Furniture Designer Joins Art, Works in 3D

The Fine Arts Building had some unusual tenants this fall. Faculty, staff, and students encountered life-sized, transparent “plastic people” in classrooms, the balcony of the Stella Boyle Smith Concert Hall, stairwells, and even in the elevator. These sculptures were created by students in Mia Hall’s three-dimensional design course.

Born and raised in Sweden, Mia joined the art department in applied design this past August. She received a BFA and an MFA in Furniture Design at San Diego State University. While completing her graduate degree, Mia worked under the tutelage of Wendy Maruyama, a renowned studio furniture designer.

“Being a firm believer in ‘cross pollination’ in the applied arts, I include instructions in alternative materials and processes, such as cast concrete, unusual surface treatments, and how to use imagery on wood,” said Hall.

The Applied Design program gives students opportunities to study traditional arts and crafts representative of the South Central Region of the United States with emphasis on the state of Arkansas.

“The reason I was attracted to applied design was the notion of function,” Hall said. “After I received my degree, I could get a job in a cabinet shop or as a designer for industry.”

Hall’s looking forward to the spring semester when students will have more educational options in the discipline. “We will have a small metal shop in our facility, and using steel, aluminum, copper, and brass will be an option for students,” said Hall. “We are also adding a course called ‘Beginning Furniture Design for Non-Majors.’ This class will be open to any student, art major or not.”

To contact Hall, call 501.569.3182 or at mphall@ualr.edu.

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