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Joseph S. Lewis III '75 named Dean, UC Irvine

Alumni News & Notes

Posted October 21, 2009
Tags 1975
Joseph S. Lewis III '75 was named Dean of the Arts, University of California, Irvine and will begin his  tenure in March 2010. Lewis is currently at Alfred University as Dean, School of Art and Design. At Hamilton he majored in art and then went to Maryland Art Institute to earn his masters.

According to the announcement in the Los Angeles Times, Lewis grew up in Manhattan's Hell's Kitchen neighborhood, the son of a singer-songwriter who sang backup for Harry Belafonte and whose work was recorded by Odetta and Fred Neil. After graduating from Hamilton, Lewis helped to found Fashion Moda, an alternative arts space in the South Bronx, and served as its director. He taught at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh before coming to L.A. in 1991.

Lewis said his most widely seen work in Southern California is "Twelve Principles" (pictured), a 1994 public art piece at the Pacific Coast Highway Metro Blue Line station in Long Beach that consists of 12 symbolic discs. He said he created graphic representations of words such as "family," "communication" and "hope" that kept popping up during his preparatory interviews with people in Long Beach's different racial and ethnic communities, reflecting what he saw as their common aspirations.

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