Waste Not Want Not

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Waste Not Want Not
Spring 2008
ThE MagaZiNE oF PRaTT iNSTiTuTE
Waste Not
Want Not
Sustainable Art: Trash Transformed |
Getting in on the Ground Floor of Green
Building: The Eco-Savvy Way |
Green Roofs: Planting the Seeds for Healthier Cities
Sustainability Q & A
In Focus
RENE PEREZ
The four white electric cars driven by Pratt Security
and Facilities Management personnel are models of
clean, quiet, efficient transportation. Their use
reduces carbon emissions and improves air quality—
key goals of sustainability. Referred to as GEMs
(Global Electric Motorcars), the cars take an hour to
charge fully, drive at a maximum speed of 35 mph,
and can travel up to 30 miles before recharging.
pratt people
contents
Fe atures:
12
18
ustainable Art: Trash Transformed
S
Spurred by environmental concerns,
artists are turning garbage into art
works, producing some unusual
results.
etting in on the Ground Floor of Green
G
Architect and environmental researcher Ed Mazria sets his
sights on architecture education. His aim: to foster a new breed
of ecologically conscious designer.
20
26
30
uilding: The Eco-Savvy Way
B
Prattfolio shines the spotlight on
eco-friendly design with a look at
two recent building projects,
including Pratt’s proposed new
building at 524 Myrtle Avenue.
reen Roofs: Planting the Seeds
G
for Healthier Cities
How Pratt faculty and staff members are
using green roofs to keep New York City
cooler and cleaner—and why they are
sharing their lessons with the city’s youth.
ustainability Q & A
S
Faculty, staff, and alumni of Pratt weigh in
on some of the most pressing ecological
issues today.
Depa rtme n ts :
About the Cover
Installation artist Steven Siegel, M.F.A.,
Sculpture/Drawing, ’78, created Nest—a
sculptural statement about societal attitudes
toward trash—in the forest at the Montalvo Arts
Center, Saratoga, California, in 2005. He pushed
huge metal spikes through 1,000 pounds of
discarded newspaper, which he placed between
trees that form an external armature. The
7’ x 7’ x 7’ work will eventually decompose, but
the environmental issues it raises will not
disappear as easily. For more information
on Siegel, see page 16.
3President’s Letter
40Ryerson Walk
Pratt ranks high on national design survey,
designer Carmen Marc Valvo to be named
Pratt Fashion Icon, and more news from
around the Institute
4First Thoughts
Debera Johnson, academic director of
sustainability at Pratt, on the role of
designers in a sustainable future
46Literary Corner
English and Humanities Chair Ira
Livingston asks: Is sustainability another
form of apocalypticism?
6Pratt People
Alumna and eco-organizer Lori Gibbs;
faculty member and developer Carlton A.
Brown; faculty member and environmental
scientist Richard Leigh; artist and alumna
Eve Mosher; graduate student and academic
sustainability project manager Jaime Lynn
Stein; LEED architect and television host
Lauren Gropper
48Supporting Pratt
34New and Noteworthy
63Obituaries
2Mailbox
51Alumni News
53 Alumni Stories
54Pratt Exhibitions
56Special Events
57 Class Notes
64Then and Now
3
p r attfolio
Mailbox
ART AND THE BODY
FALL 2007
The redesigned Prattfolio is terrific! The
format makes for a much easier read. I
loved the up-to-the minute articles.
Pratt’s attitude and energy have really
pumped up since the late ’40’s. However,
I wouldn’t exchange anything in the
world for those two exciting (and very
tough at times) years spent at Pratt. A
variety of interesting jobs in the fashion
area resulted. I mentioned Pratt and it
was “open sesame.”
Catherine Withers Aker
Certificate, Costume Design, ’48
Several people—faculty and students—
read the article “Basic Training” in the
last issue and commented on how well
researched it was. They also commented
on the strength of writing and the
beautiful illustrations. We learned a
whole lot about the history of figuredrawing in general, especially as it relates
to Pratt’s traditions. Great job.
Jenny Lee
Pratt Adjunct Professor, Fine Arts
I was very impressed with the magazine.
I hadn’t realized there were so many
interesting things coming out of Pratt
these days. I plan to show the issues to
some of my colleagues. I’m now a
professor in a large art and design
department. The magazine and the
content are stellar!
Ben Pratt
M.I.D., Industrial Design, ’92
I was pleasantly surprised at the quality
and content of the magazine, since I
vaguely recalled a magazine published at
Pratt during my years (1999-2003),
which spoke mainly to potential donors,
with zero appeal to students. The fall
issue of Prattfolio was inspiring, conjuring up sometimes forgotten feelings of
pride in having spent four years in such a
nurturing environment.
Carolina Paula
B.F.A., Illustration, ’03
I loved the photo of the early days at
Pratt that appeared in a recent Prattfolio.
As a commuting student (1957-1961), I
rode the Long Island Railroad home at
night with notebook in hand. I would
4
p ratt folio
attempt to keep the movement of the day
going (not to drop into the ordinary but
to stay in the rare air of art as best I
could). I sometimes wonder what my
experiences would have been like had I
lived there in Brooklyn instead of having
this nightly commute, but the benefit was
that I stayed very much with myself, my
own thinking, and because I was on the
train versus having access to paint, I kept
trying to transform the visual into the
verbal and every night spent an hour or
so with words, often in my case, those
replete with colors, as though a kind of
virtual painting were taking place.
Alexandra Kittle Sellon
B.F.A., Graphic Arts and Illustration, ’61
The fall issue brought back memories. I
can still see and hear anatomy professor
Khosrov Ajootian. In one anatomy class
he raised a scapula, turned it slowly, held
it up to a light, faced the class, and said
“Ain’t nature grand?” Those words have
stayed with me for all these years. What a
teacher! What a great man!
I was a disappointed, however, at the
lack of “traditional” drawing, painting,
sculpture, and design in the last issue of
Prattfolio. The trend seems to be in the
direction of abstract and nonobjective
representation.
George V. Kelvin
Certificate, Illustration, ’51
[email protected]
I was very pleased to receive the last
issue of Prattfolio. I was particularly
enthused when I saw the subject, “Art
and the Body.” In reading about the
history of anatomy classes at Pratt, I was
certain I would see the name Khosrov
Ajootian, who had been dean of the
School of Art and Design and the
anatomy professor from way before I
started at Pratt, until he died. Khosrov—
his nickname was Papa Koo—was an
amazing man, a brilliant, nationally
known anatomist, and inspiring teacher
who had a wicked sense of humor and a
very loving disposition. How could you
have left him out?
Ann L. Dubois
Fine Arts, ’59
Editor’s Note: As these reminiscences indicate,
many revered Khosrov Ajootian, former dean and
professor in the School of Art and Design at Pratt
Institute. Thank you for reminding our readers of
his important place in Pratt’s history.
The Magazine of Pratt Institute
SPRING 2008
Prattfolio is published by the Office of Public
Relations and Communications in the Division
of Development for the alumni and friends of
Pratt Institute. ©2008 Pratt Institute
Pratt Institute
200 Willoughby Avenue, Brooklyn, NY 11205
www.pratt.edu
Vice President for Development
Patricia Pelehach
Executive Director of Public
Relations and Communications
Mara McGinnis
Art Director
Jess Morphew
Managing Editor
Elizabeth Randolph
Senior Designer
Caitlyn Phillips
Assistant Editor
Adrienne Gyongy
Senior Production Manager
Sung-Hee Son
Photo Manager
Diana Pau
Editorial Assistant
Amy Aronoff
Contributors
Chantel Foretich
Tess Schutte
Michael Hambouz
Ashley Berger
Mimi Zeiger
Debera Johnson
Photography
Chantel Foretich
Bob Handelman
Diana Pau
René Perez
Kevin Wick­
Cert n o. XXX-XXX-000
This issue of Prattfolio is printed on
Forests Stewardship Council (FSC)certified paper that includes a minimum
of 10 percent post-consumer fiber.
Please send letters for Mailbox to [email protected]
or mail to Mara McGinnis, Executive Director, Office of PR and Communications, Pratt Institute, 200 Willoughby Avenue, Brooklyn, NY 11205.
KEVIN WICK
President’s
pratt people
Letter
President Thomas F. Schutte, left, speaks to photography major Kate Rothermel and digital arts
major Jarl Midelfort in his office about Pratt’s proposed new green building at 524 Myrtle Avenue.
I
n a press conference held in Pratt’s Rose Garden last spring, New York City
Mayor Michael Bloomberg announced the participation of Pratt and several other
New York City–area colleges and universities in his 30/10 Challenge, which encourages a
30 percent reduction in carbon emissions by the city’s buildings within 10 years. Pratt’s
verdant campus seemed a perfect site for the mayor’s plea for a “greener” city.
College administrators are rightfully concerned about the impact of their physical
plants on the environment. I recently joined the Leadership Circle of the President’s
Climate Commitment, a group of more than 500 college and university presidents who
have pledged to reduce campus emissions. Moreover, they understand that as centers of
learning we must educate our students about the challenges faced by our society and
provide them with the knowledge and skills to solve complex problems on multiple
fronts.
Pratt serves as a model of ecological stewardship in many ways. Our sustainability
coordinator for facilities and operations is leading the effort to green our campuses, and
Pratt’s new building at 524 Myrtle Avenue is expected to receive LEED-Gold certification. Our academic director of sustainability is making ecological literacy an integral part
of the Pratt curriculum, and our Information Technology Division is using technology to
reduce paper waste.
Pratt’s second annual Green Week, held in March, offered an overview of the efforts
that have already been made by the Pratt community to green the campus and their
professions. The weeklong series of events—gallery exhibitions, competitions, talks,
films, and hands-on activities—inspired students and faculty to achieve new levels of
creativity in solving the problems that face us.
Pratt will continue to encourage sustainable practice at every level of the Institute
and by our students, faculty, staff, and community. That change is sure to radiate out as
our students and professionals interact with the world around us.
Sincerely,
Thomas F. Schutte, President
5
first thoughts
Design:
A Green-Collar Job
M
y colleague Mary McBride,
chair of Pratt’s Design Management program and my sustainability
guru, came up with the phrase “greencollar job” one afternoon when we were
putting our heads together and looking
at the opportunity to create a new
sustainability sector for creative
professionals “Design is a green-collar
job,” she told me.
How right she is.
At Pratt where students come to
learn—from the experts—how to design
products, clothing, publications, advertisements, buildings, interiors, and
information systems, it is particularly
important for us to examine the impact
we in our professions all have on our
environment. Each of us plays a vital role
in reducing our consumption, but
perhaps no one more than our architects
and designers, artists and archivists,
urban planners and writers. We make the
future attractive, desirable, pleasurable,
convenient, and functional. We inspire,
provoke, and revolutionize. We change
the systems, processes, and protocols.
Never before has it been so relevant to be
a creative professional.
We have real problems to address. The
built environment—the communities and
buildings we occupy—produces nearly
half of all the greenhouse gases and
consumes almost 48 percent of the
energy that humans use. Another 20
percent is produced by transportation, 18
percent by livestock. The disastrous
hurricane that leveled parts of New
Orleans and the Gulf Coast of Mississippi
has been linked to global warming.
Habitats for arctic species like the polar
bear are shrinking fast. Here at Pratt, we
have recently installed tanks to handle
the water flooding our basements
because of the changing storm patterns.
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p ratt folio
Look no further than the images on
this spread to see that the world has
become a wasteful, global culture. These
images and others composed by photographer Chris Jordon point to the
enormous amount of garbage generated
by humans. These particular images
illustrate the two million plastic beverage
containers used—and discarded—in the
U.S. every five minutes. This refuse clogs
our landfills and waterways. The North
Pacific subtropical gyre, a natural vortex
in a remote area of the Pacific Ocean, has
pulled the world’s floating garbage into a
mass the size of Texas.
If we choose, the intent of our work
can be to change the world. Recently
Pratt organized a two-day conference as
part of a nationwide teach-in called
“Focus the Nation.” We reached into the
pool of faculty and brought together
architects, designers, urban planners,
writers, scientists, and civic leaders. We
also pulled in Pratt’s administrative
leaders and invited local civic leaders and
city representatives to come together and
focus on finding solutions that would
turn our hopes into action.
Pratt alumnus Ed Mazria (B.Arch., ’63)
and founder of the environmental
research and advocacy group Architecture 2030, which organized the national
teach-in, has said, ”To successfully
impact global warming and world
resource depletion, it is imperative that
ecological literacy become a central tenet
of design education. Yet today, the
interdependent relationship between
ecology and design is virtually absent in
many professional curricula. To meet the
immediate and future challenges facing
our professions, a major transformation
of the academic design community must
begin today.” My position as academic
director of sustainability for Pratt
TERESITA JESSER
By Debera Johnson
Diana Pau
Debera Johnson is Pratt’s academic director of
sustainability. In this role, she leads Pratt’s academic sustainability initiatives and supports Pratt’s
faculty in identifying and solving environmental
problems in order to place the Institute at the academic forefront among colleges of art, design, and
architecture for its sustainability efforts. Johnson
also serves as director of the Pratt Design Incubator for Sustainable Innovation. Former chairperson
of Pratt’s Department of Industrial Design, she has
taught industrial design at Pratt Institute for nearly
20 years. Johnson received a bachelor’s degree in
industrial design from Pratt in 1986.
FIRST THOUGHTS
As the world becomes more complex,
unordered, and chaotic, it will look
to designers to find solutions.
stand-alone courses or special events.
Pratt’s approach will harness our
resources to systematically educate
design students about the ecological
impacts of their professional choices and
their creative opportunities for designing
our future.
In the words of my friend Richard
Farson, a leading psychologist and founding dean of the School of Design at the
California Institute of the Arts: “Design
remains the most powerful determinant
of human behavior and achievement.” As
the world becomes more complex,
unordered, and chaotic, it will look to
designers to find solutions. Creative
thinkers who can envision strategies for
change, build experiences, manage
projects, and provoke people to act will
be an essential component to countering
the most dramatic challenge with which
we have ever been faced.
The stories that follow represent only
a fraction of what our amazing Pratt
community is doing to help change the
world. I’m guessing that it will inspire
you to become an active advocate for
change, if you are not already. Whatever
role you play—as an artist, educator,
manager, designer, planner, parent, or
child—I hope you will support Pratt in its
efforts to educate our new leaders. P
Courtesy of Chris Jordan Photographic Arts (chrisjordan.com)
Institute was created to ensure that
ecological literacy becomes an integral
part of a Pratt education.
In September 2007, Pratt was awarded
a 3-year, $475,000 grant from the U.S.
government’s Fund to Improve PostSecondary Education (FIPSE). We were
the only institution to receive a grant to
“green” its academic programs and only
three percent of the applicants received
funding. This grant will provide the
resources to find new ways of educating
future architects, artists, industrial
designers, urban planners, and other
design professionals so they have the
skills and sensibilities to creatively and
successfully meet the immediate challenge of global warming.
This prestigious grant will focus Pratt
on the following three initiatives:
ensuring that every student understands
sustainability in relation to their chosen
profession; the creation of a “living
laboratory” that integrates “greening”
our campus along with “greening” our
academic programs; and the creation of a
Center for Sustainable Design and
Research that provides a place for faculty,
students, and outside partners to collaborate on projects that range from the
practical to the provocative.
Pratt is well positioned to take on
these challenges. The Institute offers
more than 70 courses that address the
issue of environmental sustainability.
We have expert faculty, a committed
administration, and the facilities with
which to experiment and innovate. But
it is no longer enough to bring sustainability into temporary focus through
Chris Jordan’s Plastic Bottles, 2007, is part of
the photographic series Running the
Numbers: An American Self Portrait, which
exposes the country’s waste and mass
consumption. The image, top, represents the
two million plastic beverage bottles Americans
discard every five minutes; the images, middle
and bottom, are closer and closer zooms.
7
RenÉ PEREZ
pratt people
Lori Gibbs
B.Arch., Architecture, ’07
Program Director, Urban Studio Brooklyn (USBK); Junior Architect and Member, Marketing Team, Rafael Viñoly Architecture
Photographed at Habana Outpost, an eco-eatery in Fort Greene, Brooklyn
What’s that tank behind you?
This tank was the first project that USBK did during our
summer 2006 workshop. We’ve actually built two water
reclamation systems at Habana Outpost. This one collects
rainwater from Habana Outpost’s solar panel awning and uses
it to water their outdoor garden. The second, constructed
during the summer 2007 workshop, is much more complex. It
uses rainwater to flush Outpost’s toilets. That system is unique
because it conserves drinking water and reclaims rainwater at
the same time. Rainwater is not a resource conventionally used
in New York City; usually storm water drains directly into the
sewer system.
Do you see these projects as didactic tools?
Yes. The main focus of USBK’s summer workshops is to teach.
We bring architecture students from various New York City
schools—including Pratt—together with practicing professionals, clients, and community members and give them the
opportunity to build a full-scale project within the local community. Students get to explore the human and social needs that
architecture has the power to address. These are typically not
experiences they have while studying architecture at the college
level. It teaches the public something, too. Restaurant patrons
have shown a lot of curiosity about the projects, which expose
the operational guts of the building to them in an interesting and
visually pleasing way while they sip their mojitos.
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What challenges do you face when designing small, sustainable
architectural projects in an urban setting?
Small sustainable projects such as these tend to fall through
the cracks of zoning and code regulations due to their
unconventional nature—not many people flush their toilets
with rainwater.
What inspired you to start USBK?
It was a reaction to a panel discussion I attended at Pratt during
my third year in architecture school. The discussion was
centered on the Rural Studio program in Auburn, Ala. The
humanity and magnitude of the Studio’s work was very inspiring
because it uses the art and innovation of architecture to directly
serve communities in need. Three months later I met Sean and
started working with him as an intern. He was just starting
Habana Outpost, and I asked if he would be interested in starting
a program similar to the Rural Studio, but in New York City. He
was receptive, supportive, and enthusiastic about the idea.
Barring any obstacles, what would be your fantasy green project?
I’d love to design the entire roofscape of New York City as a
giant interconnected labyrinth of green, vegetated parks, and
social spaces in the sky. I think New York could benefit from
that in so many ways. Little of what I think of as the “piazza
life” found in Rome exists here. Actually, you can find a quasiprivatized American version of it at Habana Outpost.
pratt people
Carlton A. Brown
Visiting Instructor, Architecture
Founding Partner and Chief Operating Officer, Full Spectrum NY LLC;
Member, Mayor Bloomberg’s Sustainability Advisory Board
Photographed at the Kalahari, a green building in Harlem, New York
Tell me about the building behind you.
The Kalahari, which Full Spectrum developed, is a “green”
building, but our ambition is much more robust than that. We
often overlook the importance of health and human diversity in
sustainability, but our objective is to create a sustainable
community, not just a green building. We improved indoor air
quality and focused on reducing energy consumption, which
will provide residents with economic benefits. We have also
included indoor exercise facilities. This is important given that
obesity and its associated diseases are the primary killers in the
African American community. The independent film center
there will focus on film by and about people of color. Sustainable communities are those in which people have the
opportunity to speak with authenticity in their own voices.
Has it been difficult to bring green developments to areas that have
struggled with economic divestiture?
Ten or 15 years ago when we first began to focus on developing
sustainable mixed-income communities, most of the financial
institutions and public agencies were not there yet, so the going
was particularly difficult. Now that we have had a few successes,
we have earned the confidence of our partners in government,
private financial institutions, NGOs, and the general public.
What perspectives do you bring to the Mayor’s Sustainability
Advisory Board?
I speak most clearly for those people and communities who
have often been left out of the discourse. I grew up in a community left out in Mississippi. I live in a community left out in
central Brooklyn—Bed-Stuy—and my office is in an outsider
community—Harlem. So, from every angle, I have some basic
understanding of what the issues are in these communities. On
the other hand, I have been engaged in some aspect of architecture, real estate, construction, and development in the
mainstream market since I finished college in 1973.
One of the most interesting projects is downtown Brooklyn’s
BAM Cultural District development, a residential tower with
187 units, a 40,000-seat dance theater, and street-level retail.
Since 2002, I’ve been working with members of the Concerned
Citizens Coalition—the Pratt Area Community Council, Pratt
Center for Community Development, Brown Memorial Baptist
Church, Emmanuel Baptist Church, and community residents—to help ensure that the development will be green and
affordable, that there will be a place for Brooklyn-based arts
groups, and that it will provide economic opportunities for
community residents and the small, local retail businesses that
are being priced out of the Fulton Street corridor.
RenÉ PEREZ
What projects are on the horizon?
9
pratt people
Richard Leigh
Visiting Associate Professor,
Math and Science
Senior Engineer, Community Environmental Center (CEC)
Photographed at Solar1, an environmental education center in Manhattan
What’s the Community Environmental Center (CEC)?
It’s a not-for-profit energy efficiency services provider that was
set up in 1993 to help affordable housing in New York City use
less fuel and electricity under the federal weatherization
program. We also work in several programs sponsored by New
York State Energy Research and Development Authority and
other funding agents providing technical analysis and Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) consulting.
In the last few years we have established the Build It Green
recycling center in Astoria and Solar 1, an environmental
education center in Stuyvesant Cove Park in Manhattan.
Tell me about CEC’s proposed building, Solar 2, purported to be the first
net-zero building in the city.
By “net-zero,” we mean that Solar 2 will have a lot of photovoltaic cells on the roof that will generate a maximum of about 100
kilowatts. This will produce more power than we need when
the sun is bright, and none at night. So the goal is to feed the
excess back to Con Ed when available, buy from them when we
need it, and have the amount we feed back be equal to or exceed
what we buy from them—that’s “net-zero.” We’ll get there by
keeping all our loads—heating, cooling, lighting, computers,
and so on—as small as possible. The key component will be a
ground-source heat pump for heating and cooling. We have a
preliminary analysis that says net-zero is possible. We’re doing
a more detailed assessment now.
Solar 2 will be used to extend Solar 1’s environmental
education activities. It will have classrooms, a lecture hall, and
educational exhibits, including solar hot water collectors and a
model apartment.
What drew you to this line of work?
I was in graduate school studying physics when the first oil
crisis occurred and got interested in energy issues immediately.
It was so clear that people weren’t being reasonable. They were
assuming our energy use could just grow and grow forever. So
after doing “pure” physics as a post-doc, I was offered a job at
Brookhaven Laboratory doing national energy planning. I’ve
been involved with energy issues ever since.
What steps have you taken to “green” your own life?
10
p rat t folio
René Perez
RenÉ PEREZ
We’ve got a lot of compact fluorescent bulbs, we buy Energy
Star appliances, and our next car will be a hybrid, but it’s very
hard to have an impact acting as an individual. What we really
need is strong building codes and carbon taxes or other largescale economic structures to force the big players—industry,
real estate developers, and governments—to implement
meaningful change, and we need this in a hurry.
Hose cedeno
pratt people
Eve Mosher
M.F.A., Sculpture, ’05
Artist and Environmental Activist
Photographed in the financial district of Manhattan.
What are you doing?
What was the strangest reaction to your project?
I’m marking the 10-feet-above-sea-level line, indicating areas
that would experience frequent flooding due to climate change.
Last summer, I marked 70 miles around the coast of Brooklyn
and Lower Manhattan as part of a public project called “HighWaterLine.” I also passed out action packets with steps
individuals can take to combat climate change. I wanted to
provide a very local understanding of climate change and to
give people an opportunity to have a real two-way conversation
about the topic—not just be lectured at.
One woman thought the line was ugly and wanted to know
when it would go away.
What data did you use to map the high water line?
I used a U.S. Geologic Survey topographic map to trace the 10foot line and then transferred it to Google satellite maps, but
the original idea for the line came from a report, published by
the NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies that examined
the effects of climate change on New York City.
Did you encounter any skeptics?
Two. They believed in climate change but didn’t believe that it
was caused by human actions. Since I’m not a scientist, I didn’t
believe that it was my duty to argue the science with them—it’s
out in the public realm for everyone to read. What we did agree
on was the need for energy independence and that the tips I
provided in the action packet were good steps towards that goal.
What was the most encouraging reaction?
