novel, Tillie: Heart and Soul.

Joan Sidney W read “Anne Ruaud,” “Patricia Grace Vinsonhaler,” and “Cousin,” at Eastern Connecticut State University’s September 2017 celebrations for Here—the university’s new literary journal—which published her first two poems about women who died from anorexia. Also, Joan’s “First MS Attack” was reprinted in Kaleidoscope #75, and The Hartford Courant published a full-page spread of her Holocaust poems in September 2017. Afterwards, Barbara Krasner interviewed her on the site The Whole Megillah.



Her film, CLARA, ANGEL OF THE ROCKIES, won PBS’ To The Contrary’s All About Women and Girls Film Festival—Women’s History US Category, and aired nationwide. Patricia made the film to share the amazing true story of Clara Brown, a former slave who became a community leader and philanthropist during Colorado’s Gold Rush. Her short film STOPPPED IN TIME was part of the Experiments in Cinema showcase at C.A.R. (Contemporary Art Ruhr), Essen, Germany.

Carolyn Dille W is editor of Leaping Clear, the all-arts online magazine, which “is open for contributions. We invite the VCFA community of artists in all fields to check out our website.”

Stan Zumbiel W announces the publication of his first poetry collection, Standing Watch (Random Lane Press).

Nicolas Gadbois VA exhibited Left Behind at Todd Weiner Gallery, Kansas City, MO. “A group of surreal oil paintings featuring blank signs and billboards set in eerie landscapes, the work examines the way shifting realities in commerce and industry impact small towns in America. The blank signs signify empty consumerism.” Lynda Graham-Barber VA announces the publication of her newest picture book, Cookie’s Fortune (Gryphon Press).

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Amber Braden W Her poem, “A Green Non-Scented Post-It Note,” was published in the anthology series Twelve Point Collective, Volume 2. Nora Ericson WCYA announces the publication of Nora and Lisa Ericson’s second Dill & Bizzy picture book, Opposite Day (Harper Collins).

Adam Tavel W His poetry manuscript, Catafalque, won the 2017 Richard Wilbur Book Award and will be published by the University of Evansville Press. Catafalque is his third book of poems.

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class news Richard Moore W announces the publication of Guidebook: Selected French Gothic Cathedrals and Churches, a guide to 14 French Gothic churches and cathedrals in different parts of France, constructed at different times and in different styles. It also provides a background on “the why and the what” of Gothic cathedrals.

2010 Glenn Arnold W announces the publication of Clouds and Shadows (World Affairs Press, Beijing), a collection of nine short stories that explore themes of isolation, loneliness, loss, and redemption.


:: Laura Mylott Manning VA took part in MetaMoi (P)ARTY2, a group exhibition exploring the relationship between art and physics at the Center for Theoretical Physics at Columbia University.

Katie Bayerl WCYA took part in a Bear Pond Books (Montpelier) Educator Series event with the VCFA Young Writers Network. It included a writing exercise and presentation from a panel of authors about helping students discover their voices and develop their writing craft. Authors included WCYA Faculty An Na, Erin Moulton (’07 WCYA), and Katie.

Kevin Knopp VA took part in the NY Studio School 2017 Annual Invitational in NYC, a curated exhibition in three galleries devoted to five decades of alumni work.



Todd Baldwin VA His solo exhibition, Memento Mori, at Tiger Strikes Asteroid, Philadelphia, PA, included his first effort in producing a soundwork—“a swerved and reconfigured version of Dmitri Shostakovich’s String Quartet No. 15.” The show was chosen for review during the series, “The Review Panel Philadelphia: An Evening of Critical Debate,” hosted by David Cohen, NY arts critic and writer.

Blair Vaughn-Gruler VA, 2010

Michelle Knudsen WCYA took part in a “night of young adult literature and discussion” at Trident Booksellers & Café, Boston, with two other VCFA WCYA alumnae: Katie Bayerl (‘10) and Amy Rose Capetta (‘12). Each read from recent books: Revenge of the Evil Librarian (Knudsen), A Psalm for Lost Girls (Bayerl), and Echo After Echo (Capetta).

took part in the VCFA Alumni Regional Exhibition: Line | Align | Realign in Santa Fe, NM, which also traveled to San Diego, CA for a second showing. Participating alumni included: Michael Ruiz (’13 VA), photography; Renee Lauzon (’12 VA ), sound; Barbara Rockman (’98 W), poetry; Angela Meron (’10 VA), mixed media; Samantha Eckert (’15 VA), installation; Sumru Tekin (’11 VA), video; Terrill Thomas (’14 GD), light sculpture; Fiona Phillips (’08 VA), drawing; Muriel Angeli, (’00 VA), painting; Irene Abraham (’06, VA), painting; and Blair, painting. Blair is the Southwest Region Alumni Coordinator, and GVG Contemporary co-founder and gallery director, Santa Fe, NM. Blair also exhibited Compulsion Organization | new paintings at GVC Contemporary, the title of the show a reference to her “obsession with making sense of chaos, to order what is disordered, to make and break patterns.”

Linden McNeilly WCYA announces the publication of four new books from Rourke Educational Media for the library and school market: Define and Design: Saving Face; Define and Design: Staying Warm, Keeping Cool; State Guides: Flowers; and State Guides: Historic Monuments.

Janet Fox WCYA announces the forthcoming publication of her second middle-grade novel, The Last True Knight, in fall 2018.

Renee Couture VA, 2010

exhibited I Am A Country Made of Changing Places at the Umpqua Valley Art Center, OR. In this exploration of the ideas of barriers and borders, Renee says, “The fence is a manmade barrier that shows ownership. Fences enclose, surround, confine, separate, protect, and keep out. By fencing a piece of land, a space becomes a specific place. Places become separate but connected, and filled with memory, longing, and desire.” Renee also completed a one-month residency at the Djerassi Residency Arts Program in California, one of 66 awarded a spot out of 1000 candidates. She also won a fellowship sponsored by the Ford Family Foundation in partnership with Djerassi to support her transportation and materials. She spent her time exploring new trajectories for her studio practice during this residency.

Cheryl Wilder W Her debut poetry chapbook, What Binds Us, was released by Finishing Line Press, and she’s currently working on a memoir titled, Anything That Happens. Cheryl and her husband own a small web development company in North Carolina.

Lauren Markham W announces the publication of The Far Away Brothers: Two Young Migrants and the Making of an American Life. The book has earned a starred review from Kirkus and a Discover Great New Writers Award from Barnes and Noble.

Susa Silvermarie WCYA Her spoken word performance How to Love the World, a combination of Mary Oliver’s poetry and her own poetry and performed in Ajijic, Mexico, was designed to “hearten and steady us during the current climate of cynicism.” See it here: https://youtu. be/vaorR4XhLBA Susa moved to Ajijic in December 2016, and since then she’s published three articles and two narrative poems in regional English publications, and she founded JUICE, a weekly write-to-prompt circle, and JUNTOS, a literary salon. Contact her through her website:

Liara Tamani W announces the publication of Calling My Name, which tells the coming-of-age story of an African American girl named Taja Brown growing up in a devout family in Houston, TX. The same publisher, Greenwillow Books, an imprint of Harper Collins, has contracted with Liara to write a second book.

