I was in Tampa, Florida this past weekend to receive the Distinguished Alumnus Award for Outstanding Service in the Arts, from The College of the Arts, University of South Florida. It was such an nice event. Most of professors--David Wright, Brad Nickels, Lou Marcus, and Mernet Larson are now gone. Wally Wilson the chair then is now Director of the School of Art and Art History (my home program then), and Helena Szepe and Elizabeth Fraser are still in the art history program, among a cohort of newer faculty that includes Allison Moore who teaches African Art. Before the ceremony, I visited the MFA exhibition and can say that the program remains as strong as I found it in 1998-1999, when I was there. Some changes have taken place, such as the inclusion of Architecture in the College, and the merging of the Contemporary Art Museum (CAM) and the legendary Graphicstudio (the nationally-acclaimed printmaking and print archiving facility) into the Institute for Research in Art headed by Margaret Miller who in my day was just the director of CAM. An oh, I reunited with a ceramic piece I made in 1998, thanks to Irineo Cabreros, who ran the kilns then. Finally, thanks to Dean Moy and Wally Wilson, and all the faculty for this award. USF, was generous to me; it gave me a place of refuge when home threw me out. It set me on my US sojourn and travels through art history. That was more than enough.
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