Cranbrook Academy of Art Presents Maxine Frankel with Honorary Master’s Degree

Bloomfield Hills, Mich., May 5, 2015 – The Cranbrook Academy of Art Board of Governors is pleased to announce that it will confer an honorary master’s degree upon Maxine Frankel during its May 8 commencement ceremony.

Frankel has been a longtime supporter of Cranbrook Academy of Art. She joined the Academy Board of Governors in 1996, and has served as Chair of the Board since 2002. She recently announced that she will step down as Chair at end of the current academic year.

This is the first time in the Academy’s history that it has conferred an honorary degree.

“Maxine Frankel has been a transformative force for both Cranbrook Academy of Art and Art Museum,” said Christopher Scoates, the Maxine and Stuart Frankel Director of Cranbrook Academy of Art and Art Museum. “Her steadfast support to advancing the arts is unmatched, from the large gifts made through the Maxine and Stuart Frankel Foundation, to the small interactions she has with our students on a regular basis – when she pays them a surprise visit in their studio or opens her home to them to give them a tour of her incredible collection. We hope she will continue to delight and surprise our students for years to come.”

Born and raised in Detroit, Michigan, Maxine Frankel is a graduate of the University of Michigan. She and her husband, Stuart, began their passionate support for the visual and performing arts more than 30 years ago.

In 1999, they established the Maxine and Stuart Frankel Foundation for Art. Their collection at home and in their Troy building encompasses works that are minimal, abstract and new media. Among the many artists represented are Robert Arneson, Lee Bontecou, Mark di Suvero, Lucio Fontana, Eva Hesse, Donald Judd, Anselm Kiefer, Agnes Martin, John Mason, Ken Price, Random International, Robert Ryman, Richard Serra and Peter Voulkos.

The Frankel’s goal is to support the visual and performing arts and artists in a variety of ways, as well as to introduce and educate visitors. The Frankels have commissioned works by contemporary classical composers and have been instrumental in the University of Michigan Musical Society Renegade Series—bringing cutting edge performances to campus.

Since 2002, Mrs. Frankel has Chaired the Board of Governors of Cranbrook Academy of Art and Art Museum and is a Trustee of the Cranbrook Educational Community Board of Trustees.

At the University of Michigan, Mrs. Frankel is a member of President Schlissel’s National Advisory Group and is on the National Advisory Board for University of Michigan Museum of Art and University Music Society.

Maxine also serves on the Boards of The Noguchi Museum and Socrates Sculpture Park in Long Island City, New York and is a Board Member of the Sphinx Organization. She serves on the National Advisory Boards for Storm King Art Center, Common Ground Crisis Center, and is a Trustee Emerita of Independent Curators International.

Maxine lives in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan with her husband, Stuart, is the mother of Kami and Darren Frankel and the grandmother of three.

Cranbrook Academy of Art
Cranbrook Academy of Art is the country’s top ranked, graduate-only program in architecture, design and fine art. Each year, just 75 students are invited to study and live on our landmark Saarinen-designed campus, which features private studios, state-of-the art workshops, a renowned Art Museum, and 300 acres of forests, lakes, and streams, all a short drive from the red-hot art, design, and music scene of Detroit. The focus at Cranbrook is on studio practice in one of ten disciplines: Architecture, 2D and 3D Design, Ceramics, Fiber, Metalsmithing, Painting, Photography, Print Media, and Sculpture. The program is anchored by celebrated Artists- and Designers-in-Residence, one for each discipline, all of whom live and practice on campus alongside our students. For more information, visit us at

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