Gerhardt Knodel Receives the 2016 American Craft Council Gold Medal Award

Nick Cave and Myra Mimlitsch-Gray Named Fellows

Bloomfield Hills, Mich., Oct. 11, 2016 — Cranbrook Academy of Art is pleased to announce that Gerhardt Knodel, past Director of Cranbrook Academy of Art and Art Museum and former Artist-in-Residence and Head of the Fiber Department, has been awarded the 2016 Gold Medal for Consummate Craftsmanship by the American Craft Council (ACC).

Presented biennially, the ACC Awards honor outstanding artistic and scholarly achievement, leadership, and service in the field of craft. The award ceremony will be held in Omaha, Nebraska on October 14.

The Gold Medal for Consummate Craftsmanship is the Council’s highest honor. Awarded only to a previously elected Fellow, the Gold Medal recognizes outstanding artistry, along with the humanistic and philosophical values exemplified over the span of a career. In 1993, Knodel became an Honorary Fellow of the American Craft Council making him eligible for the award. Knodel joins five other alumni and former Artists-in-Residence of Cranbrook that have received the award.

Knodel studied art, music, and theater at the University of California, Los Angeles, where he was introduced to the expressive possibilities of fabric. Subsequent graduate studies at California State University at Long Beach were directed toward the implications of fabric as a medium for shaping and redefining living environments.

Last fall, Knodel launched an exhibition of new work entitled Let the Games Begin! in which he explored how gaming-based strategies provide both a visual and conceptual point of entry for the viewer to experience his work.

Best known for expanding the architectural possibilities of fabric, Knodel has created grand installations for institutions around the world for more than three decades. He is a recipient of many prestigious grants and honors including a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts, an Honorary Doctorate Degree from the Maryland Institute of Art and the Michigan Governors’ Arts Award for outstanding achievement in the visual arts. Knodel was Artist-in-Residence and Head of the Fiber Department at Cranbrook Academy of Art from 1970-1995 and Director of Cranbrook Academy of Art and Art Museum from 1995-2007. He now holds the title of Director Emeritus.

For more about his work and this award watch Knodel’s interview with ACC.

Nick Cave and Myra Mimlitsch-Gray Named American Craft Council Fellows

Nick Cave

Nick Cave

Also on October 14, the American Craft Council will induct Academy alumni Nick Cave (Fiber ’89) and Myra Mimlitsch-Gray (Metalsmithing ’86) into its College of Fellows. Candidates for this honor are nominated and elected by their peers, and must have worked for 25 years or more in their discipline.

Nick Cave is an artist and educator, working between the visual and performing arts through a wide range of mediums including sculpture, installation, video, sound, and performance. His solo exhibition Nick Cave: Here Hear, was recently on view at Cranbrook Art Museum (2015) and he is mounting an ambitious new solo exhibition at the Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art this month.

Cave leads the graduate program in fashion, body, and garment at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Watch Cave’s interview with the ACC here.

Myra Mimlitsch-Gray

Myra Mimlitsch-Gray

Alumna Myra Mimlitsch-Gray (Metalsmithing ’86) is currently a professor at the State University of New York at New Paltz and directs the metals program.

In 2014, the Metal Museum in Memphis Tennessee named Mimlitsch-Gray “Master Metalsmith” and presented her first museum retrospective, Staging Form. A solo show, In/Animate: Recent Work by Myra Mimlitsch-Gray is curated by Akiko Busch and on exhibit through December 2016 at the Samuel Dorsky Museum of Art at SUNY New Paltz.

Watch her interview with the ACC here.

Mimlitsch-Gray and Cave join 23 other Academy alumni that have been inducted into the College of Fellows.

The American Craft Council conference is being held at KANEKO, an artist space established by Jun Kaneko, former Artist-in-Residence and Head of the Ceramics Department at Cranbrook Academy of Art from 1979-1986. The space was established in 1998 Kaneko and his wife Ree, and is headquartered in three turn-of- the-century warehouses in the Old Market District of Omaha, Nebraska. KANEKO is an institution with a vision to celebrate creativity and is committed to fostering it as the overriding mission with four major programming themes: Design, Ideas, Performance, and Innovation.

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