I really loved some of the kids. Most of a certain age had studied
a little climate change in school, so they were interested in
talking about what the flood zones really meant. For the
younger ones, it was often the first time they had even heard of
climate change, but I hope the project will stick in their minds
so when they do study it in school they will remember the
experience they had with me.
What would happen to your neighborhood if the sea level rose 10 feet?
I live in Clinton Hill—which, as its name implies, is on a hill,
above the 10-foot line—but because so many of the city services
are along the coast, those of us farther inland would be affected
as well. We would lose power, our trash wouldn’t get picked up,
and the trains would stop running. Even if I had a car I wouldn’t
be able to leave the island—most of the tunnels and bridges
would be affected.
11
pratt people
Jaime Lynn Stein
Environmental Management Systems, ’08
Project Manager, Pratt’s Office of the Academic Director of Sustainability;
Webmaster, Sustainable Pratt
Photographed in Higgins Hall on the Brooklyn Campus
What did you study as an undergraduate?
I majored in biology and minored in chemistry, but in keeping
with my love for the interdisciplinary, I minored in sculpture as
well. After graduating I joined the Peace Corps and was
stationed in Burkina Faso, West Africa, where I did community
outreach and HIV education. After the Peace Corps, I took a
position doing biomedical research. I saw a lot of tuberculosis
(TB) infection in Burkina, so I joined a lab doing TB and
influenza studies.
What made you choose the Environmental Management Systems
(EMS) program?
Pratt’s Graduate Center for Planning and the Environment has a
wonderful reputation as an institution that values community
and social justice. I came to Pratt because of this reputation.
I struggled with sticking to the program in the beginning, but
after meeting Eva Hanhardt and seeing the vast network of
environmental professionals she brought to EMS through its
mini-courses, I knew the program would provide me with the
most opportunities. Eva also introduced me to Sustainable Pratt.
Has the program offered chances to do work outside of Pratt?
As a part of my coursework I worked for the Mayor’s Office of
Long Term Planning and Sustainability—home of PlaNYC—as
an intern. The internship really allowed me to expand my
network among city agencies. I started to learn about all of the
sustainability initiatives going on throughout the city and began
to know enough about the issues and agencies to form partnerships and connections and to actually begin implementation of
some projects. I love developing the strategy for implementation. I love uniting various stakeholders and disciplines in a
common goal. It was fascinating for me to learn how the rubber
meets the road when it comes to implementation.
On what kinds of projects have you worked as project manager in the
sustainability office?
Alan klein
The core of my work as project manager is to help a team of
fantastic Pratt faculty come up with a strategy to integrate
sustainability into the curriculum. We have mapped the
current state of sustainability on campus, where initiatives are
already being implemented and where we can create interdisciplinary creative clusters of faculty and students to improve
integration. It’s exciting and challenging to engage and excite
people in this process.
12
p ratt folio
courtesy of lauren gropper
pratt people
Lauren Gropper
M.S., Environmental Planning and Design, ’04
Photographed on location in Toronto, Canada
Tell me about your new show on the Discovery Channel.
It’s called Planet Green and it’s a one-hour green lifestyle show
that will air this summer. The show revolves around making
living green an attainable and inspiring life choice. We want to
inspire a conscientious, hip approach to making the shift to a
sustainable, eco-friendly day-to-day life. It’ll be headquartered
at a demolished 1920s Los Angeles house, which we’ll “green”
throughout the season. With the help of our co-hosts, episodes
will also explore other cutting-edge homes, businesses, schools,
and people greening over their environments. The final
segment will be a very social and communal “breaking of
bread” with the group from that week.
How did you become involved with the project?
The show is presented by Adrian Grenier. Most people know
him from HBO’s show Entourage, but I’ve worked with him on
several of his green initiatives. He introduced me to his
producing partner, Peter Glatzer, and they brought me in to
work on their show, which had just been sold to Discovery.
Grenier has been described as an “eco-sexy” celebrity. What has been
the impact of people like Grenier and you?
I don’t know if I would put myself in the same company as
Adrian, but I think it’s wonderful that there are fresh and very
cool individuals like him who have become the “face of green”
for the younger generation.
Have you ever gone to the annual “green” pre-Oscar party held in
Los Angeles?
Yes. This was the first year I attended the Global Green preOscar party. It was great. People were talking a lot about
biodiesel.
You co-hosted the first season of the show Green Force on HGTV. What
was your most memorable episode and why?
The most memorable for me was the show on Nelly’s House—a
women’s shelter. We met incredible women in the shelter and
the staff was so welcoming and warm. When we left I felt as if
we really made a lasting difference for the shelter.
Your work takes you from LEED consulting to TV host. Do you prefer one
to the other?
I actually enjoy the consulting aspect more. Television hosting
is just an added bonus! They complement each other in many
ways.
You’re Canadian and practice in Canada and the U.S. How would you
compare the state of green practices in the two countries?
Right now, the private sector in both countries is leading the
green movement. I’m eager to see what the public sector is
going to do to take the next step.
13
“Stop and smell the garbage” reads a
sign in the New York City subways,
but for many this simple act of
appreciation is not enough. In this
extraordinarily wealthy city, where
the lack of alleys leaves rubbish
bags and bins openly exposed on the
sidewalks, collecting trash offers
unusual possibilities.
By Adrienne Gyongy
14
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Steven Siegel, Grass,Paper, Glass, 2006, grass, sod, soakerhose, 8’ x 8’ x 8’.
Location: Grounds for Sculpture, Hamilton, N.J.
courtest of the artist
SUSTAINABLE ART:
TRASH
15
DIANA PAU
Courtesy of the artist
Wendy Kemplerer, Lions at the Gate, 2001, steel, epoxy.
Lion l: 78” x 100” x 59”, Lion ll: 108” x 120” x 75”
Courtesy of the artist
arbage can be inspirational: Tiffany
Threadgould (M.I.D., Industrial Arts, ’02)
furnished her apartment with castoffs found on the
streets. During her early years in New York, while
working as a researcher for a media company, the
Michigan native would frequently “mongo,” the
slang term used by the city’s Department of Sanitation both for the act of unofficially collecting
garbage and for the redeemed garbage itself.
“The sidewalks were a treasure trove of recycled
materials,” Threadgould recalls. “This led me back
to art school at Pratt where I wanted to refine my
design skills of turning trash into treasure for the
masses.” Her master’s thesis, “Trash Nouveau:
Reincarnating Garbage into Useable Products,”
explored the idea of reusing found materials and
reincarnating them back into products. Working
from her design studio in Brooklyn, Tiffany today
runs RePlayGround, a design firm that sells things
made out of garbage.
New York is renowned for the quantity and
quality of its trash. A 2007 New York Times article by
Steven Kurutz reports on the “freegans” movement,
defining it as “the growing subculture of scavengers
who live off the affluent
society’s waste as a way of
distancing themselves from
what they see as out-ofcontrol consumerism.”
Artists have long understood the economics of
foraging for things when they
lacked the money for materials; even today they cruise the
streets in quest of discarded
furniture and other memorabilia, often in the same pickup
trucks employed for delivering
their work to galleries.
Whether they use their street
finds to furnish lofts or
Tiffany Threadgould, Dawn, 2001, lamp of
recycled mini-blinds found in garbage, 7”x 12”
incorporate them into their
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p r att folio
Courtesy of the artist
G
Wendy Kemplerer
work, artists as trash pickers continue a tradition that
harks back to the practice of using secondhand
materials to make collages and manipulate found
objects. By reclaiming refuse and creatively recycling
it, artists employ a strategy of sustainability. “There is
practicality and frugality in art that deploys large
quantities of stuff that people have abandoned,”
wrote SUNY Professor Patricia C. Phillips in Sculpture magazine in October 2003.
Consider the sheer simplicity of Marcel
Duchamp’s “ready-made” Fountain (1917), a urinal
displayed as art, or Pablo Picasso’s inventive Bull’s
Head (1943) consisting of a bicycle seat and handlebars. The debris of modern life has inspired new
vehicles of artistic expression among many notable
artists, among them Juan Gris, Georges Braque, Kurt
Schwitters, and Joseph Cornell—all of whom have
explored the expressive range of other people’s junk.
“Since the 1920s,” writes Victor Margolin in
Beyond Green: Toward a Sustainable Art (2005),
“making art out of previously used materials has
been one of the significant strands of modernism,
although until recent years it has not been framed by
a discourse of ecology or sustainability.” Such major
figures as Robert Rauschenberg made works of art
from the trash of urban civilization. John Chamberlain made large metal sculptures from cast-off
automobile parts, and Louise Nevelson’s hefty
wood structures are filled with found objects. Her
Michael Malpass, Newtonian Sphere III, 1989, 28”
diameter, bronze, brass, copper, and silver
© Michael Malpass. Courtesy of International Arts & Artists.
influence is felt in the work of Pratt alumna and
adjunct professor Jean Shin (B.F.A. ’94; M.S., Art
History, ’96), who gives new form to cast-off items
like worn shoes, broken umbrellas, and old eyeglasses. Placed in her site-specific installations, the
objects reveal an underlying beauty independent of
their former function.
The scrap is given importance because it
becomes part of the whole and visually
interlocks with the adjoining shapes.
Artistic Recycling
The works of modernist masters make sense as
“sustainable art,” though the term itself did not
come into use until 1987. Whatever else the artist’s
intention, the medium still delivers a message, and
recycling contributes to a sustainable environment.
Artists can take credit for being among the first—the
avant-garde—to launch the recycling movement,
albeit in the gritty precincts of the art world.
The late American scrap-metal sculptor Michael
Malpass (B.F.A., Art Education, ’69; M.F.A., Sculpture, ’73; M.S. Education, ’77), a New York native,
was associated with Pratt for more than 20 years,
both as a student and teacher. He created beautiful
objects out of junked metal, which he scavenged
from the debris of the city. “I recycle, but also
elevate,” he stated. “The scrap is given
importance because it becomes part of the
whole and visually interlocks with the
adjoining shape. It is, in a small way, revitalization.” During his artistic career, Malpass
created more than 300 spherical sculptures
made from found industrial objects, using a
band saw and blacksmithing techniques.
The Pratt Sculpture Park features his
welded-steel work Sachaquea (1981), in
which found objects interconnect and flow
over the curves of the sphere, creating
harmonious surface detail and subtle
illusions of motion. To create his spherical
sculptures, Malpass rummaged through
junkyards for metal objects and scraps.
Referring to Malpass as “a poet of postindustrial nostalgia,” the renowned
journalist Pete Hamill wrote about his
sculpture in Tools as Art (Abrams, 1995):
“Even the most accomplished welder must
wonder about the way they were made,
the perfection of the spheres, the seamless
interlocking of the abandoned tools, scraps of
metal, and other discards of the collapsing New
York industrial base that Malpass collected and
made into art.” Malpass completed this process
by giving his sculptures a polished, painted, or
wire-brushed finish.
The Pratt Sculpture Park is also the site of Lions
at the Gate (2001), a commissioned work by Wendy
Klemperer (B.F.A., Painting, ’83). It was inspired by
the twin lions rampant on the citadel at Mycenae,
Greece (1250 BC), the sculptor explained, and was
originally intended for the courtyard behind Pratt’s
Main Building, though it now stands on the lawn
before a group of hedges. Klemperer’s work was
realized through the use of scrap metal curves taken
from the construction site of the Brooklyn-Queens
Expressway, where she found most of the shapes
already bent into the piles of rebar; her process
was largely to select and cut, then tack weld the
preexisting curves into sculptural forms.
“Bent and twisted, such pieces contain energy
and a potential new life,” says Klemperer. “These
steel creatures, formed from the debris of industry
and development, celebrate the natural world.”
Through artistic recycling the metal outlines
become animal-like metaphors for dramatic
movement, as Klemperer’s lunging lions rise against
the open-air setting. A light covering of marine
epoxy increases the work’s visibility and contributes
to the bonelike quality of the skeletal forms.
17
courtesy of the artist
Steven Siegel, Freight and Barrel, 2004, crushed plastic soda bottles, rubber, hose, wire.
Freight 10’ x 10’ x 10’, Barrel 15’ x 15’ x 22’. Three River Arts Festival, Pittsburgh, Pa.
Environmental Concerns
“Environmental issues have been addressed
in works of art since at least the 1970s,” observes
Victor Margolin in Beyond Green: Towards a Sustainable Art (2005), “Artists who call attention to social or
environmental problems sometimes garner more
notice and public interest than the people who are
engaged directly with such problems.”
Israeli-born Richard Lowenberg studied Environmental Design and Film at Pratt from 1964 through
1968. His pioneering multimedia work, The Secret Life
of Plants (1976), used biofeedback sensors to record
Imagination is an artist’s greatest
asset. It can produce bold visions of
what a sustainable future might be like.
muscular and neurological signals from people and
vegetation and transformed them into musical
performances. The project involved a collaboration
with dancers, designers, and technicians working with
some of the early digital video synthesizers to show
the complex interrelationships between living beings
and technological systems. “My creative interests and
works have always been ‘ecological,’ with a dedicated
focus on better understanding the ecology of our
complex, dynamic ‘information environment,’”
Lowenberg explained recently. His current creative
efforts are to motivate deployment of an example
setting, communities’-owned fiber optic broadband
network throughout New Mexico.
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Society conceals what happens to goods after they
are used, so consumers are unaware of the landfills
that result from their garbage. But the artist can
dramatically rivet public attention to the issue of
reusing industrial and other waste products. The
1980s and 1990s saw the emergence of artists who
specifically emphasized environmental concerns.
Steven Siegel (M.F.A., Sculpture/Drawing, ’78)
makes massive public trash sculptures that address
the wastefulness of consumer culture. Set in huge
landscapes, his large-scale outdoor works are
constructed of many pieces of the same thing—
recycled newspapers, plastic bottles, aluminum cans,
shredded rubber—that he layers and stacks into
densely striated forms, a reflection of his interest in
geology. Siegel’s vast accumulations of barely used
materials build upon the rich tradition of using
garbage and found objects to create art.
His site-specific installations, usually built with
local assistance, make a contrast between unspoiled
nature and societal waste, both echoing their natural
setting and intruding upon it. His work Scale (2002),
for example, used 20,000 lbs. of newspaper and stood
17’ high with an internal wooden armature. Constructed in the rural settings of university campuses,
parks, private lands, and museum grounds, Siegel’s
public works express his engagement with environmental ideas. Artfully crafted from the humble
materials of daily life, Siegel’s sculptures remind the
viewer that progress comes with a price. Like the
“freegans,” he is critical of the capitalist ethic of
overproduction and speedy disposal, so he creates
works that decompose over time or can be dismantled
and recycled again.
and embrace a human narrative that would otherwise be lost in plain view.”
The results appear as horizontally striated
landscapes that are freestanding sculptures. Held
together by water and compression, Labor Byproduct #5 (2007) is composed of a week’s worth of
sawdust from four different woodshops on the Pratt
campus. Labor Byproduct #8 (2007) is made of a
single shop’s daylong sawdust production.
Sustainability Realized
courtesy of the artist
Professor Cathey Billian (M.F.A., Fine Arts,
teven Siegel, To See Jennie Smile, 2006, paper, 24’ x 12’ x 10’.
S
North Carolina Museum of Art, Raleigh, N.C.
1
2
3
courtesy of the artist
courtesy of the artist
Rainy Lehrman (M.F.A., Sculpture, ’08) is also is
taking on the challenge of transforming leftovers
into art. She finds hunks of wood and, with very
little treatment, makes them over into art objects.
Recently, she has moved away from the craft of
furniture to make art with the by-products of
production and consumption.
Sawdust is a material in plentiful supply in Pratt’s
woodworking studios, but often overlooked because
of its granular form. Using this workshop waste as
a sculptural medium, Lehrman packs layers of
sawdust and water into a wooden mold that is
removed when the work is completed. “By repurposing this wasted material and reconstituting
it into a stratalike form,” she says, “a physical time
line begins to emerge. The layering of the sawdust
creates a geographic narrative, allowing
the audience to interpret time in an immediate way
Diana Pau
’78) has been teaching at the Institute for 27 years
and is an active member of Sustainable Pratt. In her
Foundation class, Billian assigned her students the
project, “Illumination Recycled,” which entailed
emptying the cafeteria’s recycling bins and reusing
the plastic forks to create functional hanging
lamps. “The exercise, ” Billian explains, “serves as a
handy reminder of the availability of materials all
around us, waiting to be translated, but embodying
an ever fascinating history via their prior life.”
Another lighting fixture was devised out of bobby
pins found in a student’s room. Billian encourages
students to take on the challenge of transforming
“leftovers”—industrial by-products, trash, and
recyclables—into art.
“Imagination is an artist’s greatest asset,” writes
Margolin in Beyond Green. “It can produce bold
visions of what a sustainable future might be like.”
When the New Museum of Contemporary Art in
New York reopened in December 2007, it displayed
assemblage sculpture by 30 artists, all made with
the materials of everyday life. Titled
“Unmonumental: The Object in the 21st Century,”
the exhibition is augmented by “Collage: The
Unmonumental Picture,” which introduces the
two-dimensional designs of 11 more artists who
work with salvaged materials to communicate the
tenor of our times. The collages on the walls
surrounded the sculptures on the floor, endorsing
conservationist values as surely as if their creators
had chained themselves to trees. P
1
3
Rainy Lehrman 2 Rainy Lehrman, Labor Byproduct, #5, 2007, sawdust, water, 15”x 13”x 36”
Rainy Lehrman, Labor Byproduct, #6 (detail), 2007, sawdust, water, 15” x 13” x 36”
19
GETTING I N ON THE
GROUND FLOOR
OF GREEN
BY ELIZABETH RANDOLPH
Architect Ed Mazria has gone to great lengths to get his
“No C oal” message across to architecture and design
students across the country. Is anybody listening? You bet.
T
o raise awareness of the architect’s role
keith price
in a sustainable future, green advocate and
Pratt alumnus Ed Mazria (B. Arch, ’63) is targeting
architecture students before they graduate, heading
them off at the pass before they begin to design energysucking buildings. He’s after their instructors, too. It’s a
clever strategy. According to the AIA, three-quarters of
the built environment in the U.S. will be either new or
renovated by 2035. A good number of those buildings
will be designed or redesigned by those who are now
attending schools of architecture. Mazria knows that
these students will be key players in the fight to
stem climate change and he has long argued that
ecological literacy must become a central tenet
of design education.
As Pratt Institute’s 2007 Presidential
Lecturer, Mazria brought this message to the
students and faculty of his alma mater on
November 29, 2007. “It’s up to us to change the
way we teach, to get ecological issues into the
curriculum,” he told Pratt educators during his
lecture. “Architecture programs need to catch
up with the demand for green architects.”
Calling the threat of global warming “the
greatest challenge facing humankind today,”
Mazria delivered sobering statistics on the
rapid rise in the earth’s temperature since 2000.
A body painting about reducing
He showed striking scientific projections
our carbon footprint earned
illustrating the effect that a mere one- to twoMiles Courtney (Art Direction,
meter rise in sea level would have on coastal
’08) a prize in Architecture
2030’s Reverberate competition.
regions of the U.S.—some seaside towns would
almost disappear—but said the results of
unchecked climate change could mean an even
greater rise of four to seven meters. To bring home
the catastrophic nature of such a scenario, he
20
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reminded the audience that 53 percent of the U.S.
population now lives in coastal cities and towns and
that people are still migrating to the coast every day.
Mazria is a seasoned presenter. Just when his
audience is beginning to fear, not so much for the
well- being of the polar bears, but for their own safety
and the safety of their progeny, Mazria knows it is
time to emphasize the positive, to tell us what can be
done. This portion of Mazria’s speech is essential to
rally that part in all of us that constantly hears the
warnings about climate change, sees the evidence in
powerful storms and strange weather patterns, but
feels powerless to stop what we secretly fear is
nature’s plan.
Mazria reassured the audience, “Global warming is
preventable if we are well on our way toward global
greenhouse gas emissions reductions within seven
years.” According to UN estimates, after that time
catastrophic climate change will become irreversible.
The first and most effective action to reduce global
carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions, Mazria said, is to
declare a moratorium on the use of coal-fired energy
plants worldwide. According to Mazria, coal is the only
fossil fuel plentiful enough to push the planet to 450
parts per million of atmospheric CO2, a level that could
trigger irreversible glacial melt and sea-level rise.
Second, Mazria said, we must dramatically reduce
the energy consumption of buildings, which currently
consume 76 percent of the electricity generated by
U.S. power plants. The architect urged Pratt’s
students and instructors to adopt the 2030 Challenge
issued by the nonprofit organization, Architecture
2030, which Mazria founded in 2002. The 2030
Challenge offers benchmarks for reducing the energy
used to construct and operate buildings, calling for
courtesy architecture 2030
Ed Mazria sets an example for those competing in Architecture 2030’s Reverberate competition, which asked students to communicate the “No Coal”
message through face- and body-paints.
the building sector to reduce emissions by 50 percent
of regional averages in existing buildings and by an
additional 10 percent every five years, so that by 2030
all new construction will be carbon neutral.
As important as events like Pratt’s President’s
Lecture Series are in reaching interested and receptive audiences, Mazria acknowledges that the
urgency to address climate change will require
getting the message out to colleges much more
quickly. To reach an even greater number of students
and faculty members, Architecture 2030 implemented a bold new strategy to increase ecological
literacy among the next generation of designers. In
early 2007, it issued “The 2010 Imperative,” which
calls for accredited architecture, design, planning,
and engineering schools to add an ecological requirement to all design studio problems so that each
student understands how his or her designs impact
the environment.
Mazria expects this to cause a “snowball effect.”
When students are presented with these design
problems, he reasons, they will be required to conduct
research to find new strategies and technologies that
lessen the ecological impact of products and structures. The students will bring this information back to
their classmates and instructors; thus, every presentation will have the potential to teach.
Webcasting is another means that Mazria has
employed to communicate his message to educators
and students. By using a medium that is comfortable
and familiar to those in academia, he is able to reach
large audiences at colleges and universities across the
nation and the world—all at once. The most recent
Webcast organized by Architecture 2030 was “Face
IT,” part of a nationwide teach-in on global warming
solutions that took place on January 30 and 31. Pratt’s
students and faculty members participated in the
two-day event that included Architecture 2030 and
Metropolis magazine’s Reverberate competition,
which urged students to use body paints and video to
communicate the “No Coal” message.
It’s up to us to change the way we
teach, to get ecological issues into
the curriculum.
Like most compelling presenters, Mazria tailors
his message to each specific audience. To the students
ready to take on tomorrow’s design challenges, he
seems to be saying: Your professions, indeed your
planet, need you more than ever. “When we design
something, we set up its emissions pattern for the
next 50 years, or however long a building or community stands,” the architect has said. Clearly, Mazria
wants future architects, engineers, and designers to
get it right the first time. If he has any say in the
matter—which, of course, he does—they most
certainly will. P
21
Building:
The
Eco-Savvy Way
Kenneth M. Wyner
By Mimi Zeiger
22
p ratt folio
Kenneth M. Wyner
Opposite page, alumnus and architect Robert Wilkoff used passive solar energy and careful siting to make the Chung residence energy efficient and
economical. Above, the FSC-certified maple-and-wheatboard cabinets used in the Chung’s kitchen cost less than nonsustainable wood counterparts.
Green is mainstream. Al Gore drives a Prius; farmers markets serve up locally grown, organic produce;
and big box retailers like WalMart and Target are topping their stores with living “green roofs” for energy
efficiency and to control storm water runoff. The New York Times recently reported that hundreds of
mayors, representing cities and suburbs across the nation, have signed the United States Conference of
Mayors Climate Protection Agreement, a pledge to meet Kyoto standards for carbon emissions by 2012.
Here in New York City, Mayor
Bloomberg is challenging
Last December in The New York Times, Michael Pollan, University of California-Berkeley professor
New Yorkers to reduce global
and author of the book In Defense of Food: An Eater’s Manifesto, wrote, “The word ‘sustainability’ has
warming emissions by 30 pergotten such a workout lately that the whole concept is in danger of floating away on a sea of inoffencent by 2030. With all these
siveness. Everybody, it seems, is for it whatever it means.” Pollan goes on to discuss industrial
ecologically good works
agriculture, but his sentiment could apply just as well to architecture. As green building becomes
under way, what does it mean
commonplace, does it risk floating away on a sea of sustainably harvested bamboo flooring?
for a building to be green?
