’Tis Death to Counterfeit is imprinted with images that celebrate New Jersey's history.
About the Artist
Michelle D. Novak is a native of Oakland, New Jersey, a graduate of the Rhode Island School of Design (RISD), and, for the past 19 years, the owner of a NYC Brand Strategy and Design firm, MND [www.mnd.nyc]. She resides in Manhattan in a landmarked building where Babe Ruth called home and not far from where one of her many New Amsterdam ancestor-immigrants, a former pirate, Anthony Van Saleé, arrived in the late 1620s.
She recently began to express her love of history, and New Jersey history in particular, through her artwork — endeavoring to make items that celebrate her New Jersey Dutch and Huguenot roots and help inspire future generation to explore, cherish, and help preserve their local history.
Her ‘Tis Death to counterfeit moniker was inspired by the imprint on the verso of New Jersey's colonial currency — a friendly little warning that might, technically, make her pottery illegal in eighteenth century New Jersey. (Oops.)
Michelle is a Trustee of the Genealogical Society of New Jersey (GSNJ) and the Genealogical Society of Bergen County, NJ (GSBC) and a former Trustee of the AIGA-NY Chapter. She is Layout Editor of the GSNJ Newsletter and Editor of the GSBC's The Archivist—which won the First Prize in 2015 from the International Society of Family History Writers and Editors. She is a photographer, painter, ceramist, researcher, lecturer, and enthusiastic writer of all things genealogy and local history. She is a member of numerous national, regional, state, county, and local societies and museums, including the DAR Knickerbocker Chapter, Bergen County Historical Society, Association of Professional Genealogists, and an applicant of the Holland Dames.
Michelle holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from RISD, a Certificate of Genealogical Research from Boston University, and Certificate from the Genealogical Institute of Pittsburgh.
Contact and Custom Work
Ceramics can be customized with documents specific to your family’s history (i.e., signatures, letters, wills), historic documents, line drawings, or maps. Please contact me for more information.