2011 Winifred Conkling WCYA announces the forthcoming publication of Votes For Women! American Suffragists and the Battle for the Ballot, a nonfiction account of the women’s suffrage movement.

class news Anna Jordan WCYA celebrated her first anniversary on staff at Islandport Press, where she is Editor and Special Projects Coordinator.


Kate Hosford WCYA announces the publication of How the Queen Found the Perfect Cup of Tea, a picture book about a grumpy and pampered queen who becomes dissatisfied with the tea her butler makes. She decides to travel around the world with her butler in a hot air balloon in search of the perfect cup of tea. With each stop on her journey, the queen encounters friends who expand her horizons in the kitchen and beyond.

Jodi Paloni W Her story collection, They Could Live With Themselves, received a Silver Medal in the IPPY Awards and was a finalist for the 2017 Maine Book Award. Terry Pierce WCYA announces the publication of Mama Loves You So, a New Books for Newborns board book celebrating a mother’s love.

Erin Hagar WCYA, 2012

Tatiana Ryckman W announces the publication of I Don’t Think of You (Until I Do).

announces the publication of Doing Her Bit: A Story of the Woman’s Land Army of America, a Junior Library Guild Selection. Erin began the book during her VCFA program, and it was awarded the Candlewick Picture Book Scholarship and was a finalist for the Katherine Paterson Prize. It’s dedicated to VCFA.

2012 Ian Bodkin W published his first collection of poems, Every Word Was Once Drunk (ELJ Publications). Stephanie DeGhett W published two poems—“Pondwanderer: An Elegy” and “On the Lookout”—in Calyx, A Journal of Art and Literature by Women, Winter/ Spring, Vol. 29:3.

Sarah Johnson WCYA announces the publication of her debut novel Crossings. In the story, a young woman makes a perilous crossing to a foreign land where she discovers the truth about a powerful legend and the hope for peace after centuries of conflict.

Melanie Crowder WCYA, 2011 announces the publication of her fifth novel for young readers, An Interrupted View of the Sky, A Novel. The book is a Junior Library Guild selection and received starred reviews from Kirkus, Publisher’s Weekly, and School Library Journal. Melanie’s middle-grade novel, Three Pennies, is a Global ReadAloud Contender.

Heather Sharfeddin W Her fifth novel, What Keeps You, is a story about living, dying, and the difficult journey toward acceptance and letting go. David Spitzer W announces that Hawai’I Review will publish “abyss of departures” in its e-chapbook series. The project is an image|text collaboration by Sara Shiva Spitzer and D.M. Spitzer and forms part of the longer work “geneology of the first person.” Other parts of this project have appeared in Numéro Cinq and are forthcoming in North American Review.

Miriam McNamara WCYA Her debut novel, The Unbinding of Mary Reade, was published by Sky Pony Press. It’s based on the true story of a girl who disguised herself as a boy and sailed with the notorious pirates Anne Bonny and Jack Rackham. The manuscript was Miriam’s creative thesis at VCFA. She also announces the forthcoming publication of Winging It, a historical LGBTQ YA novel.

Brian Bednarski GD announces the birth of his daughter, Tess Preston Bednarski, born June 24! Brian has also been promoted to Director of Product Design at Major League Baseball Advanced Media. Stephen Bramucci WCYA announces the publication of The Danger Gang and the Pirates of Borneo! Stephen shares that he’ll be stopping in the Grand Canyon during his book tour to deliver a classroom set of books “to the most remote, underfunded primary school in the nation on the Havasupai Indian Reservation.”

Renée Lauzon VA announces the publication of three new sound compositions in the next issue of Paperbag Magazine. All three—“Feel Better,” “Untitled (with love),” and “Water House”—were conceived during her 2016 fall residency at Mass MoCA, where she was artist-in-residence. Renée is the full-time gallery manager at GVG Contemporary, Santa Fe, NM. Todd Leisek VA announces that he is now the Assistant Director for the Oglesby Union Art Center and Director for the Oglesby Art Gallery at Florida State University, Tallahassee. He has also been accepted into the PhD program at the Institute for Doctoral Studies in Visual Arts (ME), where he “will continue to work on his art installations and studies in the diverse Native American cultural expression of Contemporary Art.”

Graphic Design alumni go on a Road Trip!

Rachel Smoka-Richardson WCYA received an Artist Initiative Grant from the Minnesota State Arts Board to work on her middle-grade work-in-progress. For the community component of the award, Rachel gave an extended version of her VCFA graduate lecture for the local SCBWI chapter.

A number of our Graphic Design alumni headed out on a “Road Trip” this year! Twelve GD alumni exhibited Road Trip at the York College Galleries, York, PA. This visual interpretation included individual works along with a collaborative piece that has taken its own “road trip:” the piece traveled from the East to West Coast with stops in between. The traditional definition of “a road trip” is an adventure that one goes on with family or friends, creating memories. This Road Trip is about connection and reconnection, the literal, metaphorical, personal and internal journeys we’ve taken. The participating artists included: Pam Galvani (’14 GD), Sondra Graff (’15 GD), Kate Gray (’15 GD), Mary Hanrahan (’13 GD), Rachael Hatley (’13 GD), Campbell McKeogh (’15 GD), Troy Patterson (’13), Lisa Rasmussen (’13 GD), Julie Sittler (’13 GD), Donald Suthard (’14 GD), Bonnie Tanaka (’13 GD), and Terrill Thomas (’14 GD).

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Ross McMeekin W announces the forthcoming publication of his debut novel The Hummingbirds (Skyhorse Publishing).



Cassie Beasley WCYA announces the publication of Tumble & Blue, “a magic-infused story of a golden gator, two cursed kids, and how they take their destinies into their own hands.”



Leah Grimaldi VA took part in a group exhibition at the Atlantic Works Gallery in Boston entitled Here and There. Leah and 12 other VCFA alumni—Renee Lauzon (’12 VA), Muriel Angeli (’00 VA), Heather Park (’09 VA), Chip Rutan (’15 VA), Sumru Tekin (’11 VA), Kim Darling (’10 VA), Valerie Hird (’07 VA), Sabrina Fadial (’01 VA), Brian Zeigler (’11 VA), Samantha Eckert (’15 VA), Wendy Powell (’11 GD), and Maggie Nowinski (’07 VA)— offered their interpretations of place and what it means to them.

