School of art

School Notes: School of Art
May/June 2018

Marta Kuzma |

National Portrait Gallery commission

Kehinde Wiley ’01MFA (painting and printmaking) was commissioned by the Smithsonian’s National Portrait Gallery to create the official portrait of the 44th US president, Barack Obama. Wiley is known for his vibrant, large-scale paintings of African Americans posing as famous figures from the history of Western art. The presidential portrait, unveiled earlier this year, features President Obama seated in front of a lush backdrop of foliage and flowers. Wiley chose flowers that carry special meaning for Obama—for example chrysanthemums, the official flower of Chicago, and jasmine from Hawaii, the president’s childhood home.

New director of academic administration

The School of Art is pleased to announce that Taryn Wolf has been named director of academic administration. This follows a comprehensive and strategic restructuring of the Office of Academic Administration at the school. Taryn joined the school in February, coming from the New School where she was senior director of recruitment and outreach. Before that she held positions at MICA, CalArts, and the School of Visual Arts. Taryn also holds a BFA from MICA. In her new role, Taryn will provide strategic leadership for the Office of Academic Administration—working with the directors of the school’s graduate and undergraduate program areas and the director of finance and administration in order to coordinate the administrative activities relating to the academic policies, procedures, and programs of the School of Art, including alumni relations and student career services.

School of Art partners with prison program

As part of the Art and Social Justice Initiative begun last year, the Yale School of Art announces its participation in a pilot program to offer postgraduate teaching fellowships to 2018 School of Art graduates. During the summer of 2018 graduates will teach five-week seminars at the Connecticut correctional facilities in Cheshire, Connecticut.  This program is in partnership with the Yale Prison Education Initiative at Dwight Hall and Yale Summer Session.

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