IVA / Alumni + Careers

Notable Interdisciplinary Alumni 

Kristen Degree

Graduated from the Interdisciplinary Visual Arts program in 2009. While at UW, Kristen interned at the contemporary art gallery, Howard House in Seattle. After graduation, Kristen received a highly competitive studio internship at Women’s Studio Workshop in Rosendale, NY, where she worked for a year, assisting in projects in book arts, papermaking, printmaking, and ceramics, as well as learning to cook and eat, and most importantly, realizing the necessity of community. In 2010, Kristen moved to Iowa City for the graduate printmaking program at U Iowa, where she also works as a research assistant. Since relocating to the midwest Kristen has become interested in alternative spaces of learning and social ecology in and around Iowa. She is currently looking forward to preparing and printing a foraging map of nuts, berries, herbs and edibles in and around Iowa City, a zine printed on paper made from industrial uniforms, maintaining a square footage of Iowa native prairie and growing a bountiful vegetable garden.

Lauren Klenow

Graduated from the University of Washington in 2007 with degrees in Interdisciplinary Visual Arts and Art History.  During her undergraduate years she interned at the Henry Art Gallery and Howard House Contemporary.  Upon graduation Klenow continued to work for Howard House as a gallery assistant, was the visual arts intern for The Stranger and worked as an art consultant for Martin Lawrence Galleries in Bellevue.  In 2008 Klenow joined Gage Academy of Art, Seattle as curator and coordinator of public events where she facilitates an excellent exhibition program.  Continuing her studio practice as a sculptor, animator, installation and collage artist, Klenow has exhibited work in Seattle at SOIL Gallery, Gallery 40, Vermillion, the NEPO House, and Gage Academy of Art. Lauren’s artwork can be viewed

Lucas Spivey

Worked with a variety of art organizations and artists after graduation from the Interdisciplinary Visual Arts program in 2009. He contributed to the work of Path with Art, Mighty Tieton, Alex Schweder La, Claudia Fitch, Ver(a)rt Gallery, 4Culture, Open Satellite, Artist Trust, the Wing Luke Museum and many many more. It all paid off and Lucas landed a job as Exhibitions Manager at Montserrat College of Art in Massachusetts. He found a small warehouse out in New England and now lives in a loft above his own gallery, called 17 Cox. Lucas considers creating exhibitions to be his favorite form of art: “I guess you could say that space, people and light are my media now. I’m really very happy.” Lucas writes about art extensively on his blogs  and has a personal website at

Stuart Sweazey 

Graduated in 2010 from the Interdisciplinary Visual Arts program, with a Minor in Art History. At UW, Stuart participated in the studio study abroad in Rome and took a wide range of courses. Currently, Stuart works as a Program Assistant in the Teacher Education Program, College of Education at the UW, where he acts as a liaison between the affiliated partner schools and the Teacher Education Program. He’s part of the planning in collaboration with Teach for America that offers an alternate route for teacher education. Stuart’s days are always busy at work but still practices art via sketchbook notes (but a studio rental is on the horizon).

Alyssa Volpigno

Graduated from the IVA major in December 2010 with an art history minor. In January 2011, she started her own business called Saltimbanque Chocolates and creates handmade chocolate confections which she sells on her website Her business ships chocolate to customers across the United States, makes personal Seattle deliveries, and caters special events. Two of Saltimbanque Chocolates’ boxed truffle sets have featured miniature prints by local Seattle artists and UW alum, keeping Alyssa’s love of visual art present in her post-grad endeavors. Alyssa is still making new collage work, but is currently putting most of her creative energy into her culinary art practices.

Alyssa also co-founded an online curatorial project called Violet Strays with UW Photo alum Serrah Russell. Violet Strays’ website features a weekly “show” that is removed at the end of the seven days and replaced with a different artist’s work. Forging connections between artists and the internet, Violet Strays promotes artists as well as the notion of temporality through the unarchived shows that the viewer must see during a specific time-frame.


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