Grants, Commissions, Exhibitions

2016   Suicide Survivors' Club artist book set, 5 books, American Death Education Council national conference, Minneapolis MN 

2014   Suicide Survivors' Club artist book set, 5 books, St. Catherine University Art Gallery, St. Paul MN 

2012   Installation, Suicide Awareness Voices of Education memorial event, Minneapolis MN

2011   Installation, Our Homeless Teens, Minnesota State Capitol Building, St. Paul MN

2010   Inspire Arts Program, Hennepin County Medical Center Hospital, Minneapolis MN

2008   Forecast Public Artworks research and development grant

2007   2-person show for Women’s Art Institute, Minneapolis College of Art and Design, Minneapolis MN

2006   Group show, Nash Gallery, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis MN

2004   Stairwell installation, north stairwell of RiverPlace II, Blue Cross commission. Blue Cross Blue Shield of Minnesota, Eagan MN

2003   Stairwell installation, south stairwell of RiverPlace II, Blue Cross commission. Blue Cross Blue Shield of Minnesota, Eagan MN

2002   KidMail, International Children’s Festival June exhibit, Ordway commission. Ordway Center for Performing Arts, Rice Park, St. Paul MN

2001   Story Leaf Project, International Children’s Festival June exhibit, Ordway commission. Ordway Center for Performing Arts, Rice Park, St. Paul MN

2000   Electronic Literature Generator, Jerome Foundation grant. Open Book Literary Center, Minneapolis MN

1999   Big Friends, 2-week holiday installation, Friends School commission. Friends School, St. Paul MN

1998   Big Women installation, 3 evenings in July, Weisman commission. Weisman Art Museum at University of Minnesota, Minneapolis MN

1998   New American Portraits, 7 hr video projection installation, FORECAST Public Artworks / United Arts grant. Hennepin County Government Center, Minneapolis

1996   Big People, month of May projection installation, FORECAST Public Artworks grant. Cedar-Riverside People’s Center, Minneapolis MN

1993   Vertical Sidewalk, month of April, projection installation.
Cedar and Riverside sidewalk/Second-Story Books, Minneapolis MN

1992   I’m As Sick As Your Secrets, month of February, projection installation. Window of house at 27th Ave. SE and Yale Ave., Minneapolis MN

1990   2-person show, WARM Gallery, Minneapolis MN

1987   Group show, Art Space, San Francisco CA


2004-2006   MFA program at Minneapolis College of Art and Design, Trustees’ Scholarship (ABT)

2000   Graduate work at MCAD’s Institute for Public Art

1993-1998   Classes/collaboration with artist Dorit Cypis

1990-1998   Graduate classes in critical theory and art history at the University of Minnesota with Griselda Pollock and Slavoj Žižek

1981   Graduate work at the San Francisco Art Institute, class with Vito Acconci

1976-1979   University of Colorado at Boulder, BA in Fine Arts


LAURIE PHILLIPS makes art that asks the question, “What’s it like to be you?”

Star Tribune art critic Mary Abbe wrote this about Laurie’s piece in the February 2014 group show at St. Catherine University’s art gallery:

“The most emotionally affecting piece in this exhibit is ‘Suicide Survivors’ Club: A Family’s Journey Through the Death of Their Loved One,’ a series of little books designed and produced by artist Laurie Phillips about a family’s emotional upheaval following the suicide of a husband and father of three. Each book tells the story of one survivor in simple, moving words, the mother tangled in legal and survival problems, the college-age daughter emotionally derailed, sons age 5 and 7 drifting between play and incomprehension. Phillips’ imaginative watercolors, shifting perspectives and whimsical cartoons set just the right tone, conveying the tragedy’s pain and resolution without sentimental pathos…. Several gallery visitors on a recent morning paused to read the little books and then began spontaneously talking about them with other visitors.”

Laurie  has had a successful career as a public artist since 1992. Her public art has been about animating everyday sites — stairwells, building exteriors and lobbies, public parks, streets — by collecting and telling stories about the people who inhabit and use these spaces, using projection and other ephemeral techniques. The subjects of these temporary works have been people absent from our collective public narrative: patrons and staffers of a low-income veterinary clinic, immigrant teens, women with unpopular body shapes, street poets, introverts, people who need exercise. She has found ways to use 15 years of experience as a life coach to elicit these stories and tell them in sensitive and powerful ways.

In 2004 she started doing indoor gallery art — the Story Graph Portraits. These combine photographic images with written narrative fragments excerpted from interviews with the subject. The pieces of the story are arranged so as to graph the subject’s shifting emotions, from high/ecstatic to low/desperate. She adds redrawn graphic icons to underline and universalize these emotions. In this way she has told stories of people living with breast cancer, growing up with parents who survived the Holocaust, and living with an eating disorder.


Laurie also works as a stress relief coach for women who feel overwhelmed by their job, their health or their relationships. She’s a national workshop leader for institutions like Abbott Northwestern Hospital, Gilda’s Club cancer resource center, Adler School of Coaching, Struthers Parkinson’s Center and American Death Education Council. 

She runs a program called Museum Sage that helps visitors receive insight into their personal lives through self-coaching in museums.

Laurie Phillips fine arts  |  651.225.0858  |