Perpich News

Art History and Museum Studies Students Visit Walker Art Center

December 17, 2021

The final week before winter break, all of Craig Farmer’s Beginning Art History and Museum Studies students traveled to the Walker Art Center to see the Julie Mehretu exhibition. The students spent a half hour creating artworks inspired by Mehretu’s painting method with Lauren Bina, former Perpich Media Arts Instructor 2019-2021, who is now a full-time educator at the Walker. The expansive size of the canvases and the layers of abstraction particularly amazed the students. This was the first field trip to an art museum for Craig’s students since December, 2019.

Born in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, and based in Harlem, New York, Julie Mehretu (b. 1970) is best known for abstract paintings layered with a variety of materials, marks, and meanings. These canvases and works on paper reference the histories of art, architecture, and past civilizations while addressing some of the most immediate conditions of our contemporary moment, including migration, revolution, climate change, global capitalism, and technology. This exhibition marks the first-ever comprehensive retrospective on the work of Mehretu.

Craig Farmer has been teaching art history at the high school level since 1992. He started his teaching career at the Field School of Washington, DC. From the summer of 2008 through 2019 he was an adjunct instructor in The University of Minnesota’s Curriculum and Instruction Department. Craig holds a B.A. in art history and history from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and an M.A. in teaching from the University of St. Thomas. He was the graduation speaker for the classes of 2002, 2011, and 2015.

One of the most celebrated art museums in the country, the Walker Art Center is known for its innovative presentations and acclaimed collections of contemporary art across the spectrum of the visual, performing, and media arts. Over the course of more than 100 years, the Walker has evolved from a privately held collection into an internationally recognized institution and civic resource. The Walker Art Center ranks among the five most-visited modern/contemporary art museums in the United States and, together with the adjacent Minneapolis Sculpture Garden, attracts more than 700,000 visitors per year.