- Gregory Scheckler, Professor of Visual Art
MFA, Utah State University
BFA, Washington University
BA, University of Notre Dame,
Gregory Scheckler comes from a family of Wisconsin German-Americans, including doctors, musicians, vaudeville stage managers and artists. He grew up in Madison, Wisconsin, next to a zoo (for animals) and a university (a zoo for people). He began college in mechanical engineering, but earned a B.A. in Modern and Classical Languages from the University of Notre Dame, a B.F.A. in Painting from Washington University in St. Louis where he was an Eliot Honors Scholar, and the M.F.A. in Art from Utah State University. He studied academic figure drawing and anatomy at the New York Academy of Art, and oil painting recently at the Angel Art Academy in Florence, Italy. His artwork has been shown professionally since the early 1990s in over a hundred exhibits. National and international collectors own his artworks, as nearby as New York City and as far away as Tokyo, Japan. As Professor of Visual Art at Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts, he currently teaches painting, drawing, digital photography and visual arts composition.
MassMoCA | Phone 413.662.5053 | Email Gregory Scheckler
- Melanie Mowinski, Assistant Professor of Visual Art
MAR, Yale University in Religion and the Visual Arts
MFA, University of the Arts in Philadelphia, in Book Arts and Printmaking
Melanie Mowinski began her career as an art education major at Case Western Reserve University and the Cleveland Institute of Art in Cleveland, Ohio. After graduating, she went west to seek her fortune, teaching in Arizona and San Francisco. Ready for another adventure, she then served as a Peace Corps Volunteer on the island of St. Kitts in the Caribbean where she developed arts curricula, community-centered arts programs, and her love of the outdoors.
She left the tropics after three years to study in New England, earning an M.A.R. in Religion and the Visual Arts from Yale University in 1999 where she was the Katsuo Miho Scholar in Peace Making. Many seeds were planted during her time at Yale, and she let them germinate while teaching for a few years at Buxton School in Williamstown, MA. Residencies at Windgrove in Tasmania and Jentel in Wyoming kept her art practice alive during these intense years of teaching. Eventually, the seeds blossomed and led her to Philadelphia where she earned her M.F.A. in Book Arts/Printmaking from The University of the Arts (UArts) in 2006.
She continues to seek out residencies and travel as opportunities of intense focus and creation. In recent years she has traveled to Denali National Park in Alaska, the Kimmel Harding Nelson Center in Nebraska, the Venezuelan Andes, a coast-to-coast journey across Costa Rica, and art fairs/shows like Art Basel, the Venice Biennial, and the Armory Show.
Mowinski is also the founder of PRESS: LetterPRESS as a Public Art Project, that is part of the Berkshire Cultural Resource Center's Downstreet Art Series. PRESS is a project that allows her to share her love of art, book arts and printmaking with as many people as possible. When she was given a Vandercook Universal III letterpress printer in March 2010, she knew it had to be shared somehow and someway with students at MCLA, and the greater North Adams Community. PRESS: LetterPRESS as a Public Art Project is one of the ways she does this.
- Laura Thompson, Visiting Assistant Professor
- Laura Thompson joined MCLA in 2007 as a visiting assistant professor of art history. Thompson has over 19 years of experience in arts and museum education. As Director of Exhibitions and Education for Kidspace at MASS MoCA since 2002, she has brought about Kidspace's expanded gallery and artist residency program, established educationally appropriate curriculum materials and programs, strengthened the collaboration between the museums and school districts, and curated highly-acclaimed Kidspace exhibitions with world renowned artists such as Devorah Sperber, Long-Bin Chen, and Tim Rollins. Thompson continues to also serve as an education consultant and lecturer at a variety of museums, arts organizations, and universities in the Northeast and formerly was a Director of Education and Public Programs at several NY history museums, and a faculty member of the Creative Arts Laboratory at Columbia University. She holds a doctorate in Arts Education from Columbia University Teachers College, with a concentration in Museum Studies. Thompson is a painter and has shown her work locally in the Arts Center in Troy, NY and in the Empty Set Gallery in Pittsfield, MA. Laura resides in Saratoga County, NY with her husband Roger and two sons Jacob and Jesse.
- Laura Christensen, Visiting Associate Professor
- Laura Christensen served for seven years as the Visual Arts Education Coordinator at MASS MoCA. She holds a BA in German and a BS in Economics from St. Louis University as well as an MFA from Utah State University and has completed graduate study at the University of Illinois and the Graduate School of Figurative Art. Laura has had exhibits at Kidspace at MASS MoCA, Eclipse Mill Gallery and The Arts Center of the Capital Region to name a few. See Laura's website.