The MICA community not only embraces a love of the arts, but sometimes a romantic love for one another.
Posted 01.01.12 by MICA Communications
The MICA community not only embraces a love of the arts, but sometimes a romantic love for one another. Brought together because of MICA, these couples have gone on to live happy lives together as they pursue careers in art and design.
Michael Bracco '01 '02 and Shawna Pincus-Bracco '02
When Michael Bracco was in his senior year as an illustration major, he stopped by the ceramics studio to visit a friend who introduced him to Shawna Pincus, a junior in the General Sculptural Studies Department. Bracco immediately tried to take her out for a drink at the Mount Royal Tavern—but Pincus declined, saying she had way too much work to do. Besides, she had a boyfriend back in Pennsylvania.
A year went by and although the two ran into each other a few times, it wasn’t until Bracco enrolled in the Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT) program when Pincus came to an opening of Bracco’s at the Blue Moon Café where he was showing a series of screenprints. The timing was right, and they hit it off right away, setting up a date for the following night. The couple both got jobs as art teachers in the Baltimore area after graduating and were married in 2006 on the steps of the Main Building.
Currently, Bracco splits his time between teaching, writing and drawing graphic novels, running his apparel line called Spaghetti Kiss, and performing with Super Art Flight, a live art comedy troupe. Pincus-Bracco left her teaching job to become a full-time artist, selling her work under the name Pink Kiss. She now also teaches art education for Towson University, while her husband still maintains close ties with the MICA MAT program, hosting yearly visits and mentoring student teachers.
Carroll Kehne '60 and Donna Price Kehne
"I first met my partner in life, Donna Price, a major in fashion design, at an evening party given by fellow students in an apartment near MICA," recalls Carroll Kehne. "We carried on a long conversation, and I asked her for a date later the following week, as classes were beginning and we would both be busy."
"We continued to see each other often and went on dates around the area. We went to the foreign movie house on 25th Street, many coffee shops, student parties, and Little Italy restaurants," said Carroll, who had signed up to attend United States Army Reserve training shortly after graduating in June 1960. "I asked Donna for her hand in marriage before basic training," he recalls, adding that the couple designed their own invitations for the wedding and had Betty Cooke '46-a former MICA faculty member, active volunteer and donor, and wife of MICA trustee and Alumni Council Chair Emeritus William Steinmetz '50-design their wedding bands.
After six months in service, the newlyweds had their first child. Donna enjoyed keeping house and family, while Carroll was hired by a packaging company in South Baltimore as their first package design artist-before the computer was even conceived-and later went on to pursue a 35-year career in art education. "We celebrated our 50th wedding anniversary last year and thank MICA for being the central key to our life," Carroll said.
Paris Goudas '02 and Jay Rudegeair '03
"I remember first meeting Jay when a mutual friend brought him over to my apartment on Bolton Street," said Paris Goudas, commenting on how he was struck by Jay Rudegeair's good looks. "There weren't many out gay people at MICA-at least at the time-so we kind of gravitated to the same circle of friends. It wasn't until a full year later that we finally began dating," he continued.
Now, the couple has been dating more than 10 years. They are both art teachers, with Rudegeair teaching in Maryland and Goudas in Washington, DC. They both continue to make art and exhibit locally, with plans to buy their first place together in the near future-hopefully with enough room for a painting studio.
Susan Kroiz Krieger '65 '74 and Hirsch Krieger
Susan Krieger first met Hirsch Krieger shortly after he was hired to be MICA's school carpenter in the mid-1960s when Hirsch began building a 36-foot sailboat in a vacant apartment in the building where Susan and her first husband lived. Although both Susan and Hirsch were happily married at the time, the two became friends and Hirsch would visit her studio space at the Dolphin Building every day to check the progress she was making on a large bronze casting.
By 1970, Hirsch had moved his sailboat to Fells Point and bought partnership at a new bar called Bertha's, while still maintaining his carpentry job at MICA. "I spent much time at Bertha's and was helping to launch the Fells Point Gallery, a project of the MICA Alumni Association," Susan recalled. "Hirsch and I became very close during that time. Our families were good friends, and we took family vacations together with our children," she added.
"In 1977 the bubble burst and my first marriage ended," said Susan, who admits she didn't see many people from those early MICA and Fells Point days-including Hirsch-for quite some time. The two re-met in the early 1990s, both divorced from their first spouses. Hirsch had finished the sailboat and sold his share in Bertha's, and was now doing freelance carpentry. Susan had a 20-year career as gallery director, first at Fells Point Gallery and then at the Baltimore Center for the Performing Arts. "Although our lives had changed drastically, we found out how much we liked each other and thus began a true romance," Susan said. "We were married in 1996 and he is truly the love of my life."
Allie Rex '02 and Brian LaRossa '01
"Brian was always coming over to borrow things, and we became friends," Allie Rex said, thinking back to the days when she and her now husband were neighbors in The Commons. Brian LaRossa, however, tells the story a little differently: "I had already noticed her on campus prior to discovering that she lived next door," he recalls. "In the beginning I popped over just about every day pretending that I needed to borrow things."
"We had a lot of fun together at MICA and with our many great friends that we met there," said Rex. After graduating, Rex earned her MFA in Painting from Cranbrook Academy of Art, and then the couple moved to Brooklyn where they have lived for seven years. LaRossa works in SoHo as a design and art director for Scholastic Corporation and does some freelance illustration work on the side. Rex spends most of her time working on her art in the couple's Brooklyn studio. "We often work side by side on our respective projects, just as we did back at MICA," said LaRossa.
Sarah Barnes and Michael Anthony '98
"I first met Sarah [ceramics staff member Sarah Barnes] in the kiln room in the ceramics studio in the fall of 1995," said Michael Anthony. Six years after the original meeting, they met up again through a mutual friend and everything fell into place.
The couple has been together for 10 years. Anthony works at Montgomery Community College as an instructional assistant, and Barnes is the ceramics studio manager at MICA. Both are ceramics artists who have exhibited work in local and regional galleries, sometimes in the same shows. The couple lives in Linthicum, Maryland in a 1917 farmhouse with six cats, two dogs, and lots of art.
Interested in more love connection stories? Click here for last year's roundup of couples who met at MICA.