Staff and Faculty

MICA's PreCollege Art and Design residency staff and faculty are regionally, nationally, and internationally recognized working artists and designers, scholars, instructors, critics, advocates, and mentors. Many faculty are MICA graduates; indeed some are former PreCollege students such as yourself.

Meet our Director of Youth and Community Education

Natovian McLeod  graduated from Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA) in 2015 with her BFA in General Fine Arts and her Master of Art in Teaching in 2016. She was an Elementary Art Teacher in Baltimore County Public Schools for 6 years and in 2022 she was awarded Maryland Elementary Art Teacher of the Year. Natovian has facilitated professional development focused on artist reflection, literacy skills, and student engagement. Her practice addresses anti-racist and culturally responsive practices in art. Before becoming the Director of Youth Programs and Community Education at MICA, Natovian was the program coordinator for MICA's Art and Design College Accelerator Program (ADCAP) and for the PreCollege Art and Design Residency Program. She is committed to arts education and hopes to promote more access and educational opportunities to students in Baltimore.

Meet our Program Manager

Zachary Antonio Diaz is an international visual artist and graphic designer. His current work focuses on creating abstract atmospheres by blending ambiguous symbols with cloud-like forms. Zachary received his BFA from the University of South Carolina in 2018. He has attended residencies at The New York Academy of Art in SOHO, NY, the International Center for the Arts in Umbria, Italy, and the 701 Center for Contemporary Art in Columbia, SC. He has exhibited his work in numerous solo and group exhibitions such as "Formations" at Zo Gallery in Baltimore, MD, "Letters" at Stormwater Studios in Columbia, SC, the Residency Showcase at the New York Academy of Art, and many more. Diaz is currently an MFA student and adjunct professor in Foundations at Towson University and is excited to return as MICA's PreCollege Program Manager for the 2024 Session.

Meet Some of our Faculty

Karl Williamson (Digital Fabrication)

Karl Williamson is a designer, artist, and educator. He studied Industrial Design at the Milwaukee Institute of Art and Design and Design for Emerging Technologies in the School of the Art Institute of Chicago Design MFA program. Before joining the MICA faculty he was the first Product Design program coordinator at the Universidad Francisco Marroquín in Guatemala (2014) and led the development of a 25,000 square foot prototyping lab in the University of Wisconsin's College of Engineering (2017).

In his teaching, Karl supports developing designers engaging in a plurality of roles that product design students may find themselves; from consumer products to speculative futures, responsible user-centered design to experimental work with materials and process.

Kenya Miles (Fiber and Textiles)

Kenya is a multidisciplinary artist & the alchemist behind Traveling Miles Studio. A one woman textile and fine art studio utilizing sustainable materials from earth pigments to natural dyes. Kenya’s work honors ancient practices while harmoniously drawing on a distinctive contemporary voice. From the valleys of Oaxaca, Mexico to the red clay roads of Ntonso, Ghana, Kenya's process is a ledger of years of wandering and apprenticing around the globe. She is currently an Artist-in-Residence and Farmer with the Baltimore Natural Dye Initiative. Kenya has facilitated workshops at the Berkeley Art Museum, Headlands Center for the Arts, and the UC Berkeley Botanical Garden. She was a guest artist at BMA’s “The Possible” and recently had a solo exhibition “The Central Sun” in San Francisco. In January 2020, Kenya started Blue Light Junction, a natural dye studio, alternative color lab, retail space, dye garden & educational facility in central Baltimore. Blue Light Junction focuses on growing, processing, and preserving the history of natural dyes and their artistic, practical, and commercial applications. Kenya is an avid traveler, gardener, and above all else Indigo’s mother (her son).

Christopher Batten (Drawing and Painting)

Born in Detroit, Christopher Batten began his undergraduate training at the Columbus College of Art and Design, and later completed his training at the College for Creative Studies where he earned a BFA in Illustration in 2006. Batten is a 2017 graduate of the Maryland Institute College of Art’s LeRoy E. Hoffberger School of Painting MFA program, where he received a Hoffberger Merit Scholarship, the Dr. Leslie King Hammond Graduate Award, and two AIGA Worldstudio Scholarships. While at MICA, Batten also served as a Graduate Program Assistant to Joan Waltemath, Hoffberger School Director. His artwork has been exhibited in cities such as Detroit, New York, San Antonio, Baltimore, and Atlanta. Subsequently, Batten’s works have appeared at the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History and Red Bull Arts Detroit.  He has been an Artist in Residence at Red Bull Arts Detroit and the Creative Alliance.  Batten is also an art educator and is currently faculty at Bard High School Early College Baltimore and an adjunct professor at the Maryland Institute College of Art. 

Laura Amussen (Interdisciplinary Art)

Laura Amussen received her MFA from MICA’s Rinehart School of Sculpture in 2006. Since graduating she has been an active participant in Baltimore’s local art scene. She is an award-winning artist, an educator, and independent curator. She was the director of exhibitions and curator at Goucher College for over ten years, where she programmed and mounted over 100 exhibitions. Amussen applies a thematically based, curatorial approach to her work, producing multiple works simultaneously, one informing the other. Her multidisciplinary methods often include large-scale site-specific installations, intimate sculptures, mixed media works, videos, projections, photographs, and performances, her practice is that of a visual storyteller. Drawn to natural materials, her work often investigates the universal themes of ecology, spirituality, and psychology, while referencing the natural world as metaphor. Amussen is the recipient of several awards, most recently the Mary Sawyers Baker Artist Award for Interdisciplinary Art. Her work has been exhibited locally and nationally, as well as featured and reviewed in many publications such as Sculpture Magazine.

Rosa Chang (Illustration)

Rosa Chang (b. Seoul, Korea) is a multi-disciplinary artist and freelance illustrator with a focus on visual/fiber art and research-based visual storytelling, emphasizing a sustainable balance between humans and the natural world. Originally trained as an illustrator and visual artist, Rosa embarked on her career in the textile and visual merchandising industry in New York City after completing her BFA degree in Illustration from the Maryland Institute College of Art. Following four years in the fashion industry, she pursued further studies at the School of Visual Arts in NYC, earning an MFA in Visual Narratives to deepen her focus on storytelling art and publication. Since then, Rosa has cultivated a diverse portfolio working with various clients and venues as both a textile/visual artist and illustrator. Her artistic expression is heavily influenced by natural materials and environments, evident across a spectrum of forms, mediums, and scales. Presently, Rosa is dedicated to sharing the traditional Asian Indigo & Natural Dye processes and its cultural significance through community cultural exchanges. Her debut picture book, “My Indigo World - A True Story of the Color Blue,” both written and illustrated by Rosa, published in May 2023, received nominations and recognitions including, 2023 New York Public Library Best Book, 2024 NSTA-CBC Outstanding Science Trade Book, 2024 Texas Topaz Nonfiction Reading List.