“You see a lot of companies using it as a marketing gimmick, but I don’t see that as universal,” says
architect Robert Wilkoff, B.Arch., ’75. When he attended Pratt in the 1970s, the environmental
movement was just gaining momentum: He celebrated the first Earth Day while a student. A consciousness of sustainable strategies such as wind power, solar power, and passive solar was budding.
But while he remained committed to green design over the next couple of decades, he saw support
for these techniques fade, mostly due to lack of governmental incentives for their development.
Today’s understanding of global warming, especially among his daughter Kate’s generation, encourages Wilkoff. (She will enter Pratt in the fall of 2008.) “What we do in the environment can have
serious ramifications, but subtle changes and awareness can have a huge impact,” he explains.
23
24
p rat t folio
Kenneth M. Wyner
Wilkoff’s Washington DC–based firm, Archaeon, Inc., specializes in
designing and renovating custom homes, and creating green
commercial architecture. Wilkoff works in sustainable practices
every chance he can, even if it is just making sure a building is well
insulated or swapping out incandescent lightbulbs for compact fluorescent alternatives. “None of it is real rocket science, but there are
dividends: health to the earth, health to the environment, and you
save money on energy costs.”
Wilkoff recently designed a contemporary green residence in a forested area of McLean, Va., for clients Beth and Luke Chung. As a
conservation policy consultant, Beth was
determined to use green products, but the say, has been the most energy-saving aspect
couple also wanted an economical home. of their new home. They are also pleased
Their challenge was to spend no more than that Wilkoff’s careful siting meant that the
5 percent above what it would cost to build home would have little impact on the natural environment.
a conventional residence.
Wilkoff sited the home on a natural slope
to take advantage of cool breezes and the
sun’s warming rays. Large, sometimes
floor-to-ceiling, windows—a key part of
the architect’s plan—allowed his clients to
utilize natural light, which filters into the
residence from almost every angle. The
architect also super-insulated the building envelope, wrapping the exterior in
environmentally friendly, man-made
“stone” siding and trim that look like natural finishes. Wilkoff ’s passive solar
energy and cooling strategy, the Chungs
What we do in the
environment can have
serious ramifications,
but subtle changes and
awareness can have a
huge impact,
Wilkoff and the Chungs engaged in an exhaustive search for sustainable and green
products, including Belizean ipê wood for the deck of the house; kitchen cabinets made
from Forest Stewardship Council (FSC)–certified woods that actually cost less than
conventional cabinets; wall-to-wall carpets of 100 percent post-consumer recycled content; broadloom carpets made from thousands of recycled soda bottles; Energy-Star
kitchen and bathroom appliances and fixtures; well-planned, dimmable lighting, including LEDs, compact fluorescents and other low-energy bulbs that allowed the Chungs to
create “layers of light”; and programmable shades that allow the home owners to change
light and temperature levels even when they are not at home.
For its efforts in designing the home, Wilkoff’s firm won a National Monument Award
for superior home design. The house also received a Best in Show nomination from the
National Association of Home Builders for its environmental features.
academic and administrative building, scheduled to open in 2009, is sure to pitch the college
further into the green discourse. Designed by
Studio A/WASA, where Pratt alumnus Jack
Esterson, B.Arch., ’75, is principal, the 120,000square-foot mixed-use building will house
student services, The Pratt Center for Community Development, the Institute’s Office of
Development, a digital arts research facility,
the Department of Digital Arts, and graduate
fine arts studios. A large glass atrium will provide a social space that will connect the various
offices. When completed, the building will
be not only a forward-thinking structure
representing the Institute’s commitment to
responsible building, it will be a textbook of
those practices. The design team is aiming for a
LEED Gold rating. The Leadership in Energy
and Environmental Design (LEED) Green
Building Rating SystemTM certification is the
most widely accepted standard and is set by the
U.S. Green Building Council; LEED Gold is the
second-highest designation.
Kenneth M. Wyner
524 Myrtle Avenue , Pratt Institute’s new
Opposite page and above, the Chungs used eco-smart furniture and décor
throughout their home, including upholstery with reclaimed or natural fibers and
a variety of low-energy lighting.
25
Sun orientation is an important element in the design of 524
Myrtle Avenue. Each façade responds differently to the sun. The building
is sited lengthwise along Myrtle Avenue. That means that the 230-footlong façades face north to the street, with retail shops on the ground floor.
Since no direct sunlight hits the north façade, it is considered the cool side.
In the winter it will be prone to heat loss, but in the summer will require
less air-conditioning. A brick façade and small windows provide thermal
mass to regulate temperature. In contrast, the south façade of the building,
which faces Pratt’s main campus, will
get full sun exposure, so the architects
designed a glass curtain wall system
integrated with louvered shades.
When sun angles are low in the winter, light can penetrate deep into the
building. In the summer, the louvers
will cut the glare and provide muchneeded shade. This kind of sensitivity
to the site helps the building’s overall
energy efficiency, since it lessens
demand on the heating and cooling,
conserving resources.
524 Myrtle Avenue’s green features can be divided
into three categories: site and water management,
energy, and materials. A green roof falls into the
first category. The plantings will regulate roof
temperature and slow storm water runoff. Native
landscaping around the building is designed to
retain water and to recharge it back into the
ground. The energy category includes such features as efficient mechanical equipment, plenty of
natural day lighting, and a 50-kilowatt photovoltaic solar array on the roof. These solar roof panels
will generate enough electricity to power 10
houses. The materials specified, such as building
steel, have a high-recycled content. Interior finishes are also recycled or sustainably harvested woods, or, as in the case of cork, rapidly
renewable. Additionally, all materials, including paint and carpet, are chosen because they
do not “off-gas,” or release chemicals into the air through evaporation.
524 Myr tle is
uncompromisingly
modernist, green,
and integrated into
the community.
G
reen Features
524 Myrtle Avenue
A:50-kilowatt photovoltaic array
B: Green roof: extensive green roof with some areas of
intensity, native plants
C: North-facing wall designed for thermal performance,
reflected daylight, and views; high insulation values.
D: Structural steel and concrete; high in recycled content.
E: Interior Finishes: nonpolluting, nonoutgassing, and lowodor
F: High-efficiency mechanical equipment with variable
speed motors, and integrated control systems.
G: Exterior sunshading devices, which admit winter
sunlight, while blocking summer sun
H: High-performance, low-e glass
I: Ultra-low-flow plumbing fixtures, and dual-flush toilets.
J: Rainwater cistern for irrigation of green roof and
site landscaping.
K: Vestibule with walk-off mat
L: Separate exhausts for brush cleaning, spray booths,
and other areas with high potential for poor air quality
M:Daylight penetration deep into core of building, high
ceilings, and interior glazing, which reduce daytime
lighting energy.
N:Light-colored pavement and shade trees, which mitigate
the urban heat island effect
O:Groundwater recharge and best management practices
for retention of stormwater
P:Extensive site landscaping with native plant species
requiring little or no irrigation.
Q:Storage and collection of recyclables
R:High-efficiency condensing boiler
S:Shower and changing room for bicycle commuters
T: White roof
Going beyond the details, Esterson sees the seamless integration of sustainability into 524
Myrtle Avenue’s design as reflective of the building’s overall link to the local community.
The two different façades help to unite the campus to Clinton Hill. A glass atrium runs all
the way through the structure—a portal between the two sides. “In the past, Pratt was seen
as a fortress,” says Esterson, who’s lived in the neighborhood for 37 years. “We didn’t want
to create another wall. The new design is uncompromisingly modernist, green, and
integrated into the community.” P
Pratt’s new building at 524 Myrtle Avenue is expected to be completed in 2009. The Institute aims to obtain LEED Gold certification for
the building from the U.S. Green Building Council.
26
p r att folio
Green Building from the Inside Out
For the Health House kitchen, designers Doering and Hansen chose
Marmoleum® floor tiles made with 100% natural ingredients, water- and
energy-saving appliances, and recycled-content countertops.
The bedroom will feature reclaimed wood trim, zero-VOC paint, and
energy-efficient lighting.
Energy-saving LED under-cabinet lighting, low-VOC finishes, and Forest
Stewardship Council (FSC)-certified flooring will be used in the living
room/kitchen.
For Pratt graduate industrial design alumnae Erika Hansen, ’04,
and Erika Doering, ’93, green building is wholly tied to healthy,
sustainable living. The two serve as interior designers for the Health
House, a collaborative project that will transform a decrepit and
toxic building into two green, three-bedroom townhouses.
Putting their Pratt industrial design education to good use,
Hansen and Doering are dedicated to searching out new materials
and techniques. They work directly with local manufacturers,
pushing companies to design products to meet environmentally
conscious criteria. “We both drive our designs from hands-on
experience. We like to get our hands dirty. We like talking to
manufacturers,” explains Doering.
The duo worked closely with Green Depot, a company
dedicated to sustainable building products, to develop a scheme
that pushed the envelope of ecological technologies, but also
maintained a truly livable home. “Interior designers don’t always
realize the key role they play in driving the greenness of a project.
Having the whole project team on board has made our green efforts
a lot more interesting and effective,” says Hansen.
In green interior design, the origin of materials is key. For the
Health House, the designers specified FSC-certified wood
flooring—the Forest Stewardship Council identifies lumber
resources with good sustainable practices. They also used
Marmoleum®, a linoleum-type flooring that is free from toxins, and
cork, which is a quickly renewable resource. Tiles in the kitchen
and bathroom are either locally manufactured or have a highrecycled material content.
Conservation was part of the scheme, too. Hansen and Doering
employed elements like electronic-sensor faucets to reduce water
waste. The designers acknowledge that they are a bit unusual for
residential use, but hope that green products of this kind will
challenge people to truly embrace green thinking. “People still
want the colonial home; most people are not seeking a green
lifestyle,” Hansen continues. “It is our job to make it desirable.”
Hansen and Doering teamed up with developers R & E Brooklyn
and architect Tony Daniels to work on the project. Re-using the
brick shell of the existing structure in a dense urban neighborhood
near public transportation is just one of the sustainable approaches
illustrated by the homes. Efficient use of space is another. The
townhouses are small, but the rooms receive lots of natural light
and have elements that connect residents to the outside. In order to
make the most of the space, the designers created built-in
furniture. In addition, each house features sustainable and energyefficient elements such as solar panels that produce electricity and
hot water; radiant heat floors; recycled, salvaged, and sustainably
harvested materials; and terraces and sunshades to control
summer heat.
When completed, the model building is expected to be LEEDcertified under the Green Building Rating System’s residential
program. It will also be the first building in New York City to be
certified by the American Lung Association’s (ALA) Health House
program. Criteria for the ALA program include high-efficiency air
filtration systems and low VOC (volatile organic compound) paint,
carpet, and other interior finishes that do not give off toxic
chemicals over their life spans. P
27
A rendering of the Adlai Stevenson High School’s proposed green roof, in the Bronx, to be built by a consortium of partners including Pratt faculty
members Paul Mankiewicz and Ned Kaufman
G reen R oofs:
P lanting the Seeds for Healthier Cities by Elizabeth Randolph
28
p rat t folio
Pratt faculty and staff members are using
green roofs to keep New York City cooler
and cleaner, imparting important lessons
to the city’s youth in the process.
Courtsey Rafael Viñoly Architects
Storm water runoff is considered one of the greatest ecological hazards facing urban areas. A dearth of
open land and vegetation in cities means there are
fewer places for rainwater to be absorbed; consequently, it drains into sewers, which then overflow,
polluting waterways. Green roofs have been heralded
as one infrastructure solution by large municipalities
like New York City, which recently passed legislation
requiring the development of a citywide Sustainable
Storm Water Management Plan.
The “urban heat island effect” is a phenomenon in
which the temperature in urban areas like New York
City can be 1 to 10 degrees warmer than in surrounding suburban or rural areas. William Riley, a
construction manager for Pratt Center for Community Development, explains that this occurs because
the predominately flat roofs of city buildings absorb
and radiate heat back into the environment. Heat
from the rooftops as well as waste heat from air conditioners and industry activity gets trapped in urban
canyons, contributing to record-high temperatures
that put undue strain on urban residents and energy
systems used to keep them cool.
Vegetative coverings have been shown to reduce the
ambient temperature of roofs. According to the Environmental Protection Agency, on hot summer days, the
surface temperature of a vegetated rooftop can be
cooler than the air temperature, whereas the surface of
a traditional rooftop can be up to 90°F warmer.
A
A Problem and a Solution
So with a multitude of advantages, why doesn’t
s New York’s architects and engineers
search for ways to reduce energy usage and
pollution, green roofs are becoming increasingly
popular. The constructions address environmental maladies facing urban areas
while, in many cases, offering educational
opportunities for New York City’s schoolchildren. As a result, green roofs are making
the city cooler and less polluted and contributing to a higher level of environmental
consciousness among the nation’s youth.
The rise in popularity of vegetative, or
green, roofs is due, in part, to the growing
awareness of environmental hazards faced
in urban areas—in particular, the rise in
temperature in these areas due to the “urban heat
island effect” and the pollution caused by storm water
runoff. Pratt itself will use a green roof on its proposed
LEED Gold building at 524 Myrtle Avenue to both
insulate the roof and to capture storm water.
every city building have a green roof? Riley, who has
been involved in energy conservation projects since
the early 1970s and has built and tested the effectiveness of green roofs as part of his work with the Pratt
Center for Community Development says, “The
additional square foot cost associated with green
roofs make this option less attractive to building
owners, who instead choose more cost-effective
Green roofs are contributing to
a higher level of environmental
consciouness among the
nation’s youth.
alternatives as roofing insulation and light/heat
reflective paints. Green roofs won’t truly flourish,
Riley predicts, until municipal governments offer tax
rebates or other incentives to encourage vegetative
roof projects.
29
The environment teaches
students that a roof doesn’t
have to be a black desert.
One of the main technical impediments to creating
green roofs, however, is the heavy weight of the soil
used to plant them, but advances in the growing media
used to support green roofs are making this less of an
issue. One giant step has been GaiaSoil™ for Green
Roofs, an alternative soil created by Paul Mankiewicz,
visiting associate professor in Pratt’s Environmental
Management Systems program and executive director
of the Gaia Institute. The ultra-lightweight and ecofriendly soil is made of nontoxic, recycled, expanded
polystyrene foam coated with organic pectin and
mixed with high-quality finished compost. The patented product is nearly 50 percent lighter than any
other green roof growing medium, yet it retains 200
percent of its weight in water, easily capturing the
majority of storm water it encounters.
In addition, GaiaSoil emulates and enhances
the essential properties of high-quality, natural soil to
support all kinds of vegetation, from shrubs to sedums
to wildflowers.
From Growing to Learning
Courtest Rafael ViÑoly ARCHITECTS
Several of Gaia’s green roof projects are generating
data to help quantify the ecological and economic benefits of rooftop gardens. At the same time, the projects are
being used to engage K-12 students in learning a variety of
topics including math, biology, and other sciences.
One such endeavor was the first green roof in the
Bronx—a 3,500-square-foot structure completed in
June 2005 atop the St. Simon Stock Elementary
School in the Fordham section. The Gaia Institute,
along with the school’s faculty and students and the
Green Apple Corps of the New York City Department
of Parks and Recreation, constructed a native plant
community and urban vegetable roof garden, using
Gaia Soil. Precision monitoring equipment—including a rain gauge, heat sensors, and temperature and
humidity meters—was installed to help document the
roof’s performance.
St. Simon Stock students have not only had an ongoing role in planting and harvesting a variety of fruits
and vegetables—they also have played a role in data
collection and analysis. In addition to classroom
instruction, they receive lessons from volunteers of
the Green Apple Corps as well as occasional demonstrations by Mankiewicz himself.
“The students love going up to the roof,” Mankiewicz says. Some love growing things and others just
love the greenness of it. The environment teaches students that a roof doesn’t have to be a black desert, that
there is the possibility to encounter life.” The biologist
himself was surprised find that the habitat had become
a stopover for monarch butterflies, which float by
every five minutes in migratory season, along with
snowbirds, which normally avoid urban environments.
The small, self-sustaining ecosystem contributes to
the feeling of being “out in nature,” one that is hard to
come by in the asphalt jungle. “One student actually
said it reminded her of her homeland in the Dominican Republic,” recalls Mankiewicz.
A similar green roof project is taking shape in the
Soundview section of the Bronx. Gaia Institute is part
of a public-private consortium is working to provide
Adlai Stevenson High School, once considered a failing school, with a new state-of-the-art green roof
featuring designated learning areas. Though the consortium is awaiting final approval on funding before
proceeding with the installation, Stevenson’s students
already have worked with designers at consortium
partner Rafael Viñoly Architects’ (RVA) to help visualize design solutions during several charrettes, and
students and teachers are gearing up to help with the
installation of the growing medium and plants.
The Stevenson roof, as it stands today, before improvements
30
p rat t folio
A rendering of the proposed new Stevenson roof
daniel simon
Paul Mankiewicz explains the alternative growing medium GaiaSoilTM to visitors of the St. Simon Stock roof.
Ned Kaufman , an adjunct associate professor of grad-
mary burge
uate architecture at Pratt, who heads the Architectural
Training and Research program at RVA, says the learning goes both ways. RVA’s trainees have worked on the
project since its inception, helping teachers and administrators in the school to develop a curriculum to be used
in conjunction with the roof. “It’s been interesting for
our architects to work with engineers, biologists, and
developers at the Salvadori Center to conceive of a green
roof design—not merely as a form of roof covering, but
also a suite of outdoor classrooms,” Kaufman reports.
A visitor enjoys the St. Simon Stock Elementary School’s
rooftop garden.
At over 20,000 square-feet, the Stevenson green roof
promises to be the largest fully instrumented vegetative
roof in the United States. After the installation, RVA’s
2005–2006 Fellow Joseph Hagerman, now an official at
the Federation of American Scientists in Washington,
D.C., will test his innovative green roof design, which
incorporates Foamglas®, an industrial insulation material produced by Pittsburgh Corning—the company will
donate its product in order to investigate its effectiveness for such uses.
Officials at Gaia Institute and RVA, and other members of the consortium hope that the Stevenson roof will
serve as a model for greening the city’s inventory of school
buildings as they enhance educational opportunities for
architecture trainees and primary school students alike.
The research on this and other green roof projects will
inform the work of scientists and designers as they seek
to improve urban environments around the globe. P
daniel simon
What the “Experts” Learn
Ripe, juicy tomatoes planted by students at
St. Simon Stock
31
Lauren Alpert
Lauren Alpert has served as project coordinator, New York Public Interest
Group (NYPIRG), Pratt Institute Chapter, since graduating from the State
University of New York at New Paltz in 2006.
Q: How does NYPIRG work and what are its
biggest challenges when it’s trying to influence
policy makers?
A: NYPIRG’s Board of Directors, which is made up entirely of students
Eva Hanhardt
Professor of urban and environmental planning and coordinator of
the Pratt Institute Environmental Management Systems (EMS)
program, Eva Hanhardt is a City and Environmental Planning
Consultant whose professional activities center around community-based and environmental planning.
Q: Does Pratt’s EMS program
emphasize a preventative approach
to environment issues?
A:
32
Environmental laws passed in the 1970s focused on a
“command and control” approach that set acceptable pollution
standards and posited that the solution to environmental
problems could be “engineered” and then “managed” at the
individual, business, and institutional levels.
The Pratt program was originally designed to respond to
such marketplace demands. In recent years, however, scientific
research relating to the environment has shown that these
earlier compliance-based strategies were not producing the
results that had been anticipated and were inadequate. A
greater understanding of cumulative impacts and the adoption
of pollution prevention approaches was seen as necessary if
problems were to be successfully addressed.
The Pratt EMS program has been redesigned to educate
environmental professionals who both have a comprehensive
understanding of the causes and interrelationships of
environmental problems and are familiar with alternative
cutting-edge strategies and technologies. EMS graduates are
able to identify and implement sustainable best practices and are
able to operate confidently within the realms of environmental
policy, architecture, city planning, community development,
business, and industrial production.
p ratt folio
from across the state, chooses the issues we take on, and the students
who work with our campus chapters put in a lot of hours to make our
programs work. These students, paired with the expertise of NYPIRG’s
issue staff, allow NYPIRG to make a difference by running multiyear
campaigns that do not end with finals. This has led to huge victories for
clean air such as New York’s participation in the Regional Greenhouse
Gas Initiative to reduce industrial pollution.
NYPIRG is often up against great odds. As a public interest group
we are always working to improve the quality of air and water, and to
expand the use of mass transit. Unfortunately, these are issues that are
often opposed by well-financed corporations that have the ear of policy
makers. Our support is from the grassroots work of students and
members of our communities, who pound the pavement to fight for
change across New York State. A great example of this is our efforts to
pass the Bigger Better Bottle Bill, which aims to add a 5¢ deposit on
noncarbonated beverages and recapture unclaimed deposits for the
Environmental Protection Fund. It has stalled in Albany because of a
few big industry opponents, but the grassroots efforts of students and
the community keep bringing the Bigger Better Bottle Bill closer to
becoming law.
Pratt’s faculty, staff, and
alumni weigh in on some of
today’s most pressing
ecological issues.
Steven S. Matt
Bachelor of Fine Arts, Communications Design, 2007, Steven S. Matt is founder and chief executive
officer of One Earth Network and is a social entrepreneur at Pratt Design Incubator for Sustainable
Innovation.
Q: H
ow can Internet technology be used to promote sustainability?
A:
The Internet has liberated us from the constraints of geography. However, one of the medium’s most
underrated aspects is its ability to connect people locally and to allow for the communication of locally
relevant information. Each community must call upon its “local experts”—average people who happen
to know a lot about their community’s solutions for achieving sustainability. If we draw upon the world’s
vast source of collective knowledge, there is no need to reinvent the wheel along the way.
My contribution to a solution is one-earth.com, a multifaceted reflection of communities around the
world and a way for people to discover what they can do in their community as told by local experts.
One-earth.com acts as a facilitator and aggregator of sustainable solutions. We recently used interactive technology to create a green map of Fort Greene,
Brooklyn. The map was originally created for The Hill, a local newspaper, but it eventually went on the site. We identified resources such as community
centers, compost sites, organic restaurants, and green business services. The interactive map has the same features as the printed map but with the ability
for local residents to edit the content, using a Wiki.
Miriam Greenberg
Professor of social science and cultural studies and faculty fellow at Pratt Center for Community
Development, Miriam Greenberg teaches and performs research in urban studies. She co-created and
co-taught the Pratt course Eco-Metropolis at Pratt. Greenberg is the author of Branding New York: How
a City in Crisis Was Sold to the World (Routledge, 2008).
Q: What is the most pressing issue you discuss in Eco-Metropolis?
A:
ask: How do we think simultaneously about the environmental and social sustainability of cities, and
We
how do we measure the impact of urban development on the environmental, epidemiological, economic,
political, and cultural life of the urban areas?
To answer these questions, we use readings from urban sociology, environmental studies, and
biology, and we invite speakers who combine an environmental and social justice approach in their work. The class also does research and analysis of current urban development debates. We recently
discussed the Williamsburg Waterfront Rezoning Plan. To its credit, the plan highlights sustainability and
green building techniques throughout, and includes set-asides for affordable housing via “inclusionary
zoning.” Yet, these benefits may be offset by its massive scale. This “green” plan may well lead to greater
carbon emissions—due to the influx of traffic, congestion, and sewage—and deteriorating air quality in a
neighborhood already plagued with some of the highest asthma rates in the city. It may also exacerbate
the displacement of Williamsburg’s low-income residents, good working-class jobs, and diverse cultural
mix. This is a high cost to pay for “sustainable development.”
33
Roxanne Eklund
Professor of fashion, Roxanne Eklund designs and develops footwear, accessories, and textiles and is
involved with By Artistic Hands, a foundation for developing cultural art involving global textile artists.
Q: How would you define textile science and how do you incorporate
ecological considerations into your courses?
