November 25, 2016

MFA in Applied Craft and Design at West Coast Craft

Pacific Northwest College of Art (PNCA) at Willamette University
Andreas Kindler Von Knobloch, Laura O’Quin, and Will Moss, MAKING SPACE, 2016. Installation view. Photo: Leslie Vigeant.

In a unique partnership, San Francisco’s West Coast Craft juried into its most recent exhibition a select group of students and alumni from the MFA in Applied Craft and Design program jointly offered by Pacific Northwest College of Art and Oregon College of Art and Craft in Portland, Oregon.

That it was the only graduate program invited to participate in the exhibition of 250+ of top contemporary artist and designer craftsmen and women highlights the unique position of a program whose graduates are equally likely to be artists and owners of small design and craft focused businesses. Notable alumni include Jennifer Cooke, Bukola Kokoi, and Eric Trine.

Among the three special installation projects West Coast Craft presented was MAKING SPACE, a collaborative project by alumni Andreas Kindler Von Knobloch, Laura O’Quin, and Will Moss that used the vertical plane of a wall, the horizontal plane of a table, and the intimate experience of a publication as support structures. In addition, two students, Sarah Brusstar and Gina Rios, were offered a booth to show their work alongside the professional exhibitors.

The MFA in Applied Craft and Design program welcomes students from a wide range of creative backgrounds in order to make original work with an applied purpose. Grounded in hands-on making, entrepreneurial strategies, and social and environmental engagement, the program is invested in creating opportunities for students to apply their practice out in the field.

The program is self-directed and resolutely cross-disciplinary. Students plunge into an intensive studio practice reinforced with in-depth study of the history and theory of craft and design and ongoing critical dialogue. Students work one-on-one with nationally and internationally recognized designers, artists, and scholars through long-term mentorships and frequent studio visits.

With a curriculum focused on the development of a strong artistic voice, the realization of work for a specific community or client, and entrepreneurism that connects making a living with making a difference, the MFA in Applied Craft and Design is the only graduate program of its kind.

For more information, contact Chair, Heidi Schwegler, [email protected] or visit

Hallie Ford School of Graduate Studies 
For over 100 years, Pacific Northwest College of Art has educated artists and designers with an philosophy that emphasizes individualized curricula, independent inquiry, and cross-disciplinary exchange. The graduate programs of PNCA’s Hallie Ford School of Graduate Studies support students in defining and growing a sustainable, engaged, and dynamic practice that will continue to evolve years after graduation. PNCA’s graduate programs are rooted in meaningful faculty-student relationships and close community, enhanced with mentors drawn from greater Portland, and expanded further still with visiting artists, curators, and scholars.

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Pacific Northwest College of Art (PNCA) is committed to readying students for a life of creative practice. Located in the heart of Portland, PNCA is in the center of a progressive and affordable urban center known for its independent spirit, innovative mindset, and creative industries.


PNCA's MFA in Applied Craft and Design at West Coast Craft

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