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Margaret Gonzalez GD is an adjunct professor at National Louis University, Chicago campus, and is also a volunteer graphic designer at Art of Life, a non-profit organization that supports adult artists with intellectual and physical disabilities. Rachael Hatley GD gave a TEDx talk in February about her ongoing “Litter Letter Project,” which originated as her VCFA thesis. The project recently expanded onto a third continent when Litter Letters were created this summer in Bristol, England; it’s now in eight US states, Australia, and the UK. See:

Timothy Miller MC was selected as one of six composition fellows for the 2017 Wyoming Festival: New Music in the Mountains, which was held in August 2017 in Grand Teton National Park. In addition, his chamber work, “224 slices of pi” for flute, cello, piano, and percussion, was selected as a Finalist-Honorable Mention in the 2016 American Prize for Excellence in Composition. The piece was written while he was a composition fellow at the 2015 nief-norf Summer Festival of Contemporary Music in Knoxville, TN.

Jennifer Mason WCYA Her story “Striking a Balance” was published as a feature article in the summer 2016 issue of Cobblestone Magazine. Her interview with a National Parks Ranger “illustrated the tightrope slung between the dueling efforts to conserve and preserve public lands.” She also announces the publication of two middle-grade books in the “Our Basic Freedoms” series published by Gareth Stevens: Freedom of Speech and Right to Petition.

2014 Jenn Barnes Bishop WCYA Her new middle-grade novel, 14 Hollow Road, was published by Alfred A. Knopf Books for Young Readers. The story is “a warm coming-of-age novel about a community banding together in the wake of a tornado.” She publishes under the pen name Jenn Bishop.

Jennifer Reed WCYA Her nonfiction educational book about computer scientist Jean Bartik, for grades 2-5, was published by Lerner in their STEM Trailblazer Bios series. The book tells the story of how Jean Bartik progressed from gifted student to software pioneer. Ingrid Sundberg WCYA announces the paperback version of her book, All We Left Behind, was published with a new cover. Ingrid teaches English at Tuacahn High School for the Performing Arts in St. George, Utah.

Ann Huang W announces PALPITATIONS OF DUST, the poemfilm she wrote, directed, and produced, won the 2017 Prince of Prestige Academy Award for Best Experimental Film. Jenna Kelly VA teaches high school Art and Yoga at Lamoille Union High School and Drawing 1 at Johnson State College, both in Vermont. Rachel Groves W received the G.S. Sharat Chandra Prize for Short Fiction from BkMk Press for her manuscript, When We Were Someone Else, publication forthcoming. M. Jane Houng WCYA announces the publication of Pun Choi: a hotchpotch of Chinese folk and fairy tales, a selection of traditional Chinese folk and fairy tales for contemporary Chinese audiences.

Emily Vizzo W Her chapbook Giantess was selected by YesYes Books for publication in their Vinyl 45 Chapbook Series, forthcoming in 2018.

Jessica Muniz-Collado MC was commissioned to compose a 45-minute work with six movements for August Soledade’s BrazzDance company in Miami, FL. The performance premiered May 24, 2017 in Miami Beach.

Robin McLaurin VA exhibited REVEAL: Portraits to Inspire Adoption at the Blanton Museum, Austin, TX. “The portraits celebrate the children in foster care who are waiting for forever families and the community that supports them.”

Patricia Spears Jones (’92 W) Lee Thomas W His novel The German has been optioned by Loose Canon Films, and the movie, with the working title of PERPETUAL, is in pre-production.

Joe McGee WCYA announces the publication of Peanut Butter & Aliens, the sequel to his picture book Peanut Butter & Brains. Joe also announces that he is engaged to Jessica Rinker (’14 WCYA).

Lesia Kuziw Tatunchuk GD announces the birth of her son, Adrian Ivan Tatunchak, born December 18, 2016.

Patricia Spears Jones wins $50,000 Jackson Poetry Prize was the recipient of the Jackson Poetry Prize, an annual prize awarded to an American poet of exceptional talent who deserves wider recognition. In selecting her, the panel described her poems as “made of fever, bones, and breath.” Patricia, the judges said, “has steadily and quietly enriched the American poetic tradition with sophisticated and moving poems. More of us should know who she is, and even more should read her.” The $50,000 prize, awarded by Poets & Writers Magazine, is designed to provide what all poets need: time and encouragement to write.

Jo-Hannah Reynolds MC, 2014 released her second album, Morning Light, and worked with three VCFA alums on the record: Jessica Muiz-Collado (’14), Reed Robins (’14), and Matthew Polashek (’14).

Mary Lambert WCYA announces the publication of Family Game Night and Other Catastrophes.

Michael Minchin W His story, “Quiet Hours,” was published in SmokeLong Quarterly, and his short story, “Birds of Prey,” was published in Necessary Fiction.

Jean L.S. Patrick WCYA announces the publication of Long-Armed Ludy and the First Women’s Olympics. The nonfiction picture book is based on the true story of Ludy Godbold, a female athlete who gained international fame at the Women’s Olympics in 1922.

vermont college of fine arts

class news

Tavia Gilbert W received the Best Female Narrator Audie Award from the Audio Publishers Association. Narrator of nearly 500 titles of fiction and non-fiction for children, young adults, and adults, Tavia is a nine-time Audie nominee, a Voice Arts Award winner, and a 17-time Earphones winner. She is the co-founder and publisher of Animal Mineral Press, a fine-art photographer, and a voice coach and teacher.

Jason Malli MC performed “Per aspera ad astra” at the 2017 New York City Electroacoustic Music Festival at the Abrons Art Center. This was the third iteration of a composition he performed at the first Electronic Music Café during the February 2012 Music Composition Residency.

Melissa Matthewson W Her critical essay, “On Writing As Liberation,” was published in the VIDA Women in Literary Arts Review. The topic: “on writing, expression and the independent woman.”



Melanie Fishbane WCYA Her YA novel, Maud, A Novel Inspired by the Life of L.M. Montgomery, was published by Penguin House.

Christine Lhowe GD announces she is now Instructor of Art & Design at Seton Hall University, NJ.



Melissa Cronin W Her story, “After a freak car crash, I thought I was too broken to find love,” appeared in The Washington Post (8/4/17). Other work was recently published in Narratively Magazine and The Jerusalem Post.

class news Bonnie Pipkin WCYA announces the publication of Aftercare Instructions by Flatiron Books/MacMillan.

Gilbert Ford WCYA illustrated the recently published Soldier Song (Hyperion), an 80-page picture book written by Debbie Levy, about how music was used in the Civil War. His nonfiction picture book, How the Cookie Crumbled, was released in October 2017 (Atheneum). Sondra Graff GD exhibited “Balance” in FIT’s Art & Design Faculty exhibition New Views 2017. The work was originally created for the VCFA Road Trip exhibit, conceived of and curated by Troy Patterson (’13 GD).

