School of Art + Design Leadership Update

Message from the Office of the Dean
May 28, 2019

Dear College of Design Faculty, Staff, and Students:

We are pleased to announce leadership changes in the School of Art + Design for the coming academic year:

Trygve Faste, associate professor of Product Design, has accepted the role of head of the Department of Product Design. This appointment follows an internal department process of nomination, discussion, and recommendation to college leadership. This is a three year appointment, with the possibility of renewal.

Joining the UO faculty in 2010, Trygve Faste has been central to the growth and development of the department. Faste’s contributions include leading the design drawing curriculum and strong service leadership. His research straddles product design and art, encompassing collaborative design projects, paintings, and an ambitious graphic novel project. Faste’s work has been exhibited nationally and internationally, been written about extensively, and received notable design awards. Prior to joining the UO, he held professional design positions with firms such as IDEO and WET Design. Faste received his MFA from Cranbrook Academy of Arts and his BA from Whitman College.

Faste succeeds Kiersten Muenchinger, a remarkable leader, who has steered Product Design from its inception in 2008 through the last eleven years of incredible development and growth. Product Design now has eight tenure related faculty, a strong national reputation, high undergraduate student demand, and the signature Sports Product Design graduate program based in Portland. Muenchinger’s leadership has been central to those successes and its current momentum. For the first time at the UO, Muenchinger will have the opportunity to fully focus on research and teaching.

Charlene Liu, associate professor and head of the Department of Art, has accepted the role of interim head of the School of Art + Design for the 2019 academic year. This acting appointment was necessitated by the current school head Laura Vandenburgh assuming the interim Dean position. Input and feedback were solicited from the Art + Design faculty and staff and the College of Design leadership in the process of making this appointment.

Charlene Liu joined the UO Department of Art in 2007, leading the printmaking curriculum. With a record of significant service, Liu became the head of the Department of Art in 2017, following two years as the associate department head.

Exhibited nationally and internationally, her work combines printmaking, drawing and papermaking to explore acculturation, cultural transmission and landscape. Her work has been reviewed in The Los Angeles Times, The New York Times, and FlashArt International and is included in the collections of the Museum of Modern Art and the New Museum in New York. Liu received her MFA from Columbia University and her BA from Brandeis University.

With Liu stepping into the role of acting school head, the Department of Art will immediately begin an internal process to select an acting department head for the 2019 academic year.

Please join us in thanking Charlene Liu and Trygve Faste for their willingness to serve in these important leadership roles.


Christoph Lindner
Dean, College of Design

Laura Vandenburgh
Interim Dean (AY 19–20), College of Design