A: Textile science is the study of fibers and fabrics—their properties, performance, aesthetics, production
and manufacturing, finishing, and the global and environmental issues surrounding them. It is an
enormous amount of information to understand, digest, and apply for students, especially in their freshman year. However,
it is a required course so that design students can really understand the materials.
In my class, I teach students that each stage and process involved in producing fibers and textiles affects our environment. The real “cost” has to be considered, and it becomes a difficult choice for the fashion industry—our profit or our planet.
If we choose a natural fiber such as cotton, for example, we have to consider fields being overplanted, the toxic pesticides
involved, cleaning methods that use too much fuel, and the ability to recycle cotton goods. Synthetic fabrics can be very
efficient and inexpensive for manufacturing, but most synthetics use petroleum bases that are not considered biodegradable.
We have several small projects that involve surfing the Internet for fashion companies and products that are using “planetfriendly” materials, organic fibers, or recycling nonbiodegradables.
Meta Brunzema
Professor of architecture and coordinator of the Graduate Urban Design Program at Pratt, Meta
Brunzema is principal of Meta Brunzema Architect P.C. She is a graduate faculty member at Pratt, a
fellow at the Institute of Urban Design, and a U.S. Green Building LEED ® accredited professional.
Q: Y
our firm is working on a carbon-neutral “Eco-City” in Eastern
Europe. What is your definition of an eco-city? Is it possible for all
cities to become “eco-cities”?
A:
In general, the word “eco-city” refers to a sustainable, ecologically healthy, and socially just urban
environment. Most recently, the term has been used to describe a handful of carbon-neutral cities
where all of the infrastructure, buildings, and public spaces have been planned completely from
scratch. My firm is working on an eco-city in Turkey that aims to be carbon-neutral. This will be
achieved by balancing the amount of CO2 released with the amount sequestered or offset. Our
eco-city will create more energy, water, and food than it consumes and will virtually eliminate solid
waste. Our renewable energy infrastructure includes wind powered-desalination plants, hydrothermal thermal energy systems, and heliostats—mirrors that track the sun and redirect sunlight
into buildings. We will incorporate urban agriculture with planted surfaces or hydroponics. Our
landscaping strategy focuses primarily on rapidly growing plants and carbon-absorbing trees.
The city aims to be physically, economically, and culturally diverse, too—a kind of regenerative
urban ecology.
Overall, though, I think it’s more important to transform our existing cities to prevent a
potential environmental disaster. This will only be possible with an extraordinary engagement by
educators, scientists, and creative professionals to advance environmental knowledge and design.
But most importantly, we will need courageous political leaders willing to challenge the status quo
and enact environmentally ambitious legislation to “futureproof” our world.
34
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Allan Chochinov
Master of Science, Industrial Design, 1988, and professor of industrial design, Allan Chochinov is partner and
editor in chief of Core77 and strategist for Coroflot.com and DesignDirectory.com. In addition to his editorial
work he coordinates design events, competitions, and content partnerships.
Q: How should designers regard “green” design?
A: In design education, there is a tendency to silo areas of study in an attempt to “dive deep” into the subject
matter. Here, you might end up with a course “in sustainability,” for example, which affords the deep dive but
has the undesirable side effect of communicating to design students that sustainability is an option, a
specialization, or an elective. It’s not, of course. Going forward, sustainable design is an absolute mandate in
everything that designers do. I had a student recently ask me about the option of “going green,” and I really
took exception to the expression. There is no more “going green,” in my opinion. Moving forward, the strategy,
the considerations, and the practice of sustainable design will be the most important way for designers to add
value to the world. Otherwise, we’re just making more garbage.
Ecological Literacy at Pratt
Below is a selection of some of the many courses taught at Pratt that
emphasize issues of sustainability and green design.
Carol Crawford
Master of Science, Interior Design, 1995, and professor of interior
design, Carol Crawford has taught interior design at Pratt since 1998 and
currently teaches classes in color and materials and sustainable design.
Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design
(LEED) Certification
Green Adaptive Re-Use and Rehabilitation
Life-Cycle Analysis
Q: What is the overarching design issue that you
address in your class, Sustainable Design?
A:
he main consideration is how sustainability can drive innovative
T
design. A criticism of green design is that it hampers freedom and
creativity, perhaps because it requires so much mindful, and often
demanding, construction and material choices.
Green design requires designers to look toward innovative
solutions to create forms that function successfully as well as
beautifully—such as developing energy-saving HVAC and water
conservation systems, and finding ways to utilize a high degree of
natural lighting. It requires research, questioning, and a refusal to
accept cookie-cutter solutions.
I tell my students that their goal as designers should be to
create environments that are healthy, safe, and inspiring to live and
work in. Human concerns must play a major role.
Architecture
Ecological Footprint Assessment/
Sustainability Indicators
Environmental Impact Assessment
Energy Management—Systems and Alternatives
Environmental Economics
Environmental Law
Environmental History and Ethics
Energy Conscious Architecture
Art and Design
Managing Innovation and Change
Art in the Urban Environment
Art, Culture, and Social Policy
Color and Materials
Sustainable Design
Continuing Education/Professional Studies
Ecology, Environment, and Pollution
The Ecology of Sustainability
Eco Metropolis
Ecology for Architects
Science and Society
Information and Library Science
Building Green: An Overview
Greening Your Facilities: A Holistic Approach
Integrate Environmental Design
Into Your Practice: Sustainability
Renewable/Green Energy
Unbearable Lightness
35
New and Noteworthy
I te ms in th e marke t plac e c r e at e d by Prat t Al u m n i ,
Faculty, and S t ude n t s
F ully-loaded C hair
Alexander Reh, M.I.D., Industrial Design, ’06
$5,500
The Fully-Loaded Chair is a lounger made of more
than 400 12-gauge shotgun shells and powdercoated steel. The back of the chair, with its web of
red hulls protruding outward in an intense array of
plastic arterial sections, creates a stark contrast to
the brassy front. Though critics have expressed
doubts about the chair’s comfort level, its suggestion
of seductive torture is intended to be part of its
charm. Reh asserts that the bright brass caps give
a soothing massage that the user might find
therapeutic, like acupuncture. The chair is built to
order and available through alexanderreh.com.
T h e In ven t i o n o f E very t h i n g E l se
Samantha Hunt, Pratt faculty member
$24 (Houghton Mifflin, 2008)
This novel re-creates the lost history of Nikola Tesla, the Serbian
immigrant inventor who lived at the New Yorker Hotel, at Thirty-fourth
Street and Eighth Avenue, for 10 years and, in 1943, died there nearly
destitute at the age of 86. During his lifetime, Tesla failed to receive
proper credit or royalties for theoretical work that made possible wireless
power transmission, radar, Xrays, the AC motor, and remote control.
Hunt’s novel imagines a friendship between the eccentric visionary and a
young chambermaid at the hotel where he lived out his last days. The
chapters alternate between the voices of both. The invented parts of the
plot include a semi-functional time machine, a mysterious visitor from the
future, and a white pigeon who is the object of Tesla’s most ardent
affection. The author, whose debut novel, The Seas, won a National Book
Foundation Award, was drawn to Tesla, she says, by the appeal of “looking
at the imagined future from the known past.” Available at bookstores.
36
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NEW AND NOTEWORTHY
Totes, B ags, an d Pil lows
Katherine Rasmussen, M.S., Communications Design, ’95
$45–$65
Brooklyn-based designer Katherine Rasmussen asked
people who race sailboats to donate their used sails to her
in exchange for a free bag, which she fabricated out of the
swapped-out sails’ recycled canvas. Using the remaining
material, she handmade a whole line of totes and
messenger bags that highlight details from the sails
themselves, like grommets and sail seam stitching. The
sturdy Dacron fabric holds up well to everyday use, and the
resultant designs have clean lines and subtle detailing,
with lots of pockets on their organic cotton-lined insides.
Even their cardboard hang-tags are eco-friendly: they’re
made out of repurposed cereal boxes. Emblazoned with
bold numbers and symbols, the totes, bags, and throw
pillows display a striking graphic quality and come in a
range of colors and sizes. Available through reiter8.com.
Lady J J e w e l ry D esign s
Jessica D’Amico, B.F.A., Sculpture, ’99
Palm Necklace $199
Giraffe Cuff $399
Style mavens will appreciate the romantic rocker chic of Lady J’s meticulously handcrafted
jewelry, which comprises pendants with chains, unisex rings, cuff links, necklaces, bracelets,
and earrings in combinations of silver, leather, and semiprecious stones. The designer, who
started her business in 2003 in the back space of a now defunct Brooklyn indie boutique, has
since carved a niche in the booming accessories market. Much of her inspiration comes from
just being in the studio and working with the component parts that become jewelry. D’Amico
likes to use silver because it adapts to a strong, yet delicate, feminine look that can be
produced at a reasonable cost, a design aesthetic that is key to her brand. Available through
ladyjjewelry.com.
37
New and Noteworthy
Antle r Coroz o C uff li n ks
Gregory Buntain, B.I.D., Industrial Design, ’08
$188
Wear your sentiments on your shirtsleeves with these cuff links made from sustainable and
repurposed materials. The Antler Corozo Cuff Links, for which Buntain served as creative
design consultant, are made from fallen rack antler horns—a naturally occurring event. At
the other end of the link is a corozo wafer button made from sustainable South American
tagua nut. This nut aids in the protection of rainforests by giving the local communities
incentive to cultivate tagua, instead of harvesting old growth rainforests. The two end
pieces are connected by sterling silver links. Handcrafted in New York City for the
sustainable luxury company COTO, the cuff links come packaged in a wooden box made
from sustainably managed Canadian forests and are laid on a bed of natural reindeer
moss. Available exclusively through 20ltd.com.
W e Are the Sh i p : Th e S tory of N e gr o
Le ague Baseball
Kadir Nelson, B.F.A., Illustration, ’96
$18.99 (Jump at the Sun/Hyperion, 2008)
The award-winning illustrator and writer of children’s books tells the story of Negro
League baseball from its beginnings in the 1920s through its decline after Jackie
Robinson crossed over to the majors in 1947. Intended for baseball lovers of all ages,
the book is also a mirror for the social and political history of black America in the first
half of the 20th century. Nelson, whose work has been exhibited in galleries and
museums around the world, richly illustrates the narrative with dozens of full- and
double-page oil paintings created with an understanding and affection for these lost
heroes of our national game. Available in bookstores.
38
p rat t folio
Paris Café :
T h e Sél ect Cr owd
Written by Noël Riley Fitch, Illustrated by Rick Tulka,
B.F.A., Integrative Studies, ’77
$17.95 (Soft Skull Press, 2007)
For nearly nine decades, Café Le Sélect in Montparnasse has been vital to the intellectual life of Paris,
hosting such notables as Ernest Hemingway, Simone
de Beauvoir, Pablo Picasso, James Baldwin, and
George Plimpton. Illustrator and editorial cartoonist
Tulka joins forces with the author Noël Riley Fitch to
fashion a charming love letter to their favorite hangout.
Although the book is organized around a history of the
café—its daily and seasonal rhythms, interesting
patrons, and typical café recipes—it prominently
features Tulka’s illustrations of celebrities as well as
full-page drawings of each waiter and many genial
caricatures of today’s regulars. Among the standouts:
Hart Crane pictured with a leering sailor in the near
background; 18 varieties of French noses; a youthful
Bill Murray looking frisky; a well-coiffed Hemingway,
writing implement in hand; and Isadora Duncan
reading a newspaper about the Sacco and Vanzetti
case. Available through amazon.com.
NEW AND NOTEWORTHY
Cr ud e Jewelry
Liz Kinnmark, B.I.D., Industrial Design, ’07
Ring, silver $75, 14k gold $295
Necklace, silver $145; 14K gold $790
Save a memento of how cheap oil used to be! A necklace, bracelet, and ring
decorated with miniature oil barrels, Crude Jewelry is a social commentary on
America’s fetishization of oil that takes the concept of black gold literally. The
line is manufactured in monthly batches. Each piece—whether gold-plated,
sterling silver, or solid 14K gold—is engraved with the date of production and
the price of a barrel of crude oil on that date.
Crude Necklace comes with a 25”-long chain. Crude Bracelet uses the
nostalgia of a charm bracelet to evoke the notion that oil may one day be a
thing of the past. Crude Ring redefines luxury by placing a miniature oil
barrel into the prong setting, rather than a traditional diamond. Kinnmark,
co-founder of Design Glut, specializes in conceptual product design. Her work
is inspired by culture, politics, aesthetics, and technology. Available through
coroflot.com or designglut.com
Creat ivit y: U n co n v e n tio n al
Wis d o m fro m 20
Acco m p l is h ed Min d s
Edited by Herb Meyers, B.F.A., Illustration, ’49, and Richard Gerstman
paper $24.95; cloth $42.50 (Palgrave Macmillan, 2007)
How do natural talent and drive turn into art? How does inspired
problem solving yield unexpectedly successful results? By
interviewing 20 of the most influential creative leaders of our time,
the editors find out directly from them just how they came up with
their original ideas. Such powerful personalities as playwright
Edward Albee, glass sculptor Dale Chihuly, painter Chuck Close,
author Erica Jong, film director Spike Lee, architect Daniel
Libeskind, and Apple computer co-founder Steve Wozniak are
among those who shed light on common themes and share their
firsthand experiences, methods, and incentives while also offering
advice on becoming more ingenious yourself. Meyers is a Lifetime
trustee of Pratt Institute. Available at bookstores.
Drag n e t Lo un g e C hair
Lo la h Eas y A r m c hair
Kenneth Cobonpue, B.I.D., Industrial Design, ’91
Dragnet Lounge Chair $3,300 indoor, $4,200 outdoor
Lolah Easy Armchair $2,148 indoor, $2,873 outdoor
Bringing nature into the home is Cobonpue’s goal in furnishing the living
space. A native of the Philippines, he merges traditional craftsmanship
and local organic materials with his own avant-garde designs to put a
sophisticated, non-Western spin on modern, artisan-style furniture. Most of
his sensuous, striking pieces are made from natural native fibers such as
rattan, bamboo, and Manila hemp, though he also works in leather and metals.
Cobonpue’s award-winning designs have caught the eye of such celebrity
collectors as Hollywood actor Brad Pitt, who has bought beds and sofas from
Cobonpue’s Los Angeles store. One bed was even featured in the Warner
Brother’s film Ocean’s 13. Available at outlets worldwide and through
kennethcobonpue.com.
39
New and Noteworthy
S tar Wars : A P o p - U p G u i d e to t h e G a l ax y
Matthew Reinhart, M.I.D., Industrial Design, ’98
$32.99 (Scholastic, 2007)
Intended for young readers (aged 6-13), this spectacular pop-up book, based on George Lucas’s epic Star
Wars movies, brings its universe to life on paper, delighting children of all ages. Best-selling pop-up artist and
engineer Matthew Reinhart has designed a 30th anniversary commemorative edition that comes packed with
a variety of novelty features: pop-ups, working light sabers, pull tabs, and other interactive looks at the
exciting and popular movies. This beautiful book will impress all fans of Star Wars and gives a whole new
perspective on the films. Available through amazon.com.
F l u t t eri n g Win gs
Laven d er Sach et
Miranda Hellman, B.F.A., Art and Design Ed./Painting, ’04
$9
S pin dle Table
Brad Ascalon, M.I.D., Industrial Design, ’05
$1,555
While still a student at Pratt, Ascalon was named as one of the world’s top 10 up-andcoming designers by Wallpaper magazine. His Spindle Table (2007) is an occasional table
made of glass, high-gloss painted wood, and steel, with a spindle of Ascalon’s own design.
The Spindle Table is just over four feet long and stands just over a foot high. Ascalon
breaks up a minimal shape with a single anachronistic, purely aesthetic detail that
challenges the nature of minimalistic design. The polished steel discs that set the spindle
in place further allow this classical element to float within the overtly modern borders of
the glass, so the entire table acts as a pedestal or a frame for the single classical element.
Although Ascalon develops product and packaging designs for a wide range of companies
and industries, he applies most of his energy and passion towards furniture design.
Available exclusively through Ligne Roset.
40
p r at t folio
The effects of mass production cause global warming
and poison our air, water, and soil. Express your
individualism and support for better air quality with
these novel, handmade goods created by Hellman, a
working painter, printmaker, bookbinder, and occasional costume designer. Her fanciful creations are
made of vintage finds, recycled fabric, plastic beads,
Venetian glass, and semiprecious stones turned into
dried lavendar sachets, placemats, jewelry, and other
accessories. In 2006, Hellman started her company,
Mira Artz, to promote her line of handcrafted items,
which she also markets at arts and crafts fairs around
New York City. Available through MiraArtz.etsy.com.
NEW AND NOTEWORTHY
Fair B racel et
Ruth Mikos, M.F.A., Photography, ’96
$118
By the El: T hir d
Av enue and it s E l
at Mi d - Centu ry
Lawrence Stelter, B.Arch., ’80, City Planning ’82
$19. 95 (H&M Publications, 2007)
Whether you love or loathe the New York City transit system,
Stelter’s documentary photographs of the now-defunct
elevated train line that ran along Third Avenue in Manhattan
during the early 1950s will leave you fascinated. This
haunting tribute to the Third Avenue El’s final years of
operation and subsequent demolition captures in color the
life and times of this bygone era with a wonderful sense of
composition, light, and feeling. Stelter’s written history leads
us north along the El’s itinerary of stops, relating the midcentury railroad structure to the surrounding elements of
New York City. Historically informative and visually compelling, this book is a must-read for anyone who savors New York
City’s vibrant street life. Available through amazon.com.
Ruth Mikos’s line of photographic glass
jewelry is eye-catching and different, with
many fun, retro images in the mix. A
photography assignment at Pratt led her to
shoot flea markets all over New York City.
This focus soon extended to include all kinds
of childhood memorabilia from her life in the
Midwest. Over a year ago Mikos began over to
incorporate her pictures of toys, dolls,
discarded lunch boxes, and old furniture into
photo charms for her jewelry collection, a
practice that combines her love of photography and fine art into something fun and funky
that she would be likely to wear. In her Jersey
City, N.J. studio, the images are printed by
computer onto waterslide decal paper in
reverse, applied to glass, sealed with resin
spray, and strung onto leather straps or silver
chains. There are also larger images
reproduced on glass tiles that can be hung on
the wall. Available through ruthmikos.com.
I CON IC A MER IC A : A R o l l e r - Coas t er R id e
T h r o ug h t h e Ey e - P o p p in g Pa n oram a o f
A m eri can P o p C u lt ur e
Tommy Hilfiger with George Lois (Pratt student 1949-1951)
$60 (Universe, 2007)
“What is America?” asks this book and replies: “It’s Monopoly and Mickey Mouse; it’s
Barbed Wire and the Can Opener. It’s the Declaration of Independence and Bob
Dylan and Groucho Marx. It’s Alfred E. Newman and Muhammad Ali, Dr. Spock and
Dr. Strangelove, the Edsel and our landing on the moon.” Inspired by fashion
designer Tommy Hilfiger’s passion for Americana and famous advertising art director
George Lois’s provocative visual power, this volume presents a mosaic of more than
400 iconic and iconoclastic images juxtaposed on its pages from the melting pot of
the American experience. The images compel Americans to question who we are,
what we stand for, and, perhaps, where we should be heading. Not only does this
volume celebrate the snap, crackle, and pop of American popular culture, it offers a
poignant and compelling commentary on America. Available at bookstores or
amazon.com.
41
© 2006 Bob Handelman
Ryerson Walk
PRATT TOPS NATIONWIDE DESIGN SURVEY
Pratt Institute’s design departments were among the highest-ranked schools in the 2008 “America’s Best Architecture and Design Schools” issue of Design Intelligence (DI), a monthly architecture
and design journal. DI’s annual school rankings are based exclusively on companies’ perceptions of
how well schools prepare their graduates for professional practice.
Pratt’s Undergraduate Interior Design program was ranked second and its Graduate Interior
Design program was ranked third by interior design and architecture firms across the country. In
addition, Pratt’s Interior Design undergraduate and graduate programs were ranked first by firms in
the eastern region of the country as well as by firms across the United States. Pratt’s Interior Design
department also scored high among schools with students showing innovation in design, skill in
using computer applications, and cross-disciplinary experience.
Pratt’s Industrial Design department was ranked third for its graduate program and fifth for its
undergraduate program by industrial design firms across the country. Both the undergraduate and graduate programs were ranked first in the eastern region of the country by firms in the eastern region.
Pratt’s Undergraduate Architecture program was ranked ninth in the country, according to DI.
The undergraduate program was ranked fourth among schools in the eastern region of the United
States by architecture and design firms in the eastern region and was ranked fifth among schools in
the eastern region by firms nationwide.
Group Meets to Formulate
Sustainability Strategies
Last fall, a diverse group of architects, designers,
urban planners, technology specialists, and
other leaders and thinkers in sustainability
gathered at Pratt Manhattan Gallery for a
strategy session that laid the groundwork for
making Pratt a model for sustainability for
schools of art and design across the country. The
forum was led by trustee Robert H. Siegel and
Debera Johnson, Pratt’s academic director of
sustainability.
The group generated close to 200 concepts,
then identified six key areas of focus, including
creating green jobs and internships and creating
standards and graphics that make it easier for
individuals to understand how they can go
carbon neutral. It is expected that these action
items will lead to a series of concrete proposals
for advancing Pratt’s leadership in sustainability.
“The exciting outcome of the meeting is the
beginning of a ‘smart network’ that will continue
to bring in a diversity of professionals who are
committed to the environment,” says Johnson.
Architecture School Is
“Home Base” for Film on
Architecture Education
JOE VERICKER
Pratt Center for Community Development marked more than four decades of planning and advocacy
for social, racial, economic, and environmental justice with its 45th Anniversary gala dinner this spring.
During the festivities, the organization honored the accomplishments of three leaders who have
helped to further the organization’s vision: J. Max Bond, Jr., FAIA, a partner at New York City–based
Davis Brody Bond, Architects and Planners, and former New York City planning commissioner;
Jonathan Rose, founder of the award-winning national real estate firm Jonathan Rose Companies LLC,
which plans, develops, and acquires environmentally responsible projects; and Alexie Torres-Fleming,
executive director of Youth Ministries for Peace and Justice, a community development center.
From left to right, bottom: honorees Jonathan Rose and Alexie Torres-Fleming, President Thomas F.
Schutte, and honoree J. Max Bond, Jr. Top: Pratt Center Director Brad Lander and Pratt trustees Gary
Hattem, Mike Pratt, and Robert Siegel.
42
p r att folio
Arbuckle Industries
Pratt Center Celebrates Its 45th Anniversary
Filmmakers Ian Harris, above left, and David
Krantz, architects themselves, are putting their
careers on hold to tell the true story of the
grueling challenges in the lives of architecture
students in the feature-length documentary
Archiculture, which they are shooting on Pratt’s
Brooklyn campus this spring semester. They
chose Pratt due to the diversity of its students
and the architecture program’s willing support.
Archiculture will provide viewers with an indepth look into the creative yet competitive
process of architectural education by following five
students during their turbulent final semester at
Pratt, revealing their passion, drive, and unflagging determination. The film will use the their
projects and their stories to examine contemporary
issues surrounding the profession.
RYERSON WALK
CARMEN MARC VALVO TO BE NAMED 2008
PRATT INSTITUTE FASHION ICON AT ANNUAL
PRATT FASHION SHOW
Pratt Institute will present the 2008 Pratt Institute Fashion Icon Award to
acclaimed designer Carmen Marc Valvo at its annual fashion runway show on
Wednesday, May 7, 2008. Following the Fashion Show, Pratt President Thomas
F. Schutte will host an exclusive party in Manhattan to honor Valvo.
The designer, who has dressed the likes of Beyoncé, Jennifer Hudson, Katie
Couric, Oprah Winfrey, Kate Winslet, Mary J. Blige, Iman, and Queen Latifah,
began his own label in 1989, after working for Nina Ricci and Christian Dior. His
sportswear, an instant success, was carried by several top stores, and his
elegant evening wear was selected by retailers Saks Fifth Avenue and Neiman
Marcus. After establishing his Collection line, Valvo launched Carmen Marc
Valvo Couture, a collection that is presented twice a year during New York
Fashion Week and that caters to his celebrity clientele. He also designs daytime
dresses under CMV by Carmen Marc Valvo, fine furs, swimwear, lingerie, and
recently introduced a line of eyewear.
