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Haggerty Museum of Art features MIAD alum for lecture

Two figures and a baby overlaid with zellige pattern in pastel colors.

“My Daughters + the Strands of Hair – Their Heads” by David Najib Kasir, 2022.

David Najib Kasir, ’01 Painting, will present his lecture “David Najib Kasir: A Conversation in Cultural Shapes & Landscapes” at Marquette University’s Haggerty Museum of Art on Tuesday, November 15th at 5 p.m. Kasir, a Milwaukee oil painter whose deeply personal work “surrounds the act of coming to terms with the challenges of family, life, love, and loss,” will speak to the topic of culture and the importance of representation. This lecture is presented in collaboration with Marquette University’s Center for Race, Ethnic and Indigenous Studies.

Oil painting of a destroyed building in background and zellige pattern over a figure carrying a child in foreground

“The Average Number of Broken Hearts in Occupied Diameter” by David Najib Kasir. Oil & acyrilic on panel, 2022.

In his recent artistic practice, Kasir draws on his parents’ experiences migrating to the United States from Syria and Iraq. His latest paintings spotlight the wars in Syria and engage viewers by asking them to understand and empathize with the millions of Arabs “now living in chaos and disarray.” Accomplished as both muralist and activist, Kasir combines imagery of Arab refugees and Syria with traditional colorful zellige tile patterns.

Building community, networking and supporting fellow artists are all vital to Kasir’s artistic practice. “Your career is a marathon and not a sprint… your practice must be a focus,” he counsels. In the years since he graduated from MIAD, Kasir notes how much the school has changed, “especially how it engages with art and public works.” Keep an eye out for Kasir’s work coming up in the Chicago Expo as well as various mural projects and two solo exhibitions scheduled for next year.

Kasir is represented by Var Galleries, which recently loaned MIAD one of his works for the “Then As Now: Woodland Pattern” exhibition in the Frederick Layton Gallery at MIAD. Keep up with Kasir’s work on Instagram (@davidnajibkasir) or his website and learn more about his upcoming lecture at Marquette.


TMJ4 features two MIAD graduates during AAPI month

Stephanie Brown of TMJ4 News featured recent graduates Mengdian Xing ’23 (Product Design) and her sister Lynn Xing ’23 (Interior Architecture and Design) during a month-long celebration of Asian American and Pacific Islander heritage.

Magic: The Gathering tournament in Italy features Illustration faculty

Ever since he was a student at the Milwaukee Institute of Art & Design (MIAD), Associate Professor of Illustration John Matson has incorporated fantasy illustration into his work. This lifelong fascination has led to a fruitful career as a fantasy illustrator and educator, most recently manifesting in an invitation to attend a Magic: The Gathering tournament in Italy as a guest illustrator.

Successful Creative Fusion gala closes Our Creative Future campaign

Raising more than $10 million is no small feat. The Milwaukee Institute of Art & Design (MIAD) announced it had exceeded its comprehensive campaign goal of $10 million after its annual fundraising gala Creative Fusion: Fashion Forward, where donors generously raised more than $485,000 in scholarship support on May 6, 2023.

2023 Penfield Poster Competition bolsters professional experience

This year’s Penfield Poster winners have been announced! In collaboration with advertising agency Cramer-Krasselt, 80 juniors at the Milwaukee Institute of Art & Design (MIAD) designed posters for the Annual Croquet Ball fundraiser at the Penfield Children’s Center.


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