Naomi Elena Ramirez VA was one of five artists performing simultaneously in the Bronx Latin American Art Biennial’s exhibition titled “I am one of those people that…,” hosted by the Bronx Museum of the Arts. The exhibition was an examination of artworks referring to personal aspects of the creation process. Naomi also took part in DoublePlus: Oren Barnoy + Naomi Elena Ramirez at Gibney Dance, NYC, where Naomi premiered a new experimental graphic score and corresponding performance, “The Temptress, Seductress, and Other Woman: Fictions of desire and responsibility.

Jessica Rinker WCYA Her picture book biography about the life and work of Gloria Steinem, What Gloria Heard, illustrated by Daria Peoples, will be published in winter 2019.

Her exhibit, Voices of Unknown Origin (aka the time traveller), appeared at Back Gallery Project, Vancouver, BC. In this work, “reference images from stills of the 1896 film showing Loïe Fuller’s “Serpentine Dance” are pushed though various strategies and filters in Andrea’s process, which includes a variety of media and an interest in visceral responses to visual art.”

Aaron Winters GD took part in ArtStreet, a free, temporary, multidisciplinary arts project produced by M5Arts that spanned over 65,000 square feet of indoor and outdoor space during its three-week run in February 2017. Aaron and Michael Scaringe (’15 GD) constructed “Serendipitous Socialization,” an interactive installation that paired impromptu wordplay with chance encounters. The immersive piece invited visitors to explore more than 600 square feet of tactile experience in motion. Cynthia Surrisi WCYA announces the publication of Vampires On the Run, the second Quinine Boyd Mystery .

Paul Zakrzewksi W announces the launch of Brave On the Page, a new online live writing workshop for memoir writers. He took this step after “teaching several rewarding private workshops in and around Santa Barbara, CA.”


Mo Duffy Cobb W announces the publication of Unpacked to Unpacked: From PEI to Palawan, her travel memoir of her young family, “brokenhearted and hungry for change,” and their “around-the-world journey of love and redemption.”

Kenneth Raimondi F, 2015

Evan Beigel MC announces Oscillatore, a string quartet composed and premiered at VCFA, was chosen in a blind submission for performance at the 2017 Hear Now Festival of New Music in Venice CA. The Lyric Quartet performed the piece.

vermont college of fine arts

class news Matthew Polashek MC is Artist in Residence and Professor of Woodwinds at Kentucky State University.

Andrea Taylor VA, 2014



Sophronia Scott W announces the publication of her novel, Unforgivable Love (William Morrow/HarperCollins). Her spiritual memoir, This Child of Faith: Raising a Spiritual Child in a Secular World, is forthcoming in December and was co-written with her son Tain. In addition, her essay collection, Love’s Long Line, will be published in February 2018.

Beth Bradfish MC Beth’s focus for the past few years has been on “sound that is felt as much as it is heard” and, working with sculptor Celia Greiner, has developed a few instruments that allow the visitor to touch and be touched by sound. “Exhale” allows visitors to lie down and let the sound flow through them. “The Sound Cart” uses small transducers to convert objects they are attached to (the board and the horns) into tactile speakers.” “The Sound Cart” was exhibited in November 2016 as part of the VCFA alumni show at Genesis Gallery Chicago. “Exhale” was exhibited as part of Roosevelt University Electroacoustic Festival in April 2017. Upcoming performances include works for Chicago Composers Orchestra and Lakeshore Rush, both at Constellation Chicago.



Shelley Saposnik WCYA teaches English Composition (since 2014) and Creative Writing (the last two semesters) at Touro College in NYC, realizing one of her goals for earning her MFA: teaching on the university level.

received a 2017 JCI USA Top Outstanding Young Americans (TOYA) Award, one of 10 given out each year. “TOYA is one of the oldest and most prestigious recognition programs in America. Since 1938, JCI USA has sought out young men and women under the age of 40 who best exemplify the finest attributes of America’s youthful achievers.”

Max Johnson MC, 2016 announces the release of his new album, In the West, on Portuguese jazz label Clean Feed. Jeffrey Huston VA curated a show for VCFA alumna Mimi Solum (VA ’15) at Saranac Art Projects, Spokane, WA, and had a solo exhibition titled Deconstructing Self at Eastern Washington University Gallery of Art. He is an Associate Professor of Media Arts at Bakersfield College, CA.

Martha (Marti) Snell W Her poem, “Blue Marble,” was awarded the Mary Jean Irion Prize by the Chautauqua Literary Arts Friends in August 2015. Her poem, “Dazzling Dinoflagellates,” written following a visit to Mosquito Bay in Vieques, PR, was published in the Fall 2016 issue of Streetlight Magazine.

Kali Lightfoot W Her book review of Becoming Lyla Dore by Teri Youmans Grimm (’00 W) was published in Green Mountains Review.

Emilie Upczak F has been hired as a lecturer in film production at CU Boulder and University of Northern Colorado, beginning in spring 2018.

Justin Paige W announces the publication of a book of poetry, Constant Traffic. Chris Piorkowski MC is Associate Professor of Film Scoring at Liberty University School of Music, Lynchburg, VA.

class news 2016

Ryan Bitzegaio GD moved to Myrtle Beach, SC to begin his new job as Assistant Professor of Graphic Design at Coastal Carolina University. Veronica Cross VA took part in a group exhibition, IN THIS REALM: Five Artists Explore Identity and Transformation, at the Institute of Contemporary Art at Maine College of Art. “This exhibition presents five views of becoming in today’s culture, inviting us to delve deeper into ideas of gender, identity, and cultural paradigms to consider the individual as well as the archetype, and to question for ourselves ideas of identity.”

Deb Kline GD Four of her pieces were part of Along the River’s Edge Juried Art Exhibition at the Thousand Islands Art Center, Clayton, NY.

Eric Taylor WCYA His creative nonfiction article “Ramadan” appeared in the July 2017 issue of Plough Quarterly. Richard Tuttobene MC was interviewed in The Huffington Post in an article titled: “Composer Chats: Richard Tuttobene On His Approach to Scoring and Making a French Horn Sound Eerie and Sinister.”

Kela Parker MC announces the release of her album The Dreamer &The Dream

Anu Kumar W announces the publication of Emperor Chandragupta, a work of historical fiction, written under the name of Adity Kay. She also writes regularly for a digital daily based in Bombay but accessible worldwide: author/1157. Her first picture book, The Secret God in the Forest, was also published.

J. Wren Supak VA took part in [RE]TELLING, an exhibition at the Tychmann Shapiro Gallery, Sabes Jewish Community Center, MN. It featured select works from the University of Minnesota Center for Holocaust and Genocide Studies’ permanent collection of survivor Fritz Hirschberger’s Sur-Rational series expressing life under Nazi rule. Hirschberger paintings and narratives were paired with contemporary works by local artists who deal closely with related matters. She held her first solo exhibition, Matyò Migration Stories Through Pattern, an exhibition celebrating Women’s Herstory, in the Ridgedale Library, MN. She also received the Hubert H. Humphrey Scholarship from the Humphrey School of Public Affairs, University of Minnesota, a merit-based award “for the time that I will study domestic and international human rights policy from my vantage as artist/researcher/advocate.”

