An oversize sculture of a body, mixed media including wool felt, fiber fill, sewing patterns, cotton thread, sewing hardware;


West Gallery
February 3, 2024
March 17, 2024
Nicole Havekost

February 3, 5:30–7 pm

This exhibition features Nicole Havekost’s large, hand-stitched, felt, figurative works exploring the experience of her body, motherhood, and aging.

Artist Talk: A Conversation with Nicole Havekost and Keren Kroul
Saturday, February 3, 4:30-5:30 pm
Nicole Havekost and Keren Kroul will discuss the work in their exhibitions, moderated by Gallery Director Nicole Watson. Opening reception to immediately follow. Free and open to the public. For ASL interpretation and/or other accommodations, please contact by January 26.

Educator & Visitor Guide: This guide is designed as a resource for all visitors, especially college educators and their students, who are eager to engage meaningfully with the artwork on view in the gallery. The content in this guide offers a range of learning opportunities and styles, with the goals of building observational skills, encouraging dialogue, cultivating critical thinking and personal reflection, and ultimately, appreciating art as a form of learning, understanding, and creating a pathway for building empathy, relationships and community at St. Kate’s and beyond.

Lydia Moran, Everything is a Process: Nicole Havekost Talks with Keren Kroul. Minnesota Women’s Press (December 27, 2023).

Mia Timlin, Catherine G. Murphy Gallery welcomes new exhibits. The Wheel (February 11, 2024).

Kendall Graham, Spring season kicks off at The O’Shaughnessy, Catherine G. Murphy Gallery. St. Catherine University Newswire (February 12, 2024).

I am fascinated by bodies. They are magical and glorious and gross and bewildering. I can actively influence the processes of my body but cannot control any of them fully. This body is mine but is also an organism with its own needs and demands that has no respect for my feelings and is not bothered by my shame. Coarse hair now grows in places that were once smooth. Lungs take in air, bones degrade. Once pregnant, the same body now hosts faltering hormones. Despite love, wounds ooze. I must accept it all as both revelation and horror. It is fundamental to being human. My work is the outlet for my compulsion to explore this exquisite, repulsive organism that exists beyond my desires and authority.

My work of the last several years has centered on themes of feminine being through the body, hybridity and contrast, scale, and disruption. Through all these works, hand-stitching, irregular seams, and nasty knots are part of my process. These are the visible representations of the making and mending, repairing, and refinishing we are engaged in as human beings daily.

Stitching, sewing, constructing, assembling – I have been doing this to make bodies and body parts for over twenty years. Piercing, pulling, closing; each stitch is both aggressive and restorative. Stitching is an act of accumulation – it is a collection of marks, moments and attachments that give shape to a form. Sewing these forms, I come to rest in my body more fully.

Nicole Havekost is an artist, parent and educator living in Rochester, Minnesota. Her own work is varied in media and technique but linked by her interest in material and process. Nicole is a 2023 Minnesota State Arts Board Creative Support Grant recipient and a three-time Minnesota State Arts Board Artist Initiative Grant recipient. Nicole recently exhibited work in a dual presentation with Dreamsong at Frieze Los Angeles. In the last year, her large-scale fiber sculpture was on view at the South Bend Museum of Art in the two-person exhibition Accumulation + Revelation in South Bend, Indiana, and she taught her soft sculpture methods at Arrowmont School of Arts and Crafts in Gatlinburg, Tennessee. Nicole earned her BFA at the Rhode Island School of Design and her MFA from the University of New Mexico. 

Logo for the Minnesota State Arts Board & Clean Water Land & Legacy Amendment
Minnesota State Arts Board

Nicole Havekost is a fiscal year 2023 recipient of a Creative Support for Individuals grant from the Minnesota State Arts Board. This activity is made possible by the voters of Minnesota through a grant from the Minnesota State Arts Board, thanks to a legislative appropriation from the Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund.


Artist Talk: A Conversation with Nicole Havekost and Keren Kroul
Saturday, February 3, 4:30-5:30 pm
Nicole Havekost and Keren Kroul discuss the work in their exhibitions, 
moderated by Gallery Director Nicole Watson.