The Pennsylvania State University

School of Visual Arts

Lindsey Landfried, Curator, and Recent Pollock-Krasner Grant Recipient

Penn State School of Visual Arts (SoVA) alum Lindsey Landfried (’11 BFA Art), recent Pollock-Krasner Grant recipient, curated a traveling exhibit, RR&P: Repetition Rhythm and Pattern, featuring works by ten artists, including Penn State School of Visual Arts professor Helen O’Leary, as well as SoVA alums Cristol Gregory (’92 B.A. Art), Katie McGraw, (‘01 B.F.A. Art), Alex Paik (‘03 B.F.A. Art), and Lilly Zuckerman (‘10 B.F.A. Art). The exhibition will be in four cities throughout the United States this year. For a video about the exhibition, visit

Below Lindsey describes how her experience at SoVA has helped shape her into the professional artist she is today:

What Penn State experiences stand out for you?
My experience at Penn State really impacted me, and there are a few moments in retrospect I know really shaped things now. Early on in my freshman year I had a drawing class with Ann Tarantino that I adored. The work she was making and the examples she used really appealed to me. Ann is a wonderful teacher and has gone above and beyond for me—in a lot of ways I consider her my mentor. Later in college I apprenticed Ann and during that time I learned a lot of the roots for my own studio work/business. How to collar a drawing, flat pack works on paper, keep an image inventory, write proposals, submit to flat files, etc. After college I moved to New York and worked as an assistant to Lesley Dill and Jill Moser, whom I had met at Penn State when they were part of the Anderson lecture series.

What were some of your favorite projects?
The drawings that were the seeds for my current work started in 2010. Lilly Zuckerman and I had spent time in Morocco on a research grant awarded to us by the Matson Anthropology Museum at Penn State. We spent time making and watching craftspeople weave, decorate ceramics, and make mosaics. When I came back, I remained interested in the intensity with which these people were experts—expert in one motion or one set of patterns, one cut, one knot. This singular, pared-down focus resonated—like a musician’s scale, I sensed a freeing amount of variation that could be played within constraints.

The fellowships office, along with Ruth Mendum, directed me towards other international scholarships and programs post-graduation. As a result, I received a DAAD (German Academic Exchange Service) grant, and in 2012, I spent a year in Berlin working full time as an artist.

Who were your mentors at Penn State?
There are so many people who impacted me at Penn State. The generosity of the painting department and their willingness to engage students beyond their courses is really noteworthy. Micaela Amato, Bonnie Collura, Sarah Rich, Helen O'Leary, Jerrold Maddox, and Simone Osthoff—I learned so very much about making art and being a working artist from them. 

What’s next?
I am developing an exhibit for KWADRAT Galerie in Berlin for 2015. With the amazing support of the Pollock-Krasner award, I will be shifting the scale and material of the work, and developing a series of free-standing sculptures based in bookmaking techniques.