The 2008 Pratt Fashion Show will feature the work of select graduating seniors
from the program. The designs to be shown on the runway will be chosen by a
panel of fashion industry critics and will span several categories of apparel including
women’s, men’s, children’s, evening, bridal, sportswear, and costume design.
The 2008 Pratt Fashion Show is sponsored by the Importer Support Program
of the Cotton Board and Cotton Incorporated.
The Pratt Libraries recently received donations
of three new collections.
The Thoren Collection features photographs
and memorabilia from alumna Virginia Thoren
(Certificate, Advertising, ’42), a society and
fashion photographer who worked for such
magazines as Vogue and Town&Country.
The Dazian Collection, donated to Pratt by the
Museum of the City of New York, comprises 500
rare books on costume, fashion, theater, textiles,
and fine arts, some featuring hand-colored
plates, engravings, lithographs, and drawings.
School of Information and Library Science Dean
Tula Giannini recommended acquisition of the
collection, which was originally a gift to the
museum by the owners of Dazian’s Theatrical
Emporium.
The Whelan Collection comprises approximately 5,500 texts on art, architecture, design,
and photography from the estate of the late
biographer Richard Whelan.
The majority of the materials will be housed in
the rare book room of Pratt’s Brooklyn library,
but the collections will gain a broader audience
due to Pratt’s membership in the Computer
Library Center, which places member holdings in
an online catalog accessible worldwide.
Prattstore Emerges as Creative
Center for Artistic Community
Changes are under way at the Prattstore, as the
Institute’s on-site source of books and art supplies
expands both its offerings and its activities under
the leadership of Roy Muraskiewicz, formerly
general manager of Kate’s Paperie and vice
president of retail for Sam Flax, both in New
York City.
The Prattstore carries a wealth of art supplies
and books linked to Pratt’s curriculum, and its
core products also serve Brooklyn’s growing
community of artists. Products designed by Pratt
alumni and students will have a special place in
the home décor section, which already includes
colorful new rugs, lamps, accessories, and
shelving units.
“The 15,000-square-foot space allows us to try
new products that foster creativity,” says
Muraskiewicz. To better serve the Pratt
community, he has increased the stock of art
supplies so materials are available throughout
the semester and has kept pricing competitive
with other art suppliers in the metropolitan area.
The store also offers a range of inexpensive
ready-made frames for student shows, and
Muraskiewicz has installed a complete customframing department that features about 1,000
different moldings.
In an attempt to draw in the general consumer
and casual art store shopper, the store has
expanded its selection of office supplies and
introduced custom printing, stationery, greeting
cards, decorative papers, posters, and prints to
its offerings, and hosts well-attended Saturday
morning children’s readings, and month-long art
exhibitions that give neighborhood artists
needed exposure.
© 2007 Bob Handelman
New Collections Bolster
Research Holdings at Pratt
Libraries
43
ryerso n walk
Amanda Adams-Louis
Halloween at Pratt: More Than
Ghouls and Goblins
Bernard Gotfryd/ Getty Images
Fifty revelers entered the Communications
Design 2007 Halloween Costume Competition,
sponsored by the Undergraduate Communications Design department, with costumes that
went far beyond the traditional ghoulish fare.
Three costume designs rose to the top, however.
From left to right, fashion design student Tori
Iannarino won a $1,000 first prize award for her
costume “Carousel”; industrial design student
Morgan Street won a $500 second prize award
for “Trash Emu”; and Ben Gould, who is also an
industrial design student, won a $250 third
prize award for “Quill.”
Professor Francine Monaco
Inducted into Interior Design
Hall of Fame
Angela Davis, the educator, writer, and activist who has made a career of combating oppression in the
U.S. and abroad, served as the School of Liberal Arts and Sciences’ first Scholar in Residence this spring.
Davis engaged the minds of students and faculty alike with her keynote address, “Identifying Racism
in the Era of Neoliberalism,” in which she spoke about the mutating yet persistent dynamics of racism.
Davis also screened the documentary film The Farm: Angola (Liz Garbus, Wilbert Rideau, and Jonathan
Stack, USA, 1998), which depicts day-to-day life in Angola Prison in Angola, La.; led a roundtable
discussion with New York–based artists about aesthetic practice, cultural politics, and social justice; and
held a seminar for Pratt faculty members on “Violence and the Visual.”
Davis is a tenured professor in the History of Consciousness department at the University of
California, Santa Cruz, and the University of California presidential chair in African American and
Feminist Studies.
Exhibition Showcases Sustainable Architectural Design from
Sponsored Research Studios
The exhibition “Manufactured Surfaces: Three Pratt Institute Sponsored Research Studios for
Sustainable Architecture” features recent and ongoing work by students in three collaborative studios
straddling the undergraduate architecture and interior design departments. The exhibition will be on
display May 19–30 at the Pratt Manhattan Gallery, located at 144 W. 14 Street, Manhattan.
The design research on display uses building products by Designtex, manufacturer of architectural
wall coverings, fabrics, and panels; Hunter Douglas, makers of window covering products; and Velux,
manufacturers of skylight products, to explore the topics of design, sustainability, and their relationship to contemporary manufacturing methodologies. The studios developed new applications for
building products through full-scale prototypes, material demonstrations, and project proposals.
A reception for the exhibition will be held on Tuesday, May 20, 6–9 PM in the Gallery.
44
p rat t folio
Courtesy of Francine Monaco
LIBERAL ARTS AND SCIENCES HOSTS FIRST SCHOLAR IN
RESIDENCE: ANGELA DAVIS
Francine Monaco, adjunct associate professor,
Interior Design, was inducted into the Interior
Design Hall of Fame in a ceremony at the
Waldolf=Astoria on November 28. Monaco, an
architect, was honored alongside her business
partner, Carl D’Aquino, for their work with
D’AquinoMonaco Inc., a design firm they
founded over a decade ago.
Monaco has taught a variety of interior design
courses since her arrival at Pratt eight years ago
and has offered interdisciplinary studio courses
with Anthony Caradonna, associate professor,
Architecture. Monaco also assists Interior Design
department chair Anita Cooney in developing
course curricula for the program.
RYERSON WALK
COURTESY DIOR BEAUTY
Dior Beauty Receives 2008 Art
of Packaging Award
Dior Beauty, the fragrance, makeup, and skin
care house of Christian Dior, Inc., received the
Pratt Institute-Luxe Pack Art of Packaging Award
during the 19th annual Marc Rosen Scholarship
fundraising gala, which took place on April 15,
2008 at the University Club in Manhattan.
Pamela Baxter, president, Christian Dior, Inc.,
accepted the accolade on behalf of the
company, which was chosen for its longstanding
commitment to package design. Diana Williams,
WABC-TV Eyewitness News anchor, served as
master of ceremonies for the gala event.
Proceeds from the event will fund monetary
awards for exceptional Pratt students studying
packaging design.
The Marc Rosen Scholarship for Graduate
Package Design was established at Pratt
Institute in 1989 to provide funds for the
education of students in packaging design,
particularly in the fragrance industry. The awards
are made to promising students who enroll in the
world’s only graduate course in cosmetics
packaging design, taught by acclaimed designer
Marc A. Rosen, M.F.A., Packaging Design, ’70,
who has served as a Pratt trustee for many years.
Thierry Gourjon
Pamela Baxter, president, Christian Dior
Trustee David Walentas and Graduate Digital Arts student William Rahilly at the new studios
GRADUATE DIGITAL ARTS STUDENTS CELEBRATE NEW
DUMBO STUDIO SPACE
Students from Pratt’s Graduate Digital Arts program gathered in the DUMBO section of Brooklyn in
February, not to party or to check out the swanky new restaurants and bars in the area, but for a
reception to celebrate their move into a loft-like studio space at 20 Jay Street. President Schutte,
trustees, department Chair Peter Patchen, and guests joined in the festivities.
“This is the first time in the 20-year history of the department that Pratt’s Graduate Digital Arts
students have had dedicated studio spaces of their own,” reported Patchen. “This is something that
will change the culture of our department.” The space will temporarily house the studios until
Pratt’s new 524 Myrtle Avenue building is completed two years from now.
The students, who had previously struggled to work in cramped quarters at home, thanked
Trustee David Walentas and spouse Jane, who is his business partner, for their generosity in
donating the space, and demonstrated their projects for visitors.
In a special presentation, Ya Chi Peng, a second-year graduate student, demonstrated her thesis
project by doing a percussive flamenco dance that triggered lights and movement in flowerlike
objects that hung from the ceiling. She sighed with relief at the end of her performance. “It’s great
to have space,” Peng said. “Can you imagine me doing this in my kitchen?”
Matthew Burger
Students Help to Build “Way-to-Go” Car
The “Way-to-Go” Car in action
Pratt industrial design students Paul Crotty,
Jason Pfaeffle, Gerry Heferman, and Brad Jones
helped to demonstrate, this spring semester, a
prototype of the “Way-to-Go” Car, a lightweight
tandem vehicle, developed as part of a project
involving faculty members and students of Pratt
and The Cooper Union. Backed by a private
funder, the project may lead to the mass
production of an entire class of green cars that
are inexpensive to purchase and drive—the final
prototype will likely use a biodiesel engine that
allows the car to get more than 100 mpg.
The Pratt team also included Arthur “Tip”
Sempliner, adjunct associate professor, Industrial
Design, who designed the vehicle; designer and
fabricator Jon Pettingill (B.I.D., Industrial Design,
’02); and Adam Apostolos, (A.O.S., Graphic
Design, ’83), manager of the metal shop and
visiting instructor, Fine Arts, who helped to build
and test the prototype.
Jeff Tolbert, adjunct associate professor,
Industrial Design, who served as project
manager, says the process has been helpful for
students who enjoyed mentor-student relationships akin to those of days past. “They have
learned about research, craftsmanship, problem
solving, and how beauty of form and functional
integrity can be one and the same.”
45
RYERSON WALK
1
2
DIANA PAU
The Nissan Cube—a car popular with Japanese youth, but not yet
available in the United States—made its debut at this year’s New York
International Auto Show with the help of Pratt industrial and interior
design students. The students had worked for months, under the
guidance of Martin Skalski, professor, Industrial Design, to perfect colorful
and intricately patterned exterior and interior treatments that represented
the spirit of the car for the show.
The team members who created the design “Quazé” said its gridlike exterior
pattern was inspired by a street map of Brooklyn, where the teammates all live.
The vehicle’s surface, which second-year graduate industrial design student
Emily Potter says reflects the “buzz and beat” of the borough, contrasts with the
quilted, silk-taffeta interior, complete with zip-up seat belt/vests, designed
to wrap passengers in comfort.
The “Nielus” team mixed aggressive shardlike shapes with larger,
broken polygons and subtle squares, setting up a striking tension as the
patterns shift on the surface of the vehicle and as the viewers’ eyes notice the
changing shapes. Team member Minos Tzouflas, a first-year graduate
industrial design student, said, “We wanted to create an interest on various
levels so that people wouldn’t think about the design until they started to
examine the surface of the car.”
The Nissan Cube is slated to make its official entry into the U.S. market
at the Los Angeles Auto Show this fall.
DIANA PAU
STUDENTS PRESENT DESIGNS FOR NISSAN
CUBES AT NEW YORK INTERNATIONAL
AUTO SHOW
1. “Nielus,” designed by students Susan Hasselbrook, Kaspar Spurgeon,
Diana Thomas, and Minos Tzouflas 2. “Quazé,” designed by students
Tawny Hixson, Yeon Jee, Emily Potter, and John Renaud
Pratt Students Compete in Lighting Competition Commemorating
Design Innovator George Kovacs
Stephanie Slaght
Graduate and sophomore industrial design students participated this spring in the George Kovacs
Lighting Competition, organized to preserve the legacy of George Kovacs, the late Austrian-born
designer, manufacturer, and importer of modern lighting fixtures, who first introduced the halogen
torchère to the United States. Students were encouraged to create new lighting designs that embodied
the standards set by Kovacs more than 50 years ago.
Three outside judges made the selections based on originality, creativity, and use of sustainable
materials. “It was hard to decide,” reported Alecia Wesner, Kovacs’ first in-house designer and
current president of Kovacs-Wesner Design Group, when she announced the winners in February.
Jennie Maneri (Graduate Industrial Design, ’10), took first prize, earning $1,000, for her design of the
table lamp, Night Sky, which Wesner said was a “universal favorite.” Austin Doten (Industrial Design,
’11) won second prize for his table lamp, FIYA, and Robert Volex (Industrial Design, ’11) took home
third prize for his floor lamp, Filament. Recognition for Best Concept went to Alexandra Pulver
(Graduate Industrial Design, ’10) for her table lamp, Hourglass. Heidi Patterson (Graduate Industrial
Design, ’10) earned a special mention for her floor lamp, Current.
From left to right, Alecia Wesner, Austin Doten, Robert Volex, and Jennie Maneri
46
p rat t folio
Sculpture Student Receives
First Anthony Gennarelli
Memorial Award
Charlotte Meyer, M.F.A., Sculpture, ’09, is the
first recipient of the Anthony Gennarelli
Memorial Award, which will support her
participation in the School of Art and Design’s
Pratt in Venice program this summer. Meyer,
whose sculptural installation Repair, 2006, is
shown above, received the award based on
artistic and academic merit. Anthony Gennarelli
was an innovative visual artist who brought the
art of stone sculpting with him from Tuscany to
the U.S.; he was also a talented musician,
teacher, and owner of a successful textile firm.
His wife, Alba Gennarelli, used proceeds from
the sale of some his sculptures to establish the
Anthony Gennarelli Memorial Award, which will
be used to support sculpture students’ study
abroad, to fund their work in Pratt’s sculpture
program, and to back their endeavors at other
institutions with which Pratt partners.
RYERSON WALK
Federal Library Grants Help
Link SILS Students to Local
Institutions
Two federal Institute of Museum and Library
Services (IMLS) grants to Pratt’s School of
Information and Library Science (SILS) to fund
practicums and internships for urban librarians are
paying off, helping to provide SILS graduates with
bridges to—and jobs at—some of the most
prestigious institutions in New York City.
A $525,000 IMLS grant, which began in 2004,
has supported the SILS Public Urban Library
Service Education (PULSE) program, created in
collaboration with the Brooklyn Public Library
(BPL) to recruit and educate new local
librarians. A second grant of $591,000, which
began in 2005, has supported the school’s
Graduate Archives Training and Education: Work
and Information (GATEWAI) program, which
offers specialized onsite training to future
archivists, manuscript curators, and photo/
image specialists at the Brooklyn Historical
Society (BHS). The grants have since funded 21
full-time trainees and 20 internsat BPL and 30
interns at BHS.
“Students value these hands-on learning experiences and the opportunities for networking that
often lead to excellent positions,” says SILS Dean
Tula Giannini. By way of example, she names Lily
Dougherty, library information supervisor at the
Stone Avenue branch; Megan Kilgallen, children’s
librarian in the Youth Services Division at the
Central branch, who recently obtained positions
at the BPL after doing practicums there; and
Eunice Liu, who was hired as a project archivist at
the BHS after an internship. “The list goes on and
on,” says Giannini.
Aviva, 2003, by Chris Wright, adjunct assistant professor, Fine Arts
Aviva Stone, an artist model who had been a
muse to Pratt’s students, faculty, and staff for
more than two decades, passed away in
December 2007. With her ample curves and
larger-than-life personality, Stone became known
as “La Grande Dame des Ateliers.” Over the
years, she posed for Pratt’s Fine Arts, Foundation, Communications Design, Fashion, and
Pre-College classes and was a perennial favorite
at the Institute’s Draw-a-thon.
Keith Gratkowski, a third-year architecture
student from Scranton, Pa., died on Nov. 27,
2007, after sustaining brain injuries resulting
from an accidental fall on Nov. 24. He had been
on the Dean’s List at Pratt and was a member of
the American Institute of Architecture Students.
He earned an associate degree, with honors,
from Johnson College in Scranton, Pa., and also
had studied at the University of Pittsburgh.
Patricia Ruth Parker-Williams, B.Arch.,
’06, passed away suddenly and unexpectedly of
natural causes on Feb. 21, 2008. After
graduating from Pratt, with honors, she moved to
Virginia Beach where she was an architect intern
with Hanbury, Evans, Wright, Vlattas + Company.
She had been married for one year to Sgt.
Christopher Brian Williams (U.S. Marine Corps)
of Virginia Beach, currently assigned to the 2nd
Intelligence Battalion, Camp Fallujah, Iraq.
Students Participate in Pratt’s First Spiritual Art Show
Pratt students recently participated in the Institute’s first ever “Spiritual Art Show,” which explored
the notion of art as a spiritual path. The exhibition, which was sponsored by the Department of
Campus Ministry, was on view in the Pratt Chapel in February and March. Rabbi Simcha Weinstein,
who organized the show says, “I wanted people to understand that they could put spirituality into
their art—that the two concepts are not mutually exclusive.”
More than 30 students responded with submissions that ran the gamut from a humorous illustration of a shofar (a ram’s horn used as a call to religious observance during the Jewish holiday of Rosh
Hashanah) to photographs documenting the Amish in Lancaster, Pa.
Also on display were images by Father Richard Bretone depicting Christian symbols and the comic
book Art School Rabbi, written by Weinstein and drawn by student David Ben-Yshay. Weinstein had
previously penned the book Up, Up, and Oy Vey, which focuses on the Jewish culture’s contributions
to the history of the comics.
RÉne Perez
For Family Weekend: A Peek
into the Lives of Students
In Memoriam
More than 400 relatives of Pratt students visited
Pratt’s Brooklyn campus for Family Weekend
2007 during the fall 2007 semester. The annual
event provides an opportunity for relatives to
experience a “day in the life” of Pratt students.
During the event, participants enjoyed such
workshops as figure drawing, jewelry design, and
color theory. Above, a parent tests her skills in a
painting workshop.
Art School Rabbi, a comic strip by student David Ben-Yshay and Rabbi Simcha Weinstein
47
Literary Corner
Sustainability
Apocalypticism
and
By Ira Livingston
Ira Livingston is chair of English and Humanities at Pratt.
This essay was originally delivered as an address at Pratt’s
sustainability teach-in in February.
I
nterest in sustainability is driven by many
factors, primary among which is a collective
desire to stay alive. Without throwing any wrench in
those works, I want to suggest some other cultural
forces at work.
Sustainability isn’t just a set of material practices
but also an emergent mind-set, paradigm, and
worldview. In the largest sense, sustainability is
something that can shape the way we understand
everything from our daily actions to the overall
trajectory of life on the planet. In other words, it has
scientific and technological dimensions as well as
what we might call religious dimensions.
The coexistence of aspects of science and religion is
one way you can tell sustainability is a postmodern
phenomenon. Everyone not made anxious by the term
“religious” may now bristle at “postmodern,” but, in my
view, this is an essential point.
To put it schematically, modernity conceives of
itself as a dynamism that breaks with the stasis of the
premodern past. But sustainability is both and neither
dynamism and stasis. It comes from an understanding
of how open systems sustain themselves dynamically.
Sustainability is also at odds with master narratives
of progress and decline, organizing principles of
modernity. The scientific incarnations of these
principles were developed in the 19th century.
Evolution was largely conceived as a progress
narrative,while the Second Law of Thermodynamics—
whereby the disorder of a closed system inevitably
increases to a maximum—was posited as a principle of
relentless decline. Together, these principles yielded a
narrative of evolving biological life striving, upwardly
mobile, set in stark relief against an irreversibly
decaying thermodynamic universe. This stance went
well with the patriarchal white ruling class’s sense of
its own tragic heroism, beset inside and out by threats
of devolution and disorder.
48
p r at t folio
A century later, the relations between biological
figure and thermodynamic ground are shiftier.
Scientists like Stuart Kauffman are now establishing
that life is not so improbable or heroic after all, but
rather an “expected emergent collective property of a
modestly complex mixture of catalytic polymers,” at
home in a universe hospitable to life and characterized
by lively self-organizing processes at all scales, from
molecules to galactic clusters. I’m giving the sunniest
and most animistic version, but in any case, sustainability belongs to this decidedly postmodern universe.
It’s easy to see that sustainability and its dark twin,
apocalypticism, don’t jibe with modernist narratives
of progress and decline. But such narratives aren’t
obsolete. In fact, obsolescence is itself mostly a
modernist notion; we postmodernists affirm that our
narratives are recycled! My point is that sustainability
is orchestrated with and against narratives of progress, decline, and apocalypse in complex ways.
I suggest that sustainability is one response to an
underlying, often unacknowledged but ever present
sense of the imminent eclipse of the West—especially the U.S.—as dominant world power; the sense
that these are the latter days of an imperial dynasty.
As with global warming, we are confronted regularly
with signs that this event is coming, or that the
tipping point has passed and we’re already on the
downward slope. Which narrative resonates more
with you depends on whether your neurotic style
tends more towards anxiety, the sense that something bad is about to happen, or depression, the
sense that something bad and irrevocable has
already happened. The latter is related to what
cultural theorist Paul Gilroy called, in the case of
England, “postcolonial melancholia.”
A glance at two films will show how this background unease can be marshaled to support
particular politics.
Literary corner
The Day After Tomorrow imagines the sudden
arrival of catastrophic climate change. United 93
rehearses the events of 9/11. The setups in both films
are subtly but strikingly similar. (I can only talk about
the beginning of United 93, since I got fed up and
stopped watching.) Both films open with extended
montages, cutting back and forth between scenes
being gathered toward what we know will be a
catastrophic convergence. In The Day After Tomorrow
it is assorted signs of imminent climate change; in
United 93, it is terrorists preparing, plane passengers
arriving at the airport, and so on.
What struck me was the music. In both films, it is
as though an extended, low, ominous chord or chords
were playing continuously in the background,
unresolved chords that require the coming catastrophe to break the tension. One experiences this unease
bodily; humans may even be programmed neurologically to respond to low-frequency sound with fear and
dread. I stopped watching United 93 because of my
sense that the film was working to put that uneasiness
in the service of creating a culture of fear, to install it
in our brains via that background hum. The hum fits
what historian Daniel Lord Smail calls a “teletropic
mechanism,” something designed to “influence the
body chemistry of others.”
Sustainability is something that can shape
the way we understand everything from
our daily actions to the overall trajectory of
human life on the planet.
Christopher Zacharow
”
Virginia Woolf evoked another kind of hum—a
cheery one—that for her characterized the golden
days before the First World War. “In those days,” she
wrote, “every conversation seemed to have been
accompanied by a sort of humming noise, not
articulate, but musical, exciting, which changed the
value of the words themselves.” Closer to the downbeat hum I’m talking about is Victorian poet Matthew
Arnold’s account of “the Sea of Faith” receding, like a
wave across a rocky beach, with a “melancholy, long,
withdrawing roar.” Or, going from sublime to ridiculous, think of 1992 presidential candidate Ross Perot’s
evocation of “the giant sucking noise” of U.S. jobs
continuously being lost to low-wage countries.
If you Google “The Hum,” you’ll even find that
there are people across North America for whom
these metaphors are only too real, people bedeviled
by “what is perceived as a persistent low-frequency
sound for which obvious sources have been ruled
out” (Wikipedia).
I suggest we understand sustainability as a kind of
melody played with and against such a chord—that
unresolved low chord playing continuously in the
background of our lives—the sound of the displacement, decline and/or collapse of U.S. power and of
Western modernity itself.
At its worst, then, sustainability is a form of denial,
a whistling through the graveyard—or slightly better,
a kind of Prozac that takes the edge off symptoms of
imperial decline—or better still, a kind of antiapocalypticism. But I want to leave you with a
question that is also a challenge: Is it possible that, at
its best and most joyful, sustainability is itself a kind
of apocalypticism, sweeping through all that we know
and do? P
49
Supporting Pratt
office personnel. Tiered support for
centralized enrollment and registration
through a “one-stop” system will
enable students to complete the entire
process—from selecting classes to
paying tuition and filing loan papers—
in one visit. With this new facility we
will see the end of the dreaded “Pratt
run around” for good!