Adam DelMarcelle GD, Current

has released new work as part of his ongoing project called “What Heroin Sounds Like”— guerilla projections displayed in his hometown of Lebanon, PA, with the goal of starting conversations around the heroin and opioid crisis. Adam’s work has also reached the national level: The Library of Congress asked him to submit three of his projections. He also took part in a moderated AIGA Vermont panel discussion—Design Activision: Conversation from the Front Lines of the Opioid Crisis—at Burlington City Arts, VT. Adam reports, “Now that the work is becoming more established, we have families of people that died from an overdose attending the projections to share their stories.”

2017 J Diaz MC announces the release of his debut album, Sic Pilot, “a project inspired by the ambiguity of my national identity.” Several of the pieces were composed during his VCFA program.

Catie Hannigan W announces the publication of her chapbook Water Fragments, which she wrote as her critical essay for her VCFA program.

Jacqui Lipton WCYA Her article, “Adding Flash Fiction to Your Writer’s Toolbox,” appeared in the Spring 2017 SCBWI Bulletin.

Tyler Friend WP Their poem “The First Time” was published in the summer 2017 issue of Tin House. The first draft of this poem was written in Matthew Dickman’s class.

David Kutz VA, 2016

exhibited “Retro,” a series of “photographs shot in many places around the world, unified by a focus on composition, color, form, line, and texture.” He also exhibited “The Stranger’s Path,” a 21-foot-long, 210-degree panoramic work “that considers the commonality of the modern travel experience.” Both exhibitions were at SohoPhoto Gallery in NYC.

Samantha LaBue W Her “near obsession with generative writing sessions,” discovered while at VCFA, led her to start a small business running prompt-led creative writing courses. Fledgling Writing Workshops just celebrated its first year by launching new, affordable classes for residents of NYC and online for writers outside of the City.

Antwon Key GD is the new Graphic Design Instructor at South Central College in North Mankato, MN, in addition to working as a freelance designer and photographer.

Jennifer Mann WCYA announces the forthcoming publication of her historical fiction about Margaret Sanger, early women’s health and rights advocate and the founder of what is now Planned Parenthood. The currently untitled coming-of-age novel follows the budding activist as she struggles to find her way in a large family amidst the harsh realities of life in the late 19th century.

Current Students Ramona Bell MC Her composition for string quartet, “Coal River Mountain—An Aerial View,” was included in the Delgani String Quartet performance in St. Peter’s Episcopal Church in NYC in June 2017. Louisa de Cossy F took part in the New England Graduate Media Symposium Unsettling: Reexaminations of Home, at Emerson College, Boston, MA. Louisa was selected to screen a selection from her film MAGDALEN LAUNDRIES: A BURIED TRUTH. Sarah Curtis Graziano W Her essay, “Daughter of a Gun,” is forthcoming in River Teeth: A Journal of Nonfiction Narrative. In it, she traces the gun mythology on the Texan side of her family back to its roots over 200 years ago. Eric Machan Howd W Two of Eric’s poems, “Hotel Mirrors” and “Edison’s Electric Pen Vibrating,” received Honorable Mention in Nostalgia Press’ national Heart Poetry Award contest and were published in the fall 2017 edition of their Heart 12 publication. Two more of his poems, “Middle Age” and “Pistachios,” were published in the Fall 2017 edition of The Healing Muse, a publication of the State University of New York’s Upstate Medical College.

vermont college of fine arts

class news Laura Atkins WCYA announces the publication of Fred Korematsu Speaks Up, the first in the Fighting for Justice series.

Kelly Beard W took second place (out of 420 submissions) in the 2017 Literary Awards Competition sponsored by the Tucson Festival of Books. The prize included a cash award and workshop with Joyce Maynard.

Amy O’Neal WP has a poem slated to appear in Not My President: An Anthology of Dissent (Thoughtcrime Press) under her pen name of L.T. Patridge.



Stephen Baker WCYA received the Karen and Philip Cushman Late Bloomer Award by the SCBWI for his manuscript Prayers to Broken Stone. This grant is awarded to authors over the age of 50 who have not been traditionally published in the children’s literature field.

Lu Heintz VA received a Vermont Studio Center Full Fellowship for a one-month residency.



Paula Allen F participated in I Love You, I Hate You, Don’t Leave Me, the VA program’s Gallery Show for Open House Weekend at the VCFA Gallery.

Aaron Cecchini-Butler MC won the BMI student composer award as a private student of Jonathan Bailey Holland, VCFA MC Faculty Chair. His winning composition, “wayward pine: sanctum/sawdust/ember/pitch,” was composed while at VCFA under the guidance of Michael Early and John Mallia.

In Memoriam

Wendy Fountain ’13 WCYA passed away in September 2017. A native of New York, she was living in Hawaii at the time of her passing. She was 55.

Jennifer McGaha W announces the forthcoming publication of her memoir, Flat Broke with Two Goats.

Ibi Zoboi, Rita Williams-Garcia among National Book Award finalists Ibi Zoboi (‘14 WCYA) and former WCYA faculty member Rita Williams-Garcia have made the shortlist for the 2017 National Book Award for Young People’s Literature! This is the first time a VCFA alumna and her former advisor have been named finalists for the prestigious award in the same year—Rita was Ibi’s first semester advisor. Ibi made the shortlist with her book American Street and Rita for her book Clayton Byrd Goes Underground. Both longtime friends were thrilled to be on the same list together and had a wonderful time during a joint interview on Vermont Public Radio’s Vermont Edition program in October!

Daniel Weiss ’09 VA passed away in October 2017 with his children and family by his side. Daniel was a high school teacher in his native Iowa for more than 30 years. He exhibited his assemblages and paintings around the country, including a substantial installation at the 2010 Iowa Artists Exhibit at the Des Moines Art Center. He was 58.

In the 2016 issue of in residence, DAVID FRENCH’s (’10 VA) name was printed incorrectly on the cover. While we made the correction in the digital version, we regret the error and once again thank David for letting us highlight his work on the cover.

PETER CHRISTIE, of Morrsiville, VT and New York City, has been involved in various Angel and Private investment opportunities in recent years, and has served on various company boards. Previously, Mr. Christie was in the insurance industry and was an acknowledged expert in the risk protection needs of professions and professional societies, as well as an innovator in the use of mutuals and captive insurance. From 1997 to 1999, he was vice chairman of Aon Group Inc. of Chicago. Peter was with the Minet Group from 1968 until it was acquired by Aon in 1997. He joined Minet in Montreal, spending time in New York and London. Peter has served as Chairman of the Helen Day Art Center in Stowe, Vermont, and as Chairman of MOCO, the Morrisville coop. Winooski, VT-resident DR. HAL COLSTON spent 17 years in the culinary field as a chef culminating in a teaching position at New England Culinary Institute after attending the University of Pennsylvania. Transitioning to social services in 1993, Hal created the Good News Garage and NeighborKeepers as a social entrepreneur. Appointed by Vermont Governor Peter Shumlin in 2011 as Executive Director of SerVermont, Hal has served as Partnership for Change Director since 2013. Hal was named the 2014 Vermonter of the Year by the Burlington Free Press. Hal has served on many nonprofit boards and is currently board chair for the Center for Whole Communities. He also serves on the boards of the Richard and Barbara Snelling Center for Government, the Young Writers Project, and the United Way of Northwest Vermont Community Investment Committee. VCFA alumna DEBBIE DUNN of Austin, TX graduated from the University of Texas at Austin with a degree in Computer Science and worked at Hewlett Packard for 20 years specializing in databases and data mining. In 2006, she earned her VCFA MFA in Writing for Children and Young Adults. Her first book highlights three women computer pioneers and is forthcoming from Disney. Her hobbies include tennis, reading, and large-scale home remodeling. Debbie has served as a Board Member for The Writer’s League of Texas, Regional Advisor for SCBWI Austin (Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators), Board Member for The ARC of the Capital Area of Texas, and Board Member for The Women’s Leadership Council in support of the Long Center for the Performing Arts. She was a charter member of a philanthropic group in Austin called IMPACT Austin. LESLIE WARD of Calais, VT is a 2016 alumna of the MFA in Writing program at VCFA and has spent the non-writing part of her life moving between the education and business worlds, most happily when the two happen to collide. She started her career with the Boston Consulting Group and then spent several years running courses for Outward Bound. These early experiences led to an MBA from Harvard Business School, followed by work in strategy consulting and business development in the public and private sectors. In addition to consulting, Leslie taught pre-school while her three boys were young. She has served on the boards of Woodbury College, Everybody Wins, the Orchard Valley Waldorf School, and the Community Engagement Lab.

vermont college of fine arts

class news

Chuck Entwistle ’99 WCYA passed away in March 2017. After his 21-year career in the US Marine Corps, he published one of the first Alzheimer’s disease guides for caregivers called I’m Not Myself Anymore. He also wrote historical fiction and nonfiction for young adults, including the book The Promise. He was 78.

Elizabeth Testa ’99 W passed away in September 2017 after a brief illness. Elizabeth was an accomplished writer and editor for many literary publications. She was an avid horseback rider as well. Most recently, she served as the Executive Director of the Durango (Colorado) Education Foundation. She was 67.



Steven Lowery F announces he “reached the quarterfinals of the Finish Line Script Competition with his fulllength narrative screenplay for PICKLE, which I’ve been working on with Film faculty Nina Davenport.” It’s the story of a sexually ambiguous teenage boy living in the shadows of his star-struck beautiful twin sister in rural Appalachia during the 1960s.

Brendan Reichs WCYA announces the publication of his young adult thriller, Nemesis.

This summer, VCFA welcomed four new members to its Board of Trustees.



Jonathan Kohrs MC announces Pittsburgh’s Chatham Baroque performed his piece titled “(Triple) Chaconne” during their Pittsburgh Series Concerts.

welcome to VCFA

class news


REPORT OF GIFTS This past summer, Vermont College of Fine Arts unveiled a new mission statement

order to make the world a more humane place. None of this would be possible without the unending support from our vast community of alumni, students, faculty, friends, and staff. Though we are a small and still rather young college, our community’s generous contributions ensure that we are able to succeed at making our mission a reality. We thank you for the many ways you support VCFA and the important work we do. The following list includes all donors to Vermont College of Fine Arts whose gifts we received between July 1, 2016 and June 30, 2017. Thank you again for your support.

Irene Abraham ‘06 Claire Adams Abigail Aguirre ‘11 Pamela Ahlen ‘07 Diane Allenberg ‘88 and James Latham Amazon Smile Kumkum Amin ‘05 M.T. Anderson Muriel Angelil ‘00 Kathi and Kenneth Appelt Sarah Aronson ‘06 Nancy Aruffo ‘95 Mary Atkinson ‘08 Rafael Attias ‘15 Alissa Auerbach Jon and Danielle Auerbach Richard and Sandra Auerbach Marianna Baer ‘08 Monica Baker ‘15 Catharine Barber ‘13 Kay Barnes ‘95 Kathi Baron ‘04 Melissa Baumgart ‘17 Cynthia and Andy Bayerl Katherine Bayerl ‘10 Carol Beatty ‘90 Elinor Benedict ‘83

Kelly Bennett ‘07 Kathryn Benson ‘17 Elizabeth Berges ‘16 Jeffrey Bernstein Bonnie Berry LaMon ‘12 Rebecca Birkin ‘18 Barbara Bishop ‘10 Bruce Black ‘99 Judith Blazer ‘06 Thornton Blease BlueCross BlueShield of Vermont Elizabeth Bluemle ‘04 Anne Bowen ‘14 Beth Bradfish ‘15 Melanie Briend ‘15 Alexandra Broches ‘99 Beth Brody ‘17 Patti Brown ‘08 Tami Lewis Brown ‘06 and David Brown Eliza Cooke Browning Rae Bruce ‘04 Margaret Bucholt ‘05 Patricia Buddenhagen ‘03 Charles and Ann Bunting The Jack and Dorothy Byrne Foundation Letitia Cain ‘17

Candlewick Press Ann Cardinal ‘07 Patricia Carey ‘16 Caroline Carlson ‘11 Jane Carlson Cathy Carr Kathleen Case ‘14 WB Cass Sarah Cassell ‘14 David Celone ‘14 Maureen Charles ‘18 Rebecca Chernoff ‘17 Martha Christina ‘84 Jeanie Chung ‘05 Daniel Clark ‘93 Elizabeth Coleman ‘12 Allyson Condie ‘17 Melanie Conklin Connor Contracting Elizabeth Cook ‘10 Jeanne Cook ‘00 Margaret Cook ‘17 Amy Coombs ‘15 Hope Coppinger ‘03 Cynthia Cotton ‘99 Sue Cowing ‘89 Patricia Crane ‘04 and Tim Crane Kristina Crocker

vermont college of fine arts

report of gifts

This statement hits at the heart of what we strive to do everyday—support artists in



We believe that the arts are central to the human experience and have the ability not only to reflect reality but also to create it.

