Leslie Gruesbeck named head of the Department of Fine and Graphic Arts

Leslie Gruesbeck has been named head of the Department of Fine and Graphic Arts at Northwestern State University. The appointment has been approved by the Board of Supervisors for the University of Louisiana System.

Gruesbeck has been coordinator of gallery activities at Northwestern State since 2006 and a faculty member at NSU since 2009. She teaches courses in design fundamentals, fiber arts and senior exhibit.

As coordinator of galleries, she recruited, scheduled, marketed and installed professional and student exhibitions in two galleries and public spaces throughout campus; curated and registered exhibitions; assisted with grant writing for arts related projects; acted as liaison to other campus organizations and departments as well as the larger community to further promote visual art activities and exhibitions.

“The School of Creative and Performing Arts is looking forward to having Professor Gruesbeck serve as chair of Fine and Graphic Arts,” said Scott Burrell, director of School of Creative and Performing Arts. “She has already begun to implement initiatives that promise to take the arts program’s excellence to the next level. She is a well-known and respected advocate for the arts in both the NSU and Natchitoches communities.”

Gruesbeck has been awarded the Donald F. Derby Endowed Professorship three times. With the support of the professorship, she explored Sturt School of Craft in Mittagong, New South Wales, Australia, attended Penland School of Crafts in Penland, North Carolina, and pursued coursework at the Royal School of Needlework in Surrey, England.

“I believe that the faculty of the Department of Fine and Graphic Arts, and our colleagues across the School of Creative and Performing Arts provide a rich, collaborative experience for our students that truly encourages growth and professional development,” said Gruesbeck. “I look forward to assisting in the growth of our department and the preparation of our students for life as professionals beyond college. “

As a faculty member, Gruesbeck developed the crafts concentration in the Department of Fine and Graphic Arts. She has been responsible for obtaining several grants to enhance the university and the community. Gruesbeck is an active presenter on the state, national and international level of her own work and of art-related research. Many of her presentations have allowed her to collaborate with other Northwestern faculty on interdisciplinary work.

Gruesbeck was registrar of the Alexandria Museum of Art in 2004-05. From 1997 to 2001, she was an administrative and design assistant at Albert & Associates Architects, PA, in Hattiesburg, Mississippi, and Gallery Manager of A Gallery in Hattiesburg. From 1991 until 1997, she worked with the ADVANCE Program for Young Scholars at NSU as publications assistant to the director, interim director and assistant director.

She earned a Bachelor of Arts in English and a Master of Arts in Art at Northwestern State. She is working towards a Doctor of Education in Adult Education and Development at NSU.

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