The ISC’s Board of Trustees established the Educator Award to recognize individual artist-educators who have excelled at teaching sculpture in institutions of higher learning. An exemplary career combining personal studio practice and measurable
academic performance form the evaluative basis of this award. Nominations for the Outstanding Educator Award will be accepted each year, beginning in September. Award recipient is selected in February of the award year. International submissions
are welcomed and encouraged.
Patrick Strzelec works in various processes and materials often relating to the gaps between seeing, knowing, recognizing, and remembering. Patrick attended the Art Institute in Chicago, received a BFA from Southern Illinois University,
and an MFA from Rutgers University. Patrick has been a recipient of numerous awards and grants in sculpture, including the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Fellowship, the Rome Prize Fellowship at the American Academy in Italy, the Ballinskelligs
Project in Ireland, National Endowment for the Arts, and numerous New Jersey State Council for the Arts grants.
Recently he received the Presidential Award for Teaching Excellence and the Chancellor Scholar Award, both at Rutgers University. He is the former Rudolph Arnheim Lecturer in Sculpture at Harvard University and currently an Associate Professor
in Sculpture, Mason Gross School of the Arts, Rutgers University, NJ.
“Over 30 years teaching, I have witnessed the expectation that grads become articulate about their work—with which I agree—lead to an emphasis on what it is "ABOUT" and, worst case, perfecting artspeak. I advocate instead for honest
work and unfettered speech. It's a difficult, but essential, pursuit.”
“I encourage [students] to find a way of working rather than a finished product and to choose materials and processes that allow the finished work to allow their investigation and reflect their thinking. I try to impart the notion
of making as a way of discovery, as a journey, rather than an exhibition of mastery.”
“I encourage my students to widen their perspectives, gaining experience through exhibitions, travel, and participation in conferences. They are encouraged to think deeply about the function of the artist in today’s world and how
they will contribute according to their talents and abilities.”
“It is a constant effort for me to try to engage each student on an individual level in order to make them reach deeper into themselves to create work which is more their own. Students are encouraged to try new things and learn
new skills, empowering them in ways they had not anticipated.”
“Teaching is part of my creative practice. It requires the same in-depth observation and response without bias to situations. In a way, I consider each a practice for the other, because in both I have to be aware in the present
and to collaborate with all of the conditions of which I am aware in order to facilitate an outcome that allows a different form of understanding.”
“My teaching emphasis is summarized in the following three rules: 1. Work into mystery. If you find you know what you are doing, stop and do something else. 2. What your sculpture is doing, structurally and visually, is more significant
than its subject matter. 3. It doesn't matter how you start. It matters how you finish.”
Edward Mayer received an MFA from the University of Wisconsin, Madison. Mayer began teaching sculpture in 1970 at Ohio University in Athens, and has continued to teach (since 1983) at the State University of New York, Albany, where
he heads the Sculpture Department. His temporary, site-specific installations deal with notions of structure, permanence, and form in sculpture.
Patricia Renick was born in Lakeland, Florida, in 1932 and taught at the University of Cincinnati, College of Design, Architecture and Art for 31 years. Affectionately nicknamed “Mother Art,” she was a tireless advocate for art
students and young artists, changing and affecting countless lives throughout her career. Renick was also well known for her commitment to the Cincinnati art community and her dedication to advancing the position of women artists
and feminist works in the art world.
Joseph Siepel taught at Virginia Commonwealth University for 27 years and was the chair of the Department of Sculpture for 16 years. VCU’s graduate sculpture program is ranked among the nation’s top five, and the School of the
Arts is ranked in the top 20, according to U.S. News & World Report. In 2001, Siepel became the Associate Dean of Academic Affairs and Director of Graduate Studies for the School of the Arts. He has continued to be involved
in the graduate sculpture program.
Morio Shinoda taught in the Plastic Arts and Mixed Media Department at the University of Tsukuba for 15 years, beginning in 1979. He also taught art in the Department of Education at the University of Nagasaki for two years. Under
his devoted guidance, many of his students have become unique and successful artists. Some have become well known nationally and internationally, including Tsunekazu Ishihara, (the creator of “Pokemon”), Takamasa Kuniyasu,
Daizaburo Harada, Toshio Iwai, Toshihiko Okabe, and Nobumichi Tosa (Meiwa Denki).
Born in 1923 in Stamford, Connecticut, Julius Schmidt received his B.F.A. and M.F.A. in Sculpture from the Cranbrook Academy of Art in Michigan. His work has been shown in galleries all across the U.S. Julius was the head of the
Sculpture Department at the University of Iowa from 1970 - 1993. He currently resides in Iowa City, Iowa.
George Beasley joined the faculty of the School of Art and Design at Georgia State University in 1970, after receiving a MFA in sculpture from Cranbrook Academy of Art. As the head of the sculpture area and the School’s graduate
advisor, Beasley believes effective teaching to be an outgrowth of studio/apprentice practice. He stresses the idea of teaching by example using the production of almost all of his own work in school studios as a vehicle to
demonstrate concepts and processes. Beasley is known for his work in iron and spectacular iron-pour performances.
A successful candidate should be currently teaching with 15+ years of teaching at an institution of higher learning, have a considerable body of work and should be knowledgeable in the history, theories & innovations that compose the
subject of sculpture. This knowledge along with visible personal research and an informed technical vocabulary will have resulted in teaching effectiveness. The ability to articulate this knowledge in the identification and promotion
of each student’s creative potential defines the spirit of the ISC Educator Award.
Nominators can submit only one (1) candidate nomination each year.
Multiple submissions by the same nominator will result in the disqualification of all submissions by the nominator.
Nominees cannot nominate
themselves for the Outstanding Educator Award.