Sheila Dickinson has been involved in the Minnesota arts scene for fifteen years as an arts writer, curator and art history professor. Her arts writing is widely published in local, national and international outlets, such as Artforum, ArtNews, Hyperallergic, MN Artists, InReview and City Pages. Most recently Dickinson held the position of curator and Artistic Director of the Rochester Art Center where she built collaborative exhibitions with community, cultural and health organizations that sustained and nurtured artists and the art center. She developed a local art program, Rooted, wherein she helped artists from the seven counties of southeastern MN to apply for SEMAC grants for a solo exhibition at RAC. Many of the artists had never applied or received an artist grant. She continues to support local artists in her community through building connections between Rochester and the Twin Cities art scenes.

Previously she was a contemporary art history adjunct professor at area art colleges, MCAD and College of Visual Arts, as well as at Macalester College. She is currently affiliated faculty in Humanities in Medicine in the Alix School of Medicine, Mayo Clinic, where she teaches about art and empathy to medical students. She received her PhD in Art History from University College Dublin and her BA from St. Olaf College.

Dickinson believes joining the MCA Board is a way to give back and serve the art community that gives meaning and cultural sustenance to the lives of our state’s citizens. Art is what bridges communities and helps build resilience in making sense of the past trials and prepare our communities for what will come next. She is excited to represent Southeast MN and help grow the arts in her community. As a mother of a trans teen and of two special needs children, she aims to create greater arts access for all abilities and identities.

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Sheila Dickinson