Michael and Jinny Goldstein Deborah Gonzales ‘08 Rima Grad ‘17 Chris Graff Sondra Graff ‘15 Holter Graham ‘99 and Neela Vaswani ‘99 Kate Gray ‘15 Green Mountain United Way Thomas Christopher Greene ‘96 Gail Gregg ‘98 Harry Groome ‘00 Joan Grubin ‘03 and David Grubin Katie and Cory Gustafson Gretchen Haertsch ‘15 Susan Hall ‘13 Erica and Brynn Hare Erin Harris Pamela Harrison ‘83 Marilyn Hart and Jim Powers Kelly Harwood ‘15 Rachel Hayes ‘17 Helen Hemphill ‘04 Hemphill Family Foundation Karyn Henley ‘04 Athena Hernandez ‘16 Ellen Hersh ‘94 Nancy Hewitt ‘02 Dwight Hilson ‘15 and Mindy Hilson John S. Hilson Family Foundation Con and Jeannette Hogan Michael Hogan Andrew Hordes ‘18 Kenneth Horne ‘13 Katherine Leighton Hosford ‘11 and Chris Welch Matthew Hudson ‘05 Debra Hutchison ‘03 Rachel Hylton ‘12 IBM Marie-Louise Jackson-Miller Melanie Jacobson ‘18 David Jauss Cordelia Jensen ‘12 Ginger Johnson ‘09 New York Community Trust LJTJ Fund Katherine Quimby Johnson ‘14 Patrick Johnson ‘08 Varian Johnson ‘09 Nikki Juen ‘16 Bill Kaminski ‘14 Helen Kampion ‘07 William Kaplan Denise Karabinus ‘09 Maggie Kast ‘01



that ends with this sentence:

Margaret Crocker ‘10 Mary Cronin ‘11 Karen D’Arc ‘99 Danielle Dahline ‘01 Meghan Daniels Sharon Darrow ‘96 Meredith Davies Hadaway ‘03 Bradley Davis ‘95 Michelle Demers ‘03 Sara Desmond ‘10 Kathleen Diehl ‘84 Carolyn Dille ‘09 Jessica Dils ‘10 and Blair Dils Mary Dingee Fillmore Elizabeth Doan ‘08 Cornelia Donovan ‘03 Eugenie Doyle ‘95 Amy Dryansky ‘93 Virginia Dudek ‘15 Robbie Dunlap ‘10 Karen Edmunds ‘05 Gregory Ellis ‘94 Sarah Ellis Alexandra Enders ‘00 Nora Ericson ‘10 Kristy Everington ‘17 Rosalyn Eves Jill Ewald ‘95 and Kenneth Ewald Lauren Fabius Sabrina Fadial ‘01 Cynthia Faughnan ‘07 Nanette Feldman ‘93 Jennifer Fenn Katherine Ferguson ‘16 Fidelity Charitable Janet Filomeno ‘06 Melissa Fisher ‘14 Cathy Fishman ‘06 The Flying Pig Bookstore Judith Ford ‘16 Chuck Forester ‘04 Collette Fournier ‘03 Elizabeth Fox ‘17 Janet Fox ‘10 Matt Fried ‘12 Mark Friel ‘17 Nat Frothingham Robin Galbraith ‘17 Pamela Galvani ‘14 Jennifer Gennari ‘06 Paula Gillam ‘99 Sam Gilpin ‘17 Helen Glenn ‘91 Dean Gloster ‘17

Leslie Kaufman ‘05 William Kemmett ‘86 Mildred Kennedy-Stirling ‘12 John Kern ‘96 and Valerie Hurley Nina Kidd ‘08 Heidi Kim ‘14 Edna King and Cara Armstrong John King ‘17 Rebecca Kirshenbaum ‘18 Patricia Kirtley ‘08 Ann Kittredge ‘01 Kimberly Klement ‘03 Michelle Knudsen ‘10 Karmen Kooyers ‘05 Susan Korchak ‘15 Ann Jacobus Kordahl ‘07 Ravi Krishnaswami Uma Krishnaswami Elizabeth Kuelbs ‘12 Madeleine Kunin Dale Kushner ‘83 Samantha LaBue ‘17 Nancy Lagomarsino ‘84 Wally Lamb ‘84 Sarah Lamstein ‘03 Lindsey Lane ‘10 Lynda Lantz ‘98 Renee Lauzon ‘12 Sydney Lea Jeffrey Leong ‘14 Amanda Lewis ‘17 Corrinne Lewis ‘07 Meredith Lewis ‘12

Thank you

In honor of Roger Weingarten Elinor Benedict

In honor of Casey Neumann Mary-Louise Jackson-Miller

In honor of Louise Crowley

In honor of Craig Saddlemire

In memory of Diana Daggett

Kumkum Amin Kay Barnes Judith Blazer Rae Bruce Margaret Bucholt David Celone Martha Christina Elizabeth Coleman Meredith Davies Hadaway Carolyn Dille Eugenie Doyle Debra Hutchison David Jauss Kimberly Klement Jeffrey Leong Kali Lightfoot Virginia Lofft Reginald Martin Diane Martinez David Mook Ann Robinson Linda Schneider Myra and Harold Shapiro Emily Skoler Layne Staral Kathleen Tibbetts Susan Tollefson Charotte Warren and anonymous donors

Constance Saddlemire

Charles Rutan

In honor of Katie Gustafson

In memory of Brian Webb

Heidi Tringe


In honor of Brian Leung

In memory of Janet Kaplan

Judith Ford

In honor of Casper Martin

Irene Abraham Nanette Feldman Mildred Kennedy-Stirling Michael Minelli

Katherine Paterson

In memory of Milton S. Murueil

In memory of Frances Lee Hall

Sarah Lamstein

Mary Atkinson Tobin Anderson Kelly Bennett Patti Brown Nora Ericson Ginger Johnson Ann Jacobus Kordahl Margaret Nevinski Nancy Reynolds Tamara Smith Teresa Smith Sarah Sullivan

In memory of Norma Fox Mazer

In memory Jack Myers

John Thelin

Bradley Davis William Kemmett

In memory of Lynda Hull

In memory of Edith Sorel

In honor of Marion Dane Bauer

Edna King and Cara Armstrong


In memory of Roy Levin

In memory of Harry Graff Sondra Graff

In honor of Leslie Ullman

Jane Pincus John Solaperto

Patricia Lee Lewis

In memory of Gilbert Garland

Sherrie Lorance

In honor of David Kidd

Nancy Lagomarsino

In memory of Genie Zeiger

Nina Kidd

In memory of Josanne LaValley

Joan Sidney

In honor of Robert E. Sollmann Ryder Ziebarth

Anonymous Bruce Black Sharon Darrow Emily Pearce

In memory of Richard Martin Nanette Feldman

In memory of Frances Stuart Jane Noel

In memory of Virginia Reiser Janet Mendelsohn

In memory of Craig Evans

John Thelin

In memory of Joy Crutchfield

Sarah Sullivan

Artists Development Fund The Artists Development Fund was created in 2016 to help financially support artists from diverse backgrounds by providing them access to the highest level of graduate arts education. We sincerely thank the following donors who have supported this important fund since its inception.

