University of Idaho to Celebrate Retirement of Art Professor

Tuesday, May 7 2013

MOSCOW, Idaho – While University of Idaho’s College of Art and Architecture professor of art David Giese is retiring, he is leaving a lasting a legacy for students to embrace interdisciplinary studies with an endowed fellowship. To celebrate the creation of this new fellowship and his retirement, join the college for La Sereta Retirement Soiree on Saturday, May 18 at 8 p.m. in the Student Union Building Ballroom. To RSVP, visit

Leaving a lasting impression beyond his inspiration to students and talent, Giese, along with alumni, has pledged donations to create the David Giese Fellowship for Interdisciplinary Studies. The fellowship will bring visiting artists or designers to campus to work with a class or teach a workshop. The only criteria for use of these endowed funds are that each visiting artist’s or designer’s work must be interdisciplinary by nature.

“The reality of the workplace is interdisciplinary and students, if they hope to succeed, regardless of what they do, are going to have to deal with the dialogue of people from different backgrounds – especially in the fields represented by the College of Art and Architecture,” said Giese.

Giese came to the University of Idaho in 1977 as a professor of art for the then-department of art and architecture. From lecture to design classes, Giese has touched the lives of thousands of art students. His influence was felt beyond his classrooms and even the campus. He also was instrumental in bringing Mardi Gras to the streets of Moscow. He incorporated the event into his freshman foundation’s class, requiring students to build a float out of wooden frames and milk carton paper.

“Every year, 30,000 people would come downtown to Main Street and watch the student floats created in my class,” said Giese. “We also created the Beaux Arts Ball as a fundraiser. Everyone came in black and white. It fused together town and gown.”

Giese also has widely entertained audiences with his sculpture work detailing the excavation of the Italian Villa Bitricci. The fictitious place is located in the foothills of the Italian Alps and was home to royalty, aristocrats and scholars. His creation of a village and his excavation is known widely in the art world.

He has participated in more than 235 group shows and 24 one-person exhibitions. His work has appeared in Los Angeles, Toronto, Seattle Tucson, Ariz., Santa Monica, Calif., Las Vegas, New York City, New Orleans, Boise, Idaho, and Salem, Ore. He has received a number of awards, including the 2010 Governor’s Award in the Arts in Idaho.

“While I am excited to start this new chapter of my life, I am honored to have worked alongside some incredible faculty and staff members,” said Giese. “I feel extremely fortunate to have been a part of a person’s critical factor in the development who and what they become.”

For more information about the event and scholarship, visit
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About the University of Idaho
The University of Idaho inspires students to succeed and become leaders. Its land-grant mission furthers innovative scholarly and creative research to grow Idaho's economy and serve a statewide community. From its main campus in Moscow, Idaho, to 70 research and academic locations statewide, U-Idaho emphasizes real-world application as part of its student experience. U-Idaho combines the strength of a large university with the intimacy of small learning communities. It is home to the Vandals, and competes in the Western Athletic Conference. Through the university’s $225 million Inspiring Futures capital campaign, private giving will enhance student learning, faculty research and innovation, and a spirit of enterprise. Learn more: