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Margaret H. Kilbuck Johansen ’44

A picture of Margaret Kilbuck Johansen

Margaret H. Kilbuck Johansen ’44, July 18, 2004, in McMinnville, Oregon, from acute liver disease. Marg graduated from Reed with a bachelor’s degree in sociology. Additional education included study at La Escuela de Antropologia de Mexico, and the University of New Hampshire. In 1943, she married Herman Andrew Johansen ’48, and they moved to Eugene and Albany, Oregon, and to Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, where he was a research chemist at Westinghouse Research Laboratory. Marg began her art career in lithography, but developed her interest in textiles and weaving, when materials for printmaking were unavailable. She considered weaving "interruptible activity" that complimented her life as mother of five children. In Pittsburgh, she taught weaving and design at the Arts and Crafts Center, and was an assistant professor of art at Carnegie Institute of Technology (Carnegie-Mellon University) for 15 years. She also taught at Oregon State College of Education (Western Oregon University) in Monmouth, and at Linfield College, in McMinnville. In 1966, she received a grant for creative weaving from the from Louis G. Tiffany Foundation, and was named 1970 Artist of the Year in Pittsburgh. She was one of the first Americans invited to exhibit her work in the Biennale Exhibit of Tapestry international tapestry show in Lausanne, Switzerland, in 1965; the invitation was extended again in 1969. Marg participated regularly in juried exhibits, one-person shows, and major exhibitions, including the Paris Mobilier. A self-taught weaver, she attributed an influence on her art by her Native American heritage and her early years living in Hood River, Oregon. Following 20 years of life on the East Coast, the couple relocated to a farm in McMinnville in 1975. she continued to pursue her interest in gardening and art, and was a member of the Arts Alliance of Yamhill County. She was a quiet, supportive, and generous individual. Survivors include Andrew; three sons and two daughters, including Marta J. Johansen ’78; seven grandchildren; seven great-grandchildren; and four sisters.

Appeared in Reed magazine: February 2005

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