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8 Things to Look Forward to at Stamps This Fall

Whether you’re a new face or coming back to the Stamps School, there’s a variety of events and opportunities ready for you this fall! Learn more about some fun things to look forward to before classes start on August 29.

Group of Stamps students, faculty, and staff pose next to balloons in the 2nd floor courtyard in 2021

1. Welcome Bash

For Stamps students, there’s plenty of chances to meet new people and become part of the tight knit community.

A great first event to attend at Stamps is the annual Welcome Bash. The Welcome Bash will be held on August 31 from 4 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. at the 2nd floor courtyard. Students, faculty and staff are welcome to attend. At the event, attendees can enjoy free food, learn about clubs and resources, and meet the Stamps community. RSVP if you’re planning to attend!

Gray stamps pullover with logo, navy baseball cap with logo, and heather blue t-shirt with 10th anniversary Stamps logo

2. Stamps Gear

Need a new back-to-school wardrobe? Stamps has you covered. You can order the gear that’s right for you on the Stamps Merchandise Store at any time. Some of the limited edition apparel celebrates the upcoming 10 year anniversary for the naming of the Penny W. Stamps School of Art & Design, making it extra special. The net profits from each purchase benefit a scholarship fund for Stamps students.

A drag queen in sunglasses dancing in a nightclub.
The Legendary Drag Queens Speaker Series event is September 29. | Photo by James Hosking.

3. Speaker Series

Each Thursday night starting September 15, you can enjoy live, in-person presentations as part of the Penny Stamps Distinguished Speaker Series. These events bring respected leaders and innovators from a broad spectrum of creative fields right to you. The series will take place at 5:30 pm at the Michigan Theater in downtown Ann Arbor. From photographers to legendary drag queens, there’s something for everyone this year. You can check out the full list of speaker series events for more information.

Headshot of Carlos Francisco Jackson, Dean of the Penny W. Stamps School of Art & Design at U-M.

4. New Leadership

New year, new Dean! Stamps is welcoming Dean Carlos Francisco Jackson. Dean Jackson is a visual artist and writer whose work reflects the themes and imagery of the Latina/​Latino presence in American art, contemporary Latina/​Latino printmaking and the rise and impact of Chicana/​Chicano graphics. Make sure to say hi when you see him at Stamps!

Digital loom and computer. Colorful threads rest on the loom.

5. Brand New Equipment

The Stamps School recently purchased two Thread Controller 2 (TC2) digital jacquard looms, which are state of the art, computer-assisted machines used for hand weaving. According to Fiber & 2D Foundations studio coordinator Kit Parks, the looms will allow artists to manipulate each thread individually using computerized controls, leading to more detailed and realistic images. 

Because the TC2s enable the creation of highly detailed images, I expect we’ll see more pieces that highlight pictorial elements,” Parks said. These looms also offer more efficiency than a traditional floor loom, so we may see larger works as well!”

Penny Stamps sits at a table surrounded by guests at the Stamps School Naming Celebration

6. 10th Naming Anniversary Celebration

This isn’t just any ordinary semester – it’s the 10th anniversary since the naming of Stamps! We are honoring Penny W. Stamps for the remarkable gift she and her husband, E. Roe Stamps made to support art and design education at the University of Michigan. We’ll also look back on Stamps’ legacy and the accomplishments over the last 10 years. There’s lots in store, including a statue installation outside of the Dean’s Office and a celebration program.

Photograph of a group of people  in a grassy lot playing in water that is being sprayed from a large truck with solar panels
LaToya Ruby Frazier: Shea Cobb, Amber Hasan, and Her Children, Nieces, and Nephews (Zari, DJ, Jayda, Justin, Justace, Jaylen) and Their Friends Playing in the Water Moses West Is Spraying from His Atmospheric Water Generator on North Saginaw Street Between Morengo Avenue and East Pulaski Avenue, Flint, Michigan, 20192020

7. LaToya Ruby Frazier: Flint is Family in Three Acts Exhibition

You won’t want to miss Flint is Family in Three Acts, opening at Stamps Gallery on Friday, August 26 and on view free of charge through January 14. This multi-part exhibition by renowned artist LaToya Ruby Frazier combines photographs, videos, and texts to advocate for access to clean and safe drinking water for all people. There are also receptions and walkthrough events with Frazier, so head to the event page to learn more. Plus, catch Frazier as the kick-off speaker at the Penny Stamps Distinguished Speaker Series on Thursday, September 15 at the Michigan Theater.

Student sketches in classroom wearing a black mask.

8. Updated Health Guidelines

As we return to a more typical academic year, new health resources are available to help all members of the University of Michigan Community. Check out the new U‑M Health Response website with information on the latest COVID-19 guidance and other details to help you navigate the coming months.

Stay Up To Date

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