Photo by Sarah Blanchette
Vanessa Viruet was born in Milwaukee, Wisconsin in 1987. Viruet pursued Fiber Studies at the Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA), complemented by painting and printmaking studies abroad in Jamaica and France. She was awarded her BFA and MAT from MICA in 2009 and 2010 respectively, and her textiles were featured in several exhibitions in Baltimore before she relocated to Chicago.
For six years she served as an art instructor at a Chicago Public Schools magnet school, where her curriculum emphasized lessons in culture, identity, and consumerism. She has contributed to the local arts movement by lecturing and presenting in the zine community and developing a youth circus arts program with the Chicago Park District. Viruet was a student at The Dance Academy of Salsa, where her artwork also was on display in the prominent Puerto Rican community of Humboldt Park. Viruet was a fixture at Chicago's Bridgeport Art Center as well, where she maintained a studio practice and engaged the community in the collective's interactive 3rd Friday events. Viruet has relocated to pursue an MFA in Fibers at the Cranbrook Academy of Art in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan.