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Academics . Foundation . Faculty

Foundation Faculty

Petra Soesemann

Title Professor | Chair of Foundation
Department Foundation
Phone 216.421.7930

Courses  3D Design

Degree MFA, Sculpture, School of the Art Institute of Chicago
BFA, Sculpture, Cleveland Institute of Art

Graduate work in Landscape Architecture at the University of Illinois; summer study in Landscape Architecture at Harvard University; summer study at the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture

Petra Soesemann is a Professor and Chair of the Foundation Environment. In 2009 she was granted a year-long sabbatical leave to focus on her creative practice at the Roswell Artist-in-Residence Program. Selected awards include Artist-in-Residence at the Fundacion Valparaiso in Spain; Fulbright Fellowship to study Incan architecture in Peru; exhibition Grant to Sao Paulo, Brazil; travel grants to Mexico, Honduras and Guatemala to research Mayan art and architecture; and travel grants to Turkey to study Islamic art and architecture as well as contemporary art. She has also taken CIA students to Mexico, Germany and Italy on team-taught foreign study trips. Soesemann’s recent work explores the conventional relationships between seeing and representing; her fabric constructions often manipulate light and color to bring perception into conflict with uncertainty, engaging the basic mechanisms of “mind seeking meaning” as a process of consciousness.

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Nicole Condon-Shih

Title Associate Professor, Assistant Chair of Foundation
Department Foundation
Phone 216.421.7000

Courses  Life Drawing

Degree MFA, Hunter College, The City University of New York
BFA, Cornell University, College of Architecture, Art and Planning

Nicole Condon-Shih is an interdisciplinary artist who explores the intersection of art and science in a research-based creative practice. She examines the dichotomy between the microscopic versus the macroscopic in thinking about biological, cultural, and societal systems.

In 2020, Condon-Shih completed the permanent public art project, Hidden Estrus, at the Sears think[box] on the Case Western Reserve University campus.

Her work has also been shown internationally in Hong Kong at the Bi-City Biennale of Urbanism & Architecture, in Beijing at the B3 Biennale of the Moving Image, and in the Reverse the Perspective exhibition at the Xiangsi Art Museum in Tianjin, China.

Her art practice continually informs her teaching, just as teaching is integral to her practice as an artist. Condon-Shih has focused her pedagogical research specifically towards innovative first-year curriculum that underscores experimentation, process, and develops creative practices with critical thinking at its core.

Steven Gutierrez

Steven Gutierrez

Title Associate Professor | Interim Chair of Game Design
Department Foundation
Phone 216.421.7000

Courses  Digital II: Image & Sequence | Intro to Animation | Introduction to Game Development

Degree MFA Art & Technology, The Ohio State University
BS Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, Cornell University

Steven Gutierrez is an artist, engineer, and educator interested in the intersection of art, technology and the environment. His work has been primarily focused on social and environmental issues. His current research is directed towards finding how technology may be used to help life rather than to destroy it.

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Kevin Kautenburger

Title Professor
Department Foundation
Phone 216.421.7931

Courses  3D Design

Degree MFA, Ceramics from the Tyler School of Art, Temple University
BFA, Studio Art from Kent State

Kautenburger's sculpture functions to contain sensations of the natural environment, housing and presenting natural phenomena as an invitation for anyone so inclined to poetic ponderance. Work often involves insect habitats (crickets and honeybees), natural material from the Rocky River basin, as well as substances collected from his bee yard, such as propolis, wax, and pollens.

He is a recipient of a Pew Fellowship in the Arts, and has exhibitited at the Philadelphia Museum of Art, Cleveland Museum of Art, and the Allentown Museum of Art, among others. He has an MFA in Ceramics from Tyler School of Art, and a BFA from Kent State University.

He has been teaching at CIA since 2001, where he teaches Foundation Design and Environment, Art and Engaged Practice.

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Jimmy Kuehnle

Title Associate Professor
Department Foundation
Phone 216.421.7000

Courses  Digital II: Modeling & Fabrication

Degree MFA, University of Texas at San Antonio
BFA, Truman State University

Kuehnle has had solo shows at museums, galleries and universities in the United States and internationally.

In 2019 he opened a solo show, Wow, Pop, Bliss, at the Columbia Museum of Art in Columbia, SC that will span 4 interior galleries and include a monumental site-specific inflatable sculpture on the museum’s exterior.

He exhibited a site-specific interactive inflatable installation at Exploratorium Museum in San Francisco in 2018. His 2016 solo exhibition at the Hudson River Museum in Yonkers, New York was favorably reviewed in The New York Times, featured in New York Magazine’s “Approval Matrix” and recommended by online sites such as the New York Daily News, Artnet and Hyperallergic. In 2016, Kuehnle received a Creative Workforce Fellowship, a program of the Community Partnership for Arts and Culture funded by the citizens of Cuyahoga County. In the fall of 2016, Kuehnle exhibited new monumentally scaled site-specific inflatables at the Akron Art Museum in an exhibit titled, Wiggle, Giggle, Jiggle. This installation was reviewed in the Plain Dealer, Akron Beacon Journal, Canvas Magazine, CAN Journal, WCPN’s the Sound of Applause. In 2014, he was selected for the national survey exhibition State of the Art: Discovering American Art Now at the Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art. As a Fulbright Graduate Research Fellow in Japan, 2008, he pursued his interest in public art and sculpture.

