Morgan Clifford

Professor of Art (Fibers)

Office: B100 KFA
Phone: 715.425.3308

Morgan Clifford is a professor of art at UW-River Falls. Clifford has a B.A. from Beloit College and an M.F.A. from Cranbrook Academy of Art. She attended Statens Laereskole I Forming in Notodden, Norway to study textiles. She taught the fibers program at Macalester College before coming to UW-River Falls in 1990. She has received grants to study textiles in Indonesia and Japan and has recently spent time in Peru studying Precolumbian textiles.


  • Master of Fine Arts, Cranbrook Academy of Art, Bloomfield Hills, MI, 1986

Artist Statement

Put me in most modern fabric stores and I’m completely bored, but dangle some ancient rag made of handspun, hand woven materials in front of me and I’m right there with you. I am endlessly fascinated by what happens when threads are crisscrossed and grids and squares are created. The compositional devices of checks, checkerboards, and lattices are natural extensions of the woven structure, so I use them in my work.  Color is critical.  A textile that glows because of beautiful colors and patinas doesn’t need to have a complex composition.  I have a strong physical and tactile response to the linen, silk, hemp, and handspun nettles (“aloo” from Nepal) that I work with.  If I didn’t, I doubt that the final piece would succeed.  When people see my work up close they often tell me “I just want to touch it”.  Exactly.

Selected Exhibitions

  • Convergence: National Textile Exhibition, Vancouver, BC
  • E. Carolina University, Greenville, NC        
  • Healing Arts, Hudson Hospital, Hudson, WI
  • Mobilia Gallery, Cambridge, MA
  • Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, MA
  • National Surface Design Conference Exhibition, Kansas City, KS
  • Phipps Center for the Arts, Hudson, WI
  • Sherry Leedy Contemporary Art Gallery, Kansas City, KS
  • Textile Center of Minnesota, St. Paul, MN
  • Whipple Cultural Center, Las Vegas, NV


  • Arts Midwest/National Endowment to the Arts: Fellowship
  • Minnesota State Arts Board: Career Opportunity
  • Minnesota State Arts Board: Fellowship
  • National Endowment to the Arts: Fellowship
  • Outstanding Faculty Member of the Year,  Arts and Humanities Division, UW-River Falls


  • Bradshaw Celebration of Life Center, Stillwater, MN
  • Family Means Center, Stillwater, MN
  • Macalester College Permanent Collection, St. Paul, MN
  • Minneapolis Institute of Art (3 acquisitions), Minneapolis, MN
  • Helen Allen Textile Collection, University of Wisconsin-Madison, Madison, WI
  • Hammel, Green, and Abramson Architects, Minneapolis, MN
  • Piper, Jaffray, and Hopwood Corp, Minneapolis, MN
  • Saint Mark’s Cathedral, Minneapolis, MN
  • Springboard for the Arts, St. Paul, MN


  • Fiberarts Design Book 7: Cover, Lark Publications, 2004
  • Fiberarts Design Books, No.s 2, 3, 4, 5, 7; Lark Publications
  • Weaving, A Handbook of the Fiber Arts, (Shirley Held), Harcourt, 1999
  • Fiberarts Magazine, M/A 1992; N/D 1992; N/D 1987; M/J 1984
  • Surface Design Journal, Winter 1991/92
  • Video Script Consultant and On-Camera Weaver: Minneapolis Inst. of Art; film on technical, historical, cultural aspects of brocade; 1989

International Experiences

  • Columbia, South America: One year traveling exhibition
  • Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art, Dundee, Scotland: Visiting Artist
  • Gallery Muu, Kyoto; Senbikiya Gallery, Tokyo: Exhibition
  • International Textile Competition, Kyoto, Japan: Exhibition
  • Minnesota State Arts Board, Career Opportunity Grant: Funding for textile research in Sumatra, Bali, and Java
  • Minnesota State Arts Board: Career Opportunity Grant: Funding for textile research in Japan; attendance at International Shibori Symposium
  • Glasgow School of Art, Glasgow, Scotland: Visiting Artist
  • Precolumbian textile research, Peru
  • Wisconsin in Scotland, University of Wisconsin, Dalkeith, Scotland, taught Art Appreciation and Fibers to University of Wisconsin students

Contact Us

Art Department
M–F, 8 a.m.–4:30 p.m.
Kleinpell Fine Arts 172
Facebook Icon