Courtesy of Studio A/WASA
The Center will feature computer
kiosks for enrollment and registration;
free-standing desks for staff crosstrained in all aspects of the enrollment
process, outfitted with dual-sided
computer screens so staff can easily
walk students through any aspect of the
process; and private offices for individual staff specialists to help with
more complex registration and
financial aid issues.
524 Myrtle Improves Student
Serviced and Facilities
T
he new “green” building Pratt is erecting
at 524 Myrtle Avenue, which is expected to
attain the coveted LEED Gold standard, is perhaps the
most tangible example of Pratt’s stated commitment to
transforming the campus into a living laboratory for
sustainable design. This alone is enough to make the
building an important addition to the Institute. But
even more important, at least in the daily life of many
staff and the students they serve, is the fact that 524
Myrtle has been designed to relieve some of the
longstanding issues plaguing student life at Pratt.
Upper level floors will house the new
Digital Arts Center and the Convergence and Fine Arts Studios, which will
offer sorely needed state-of-the-art
learning, practice, and exhibition
spaces. 524 Myrtle will also be the new
home of the widely acclaimed Pratt
Center for Community Development,
which has worked for more than 40
years toward a more just, equitable, and
sustainable city for all New Yorkers. The Pratt Center
will share a floor with the Institute’s Development and
Alumni Relations offices, including Publications and
Communications.
In recent years Myrtle Avenue has been transformed
into a busy thoroughfare with more shops, restaurants,
and cafés, and the new building will extend this vitality.
A Kentucky Fried Chicken had formerly occupied the
site at 524 Myrtle, but in recent years it was vacant and
blighted. The new building will have a ground floor
dedicated to retail space, providing initiative and
encouragement to Myrtle Avenue businesses and
creating a naturally dynamic mingling and meeting
point with our neighbors.
The Student aServices Center
524 Myrtle will, for the first time, make it possible
for all student services to function out of one physical
location. The new Student Services Center will house
registration, enrollment, financial aid, and bursar’s
50
p r at t folio
For information about how you can help Pratt achieve its full
vision and goals for 524 Myrtle through your financial support,
please contact Patricia Pelehach, VP of Development at 718-6363448 or [email protected] We would be happy to provide you
with architectural renderings or to arrange a site visit.
supporting pratt
Ensuring Pratt’s Future
Charles Prat t left an indelible mark on Brooklyn, the art
and design world, and society at large when he founded Pratt
Institute. Since that time, many generous individuals have sought
to ensure Pratt’s future by including the institution in their estate
plans. Today, bequests provide critical resources for Pratt’s most
fundamental endeavors, including professorships, scholarships,
and academic facilities. Beyond the financial resources they
provide, bequests are truly gifts from the heart, enabling alumni
and friends to perpetuate their vision and love of Pratt Institute
for generations to come.
Your Gateway to News
about Pratt Institute
GATEWAY is the community
newsletter of Pratt Institute
and provides news to the
Institute’s alumni, faculty,
Remembering Pratt Is Easy.
staff, students, and friends.
You may make an outright bequest by specifying a specific dollar amount
or a percentage of your estate to Pratt Institute. Sample language might
include the following:
It is published twice
“I give, devise, and bequeath to Pratt Institute, a not-for-profit educational institution located at 200 Willoughby Avenue, Brooklyn, NY
11205, and incorporated in the State of New York, the sum of $_____.”
ber, December, June, July,
You may also bequeath a percentage of your estate. Or you may make a
residuary request, which indicates that a gift of the remainder of your
estate will be made to Pratt Institute after all other specific bequests
have been fulfilled. You may not have to change your will to remember
Pratt. Many states, including Connecticut, New Jersey, and New York,
allow residents to add a codicil to their wills.
published once per month.
Please contact Cindy Forbes, major gifts officer, should you wish advice
and assistance at 718-636-3757 or email her at [email protected]
If you notify us of your bequest intention, we will enroll you in the
Renaissance Society of Pratt Institute.
monthly, excluding Novemand August, when it is
We’d like to share GATEWAY with you electronically.
Send your e-mail address to [email protected]
and we’ll keep you informed about what’s happening
at your alma mater.
Legends
2008
A Pratt Institute Scholarship Benefit honoring Art and Design Icons
SAV E T HE DATE
T HU R SDAY, O C TO B ER 16
L EGENDS 2 0 0 8 C O - C H A I R S Kurt Andersen, Amy Cappellazzo, Marjorie Kuhn
For more information or to reserve tickets, please contact Pratt Special Events at 718.399.4486 or [email protected]
51
pratt people
Remember
Renew
Reimagine
Save the Date
ReIGNITE!
A Weekend of Connection and Creativity
October 24–26, 2008
Join your classmates and Pratt faculty at ReIGNITE!
to explore thought-provoking and skill-building panels
A Weekend of Connection and Creativity
and workshops. All are welcome.
’’s
e
n
o
y
r
e
Ev
Invited!
To learn more, visit
www.pratt.edu/ReIGNITE!
Sign up online for email alerts.
If this is not your reunion year,
additional information about
ReIGNITE! will be available
only online and via email.
Re me mb er Art and War
War is humankind’s most self-destructive and aberrant behavior. Yet it is also
the locus of expression of some of our most prized virtues: patriotism, heroism
and sacrifice. This theme looks at artists’ and designers’ participation in war (and
peace activities) from several vantage points. We dare not forget. Join us as we
remember the conflicts of the past, and investigate our responses in the present.
Renew Creative Renewal and Exploration
How do you renew your artistic vision when inspiration seems to have dried up?
How do you transition from one art career to the next stage…which may be retirement or volunteer activities? How do you define success? How do you incorporate new ideas and practices into your business model or studio? Come learn
firsthand from prolific and ever-renewing artists, advisers, and lifelong learners’
tips and techniques for keeping your artistic practice fresh and satisfying.
Rei magine Art and the Word
Visual art and design have long had a symbiotic relationship with literature and
words. From the Bible and classic literature to graffiti and hip-hop, art is impacted
by words and vice versa—think of classic history paintings and Victorian narrative paintings, illustrations for newspapers and books, Picasso in his Cubist period
reasserting the primacy of the picture plane by painting words on the surface, and
more recently, the work of Jenny Holzer, Richard Prince, the Hernandez brothers
(Love and Rockets). Art and words are the crux of the relationship between artists
and designers and their critics, and between art directors and copy editors. This
theme explores the ever changing, ever challenging relationship between art and
words and invites you to reimagine your own work through the power of words.
Campus and neighborhood tours / President’s Circle members’ reception / Reunion exhibition /
Opening of special alumni section in the Prattstore / Gala dinner and live music / Prerelease screening of
The Ghost Army, a World War II documentary that shows how Pratt alumni used art to deceive Axis powers in Europe
Especially for Reunion Classes (alumni whose class years end in ’3s and ’8s)
• Champagne luncheons for alumni celebrating their 25th and 50th reunions.
• Opportunity to include work in the Reunion exhibition featuring art, design, and architecture.
• Invitation to the Alumni Achievement Award luncheon—space is limited—RSVP early.
52
p r att folio
pratt people
Alumni News
1
3
2
4
5
1. 2007 Alumni Achievement Award honorees Robert Cioppa, Rodney Leon, Beverly Pepper, President Thomas F. Schutte, Deirdre Lawrence, and Dr.
Michael Allocca. 2. Betsy Lewin with Duck for President, which she illustrated, and Paul Wrablica, in front of his mid-1940s redesign of the Presidential
Seal in the Reunion exhibition. 3. Virginia Thoren discusses her photographs with Ashley Berger at the Reunion 2007 exhibition. 4. Myrtle (Fredrickson)
Johnson, Betty (Kormusis) Crumley, Marcia (Nurnberg) Wiener, President Thomas F. Schutte, and Joan (Azzolina) Cousineau review yearbooks at
Reunion 2007. 5. Bruce Freeman and Marjorie (Kler) Freeman at the 55th Reunion luncheon.
2007 Alumni Achievement Awards Honor
Distinguished Graduates
During Reunion, Pratt honored five outstanding alumni with
the 2007 Alumni Achievement Award, as part of an awards
luncheon held in the Hazel and Robert Siegel Gallery in
Higgins Hall. Honorees for 2007 are as follows:
Dr. Michael Allocca , B.S., Electrical Engineering, ’64, is a
member of the faculty of The Mahler Company, a global leader
in executive development and organizational change, with
headquarters in New Jersey. His appointment follows a long
career in the corporate world, where he has held a broad range
of management positions in engineering, marketing, sales, and
general management in both large and small firms.
Robert Cioppa , B.Arch., ’67, is a principal of the Manhattan-based
architectural firm of Kohn Pederson Fox Associates PC. During
a career spanning more than 40 years, he has overseen the
design and construction of government, corporate headquarters, and offices for a variety of media, research, and financial
clients including Boston Properties, Hines Properties, and
Gannett/USA Today.
Deirdre Lawrence , M.S., Library and Information Science, ’79,
has been principal librarian at the Brooklyn Museum since late
1983. In this capacity, she established the museum’s archives
and implemented projects to preserve and make accessible the
museum’s research collections. She has also overseen a
renovation project and the implementation of an online catalog.
Rodney Leon , B.Arch., ’92, who received Pratt’s 2007 Young
Alumni Achievement Award, is a founding principal of AARRIS
Architects LLP. He was chosen as the winning designer of a
permanent memorial that uses seven elements to explain and
honor the history of the African Burial Ground on Duane Street
in Lower Manhattan.
Beverly Pepper , Certificate, Illustration, ’42, is an internationally
acclaimed sculptor whose large-scale works are found in plazas
and parks around the world. Pepper’s determination to create a
more profound dialogue between sculpture and its natural
environment has led to an ongoing commitment to site-specific
projects of ever-increasing complexity.
Reunion Draws Old Friends, Talent, and
Memories Galore
Pratt Institute celebrated its 2007 Alumni Reunion and
Homecoming October 12–14, 2007, hosting more than 200
graduates and guests from the classes of ’02, ’97, ’92, ’87, ’82, ’77,
’72, ’67, ’62, ’57, ’52, ’47, and ’42 on the Brooklyn campus.
53
Alumni news
1
2
1. Delilah Mulraine, Ian Thornell, Lincoln Farrell, Lawrence Stelter, Diana Sorkin,
Darnley Beckles, and fellow alumni at the Brooklyn Architecture Exchange
Last year marked the second “Reunion: Work by Pratt
Alumni” exhibition. Thirty alumni artists, designers, and
architects contributed pieces ranging from the mid-1940s
redesign of the Presidential seal, to original fashion photography from the 1950s and 1960s, to contemporary large-scale
paintings, ceramics, and screenprints.
Alumni enjoyed a gallery tour through Williamsburg and
Greenpoint, Brooklyn, led by Gumshoe Explorers. The highlight
of the evening was a stop at alumna Yuko Nii’s Williamsburg Art
and Historical Center for a guided tour of “Sun Pictures to Mega
Pixels,” a photo exhibition.
The classes of ’62, ’57, ’52, ’47, and ’42 celebrated with a
champagne luncheon at the Caroline Ladd Pratt House.
The classes of ’87, ’82, ’77, ’72, and ’67 reminisced over a gala
dinner, also at the Caroline Ladd Pratt House and then joined
Pratt students and the graduating classes of ’02, ’97, and ’92 for a
live music set by alumni band Japanther in Memorial Hall. The
band consists of Matt Reilly, Art Direction, ’02, and Ian Vanek,
Graphic Design, ’02. Reilly played his guitar for the entire show
with his Pratt alumni ID card. Both Reilly and Vanek said it was
a dream come true for them to play in beautiful Memorial Hall.
The School of Information and Library Science (SILS)
brought together more than 60 SILS graduates, students, and
faculty to the Manhattan campus for the 20th Annual Nasser
Sharify Lecture. The featured speaker was Professor W. Boyd
Rayward, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, who
spoke about the future of libraries and LIS education in today’s
diverse global culture in the digital age.
Brooklyn Architecture Exchange
January 23, 2008 More than 200 Brooklyn-based architects and Pratt alumni
gathered for Brooklyn Architecture Exchange, part of the
Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce’s after-hours networking events
program. The event was held in the Hazel and Robert Siegel
Gallery in Higgins Hall.
Fourth Annual Alumni Basketball Game
February 2, 2008
More than 100 Pratt alumni and students gathered on Saturday,
February 2, to participate in the Fourth Annual Alumni
Basketball Game. Alumni came from as far away as California,
Virginia, Maryland, and Georgia to participate in the event.
54
p rat t folio
3
4
2. Darin Brooks and Robert Reid at the PrattConnects Texas alumni
reception in their studio.
3. Rodney
Leon discusses
his African
Burial
PrattConnects
African
Burial
Ground
Tour
Ground with President Schutte, alumni, faculty, and students. 4. Rich
Kirt Joseph, fellow alumni, and current Cannoneers at the fourth
andPaul,
Reception
annual14,
alumni
November
2007basketball game.
Eighty alumni gathered at the African Burial Ground Memorial
in downtown Manhattan for a private tour and presentation by
designer Rodney Leon, Architecture, ’92. Leon led the group
through all of the design elements of the monument, discussing
historical and physical references. (The memorial, which
towers above and surrounds viewers, is as tall as the burial
ground is deep.) After the presentation, alumni enjoyed a
reception on the 30th floor of the Ted Weiss Federal Building.
PrattConnects Texas Alumni
September 25, 2007
Fifty alumni from across Texas gathered at Brooks-Reid Studio,
the Houston boutique studio and home of alumni Robert Reid
and Darrin Brooks, for networking and a brief presentation by
President Schutte on the state of Pratt Institute. Reid and
Brooks, both Masters of Interior Design, ’00, were excited to
host their first PrattConnects alumni reception. Relocating
from New York City to Houston immediately after graduation,
Reid and Brooks quickly became senior designers in a Top 100
commercial interiors practice. Within two years, they started
their own practice with clients from across North America.
Alumni Stories
Below are excerpts from three Alumni Stories that appear on our Pratt Web Site. Alumni Stories presents selected
theme-based recollections, interviews, and musings by and about Pratt Alumni. To find out more about the Hermans,
Adams, Grays, and other great Pratt couples, visit www.pratt.edu/alumnistories. If you would like to share your Pratt
experience, email your own story to [email protected]
Partners in design and life
“Pam and I used to pass in the Pratt corridors,” says Alan
Herman. “We had many of the same teachers and classes but
never at the same time! We finally met in Southern California
after we both graduated in 1969.” While the Hermans’ relationship blossomed after Pratt, the couple credit Pratt for nurturing
their taste, craftsmanship, and philosophy of life—which includes
working as a team for the last 31 years in their own company,
Alan Herman & Associates (http://alanherman.com).
Alan Herman, Advertising Design, Cum Laude,
’69, Pamela Jo Carlson Herman, Advertising
Design, ’69
“He had the swagger of a man who
had worked on a boat for years.”
“The moment I saw Robert, I knew I would marry him,” says Marie Piro Gray. And she was right! Seven years after her first day
at Pratt, the couple wed and enjoyed 35 wonderful years together
until Mr. Gray’s passing in 1998. Recently, Mrs. Gray has begun
painting watercolors, an activity that harks back to her days in
Pratt’s Art Education program.
Marie (Piro) Gray, Art Education, ’58,
Robert Gray, Engineering, ’58
Courting on the court
“Rick had seen a picture of me while he was visiting a friend at
TK
the Willoughby dorm,” says Minnie Adams. “He kept asking me
to come to one of his basketball games.” Mrs. Adams wasn’t interested in basketball at first, but since Dr. Adams played for the
Pratt Cannoneers she went to all the games and even became a
Pratt cheerleader! A year after graduating, the couple was married and has been together for 30 years.
Dr. Rick Adams, Chemical Engineering, ’77,
Minnie (Grant) Adams, Merchandising and
Fashion Management, ’77
55
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1
spring–summer 2008
KEN COX
courtesy of the artist
Pratt Exhibitions
2
MICHAEL O’ROURKE: RECENT PRINTS
3
3
ANNUAL SENIOR EXHIBITION: JEWELRY
1. Michael O’Rourke, Grass, 2007 2. Maneola Mandera, Planet Necklace, 2007 3. Jeong Ah Bae, Enamel Set, 2007
4. Bo Kyung Kim, Bracelets and ring, 2007 5. Jean-Pierre Hébert, Telemachos, 2001–2002 6. Camille Utterback, Untitled 5, 2004
Past
Pratt Manhattan Gallery
My World: The New Subjectivity in Design
January 5–February 23, 2008
Impermanent Markings
March 7–April 17, 2008
The exhibition explored the new subjectivity in contemporary
design, which uses sophisticated new technologies to create
objects with qualities traditionally associated with hand craftsmanship. Participating designers included Danny Brown,
Committee, Doshi Levien, Neutral, Peter Traag, Alison
Willoughby, and Wokmedia.
The show defined drawing in very broad terms and explored
mark making in various ephemeral and impermanent media such
as sand, fire, earth, water, code, motion capture, performance,
and video. It was guest curated by Linda Lauro-Lazin, adjunct
associate professor, Digital Arts. Participating artists included
Jean-Pierre Hébert; Ana Mendieta; Oscar Muñoz; The Open
Ended Group: Marc Downie, Shelley Eshkar, and Paul Kaiser;
C.E.B. Reas; Carolee Schneemann; and Camille Utterback.
Current
President’s Office Gallery
Pratt Manhattan Gallery
Michael O’Rourke: Recent Prints
February 25 –September 15, 2008
Pratt M.F.A. Exhibition
April 25 –May 17, 2008
Michael O’Rourke, professor, Digital Arts, displays digital prints
on paper and canvas from several of his recent series. He has
exhibited and screened his artwork—which combines digital and
traditional techniques such as printmaking, mural, sculpture,
drawing, and animation—around the world and has served as
a digital-imaging consultant to a number of artists, including
Jenny Holzer.
Paintings, sculptures, photographs, prints, and videos by
students graduating from Pratt Institute’s M.F.A. program
Section 1: April 25–May 3, 2008
Section 2: May 9–17, 2008
The Rubelle & Norman Schafler Gallery
Senior Drawing, Painting, and Photography
May 8–July 25, 2008
For more information, visit pratt.edu/exhibitions.
56
p rat t folio
courtesy of the artist
courtesy of the artist
pratt exhibitions
4
4
5
6
IMPERMANeNT MARKINGS
The Rubelle & Norman Schafler Gallery
This was the first exhibition of work by faculty, alumni, students, and
patients from the Institute’s Creative Arts Therapy Program.
7
Upcoming
Pratt Manhattan Gallery
Naomi Leff Interiors
June 19–September 13, 2008
This fourth installment of the President’s Exhibition Series will be
the first to explore the full spectrum of Pratt graduate Naomi Leff’s
innovative career in interior design. It will use the designer’s personal
archive to demonstrate her creative process and present her work.
Party Headquarters ’08
Fall 2008
“Party Headquarters ‘08,” guest-curated by writer and art critic Eleanor
Heartney and artist, democracy activist and political humorist Larry Litt,
seeks to address the state of voting attitudes among vote-eligible citizens
and will serve as a space where the public and artists can comment on
American politics and mainstream media.
© 2007 Bob Handelman
The Spontaneous Gesture Realized: Art and Dance Therapy Department Exhibition
January 23–March 14, 2008
The Rubelle & Norman Schafler Gallery
The Schafler Gallery, shown above, presents exhibitions by Pratt
Institute faculty, students, and alumni in fine arts, architecture, and
design. The gallery favors cross-disciplinary topics drawn mainly from
the work of students and faculty and provides an open forum for the
presentation and discussion of contemporary culture. The Schafler
Gallery is located on the first floor of the Chemistry Building on Pratt’s
Brooklyn Campus and is open Monday–Friday, 9 AM to 5 PM. Phone
718-636-3517 or contact pratt.edu/exhibitions.
Pratt Manhattan Gallery
Pratt Manhattan Gallery is the public art gallery of Pratt Institute. The
goals of the gallery are to present significant innovative and intellectually challenging work in the fields of art, architecture, fashion, and
design from an international perspective and to provide a range of
educational initiatives to help viewers relate contemporary art to their
lives in a meaningful way. It is located at 144 West 14th Street
between Sixth and Seventh Avenues in Chelsea. Gallery hours are
Tuesday–Saturday, 11 AM to 6 PM. Phone 212-647-7778 or contact
pratt.edu/exhibitions.
Steuben Media Arts Gallery
Located on the third floor of Steuben Hall on the Brooklyn campus, the
Steuben Media Arts Gallery showcases the work of Pratt Institute
students majoring in photography. It also features solo exhibitions by
contemporary photographers whose work highlights interdisciplinary
connections between architecture, design, and fashion. Gallery hours
are Thursday–Saturday 1 to 5 PM.
57
1
2
Diana pau
kevin wick
Special Events
4
elana olivo
stephanie slaght
3
1. Rowena Reed Kostellow honoree Lucia DeRespinas, left, with Industrial Design student Liz Pavase, who designed the 2007 award 2. From left, Pete
Hamill, Dean Toni Oliviero, President Schutte, and Kurt Andersen at Pratt’s Salon Series 3. From left, Architecture Dean Thomas Hanrahan, Ed Mazria,
former First Lady of the State of New York Silda Wall Spitzer and President Schutte before the 2007 President’s Lecture 4. From left, Interior Design
Chair Anita Cooney, designer Calvin Tsao, and Dean Thomas Hanrahan
Pratt Salon Series: Heyday: The Moment
New York Became Modern
October 23, 2007
On Tuesday, October 23, Pratt trustee,
journalist, and author of the critically
acclaimed Heyday: A Novel, Kurt
Andersen, and Pratt alumnus and
celebrated novelist and journalist Pete
Hamill joined moderator Toni Oliviero,
dean of the School of Liberal Arts and
Sciences, for an evening of dinner,
cocktails, and illuminating conversation
with donors and friends of the Institute.
The two quintessential New Yorkers led
a lively discussion about 19th-century
New York City, and the intensity of
social, cultural, and artistic change that
laid the foundation for our modern city.
14th Annual President’s Lecture Series:
Ed Mazria
November 29, 2007
Internationally recognized architect,
author, educator, and lecturer Ed Mazria
spoke at the fourteenth annual Pratt
Institute President’s Lecture Series in
November at Higgins Hall Auditorium
on Pratt’s Brooklyn Campus. Former
First Lady of the State of New York Silda
Wall Spitzer, an advocate for green
building, commended Pratt for its
leadership in sustainability before
introducing the speaker to a standing58
p r at t folio
room-only audience. As the founder and
executive director of the nonprofit
Architecture 2030, Mazria has developed
the 2030 Challenge—a strategy to
dramatically reduce global greenhouse
gas emissions and fossil fuel consumption by the year 2030—issued to the
global architecture and building community. Mazria, who received a degree in
architecture from Pratt in 1963, discussed the projected impact of burning
fossil fuels, the rapid depletion of global
petroleum and natural gas reserves, and
the role we must play in addressing them.
Following the discussion, Pratt hosted a
special student reception and formal
dinner in honor of Mazria.
Rowena Reed Kostellow Award
January 25, 2008
Lucia N. DeRespinis, designer and Pratt
adjunct professor, was awarded the 2007
Rowena Reed Kostellow Award for her
dedication and teaching of threedimensional design. The ceremony took
place at the Knoll Showroom in New York
City and was attended by Pratt Department of Industrial Design faculty and
students, industry leaders, and friends,
family, and colleagues of the honoree.
The fund and awards were established
to celebrate and communicate the
contributions and philosophy of Rowena
Reed Kostellow, who taught in Pratt’s
Department of Industrial Design for
more than 50 years. The Fund’s mission
is to introduce her ideas to new generations of designers by supporting
scholarships, publishing, and programs.
Two Rowena Reed Kostellow Awards—
one to a student and one to a
professional—are presented annually.