Selected group exhibitions include Inflatable, Exploratorium, San Francisco (2018) How to Remain Human, MOCA Cleveland (2015); ARS, Fondazione Arnaldo Pomodoro, Milan, Italy (2010); and Betsu no Sekai, Nagakute Cultural Center, Nagoya, Japan (2008). Kuehnle has been awarded artist residencies from, SPACES, Cleveland, Ohio (2013); Sculpture Space, Utica, New York (2010); Albion College, Albion, Michigan (2009); and Ateljé Stundars, Vaasa, Finland (2009).

Focusing on sculpture and performance, Kuehnle works in various media and has exhibited his projects nationally and internationally. His recent work features site-specific inflatable installations in museums as well as public performance treks through rural and urban cities in the U.S. such as Chicago, Detroit, Austin, St. Louis, Cincinnati, San Antonio, Dallas, and New York as well as international performances in Japan, Italy, and Finland.

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Scott Ligon

Title Associate Professor
Department Foundation
Phone 216.421.7947

Courses  Digital II: Image & Sequence

Degree MFA, Hoffberger School of Painting, Maryland Institute College of Art

Scott Ligon is an award-winning digital artist and filmmaker. He is the coordinator for the digital foundation curriculum at the Cleveland Institute of Art.

He received his MFA from the Maryland Institute College of Art where he studied under renowned original abstract expressionist Grace Hartigan and attended “Perspectives on Criticism” classes taught by Robert Storr, formerly senior curator of painting and sculpture at New York’s Museum of Modern Art.

Early in his career, Scott made a living as a graphic designer and illustrator for ad agencies around the Washington DC area. This enabled Scott to learn digital art software. Scott utilized his perspective as a painter to explore the expansive possibilities of digital technology as an art- making tool.

Scott is the author of Digital Art Revolution, Creating Fine Art with Photoshop. The book was published in March 2010 by Watson-Guptill, a division of Random House, the premiere publisher in books. The book is currently in its second printing and an eBook version was released in July 2011, available for Kindle, Nook, iPad and other eBook formats.

His award-winning animated short film, Escape Velocity, about the connection between ADHD and creativity, has played in festivals and theaters all over the world. Escape Velocity plays regularly on the Documentary Channel in the USA and Shorts TV in Europe. The film recently signed a third television deal with LAPTV, a partnership of four major entertainment giants, 20th Century Fox, MGM, Paramount, and Fox TV in Latin America. The film is distributed by Shorts International, the world’s leading short film brand.

He has recently completed his second short film, Figure/Ground about the death of his father. It features veteran actor Allan Kulakow who has been in several movies, including Death by Dawn, Syriana, The Good Shepherd, and HBO’s Something the Lord Made. He appeared as the Joint Chief of Staff on NBC’s West Wing. Figure/Ground is currently making a film festival tour and was recently signed to an exclusive distribution agreement with Future Shorts in London. Future Shorts is a short film distributor whose partners include HBO and Sony Computer Entertainment.

Scott is currently working on his first feature film, a documentary about creativity called The Big Picture.

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Christian Wulffen

Title Professor
Department Foundation
Phone 216.421.7931

Courses  Life Drawing

Degree MFA, Academy of Fine Arts at the Staatlicen Akademie der Bildenden Kunste (State Academy of the Fine Arts), Stuttgart (Germany)

Freie Kunstschule (Independent Art School) Nurtingen (Germany)

Christian Wulffen has been an Associate Professor since 2003.

Artist Statement:

I am concerned with how artists achieve knowledge and how they structure knowledge. This intersects with my concern as a teacher and artist, to encourage participants to reflect on the processes that an artist goes through--for example, an intuitive creative thinking process, intentional purposeful engagement, and adherence to a model or system.

These thought processes can be contextualized further by situating them within larger theories of knowledge production, as outlined by W. J. T. Mitchell: “semiotics, structuralism, deconstruction, system theory, speech at theory, ordinary language philosophy and now image science or critical iconology”.

To convey this notion of action as a mode of knowledge production, I use specific symbols for my work, one of these: boards that are pre-manufactured with three vertical slots and one horizontal slot (plywood).

From the viewer’s perspective, the board has the option to hold various information. From my perspective, I see this as a concept to display information to exercise the different links in its display from one board to another. My environment is a grid—one of the hallmarks of modernist abstraction and capable, as a visual symbol, of signifying a whole system of art production and thought. This idea is depends on the perspective of the viewer and how that viewer is situated in a distributed network of production and reception of the information about this subject.

Crucially for me, the painting, the paper, and the board (as in my recent production), simulate the portability of information. I am interested in its mobility as a sign in which sender and recipient receive the same information but decode it differently depending on their respective environments.

Terry Clark

Title Lecturer
Department Foundation
Phone 216.421.7000

Courses  Life Drawing

Degree MFA, Kent State University
BFA, Cleveland Institute of Art

Terry J. Clark II earned his MFA in Painting from Kent State University in 2004 and his BFA from the Cleveland Institute of Art in 2002. Terry’s artworks have been featured at the Cleveland Museum of Art, Ingenuity Festival, Asterisk Gallery, and CSU Art Gallery. Terry has taught 2D and 3D design at Cleveland State University and drawing at CIA. Terry paints with acrylic and watercolor paints and makes sculpture from found objects. His subject matter inspiration comes from Earth Sciences and observing the natural world. The concepts of natural light, optics, and color are recurring themes found in his artworks.

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