Giving back to SAIC is important to helping maintain SAIC’s ongoing position as one of the most influential art schools, something we can continue connecting with as alumni. This also means helping to ensure that SAIC is able to grow technologically and educationally in relation to its fine arts focused curriculum.
—Brenna Quinn (BFA 2011)
Challenging Perceptions. Impacting Communities.
Our graduates move on to do great things; more than 17,000 alumni impact the world and their communities through their work, scholarship, teaching, and service. As artists, designers, entrepreneurs, curators, writers, historians, filmmakers, musicians, educators, administrators, community leaders, activists, and preservationists, SAIC's alumni use their interdisciplinary education to challenge the status quo. They provide creative and innovative solutions that have a positive impact on every aspect of our lives.
Their accomplishments are many and diverse. Whether it is winning a prestigious fellowship (Milad Mozari, MFA 2013) or educating women around the world about how art and creativity can inspire self-empowerment (Sara Drake, BFA 2011); or, continuing collaborations formed during their time at SAIC to produce cutting-edge works of light and sound that astonish audiences in Chicago and around the world (Coppice, Luftwerk)—SAIC's alumni impact our cultural landscape in powerful ways every day.
|Go-Go Gadget Community
A group of SAIC makers and hacker builds a space to tinker with technology.
SAIC alumni Josh Billions (BFA 2012), Dave Hull (MFA 2012), and Harvey Moon (BFA 2012) are the founders of MB Labs, a Chicago-based small business that works collaboratively to design and manufacture innovative software and hardware. As a component of their business plan they bring together makers and hackers all over Chicago to share their knowledge and experiences in a real-life open-source meet-up.
An SAIC alumna empowers Cambodian women through comics.
Sara Drake (BFA 2011) loves comics. She reads them and makes her own, and she wants more women to read and make comics too. So she started in a place where women have limited access to creative expression—Cambodia.
Milad Mozari investigates personal and public histories through sound.
Catching the L to work, grabbing a taxi to a concert—seemingly unimportant tasks involving transportation—are gainful experiences of sound and culture in the work of SAIC alumnus Milad Mozari (MFA 2013). The 2013 recipient of the Clare Rosen and Samuel Edes Foundation Semi-Finalist Prize for Emerging Artists, Mozari investigates sound and its function within mobile sites, from advertising trucks in South Korea to manually operated elevators.
The alumni duo Luftwerk illuminates your perceptions of light and color.
An SAIC alumni duo, Luftwerk's large-scale, immersive video art deconstructs your thoughts on color, refocuses your idea of light, and disorients your sense of space. After journeying through Luftwerk's 2013 exhibit at the Chicago Cultural Center, SHIFT, you might never look at light, color, and motion in the same way again. In fact, you might second-guess your senses all together.
Alumni duo Coppice breathes life into Chicago’s experimental sound scene.
Though their projects range from compositions and recordings to sculpture and performed installations, Coppice, a duo composed of SAIC alumni Noé Cuéllar (BFA 2009) and Joseph Kramer (MFA 2010), consistently produces transcendent, undulating music that excites the senses and haunts the imagination.
|Empowerment by Design
Emily Pilloton's Nonprofit Design Agency Activates Education and Community
Emily Pilloton (MFA 2005) exemplifies the possibilities of forging a career path that fulfills personal passions while empowering others to reach their own self-directed potential.
Pilloton is the founder and director of Project H Design (design initiatives for Humanity, Habitats, Health, and Happiness), a nonprofit design and architecture agency she created in 2008. She operates her organization around the central idea that design can activate both education and community and capitalizes on the motivated energy of residents in the communities she engages.
|Feeding Social Justice
Tara Lane is cultivating spaces and contemporary conversations around food.
Tara Lane (BFA 2004) left her position as Executive Pastry Chef at Chicago's Blackbird and Avec restaurants to work on social justice projects that involve food. She landed at Jane Addams Hull-House where the extraordinary history of the Resident's Dining Hall inspires her to educate people about the issues surrounding food production and social activism.