St. Paul, Minn. Macalester’s Arts Commons is on the cover of the Jan/Feb 2013 Architecture Minnesota with the caption: “A college arts commons brims with light and life.”  Inside, the issue features an interview with President Brian Rosenberg and six pages of the first phase of the Janet Wallace Fine Arts Center (JWFAC) renovation and expansion.

“Our great hope for the public spaces in the building was that they would become a hub for the campus,” Rosenberg said. “We wanted students to use the large, open communal spaces to study and socialize in groups, and that’s happened.  And we also created quieter spaces – the nooks and crannies of the building – for students who want to read or take a nap or have a quiet conversation, and that’s played out as well. It really has become a living building – a building that the campus has inhabited very, very quickly.”

The interview also touches on the Leonard Center and Markim Hall, and how all three building projects have influenced the campus community.  “I’m a big believer,” Rosenberg said, “in the fact that architecture really does shape and inform human activity.”

The article about the JWFAC first phase is titled “Major Lift,” and features a jaw-dropping two-page spread of the Mairs Concert Hall interior.  The other four pages show several photos, architectural renderings and highlight the second phase:  Studio Arts.

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Macalester College, founded in 1874, is a national liberal arts college with a full-time enrollment of 2,035 students. Macalester is nationally recognized for its long-standing commitment to academic excellence, internationalism, multiculturalism, and civic engagement. Learn more at

January 14 2013

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