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Remembering Adam F. Nilson, Fine Art alum

Giant mural painted on the side of brick building of a woman on a crescent moon. Text on the mural reads

Adam F. Nilson, Miller High Life mural (photo courtesy of Nilson Studios)

Adam F. Nilson ’03 (Drawing) passed away on March 5, 2023. He was the owner of nationally recognized Nilson Studio, where he created many beloved Milwaukee area murals. Generous with his community, Nilson also hosted art supply drives and mentored students to ensure children had access to the arts.

According to his website, Nilson credits his son Jackson with “the inspiration and courage to strike out on his own.” After graduating from the Milwaukee Institute of Art & Design, Nilson founded his studio mural business. His work spanned private murals and fine art work to Milwaukee hallmarks like the iconic Miller sign. Nilson’s clients ranged from restaurants and breweries to the Milwaukee Bucks, and his work was featured on several HGTV shows.

Starting his career at 17 years old, Nilson created a graffiti mural for his school, Beloit Memorial High School. Even years after graduating, Nilson continued to give back to students at Beloit Memorial and in the Milwaukee community, participating in fundraising efforts and mentoring to keep kids engaged in art.

Nilson’s generous creative contributions profoundly impacted his Wisconsin communities and beyond. A funeral service will be held on Saturday, March 11, 2023 at 1 p.m. at the Daley Murphy Wisch & Associates Funeral Home and Crematorium in Beloit, WI. A visitation will precede the service at 10 a.m. Nilson’s family requests that, in lieu of flowers, donations be made to charity in his name.

Read Adam Nilson’s full obituary here.


MIAD Gallery at The Ave celebrates opening

The Milwaukee Institute of Art & Design (MIAD) celebrates its first offsite gallery during its grand opening on April 6, 2023 from 6 – 8 p.m. MIAD invites the public to attend the event and to explore the new Gallery at The Ave, located at 301 W. Wisconsin Ave in The Avenue near the 3rd Street Market Hall.

First-Year Exhibition 2023 winners announced

Four winners and three honorable mentions were selected at the Milwaukee Institute of Art & Design’s (MIAD) First-Year Experience Student Exhibition opening reception on Friday, March 24, 2023. Renato Umali, Mariah Tate Klemens and Gabrielle Banzhaf, the three jurors, commended all the participating students for their strong work.

Communication Design senior lands Nike Internship

Catherine Currie ’23 (Communication Design), a senior at the Milwaukee Institute of Art & Design (MIAD), was selected for the highly competitive graphic design internship at Nike. The internship will take place over 10 weeks this summer at Nike’s headquarters in Beaverton, Oregon.

MIAD Defines 2023: Day of play

For the 2023 iteration of MIAD Defines, the Milwaukee Institute of Art & Design dedicated Tuesday, March 21 to playing. With the aim to connect, converse and learn across majors, years and disciplines, this year’s MIAD Defines was a resounding success.

Peter Barrickman selected as NSP: Fine Arts full-time faculty

Following a national search, Peter Barrickman has been selected as the newest full-time faculty member in New Studio Practice (NSP): Fine Arts at the Milwaukee Institute of Art & Design (MIAD). An internationally recognized artist, Barrickman also co-founded Mazzzagine, a publication dedicated to supporting artists and fostering collaboration.


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