Anna and Joseph Syrop Annual Lecture:
Calvin Tsao
February 14, 2008
In February, the Interior Design Department hosted architect and Interior
Design Hall of Fame inductee, Calvin
Tsao as the 3rd Annual Anna and Joseph
Syrop Lecturer. Tsao is currently
president of The Architectural League of
New York and has served as the vice
president for Design Excellence at the
American Institute of Architects (AIA)
New York Chapter. Before a packed
house in Higgins Hall Auditorium, Tsao
explained his approach to his own work
and addressed the related challenges
involved, using a 257-image slide
presentation. This event, sponsored by
the Selz Foundation, is an annual lecture
by outstanding individuals in design.
1930s
Al Konetzni, Pictorial Illustration,
’35, a Disney artist and Legend,
designed four new Disney stamps,
featuring Mickey Mouse, Dumbo,
Peter Pan and Tinkerbell, and
Aladdin with the Genie. Konetzni
was on hand for the unveiling in
September at the South Florida
Museum.
Maida Heatter, Painting, ’36, will
have five of her cookbooks featured
in the 2008 spring catalog of
Andrews McMeel Cookbooks. The
internationally acclaimed dessert
cookbook author recently donated
to the Pratt Libraries autographed
copies of 13 of her award-winning
books.
Alvin J. Pimsler, Fashion
Illustration, ’38, was elected to the
Society of Illustrators Hall of Fame
in 2006.
1940s
Ellsworth Kelly, Fine Arts, ’44;
Doctor of Fine Arts (Hon.),’93, is
the artist whose one-color
lithograph, titled Red Curve,
appeared on the cover of the 2007
holiday greeting card sent from the
president’s office to constituents
and friends of Pratt Institute.
Gemini G.E.L. at Joni Moisant Weyl
in Manhattan recently presented a
solo exhibition of his lithographs,
titled “Ellsworth Kelly: The Rivers.”
Helen Fleischman Post, Illustration, ’46, was invited by the
Woodbridge Art Center to exhibit
her oil and pastel paintings last
March.
1950s
Harry Shekailo, Architecture, ’50,
wrote Grandpa’s Thoughts of World
War II, Bush, Love, and More
(Trafford, 2006) to help him cope
with the stress of taking care of his
disabled wife for the final 18 years of
her life. Now 90 years old and “still
enjoying life,” Shekailo is helping his
great-grandchildren get their college
education and is painting again.
William C. North, Art and Design
Education, ’51, was appointed artist
in residence in February 2006 at
the Delnor-Wiggins Pass State Park
in Naples, Fla. His impressionist
oil beachscapes, painted on
location, were on view last summer
at the Florida Fine Art Gallery in
Fort Myers.
Norman J. James, Industrial
Design, ’56, recently released Of
Firebirds & Moonmen: A Designer’s
Story from the Golden Age (Xlibris
Corp., 2007), a memoir that vividly
recaptures the odyssey of a maverick
Class Notes
car maker and presents a behindthe-scenes look at the design of the
GM gas-turbine Firebird III, which
is still considered one of the most
advanced concept cars ever built.
Robert F. Manning, Graphic Arts,
’58, has been a member of the
Speakers Bureau of the Vermont
Humanities Council since 2001.
His three lectures, funded by the
Council, are: “Bearing Witness—
Art As Social Commentary, Art As
Propaganda”; “The Neolithic World
of Stone”; and “Georgia O’Keeffe, An
American Master.” After 35 years of
teaching, Manning is a retired
professor of fine arts.
Marilyn Church, B.F.A., Graphic
Arts, ’59, exhibited several of her
collages in a group show at Lana
Santorelli Gallery in Manhattan
this winter.
Jan Sand, Industrial Design, ’59,
recently launched an Internet blog
(http://sandfile.blogspot.com/), an
autobiographical site that focuses on
Sand’s creative journey in Helsinki,
Finland. Sand sustains his creativity
writing poetry, drawing, and
painting, and has had many works
published. Before moving to Helsinki
in the early 1990s, he was employed
by the UN as a design adviser in
Israel and has developed numerous
temporary exhibitions throughout
Europe and the United States.
1960s
Guido G. Karcher, Mechanical
Engineering, ’60, was honored by
the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) for
outstanding leadership in the
advancement of its codes and
standards. He received ASME’s
Melvin R. Green Codes and
Standards Medal.
Barbara Nessim, Graphic Arts and
Illustration, ’60, exhibited her work
last summer in two back-to-back
shows at Sienna Gallery in Lenox,
Mass. The first show, “Transitions,”
included pieces from her early
1990s RAM 400 project; the second,
included drawings from the
“WOMANGIRL” series of the early
1970s. Selections from the latter
were also exhibited in the “What F
Word?” group show at the Cynthia
Broan Gallery in New York City.
William L. Porter, M.I.D., ’60, a
retired General Motors designer,
has been constructing an all-steel
house, garage, studio, workshop,
and barn complex north of Ann
Arbor, Mich..
Sam Cochran
Samuel Cabot Cochran
B.I.D., ’05, used his senior thesis project as the basis for Grow Ivy, a hybrid solar and
wind prototype that attaches to the side of buildings to turn the sun’s light into solar
energy and electricity. The wind energy is captured through piezoelectric devices that
generate wind power from the fluttering of the solar leaves.
Collapsible, portable, and beautiful, Grow Ivy won immediate praise from architects
and designers when it was displayed at the International Contemporary Furniture Fair in
New York in 2005. It was featured in “Design and the Elastic Mind,” an exhibition at the
Museum of Modern Art, New York, from February 24 through May 12, 2008, with the
sponsorship of the National Collegiate Inventors and Innovators Alliance.
Cochran’s start-up company, Sustainably Minded Interactive Technology (SMIT),
began as a sustainable business plan proposed in his sister Teresita’s master’s thesis
project in New York University’s Interactive Telecommunications Program, from which
she received her degree in 2005. Cochran quickly realized that they were working in the
same field of interest, so the siblings formed SMIT in spring 2005. In the fall they moved
into Pratt’s Design Incubator for Sustainable Innovation to turn his thesis project Grow Ivy
into a real-world product.
“The incubator network has been a huge advantage,” said Cochran, “from connecting
me with the right people, to solving legal issues and finding investors.” SMIT already has a
patent pending on the combination of photovoltaics (solar panels) and piezoelectric devices.
He and Teresita Cochran welcomed a third partner as of November 2007—Pratt alumnus
Benjamin Howes, B.Arch., ’06. They are now in pursuit of other provisional patents.
“I believe sustainability can be the standard way of working and designing,” said
Cochran. “Each one of us has the opportunity to create and be a part of the new
industrial revolution. We can make the word ‘sustainability’ a reality.”
59
CLASS notes
Dru Nadler, The Advocate© 2007 Southern Conn. Newspapers
City Landmark. Nii led a group of
alumni through her center as part
of reunion.
Lorna J. Ritz, Art Education, ’69,
had solo shows at Gallery Anthony
Curtis in Boston last summer and at
The Oxbow Gallery in Northampton, Mass., last fall. Through the
International Residency Program
at the Augusta Savage Gallery of the
University of Massachusetts, she
was cultural ambassador to artists
in South Africa in 2007. Ritz
teaches painting at Western New
England College.
1970s
Donald M. Axleroad
B.F.A., Illustration, ’56, the winner of numerous awards in printmaking,
recently retired as founder and CEO of the Food Group, one of the food
industry’s leading advertising and marketing firms. For two decades during
this time, he served on the board of the Culinary Institute of America.
Today, Axleroad puts his energy into further developing his own printmaking skills and reaches out to help others move forward in their lives.
Recently, in his home state of Connecticut, Axleroad held three solo
exhibitions of his Greek mythology–inspired prints and paintings. “The
Allegory of Myth and the Modern Mess” was shown at the New Haven
Free Public Library Gallery and then at the Silvermine Guild Arts Center.
Despite a fire that destroyed some prints two days before the opening,
“Fear of Fate, Then and Now; Ancient Myths, Modern Messages” went
on view at the Carriage Barn Gallery in New Canaan in January 2008.
Axleroad’s work depicted the parallels between ancient Greek mythological characters and modern victims of degenerative diseases. “In both
mythology and in diseases like dementia and Alzheimer’s,” says
Axleroad, whose father and longtime companion were both afflicted with
the latter, “things keep happening that no one can explain, and people
ask ‘Why did this happen to me?’”
Axleroad is the founder and director of the Always Reaching for
Independence Artist’s Initiative of Stamford, where he has been teaching
developmentally disabled residents to draw and paint for four years. “I’ve
seen almost all the individuals develop not only the persona of an artist—
prideful—but also come into styles that express distinct depth and creativity,”
he says. “The mind can keep evolving despite tremendous obstacles.”
Raphael Montanez Ortiz, Art
and Design Education ’64, M.S.; Art
Education, ’65, renowned for his 50
years in destruction art, was
honored by the Jersey City
Museum in a solo exhibition and
comprehensive catalog, titled
Unmaking: The Work of Raphael
Montanez Ortiz. Ortiz has been a
member of Rutgers University’s
arts faculty for many years.
Jonathan B. Isleib, Interior
Design, ’66, has been a residential
designer for many years in Lyme,
Conn. Recently, he designed and
built his own new home and office
space situated on a scenic
Connecticut River site.
Haig Khachatoorian, B.I.D., ’67,
has practiced internationally in the
disciplines of industrial, exhibit,
graphic, and interior design as
consultant, educator, and freelance
60
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designer. In 1987 he joined the
faculty of North Carolina State
University College of Design, where
he has served as department chair
of industrial design, director of
graduate programs, and associate
dean for research.
Lucinda Parker McCarthy,
M.F.A., ’68, has created a 40’ x 10’
acrylic painting, with a night-today theme, for the future
performing arts center of Lower
Columbia College in Longview,
Wash. The mural will hang above
the visual arts gallery and will be
visible from campus through large
windows in the façade.
Yuko Nii, M.F.A., ’69, founded the
Williamsburg Art and Historical
Center in 1996. The Center’s
building in Brooklyn, N.Y., is on the
National Register of Historic Places
and is designated as a New York
Emma Lee Crawford, B.F.A., ’70;
M.S., Packaging Design, ’75,
exhibited one-of-a-kind works of
art on paper in winter 2007 at the
Cunneen-Hackett Arts Center in
Poughkeepsie, N.Y.
Caesar J. Santander, M.F.A., ’72,
creates photorealistic paintings.
Frequently the subjects of his art
are collectible toys.
Roger M. Bazeley, M.I.D., ’73,
received a master’s degree in
transportation management from
San Jose State’s Transportation
Institute in June 2007.
Ann Marie Rousseau, M.F.A., ’74,
had a solo exhibition, “Alternatypes
II: Interior Light,” at the Cypress
College Photography Galleries in
Cypress, Calif., last October.
Tucker L. Viemeister, B.I.D., ’74,
is one of the founders of Smart
Design. His name appeared on a
very select list of “Design Revolutionaries” in the October 29, 2007,
issue of New York magazine.
Viemeister was recognized for
OXO’s Good Grips line of housewares, which combine “real design”
and “real function.”
Ted Muehling, B.I.D., ’75, was
featured in an article, titled “The
I.D. 40 Creative Workspaces,” that
appeared in the January/February
2008 issue of I.D., The International
Design Magazine.
Cheryl Phillips Raiken, B.F.A.,
Communications Design, ’75; B.
Arch., ’78, catered the 2007
PrattConnects reception in San
Diego last summer. She and her
husband, Dean, established Metro
Gourmet, Inc. in 1993.
Kay WalkingStick, M.F.A., ’75, was
featured last fall in a solo show of
her recent paintings at June Kelly
Gallery in Manhattan. Her diptych
landscape paintings, oil on wood
panel, depict sites related to her
own experiences or those of her
Cherokee heritage and history.
Peter M. Fiore, Illustration, ’76,
won first prize for landscape in
Artist’s Magazine’s 2007 Annual
Competition. He was also noted as
an “Artist to Watch” in Fine Art
Connoisseur Magazine. Feature
articles about Fiore appeared in
Orange Magazine, and American
Art Collector.
Lynn Saville, M.F.A., ’76, had a 2007
solo exhibition, titled “Night/Shift:
Photography of Lynn Saville.” The
Pensacola Museum of Art presented
more than 30 of her color and blackand-white photographs. Recently,
Saville’s public installation of seven
lightbox displays in the 42nd Street
Bryant Park subway station in
Manhattan received great attention.
Nancy Simonds, M.F.A., ’76, is a
producer/director for Houston PBS,
KUHT-TV. In fall 2007 the channel
aired “Our Nation’s Highest Honor:
Remembering World War II’s
Finest” and “The Cruiser Houston:
Of Pride and Purpose.”
Steven Bleicher, B.F.A., ’77; M.F.A.,
’79, had a solo exhibition of
his work, presented last fall by the
art department of The Southeastern
Community College in Whiteville,
N.C., and a two-artists show this
winter at Santa Fe Gallery.
Stewart M. Fishbein, B.Arch., ’77,
and Dr. Peter M. Aupperle were
joined in a civil union on April 22,
2007, in Mendham, N.J. Fishbein is
a principal in the Switzer Group, a
Manhattan architecture firm
specializing in corporate interiors.
Michael N. Napolitano, B.Arch.
’77, was appointed director of
construction and design for the
California-based restaurant chain,
Baja Fresh Mexican Grill.
Therman Statom, Graduate Fine
Arts, ’77, received the prestigious
2008 UrbanGlass Award for
Outstanding Achievement at the
annual UrbanGlass Gala at Chelsea
Piers, New York City.
Marjorie Williams-Smith, M.F.A.,
’77, employed metal point and
graphite to capture the beauty of
fragile dried flowers in her artwork
exhibited last summer at the Fort
Worth Community Arts Center.
Williams-Smith is associate professor
of art at the University of Arkansas at
Little Rock. She had the honor of
creating the design for the United
States Mint’s Congressional Medal
honoring the “Little Rock Nine.”
Dinesh Doshi, M.Arch., ’78, has
published two books with writer and
editor W.B. King: The Art & Science of
Store Design and Dinesh Doshi—A
Lifetime of Art and Interpretation,
which covers his oil on canvas
paintings of the last 40 years.
class notes
Barbara Greenwald Lesser
Nicole Lesser
B.F.A., Fashion Design, ’74, is a 30-year veteran of the apparel industry and a pioneer in the
casual dress market. The Los Angeles–based entrepreneur began her career as a sweater
designer, then spent several years in New York before taking a position with San Francisco
Shirt Works and later with Esprit at the height of the company’s growth. During the decade of
the ’80s she owned a sportswear company, Felicity, with her husband and business partner,
Mark Lesser. In 1990, the duo launched Wearable Integrity, Inc., and subsequently, in 1991,
FIBERS by Barbara Lesser, a sportswear collection that is known for its incredible fit.
With her spouse providing the business acumen, Lesser is able to focus on fashion as an
art form. Her informal, yet sophisticated designs feature stretch fabrics in silhouettes that
flatter a variety of body types and are sold at better specialty stores throughout the United
States. Lesser says lifestyle, as well as fashion trends and exciting colors, plays a large role in
her design decisions.
Early on the Lessers became involved with the environmentally responsible concept of
organic cotton. “I began to use organic cottons and recycled products in the early ’90s,” she
recalls, “but it was too early for the fashion audience. The contemporary market is now ready
to feel responsible for their purchasing power, and our industry is gearing up and educating
itself while offering sustainability in many forms to the public. The concept of sustainability
has a big future in the fashion world.”
Lesser credits her alma mater with making a big difference in her life and career. “I loved
my years at Pratt,” she says. “They helped me build independence, individuality, and
confidence by exposing me to new ideas and experiences.”
Nancy Gittleman Katz, B.F.A.,
Merchandising and Fashion
Management, ’78, was appointed as
a trustee of the National Kidney
Foundation of Florida last July and
now serves on the Planned Giving
Subcommittee. Katz, herself a
kidney disease survivor, was
instrumental in establishing the
Palm Beach Council of the National
Kidney Foundation.
Ellen Wallenstein, M.F.A., ’78, was
the featured artist last fall at The
Henry Street Settlement Abrons
Arts Center in Manhattan. On
exhibit were her photographs and
artist books made during the three
years she spent as a hospice
volunteer. Wallenstein is an adjunct
associate professor in the Media
Arts Department of Pratt. She is
also a faculty member at the School
of Visual Arts.
Peggy K. Cyphers, M.F.A., ’79, and
Christine E. Twomey, M.F.A., ’79,
co-founded the New York City–based
BROADTHINKING.ORG, a changing
amalgam of women artists who
advance innovative ideas promoting
the continued existence of all living
things. Kathleen F. Vance, Sculpture,
’99, was also a participating artist in
the inaugural BROAD- THINKING
group exhibition, presented at Silent
Space and E32 in Kingston, N.Y., last
August.
Lawrence Heintjes, Painting, ’79,
exhibited his sculptural paintings
in July at Tillie’s, a Pratt neighborhood restaurant. He and his wife,
Mary Rieser, Fine Arts, ’85,
produced the stained glass sign for
Tillie’s window when it first opened
10 years ago.
Clifford Smith, M.F.A., ’79, had a
solo show of his realistic landscapes,
oil on linen canvas, at Rosenbaum
Contemporary at Gallery Center in
Boca Raton, Fla., last fall. He is
currently a New Hampshire resident.
1980s
Lina Bertucci, M.F.A., ’80, was
featured by Perry Rubenstein
Gallery last fall in an exhibition of
her portrait photographs called
“Women in the Tattoo Subculture.”
Daryl Moore, B.F.A., Illustration,
’80, was recently appointed as the
founding dean at California State
University, Stanislaus College of the
Arts. He was formerly chair of art
and design at Montclair State
University in New Jersey.
Paul Karasik, B.F.A., Graphic/
Communications Design, ’81, was
introduced to the work of a littleknown cartoon artist and was so
impressed by the artist’s genius
that he was inspired to edit a book,
titled I Shall Destroy All the
Civilized Planets: The Comics of
Fletcher Hanks. Karasik also wrote
the afterword.
Barbara Bally Wallace, B.F.A.,
Painting, ’81, was a participating
artist at The Merck 2007 Union
County Juried Art Show last fall.
Marjorie Matthews Moutari,
B.S., Nutrition and Dietetics, ’82, is
CEO of her company, Kazam
Natural Body Care, Her health and
beauty products are sold in her
Bayonne, N.J., store. Moutari is
married to the former ambassador
of Niger.
Roxanne Faber Savage, B.F.A.,
Drawing, ’82, is a printmaker whose
work was presented by The Friends
of the Fairfield Public Library,
Bruce S. Kershner Gallery, in a solo
show this winter.
Benjamin F. Jones, M.F.A., ’83, was
honored for his support of the arts
community at the 25th anniversary
gala event, held at the Newark Club,
to benefit the City Without Walls
show, “METRO 25.” Jones is a
board member of the Sumei Arts
Center in Newark, N.J. The Jersey
City Museum will present a
retrospective of the last 40 years of
his artwork in September 2008.
Aino-Marja (Mari) Rantanen,
M.F.A., ’83, had a solo exhibition of
her paintings from the past 15 years
at the Kunsthalle in Helsinki,
Finland, in 2007. An accompanying
book presented her work from the
earliest to the most recent.
Anthony M. Catsimatides, B.
Arch., ’84, recently reëstablished
his architectural practice in
Syracuse, N.Y., after obtaining his
master’s degree in architectural
research and technology at
Syracuse University.
George P. Hirose, M.F.A., ’84,
captured colors unseen by the
naked eye when he focused his
camera on the Cape light of
Provincetown, Mass., after sunset.
His new book of photographs, Blue
Nights, was released in the fall by
Provincetown Arts Press with an
essay by Norman Mailer, a former
permanent Provincetown resident.
A. Wayne Sides, M.F.A., ’84, was
the featured artist in an exhibition
sponsored by the Louisiana State
University School of Art, titled
“Wayne Sides: Photography 1977–
2007,” in The Alfred C. Glassell
Gallery of the Shaw Center for the
Arts in Baton Rouge. Sides is
currently in his 20th year of
teaching photography at the
University of North Alabama.
Robert J. Eckstein, B.F.A.,
Communications Design, ’85, is the
author of the book, The History of the
Snowman, which was released by
Simon Spotlight Entertainment last
November and featured in The New
York Times Book Review, as well as
other publications. This is Eckstein’s
first nonfiction, adult book.
Liliana Sosa Gonzalez, B.S.,
Electrical Engineering, ’85, is
currently chief engineer of Design
Engineering for Con Edison, where
she began her career in 1985 as a
management intern.
Dina Grossman, Communications
Design, ’83-’85, published her first
book, How We Returned to Egypt
(Tzipora, 2007), under the pen
name Yaakol Shirim. It describes
the emigration of Soviet Jews to
Israel and has been endorsed by a
member of the Israeli parliament.
Mary Rieser Heintjes, B.F.A., ’85,
is a participating artist in a show
this spring, late April through midJune, in the Main Gallery of the
Brooklyn Public Library at Grand
Army Plaza. The presentation of
her work, “Nature and Architecture
Through Light,” includes paintings,
drawings, and photographs.
61
Courtesy of the Artist
class notes
Mark Wagner
B.F.A., Illustration/Communications Design, ’83, has worked
professionally as a freelance artist, as a concept artist for the film industry,
graphic designer, illustrator, Web developer, and teacher since 1986.
With his wife, a writer, he has been raising two young daughters.
Becoming a parent inspired Wagner to record the experience in
drawings, photographs, and text, resulting in his first book proposal, “The
Art of Being a Dad: The First Seven Years.”
During his time at Pratt, Wagner was offered a grant from the National
Endowment for the Arts to explore on a computer at New York University.
“That computer cost a million bucks and had eight colors,” said Wagner.
“In 1995 I went digital and have been on the computer making art
everyday since then. I find art and the spirit easy and interesting to
access with digital media.”
Wagner is the founder and creative director of the “Kids’ Chalk Art
Project,” an event to celebrate and invest in the creative spirit of children.
The project’s goal is to create the world’s largest chalk drawing to achieve
the Guinness World Record through the combined efforts of kids (K-12)
and the extended San Francisco Bay Area community. (The Guinness
World Record is currently held by a chalk drawing measuring 60,439.3
square feet, made by more than 700 volunteers for an event in Eeklo,
Belgium, in 2006.) For a two-week period, young and older participants
will be drawing together in shifts to cover a 120,000-square-foot swath of
pavement at the decommissioned Alameda Naval Air Station in Alameda,
Calif. The project culminates on June 7 with a festival and a satellite
photo of the finished creation. Wagner’s project will soon launch ReEnchanting the World Through Art, a nonprofit organization that supports
and inspires children’s creativity and imagination.
Barbara Lehman, B.F.A.,
Illustration, ’85, is the author and
illustrator of wordless picture
books. Her fourth book, Trainstop,
is being published this spring by
Houghton Mifflin. Her first work,
The Red Book, was awarded the
Caldecott Honor in 2005 and was a
New York Times best seller.
Tamar R. Stone, B.F.A., Photography, ’85, was a contributing artist to
the recent group show, “Pricked:
Extreme Embroidery,” at the
Museum of Arts and Design in
Manhattan. On exhibit was one of
her doll bed/artist books.
62
p r att folio
Megan Montague Cash, B.F.A.,
Graphic Design,’86, won the firstplace gold medal in the Society of
Illustrators’ annual children’s book
competition in 2007 for Bow-Wow
Bugs a Bug (Harcourt Children’s
Books, 2007). The book was
co-created with Mark Newgarden.
Cash and Newgarden recently
released two follow-up tales: BowWow Orders Lunch and Bow-Wow
Naps by Number. Miriam Korolkovas, M.F.A., ’86, is
a jewelry designer and sculptor
living in Brazil. A photograph of a
jewel and an accompanying article
written by her were recently
published in a book, titled
Kristallós.
Michael Santoro, B.I.D., ’87, is
president of MacCase, a company
that produces premium leather
products, including shoulder
carriers, sleeves, accessory bags,
and iPod carriers. A new tote and
briefcase will be available soon.