Kathi and Kenneth Appelt Tami Lewis Brown ‘06 and David Brown Eliza Cooke Browning Patricia Buddenhagen ‘03 Charles and Ann Bunting Vivian Dorsel ‘06 Judith Ford ‘16 Michael and Jinny Goldstein

Joan Grubin ‘03 and David Grubin Dwight Hilson ‘15 and Mindy Hilson John S. Hilson Family Foundation Con Hogan and Jeannette Hogan Michael Hogan Katherine Leighton Hosford ‘11 and Chris Welch Cordelia Jensen ‘12 Maggie Kast ‘01

The Martin Foundation Katherine Paterson Michael Rosenfeld Bill Schubart Peter Smith and Letitia Chambers Vicki Wittenstein ‘06 and Andrew Wittenstein and anoynmous donors

vermont college of fine arts

report of gifts

Donald Suthard ‘14 Shari Swanson ‘12 Pamela Taylor ‘12 Diane Telgen ‘17 John Thelin ‘95 Andrew Thomas ‘16 Fredrika Thompson ‘06 Seth Thompson ‘97 Jennifer Thornburg ‘17 Megan Thygeson ‘17 Kathleen Tibbetts ‘14 Peter Timpone Susan Tollefson ‘98 Paul Tonnes ‘13 Darlene Town ‘14 Heidi Tringe Nicole Valentine ‘12 Katie Van Ark ‘16 Sharon Van Zandt ‘12 Gail Vannelli ‘19 Crystal Velasquez Vermont Community Foundation Zan Wallach ‘11 Elsa Waller ‘94 and Julian Waller Charlotte Warren ‘95 Bruce Wasserman ‘17 Peter Watson Tom Watson ‘99 Earl Wendel ‘01 Jan Wesley ‘01 Kerry Westhelle Anne Westrick ‘11 Mary Weyhing Jennifer Whistler ‘17 Dianne White ‘08 Tom and Margaret Whitford Jeff Wiggins ‘09 and Jose Olivo Faith Wilding Amy Willis and Scott Hess Kathleen Wilson ‘11 Aaron Winters ‘14 Nat Winthrop Elaine Witten Vicki Wittenstein ‘06 and Andrew Wittenstein Margaret Wiviott ‘11 Gretchen Woelfle ‘00 David Wojahn Susannah Wood ‘12 Peter Wright ‘14 and Katherine Wright Ellen Yeomans ‘04 Roger Zahab Anne Ziebarth ‘16 Rosamond Zimmermann ‘16 Stanley Zumbiel ‘08 and anonymous donors



Candice and Stephen Peck Pamela Pekich ‘62 Penguin Random House Dorothy Pensky ‘99 Janine Pibal ‘17 Jane Pincus ‘93 Victoria Pitt ‘14 Wendy Powell ‘15 Donna Pressman ‘88 Michele Prestininzi ‘17 Helen Pyne ‘11 Rachel Ramsay ‘14 Shirley Reid ‘47 Lee Reilly ‘12 Jennifer Renko Nancy Reynolds ‘08 Sharon Reynolds ‘98 Susan Ritz Ann Robinson ‘97 Michael Rosenfeld Jason Routhier Charles Rutan ‘15 Susan Ryan-Nelson ‘69 Constance Saddlemire Wendy Sanford ‘03 Denise Santomauro ‘17 Shelley Saposnik ‘14 Susan Sarlo Richard Saudek Deborah Scarfo ‘17 Jason Schaefer ‘17 Susan Schmitt ‘19 Linda Schneider ‘02 Bill Schubart Michael Scofield ‘02 and Noreen Scofield Carla Senecal Myra Shapiro ‘93 and Harold Shapiro Joan Sidney ‘08 Sue Silverman ‘88 Ingrid Silverstein ‘08 Janet Skiff ‘17 Emily Skoler ‘94 Cynthia Smith Dale Smith ‘17 Jackie Smith Peter Smith and Letitia Chambers Suzanne Smith ‘10 Tamara Smith ‘07 Teresa Smith ‘07 Martha Snell ‘15 John Solaperto ‘95 Susan Spaulding Layne Staral ‘04 Lori Steel ‘12 Breana Steele ‘16 Sally Stiles ‘01 Linda Stillman ‘03 Maura Stokes ‘03 Suma Subramaniam ‘17 Sarah Sullivan ‘05



Patricia Lewis ‘99 Theresa Liess-Hassinger ‘99 Kali Lightfoot ‘15 Catherine Linka ‘06 Jacqueline Lipton ‘16 Pamela Livingston ‘12 Lory Lockwood ‘00 Virginia Lofft ‘10 Sherrie Lorance ‘18 Janice Lower ‘14 Ian Lynam Robert Macauley ‘12 Sarah Madru Kekla Magoon ‘05 Casper Martin ‘12 The Martin Foundation Maggie Martin Reginald Martin ‘93 Diane Martinez ‘07 Mascoma Savings Bank Amy Maughan ‘14 Jody Maunsell Carol McAfee ‘17 Kimberly McCreight Margo McLoughlin ‘17 Katherine Mead ‘99 Janet Mendelsohn ‘06 and Robert Mendelsohn MetLife Foundation David Meyer ‘98 The Middlecott Foundation Craig Milewski ‘13 Michael Minchin ‘14 Michael Minelli Daniel Mizrachi Morgan Stanley MMR Matthew Monk David Mook ‘02 and Mary Mook Alejandro Moya ‘14 Erin Murphy Literary Agency Marianne Murphy ‘17 Diane Myers ‘14 National Life Group Margaret Nevinski ‘08 New York Community Trust LJTJ Fund Jane Noel ‘06 Michele Nosbisch ‘17 Carol O’Neill ‘93 John O’Rourke ‘99 Joanne O’Sullivan Erika Odegard Carmen Oliver Olusegun Olude ‘14 Pamela Painter Angela Paladino Jericho Parms ‘12 Ann Parr ‘04 Katherine Paterson Trinity Peacock-Broyles ‘07 Emily Pearce ‘99


36 College Street Montpelier, v t 05602

VCFA AT 10 YEARS Next year marks the 10-year anniversary of Vermont College of Fine Arts. 10 YEARS!




In 2008, a group of visionaries guided by Tom Greene led the charge in developing our amazing community of artists. As Union Institute looked to leave campus and end its association with the legacy MFA programs (Writing, Visual Art, and Writing for Children & Young Adults), faculty, alumni, staff, and local community leaders gathered together the resources to make VCFA a reality.

And here we are, 10 years later, having boosted our enrollment and adding six academic programs—MFAs in Graphic Design, Music Composition, Film, Writing & Publishing, and a Master of Arts in Teaching and Master of Arts in Art & Design Education, and the new International MFA in Creative Writing & Literary Translation. We’ve gone from being a “national center for the arts” to a “global community of artists” in such a short time. Thank you all for being part of such an amazing and beautiful arts community. There’s really no place like VCFA in the world. We look forward to hearing from you— and seeing you—during this special anniversary year! We’ll be hosting a variety of events, both large and small, on campus and off, in celebration. Stay tuned!