I am stunned and saddened to hear of Prince's death. His creativity was and is an inspiration on multiple levels. He was true to his unique vision and that truth was a gift to the world...as was his music.
On an anecdotal level, I was a painter on a movie set within Paisley Park (Grumpy Old Men.) The work days were 10-12 hours long and winter snows were deep outside. In fact, one night, the snowfall was so intense, a few of us decided to hole up in a nearby hotel instead of spending all of our free time driving home and back. One mid-morning, we were in focused "work mode" complete with paint-splashed clothes, when a voice over the loud speaker pronounced: "His highness is IN the building!" (Their emphasis.) This happened on more than one occasion and we perked up a bit at the idea that he might possibly walk through our sets of ice houses or home interiors with "wild walls" and void ceilings.
On another occasion, I felt lucky to get to work on a dance floor of faux marble for one of his touring shows. It was a small project, but inspiring to be on the periphery of his world...
We had wonderful 9-day adventure exploring places related to the Impressionist Rebellion...and maintaining visual travel journals. Here's the crew in Paris. A little bit of drama with one student losing her passport. But an emergency passport was acquired via the consulate.
Monica has just returned with a group of students from southern France. They were studying Impressionism, among other things. I hope Monica will share some of her adventures and sketchbook images below. (associate editor)
Inspiring visit to the American Swedish Institute in Minneapolis today to see an expansive and dramatic collection of Lars Lerin watercolors is on display...until May 22.
January 2016 - Monica is Highlighted as Professor of the Month for Learning Abroad Center at the University of Minnesota.
The interview about leading a Global Seminar titled Japanese Design and Aesthetics included:
Why did you choose Japan as the site for this seminar?
Japanese design and aesthetics feed the soul. While visiting, we witness and experience both inner and outer aspects of culture, the meditative and the visual. Within these contrasts, there is deep respect for historical reference and ritual as well as a rich pop culture. In both, there is pattern, passion, and design.
What do you think will be the highlights of this Global Seminar?
The beat in Tokyo is intense and invigorating: a beautiful blend of past and future. The rhythm in Kyoto is softer—rich with ritual design. And the "hidden treasure" is our visit to Naoshima, an island further south, in the Inland Sea.