From left: Pope.L, Oppenheimer, and Stockholder. (Photography by Elizabeth Station)

Inside the artists’ studios

Visual arts professors—all working artists—offer glimpses of work in progress.

For more than a year, the Logan Center for the Arts has offered sparkling new spaces for students to create visual art. Next door at Midway Studios, faculty moved into renovated spaces of their own this fall.

Four professors opened the doors of their studios to the public on Humanities Day and offered a brief tour.


Jessica Stockholder, a sculptor and department chair of visual arts, warned visitors that she was “betwixt and between projects.” Her studio offered an inviting riot of color, from the pastels and paint scattered on tables to the collages and 3-D works made with found objects on the wall.


Photographer Laura Letinsky’s bright garret is her first studio—before moving to campus, she worked at home on a tabletop. She is collecting old magazines for one project and having napkins made with some of her still-life patterns for another.


In Geof Oppenheimer’s studio, visitors paused at a lineup of images neatly pinned to one wall—he has an archive of about 1,000 favorites, he says, that he rotates in and out. He is working on two projects for an upcoming show at Northwestern University’s Block Museum of Art; one installation is called Civil/Evil and the other, Drama, is “a long-form video.”

The tour wrapped up in the workspace of interdisciplinary artist William Pope.L. Stockholder encourages visitors to ask any questions. An older alumna from the MFA program asks what the graduate program is like today.

Another visitor—peering at a taxidermy owl nailed to a board and smeared with a sticky brown substance—asks, “Is that peanut butter?” Peanut butter mixed with acrylic paint, answers Pope.L, whose 2013 Renaissance Society show included a work made with ketchup.

We would exit through the gift shop, if we could.