Barbara Beirne, M.F.A., ’88, has
worked as a documentary
photographer for more than 25
years. Her photography exhibition,
“Becoming American: Teenagers &
Immigration,” opened in September at the National Steinbeck
Center in Salinas, Calif. The
exhibition, developed by the
Smithsonian Institution Traveling
Exhibition Service, will tour the
United States through 2011.
Jane Greenwood, B.Arch., ’88, is
co-founder of Kostow Greenwood
Architects, NYC, which is designing
SteelStax, a performing arts,
cultural events, broadcast, and
educational complex in Bethlehem,
Pa. The project is scheduled to
break ground in January 2009 on
the former site of the Bethlehem
Steel Corporation.
Mario Robinson, B.F.A., Illustration, ’88, is renowned for his
portraits of African Americans. In
December 2007, he was cited in a
FineArtConnoisseur article, titled
“Artists Making Their Mark: Three
to Watch.”
Stefan Sagmeister, M.S.,
Communications Design, ’88,
exhibited at Art Basel/Miami 2007.
In February, Sagmeister had an
interactive exhibition of his work,
called “Stefan Sagmeister: Things I
have Learned in My Life So Far,”
and a presentation of his new book
by the same name, at Deitch in New
York City.
Danièle M. Marin, M.F.A., ’89, was
the solo artist in an exhibition of
her paintings and installation, titled
“Rescue (Object Lessons),” at Noho
Gallery in Chelsea, Manhattan.
Robert G. Meyer, B.F.A.,
Printmaking, ’89, and Teri Muroff,
B.F.A., Painting, ’90, were married on
August 16, 2007, at the summit of the
Cyclone, the historic Coney Island
roller coaster in Brooklyn, N.Y.
1990s
Kenneth Cobonpue, B.I.D., ’91,
recently received the “Most
Inspiring Cebuano Entrepreneur”
award conferred by the Philippine
Center of Entrepreneurship at the
Go Negosyo Entrepreneurship
Conference held in the Cebu
International Convention Center.
See page 37.
Joseph Caserto, B.F.A., Communications Design, ’92, received a 29th
Annual National Design Award of
Excellence from the American
Society of Business Publication
Editors for the front cover of the
October 15, 2006 issue of Baseline
Magazine. Caserto art directed and
designed the cover, as well as the
editorial content of the entire issue.
The competition is the largest
among U.S. business publications.
David R. Dike, B.Arch., ’92, has
joined HOK Chicago’s International Studio as senior designer. His
emphasis at HOK will be on work
in growing regions, such as the
Middle East.
Kirsten M. Fischler, M.F.A., ’92,
was the curator and a participating
artist last fall in an exhibition titled
“Recycled Creativity: The Tipping
Point of Cultural Chaos.” The
theme explored both the physicality of recycling through “found
object art” and dumpster diving, as
well as the recycling of images and
themes. The show was held at The
Arts Scene in West Chester, Pa.
Eun-Ju (E. J.) Lee, M.S., Interior
Design, ’92, was recently named
principal at Gensler. She has been
with the firm since 1999 and led the
interior design of the New York
Times headquarters. Currently
Lee is leading the design for the
interior architecture of the new
Bank of America tower at One
Bryant Park, which is on track for a
LEED-Gold rating.
Paul Ligniti, M.Arch., ’92, and his
wife, Jeanette, are the proud parents
of their first child, Stefano Antonio
Ligniti, born August 21, 2007.
Jinbae Park, M.S., Interior Design,
’92, is teaching in the Interior
Design Department at F.I.T. in New
York City. His various vocations
include interior designer, educator,
author, photographer, and chef. His
seventh book, New York Idea, was
published in Seoul, Korea, last May.
Kenneth Schlesinger, M.S.,
Library and Information Science,
’92, has been named professor and
chief librarian at Lehman College,
CUNY, in the Bronx. Schlesinger is
vice president of the Theater
Library Association and a founder
and board president of Independent Media Arts Preservation.
class notes
Gilen Chan
Amanda Riley
B.E., Mechanical Engineering, ’85, started her career as an engineer at General Electric’s
Aircraft Engines Group and then worked as an internal auditor there. She conducted governmentcompliance investigations and was inspired by the legal department at GE to pursue the study of law.
Today, after responsible positions in transportation, entertainment, advertising, and banking, Chan is
an attorney with an expertise in ethics and compliance, a topic on which she has written and lectured
extensively over the last nine years.
“Being receptive to opportunities one may not be traditionally prepared for can lead to a satisfying
career and life,” she says, and advises: “Keep an open mind.” In 2007, Chan became the first person
to occupy the newly created position of special counsel in the Office of the President at New York City
College of Technology, City University of New York. “I truly believe I can make a difference in this role,”
Chan says. “My job utilizes the majority of all that I’ve learned. I had great faculty at Pratt,” she adds,
citing as her biggest influences former Pratt faculty members Dr. Richard North and Dr. Eleanor Baum.
Chan’s concern about environmental sustainability is manifest in personal ways: She drives a
sturdy 20-year-old car that consumes little gas, employs every piece of metal scrap in her jewelry
hobby, and educates her eight-year-old son to appreciate the significance of recycling and reusing
items in his environment. In her capacity as an official of City Tech, Chan says, “We have a responsibility to teach our students the value of making things that last. In a world that has become a
throwaway society, where it is easier to replace something than to keep it, the environment benefits
from structures and products that last and are not made for quick disposal.”
Peter A. Wachtel, M.I.D., ’92, was
appointed to the newly created
position of product design director
for Cookie Jar Entertainment,
based in Los Angeles. Wachtel is the
father of Aaron Andrew, born
January 20, 2006.
Paul N. Ligniti, M. Arch., ’93, and
his wife, Jeanette, are pleased to
announce the birth of their first
child, Stefano Antonio Ligniti, born
August 21, 2007.
Todd C. Poteet, Communications
Design, ’93, is the owner of Pen &
Ink Creative in Red Hook,
Brooklyn. He has worked with
many Fortune 500 companies and
environmental organizations while
focusing his attention on the needs
of community-minded organizations. Poteet founded the Art
Institute of Mill Street Loft, a precollege portfolio development
program for artistically and careerminded teens. Since the program’s
inception, every one of its
graduating seniors has gone to
college on a scholarship.
Vlad Bina, M.Arch., ’94, finished
his architecture studies with a
Fulbright at MIT and did his thesis
on shape grammars and conceptualizing structures. He spent a year
in Boston as a traditional architect
on the “big dig” project and has
been doing digital set design since
1995. His film credits include
Matrix Reloaded, Matrix Revolutions, Sin City, Spiderman II and III,
and The DaVinci Code. Bernard Chang, B.Arch., ’95, is
currently illustrating the comic
book, Wonder Woman (DC Comics),
written by acclaimed scribe Gail
Simone. He is also drawing
IronMan: The End for Marvel
Comics, which tells the last story of
armored hero Tony Stark in the
year 2050. (It is due out in May.)
Chang’s work can also be found in
the New York Times best seller, The
Rules of the Game by Neil Strauss,
and he is credited with illustrating
the cover to the British version of
the book. Later this year, Upper
Deck will debut a new line of their
All-Star Vinyl sports figurines
designed by Bernard, including
Kobe Bryant, Jaromir Jagr, and
Mike Modano.
Takafumi Eura, M.I.D., ’95, in 2007
launched an original company and
brand called C-Zen, Inc. in Santa
Monica, Calif., with partner, Sohail
Sherif. After nine years as a shoe
designer for K-Swiss, Westlake
Village, Calif., he is excited to be
developing a new product that will
hit the U.S. market, Europe, and
Asia by the end of 2008.
Jacquelyn A. Martino, M.F.A.,
Computer Graphics, ’95, was named
chair of the 35th annual SIGGRAPH International Conference
and Exhibition on Computer
Graphics and Interactive Techniques, which will be held at the
Los Angeles Convention Center in
August. Martino recently joined the
IBM Watson Research Center in
Yorktown Heights, N.Y.
Tama Dumlao, M.P.S., Art Therapy,
’96, received an artist grant for one
year from the Kenneth A. Picerne
Foundation.
Joseph J. Minuta, B.Arch., ’96, was
honored for his work with senior
nursing care facilities for Elant
Foundation, Inc. The Elant
Signature Award is for philanthropy-vision-communication. His
firm, Minuta Architecture, PLLC,
has made significant in-kind
contributions in renewing their
facilities in Newburgh, N.Y.
Jean Kyoung Shin, M.S., History of
Art, ’96, had her artwork exhibited
recently at the Brooklyn Academy
of Music, N.Y.; The Rockland Center
for the Arts, Nyack, N.Y.; Berkeley
Art Museum, Calif.; Tang Museum,
Skidmore College, Saratoga
Springs, N.Y.; and the Museum of
Fine Arts, Houston, Texas.
Peter M. Fiore, Illustration, ’97,
was featured in a solo exhibition,
“The Luminous Landscape–2007,”
at the Travis Gallery in New Hope,
Pa., in September. Fiore was praised
in a recent article in FineArtConnoisseur, and he was the 2007 first
prize winner in the landscape
category of The Artist’s Magazine’s
annual juried competition.
Lea Barton, M.F.A., ’98, was the
solo artist at Cole Pratt Gallery on
Magazine Street in New Orleans last
fall. The exhibition, titled “South,”
featured her mixed media work.
Pamela B. Paul, M.S., Interior
Design, ’98, has lived for 10 years on
the island of Bali, where she
initiated the first no-kill domestic
shelter and The Bali Society for the
Protection of Animals. Paul also
works as a translator and location
scout for film crews on the island.
Susannah Chipps Tamarkin, M.S.,
Library and Information Science,
’98, became the first library teacher
in the New York City Department
of Education to receive National
Board Certification in Early
Childhood/Young Adult Library
Media.
Carey Kirkella, B.F.A., Photography, ’99, was a participating artist in
The Noorderlicht Photo Festival in
Groningen, the Netherlands, last
fall. The 2007 festival theme was
“Act of Faith.” Several prints from
Kirkella’s Christian music festival
series were included in the
exhibition.
Nathan Opp, M.S., History of Art,
’99, had a solo show of his paintings
in an exhibition, titled “Intimate
Spaces,” at the Tulsa Artists’
Coalition Gallery in Tulsa, Okla.,
in August.
Mark C. Smith, B.F.A., Painting, ’99,
is the creator and impetus behind
the Design Seed thesis project in the
industrial design department at
Auburn University. Design Seed’s
first venture is a toy company called
MABA, which will make developmental toys for children up to the
age of seven. Smith is also the
designer of the tulip ceiling fan,
whose blades expand and contract
like flower petals.
63
class notes
2000s
Tahir Hemphill, M.S., Communications Design, ’00, recently
completed three new projects.
Using a team approach, a rubric
called Hip Hop Word Count was
developed to estimate the years of
education needed to understand
the language in hip-hop rhyme.
Hemphill has filmed a documentary
about the life of his father, Brother
Harold, whom he met for the first
time in 1999. An excerpt from the
documentary was screened in
November at Monkeytown, in
Williamsburg, Brooklyn.
Angela Kettler, B.F.A., Fashion
Design, ’00, and Jennifer Dwin,
Fashion Design, ’01, were two of the
first four young New York City
designers selected to participate in
Forward, a retail incubator for
start-up fashion designers. Each
participant was paid $4,200 to take
part in the six-month program,
dubbed “The Real World of
Fashion.” Forward is funded by the
Lower East Side Business
Improvement District.
Sattor Uzkhon Jabbor, M.S.,
Urban Design, ’01, is currently
employed at RMJM London and is
enrolled in the professional
translator program at Westminster
University.
Zulema Mejias, B.F.A., ’01; M.P.S.,
’04, married Oscar Penas on
January 29. Mejias is assistant to
the chairperson of Graduate
Communications/Packaging
Design at Pratt, and her husband is
a musician.
Peter M. Riesett, Graduate Fine
Arts, ’01, was chosen as one of the
winners from the United States in a
photography competition, titled
“Flash Forward 2007.” Images from
his series, “Testament,” were
displayed at The Magenta
Foundation’s “Emerging Photographers Book Launch and
Exhibition,” held at Lennox
Contemporary in Toronto and at
Kathleen Cullen Fine Art in New
York City.
Jason Curtis, B.F.A., Photography,
’02, was one of the emerging fine
arts photographers featured in a
book, titled A Field Guide to the
North American Family, by Garth
Risk Hallberg. An exhibition by the
same name was curated by Humble
Arts Foundation in collaboration
with Mark Batty Publisher and
displayed at Gallery Bar in
Manhattan last December.
Caryn M. Koster, B. Arch., ’02, is a
project manager responsible for
various capital projects at Yeshiva
University.
.
64
p rat t folio
Kathryn Bric Millhorn, M.S.,
Library and Information Science,
’02, was appointed to the position
of director of library services for
AIBMR Life Sciences, Inc., a fullservice natural and medicinal
products research institute.
Andrew K. Tay, M.I.D., ’02, is
building a unique career by merging
design, music, and education. He is
a freelance Web designer for a
major indie music retailer and Web
hosting company. Tay teaches
guitar and is making musical
instruments, both performanceoriented and art pieces. Tay
received funding to study the art of
luthier making this spring with
Quebec-based master guitar
builder, Sergei DeJonge.
Jerome L. Myers, Library and
Information Science, ’03, was
appointed to the position of
reference and instruction services
supervisor for the Tacoma Public
Library in Tacoma, Wash. He began
his career at the Brooklyn Public
Library in 2001.
Eneri Abillar, M.I.D., ’04, joined
the California-based Vapor Studio,
Encinitas, in 2007, after serving as
the contract design lead on a
number of the studio’s high-profile
projects. Maku, a furniture line
designed by Abillar, made the cover
of the July 2007 issue of Décor &
Style.
Anthony (Tony) Alvarez, B.F.A.,
Photography/Media Arts, ’04, was
represented in the group show
“refuse/refuse” at Pochron Studios
in Brooklyn last September.
Jonathan Shehee, M.F.A., ’04,
accepted a position in residential
sales at the Corcoran Group in
Manhattan. While building his real
estate career, he still finds time to
do some artwork.
Chelsea Carter, Industrial Design,
’05, has worked in the Jim Henson
studios in Manhattan since her
senior year. She’s made a range of
objects for the studio, including
banjos, shoes, and, recently, Ben
Stiller’s eyes for a 2007 holiday
show. Carter also makes cookies for
Cookie Monster!
Numyi Lee, M.F.A., ’05, had a solo
painting exhibition, “Numyism/
Survivors,” presented by chashama
in Manhattan last fall. Lee began the
survivors’ story of her family-in-law
in Iraq in 2007 and expanded the
series to include herself as a
survivor. Lee started the chashama
residency program in 2006 and had
a solo show, “Between Black and
White Colors.” Nine drawings of
hers were rented for the movie
American Gangster (2007). Her
paintings and drawings will also be
seen in the movies Sisterhood of the
Traveling Pants 2 (2008) and Phoebe
in Wonderland (2009).
Ashley Sabin, B.A., History of
Design, ’05, has directed her first
film, which she co-produced with
David Redmon. The award winning
documentary, Kamp Katrina, is the
story of a group of people who
sought refuge in a tent city created
within a garden provided by a New
Orleans couple.
Jennifer Asselta, B.F.A., Graphic
Design, ’06, is a junior brand
designer for Palio Communications
in Saratoga Springs, N.Y. Prior to
her new appointment, she was a
freelance designer at American
Express Publishing.
Emilie Baltz, M.I.D., ’06, created a
limited edition of five gilded picnic
tables. The 24 KaP (24 Karat Amish
Picnic) table was exhibited at
Florian Papp Galleries in Manhattan in September.
William Caballero, B.F.A.,
Computer Graphics, ’06, has two
films that were chosen as “Film of
the Week” on mtvU in 2007: Tango
in Red, a short musical video art
piece, and Without Sin, a short film
that was also screened at the 29th
Annual Big Muddy Film Festival in
Illinois. Another piece, Themes and
Variations for 10 Instruments and 1
Actress, was shown at Lincoln
Center in April 2007.
Jonathan Gibson, M.F.A., ’06, has
a full-time faculty position in the
Department of Art, Xavier
University, in Cincinnati, Ohio,
where he teaches design and
photography.
Mary Jane Nichols, M.S.,
Information and Library Science,
’06, has been drumming for a threegirl rock band for more than two
years. The Vesties performed their
30-second jingle for Dodge
Caravan, in a rock version of “We
Wish You a Merry Christmas,” on
ABC’s The View. The Vesties were
one of three weekly winners of a
Dodge Caravan competition.
Benjamin Wolf, B.F.A., Photography, ’06, received a $1,500 grant
awarded by the 2008 Brooklyn Arts
Council, Community Regrant
Program Panel and the BAC Board
of Directors and funded by the
Greater New York Arts Development Fund of the NYC Department
of Cultural Affairs. His project, “IN
WITH THE OLD, OUT WITH THE
NEW: An observation of the Now,”
is on view from May 15–June 15.
David Conners, M.S., Information
and Library Science, ’07, became
the Digital Collections Librarian at
Haverford College in Haverford,
Pa., last August.
Deena DeNaro, B.I.D., ’07, began
working last fall for Material
ConneXion, Inc., an international
knowledge base for information
about new and innovative
materials.
Natalie Lanese, M.F.A, Printmaking, ‘07, participated in the Scope
Fair in Basel, Switzerland, in June
2007. The fair owner, Alexis
Hubshman, saw her work and
invited her to do an installation for
the Scope fair in the Hamptons in
July 2007. Jonathan Lee, B.F.A., Interior
Design,’07, created, as a senior
project, a digitally animated short,
titled Rice Ball Brawl. The film was
screened in February 2008 at the
Animex International Festival of
Animation & Computer Games in
Middlebrough, England. It was also
screened at MetroCAF 2007, the
fifth annual NYC Metropolitan
Area College Computer Animation
Festival.
Nicole Melanson, B.F.A., Film, ’07,
was a participating artist at
Anthology Film Archives in Manhattan. Her senior thesis film, Welcome,
Human, was screened as part of
Anthology’s Halloween show.
Will J. Staley, M.I.D., ’07, was
appointed as a domestic policy
fellow by the Clinton Foundation.
He works in the Harlem office for
the Clinton Climate Initiative,
helping to research and design
products that create jobs in
impoverished areas of the world
and that protect the environment.
Staley is participating in the Pratt
ID Incubator program this year and
working on the THRIVE project.
Obituaries
1920s
1940s
1950s
1970s
Margaret Woodfall Williams
Painting, Drawing, Illustration,
1928
Bessie Mameletzi Hauzinger
Costume Design, 1940
Sebastian Matilla
Industrial Design, 1951
Paul S. Heteji, Sr.
Industrial Design, 1940
George Klauber
Drawing, 1952
Sylvia Walter Jaroslow
M.S., Library and Information
Science, 1971
Robert F. Kuhn
Illustration, 1940
Robert M. Taylor
Pictorial Illustration, 1952
Robert Edward Redmann
Industrial Design, 1941
Donald C. Axon
Architecture, 1954
1930s
Pauline Lazarus Schachtmeister
Costume Design, 1941
Leon Brand
Architecture, 1955
Grace Hansen Cella
Advertising Design, 1932
Margaret Stanley
Library Science, 1941
Benjamin Feinstein
Architecture, 1955
Virginia Hartle Jackson
Library Science, 1942
Olaf K. Schoenherr
Mechanical Engineering, 1956
Jean Haurand Furman
M.S., Library and Information
Science, 1983
Albert H. Moore
Mechanical Engineering, 1942
Leonard S. Baer
Illustration, 1957
Gerald Paul Hildebrandt
Industrial Design, 1983
Frederick R. Schmitt, Sr.
Structural Engineering, 1942
Carmela Cinque Jacaruso
Home Economics, 1957
Carol Cox Stites
Interior Design, 1943
Sara Jacoby
Library Science, 1957
Samuel Owen Schwartz
Electrical Engineering, 1944
David H. Larson
Advertising Design, 1958
Dean Timothy Andrews
Library Science, 1945
Anthony Razziano
Mechanical Engineering, 1959
Edith Piquet Kaylor
Dietetics, 1929
Marjorie F. Pedretti
Costume and Commercial
Illustration, 1929
Michael Horelick
Industrial Electrical Engineering,
1932
Helen Troll Schlueter
Institutional Management, 1933
Dorothy Robbins Gifford Curtis
Industrial Design, 1934
Edward J. Urban
Industrial Mechanical Engineering,
1934
Robert C. Danzer
Advertising Design, 1935
Dorothy E. Gaffney Reid
Advertising Design, 1937
Janet Muse Osborn
Dressmaking, 1938
David Shaw
Illustration, 1938
Freda Follender Vink-Brock
Costume Design, 1938
Alfred A. D’Agostino
Industrial Chemical Engineering,
1939
Joseph S. Campbell
Electrical Engineering, 1947
Louise Meyerowitz Merrim
Art and Design Education, 1947
(George) Wimberly Drew
Costume Design, 1948
Margaret J. Petruska Smith
Dressmaking, 1939
George Stimak
Advertising Design, 1949
Sharon M. Bascom
Fashion Design, 1978
1980s
Gladys Wynne Jarrett
Library Science, 1963
Gladys “Eekey” M. Hodapp
Library Science, 1966
David K. Kaestle
Advertising Design, 1967
William J. Pecau
Advertising Design, 1947
Ernest H. Kittredge
Drawing, 1948
David Mandl
Architecture, 1976
1960s
Anne Morrell Walsh
Industrial Design, 1945
Dominic E. Merlo
Advertising Design, 1939
Steve Kasloff
Illustration, 1974
Edward N. Richardson
Illustration, 1968
Francisco Laurier
Architecture, 1969
Nancy Pope Ross
Art Education, 1969
Friends of Pratt
Walter Louis Civardi
Professor Emeritus, Photography
Herman Rose
Former faculty member
Alan Maxwell Pottasch
Parent of current Pratt student
Norbert Turkel
Former faculty member, Architecture
65
patrick marchetta
Then and Now
diana pau
This photograph, taken by Patrick Marchetta (B.Arch., ’75) at the corner of Myrtle and Washington avenues, reveals a slice of
Brooklyn history­—the oft-remembered Myrtle Avenue El, which operated between 1888 and 1969.
Today, the corner, free from the El’s trestles, is booming, as is Pratt’s neighborhood, Clinton Hill. The area now boasts a diverse
mix of restaurants, cafés, yoga studios, and boutique shops.
Pratt will build a new “green” building on the corner of Myrtle Avenue and Emerson Place, a few blocks east. It is scheduled to
open in 2009.
66
p rat t folio
Display your degree
as proudly as your artwork!
Desk drawers are no place for degrees to languish.
Frame them. For exhibition-prone Pratt graduates, the
Prattstore offers a range of excellent and
price-wise frames.
Visit us online at www.prattstore.net
for a sampling of products, or you can call
us at 718-789-1105 with any questions.
Alumni always get 10% off the purchase price.
S tore Hours:
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The Prattstore | 550 Myrtle Avenue, Brooklyn, NY 11205
Gallery
Gallery
This penthouse apartment in Naples, Florida, with its
bold geometric forms and circular ceiling recess, is one
of the many
An image
interiors
fromthat
the installation
will be featured
“Point
in A
“Naomi
→ B” by
Leff:
digital
Interiorartists
Design”,
Marc
part
Downie,
of the Shelley
President’s
Eshkar,
Exhibition
and Paul
Series,
Kaiser,
at the Pratt
whoseManhattan
work will be
Gallery
featured
frominJune
“Impermanent
19–September
Markings,”
13, 2008.
an exhibition
The exhibition
of work
also
in ephemeral
celebrates the
media
publication
to open at
of the monograph
Pratt Manhattan
Naomi
Gallery
Leff: Interior
on March
Design
7, 2008.
(Monacelli
The piece,
Press, which
2007),explores
edited by
children’s
interior designer
movements,
Kimberly
makes use of the
Williams
trio’s
with
new
a foreword
real-timebyrendering
Paige Rense,
technology
editor to
in impart
chief, a
Architectural
heightened
Digest.
sense of three-dimensional awareness.
PRATT INSTITUTE
200 Willoughby Avenue, Brooklyn NY 11205

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