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Recent News

Flagg Building

Corcoran School Seeking New Director

November 13, 2019

The Corcoran School of the Arts and Design invites applications for a full time, tenure track or tenured appointment as Director to begin as early as Fall 2020. Review of applications will begin on December 16, 2019 and will continue until the position is filled.

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Transformer Ball

15th Annual Transformer Silent Auction & Benefit Party

October 28, 2019

This year, the Corcoran School of the Arts & Design hosted the 15th Annual Transformer Silent Auction & Benefit Party, an event that showcased some of D.C.’s best contemporary visual art (including more than a few exhibits from Corcoran alumni).

Student News



student art featuring feet and leg models


The Connersmith's ACADEMY, its 17th annual invitational survey of outstanding work by MFA/BFA students in the Washington/Baltimore area, featured Corcoran students Patrick Quinn (BFA) and Judas Recendez (MFA).

The Lemon Collective

Kathryn Zaremba (MA Exhibition Design, 2012) kickstarted The Lemon Collective, a workshop that hosts guided classes focused on bringing female artists, entrepreneurs and activists together in the District.  Zaremba dedicates herself to empowering other artists and promoting entrepreneurship for creatives.   

Participants in the Lemon Collective's  Drawing Night work on sketching flowers at She Loves Me, a flower shop that the collective collaborates with frequently.

Group of students posed with laura linney

Master Class With Laura Linney

The Academy of Classical Acting hosted a master class earlier this fall with actress Laura Linney, who spent several hours working on acting and text analysis with our students. Thanks for being an inspiration to our actors, Laura!


Faculty News




Professor Sham Takes On Innovation

Assistant Professor of Innovation Arts James Sham is an interdisciplinary artist whose research includes themes of translation, performance, social practice and innovation. He is the inventor of a newly published innovation in the field of photovoltaics - the patent-pending "Solar Paper." Currently, Professor Sham is being featured in "Appealing to the Populous" - the international art and science exhibition for evolutionary biology in Berlin.


students in blue megasnuggie


As winter approaches and the temperature cools down, what better way to get comfy than a snuggie designed for 30 people?! Our Innovation Arts professor James Sham, along with production design MFA student Rhea Roland, have created the Megasnuggie as a tool for breaking down inhibitions and staying warm at the same time, too.


3D printing is pretty cool… but what if you could “print” your landscaping? Professor James Sham and Mark Jennings, a first year undergraduate student in Mechanical Engineering, decided to find out by building Bloombot, a device where you can create the landscaping of your dreams by planting bulbs, seeds and other vegetation into prescribed patterns. What’s possible in your own backyard?

Bloombot: robot with wheels and tubes of seeds


Choir Director Blake Clark playing piano

New Choir Director, Blake Clark

The Music department is excited for changes in the program, including welcoming Blake Clark, the new director of University Singers, the music department's choir, as well as opportunities for expansion.

man dancing with two women

How A Choreographer Sees Art In A New Way, Through Dance

Professor of Dance, Dana Tai Soon Burgess was recently featured in the Washington Post's article, "How a choreographer sees art in a new way, through dance." Burgess, the National Portrait Gallery's first choreographer in residence, worked on creating a dance based on the exhibition "One Life: Sylvia Plath," which his troupe performed on December 7th and 10th. National Portrait Gallery Director Kim Sajet describes Burgess as a "treasure" and says, "Our goal is to bring a sense of emotion about who we are as humans into the Portrait Gallery."


Photo of an indoor pool

Professor Sakai Featured In FotoWeekDC Show

Visiting Assistant Professor of Photography, Jennifer Sakai, was featured in the FotoWeekDC 2017 show as a Fine Art Honorable Mention selection. Professor Sakai's current research consists of the exploration and examination of the landscape in the photographic medium. She has two current series: the first "Hillover Road, east-west" is a study of the light, color and surface as shown through the venacular of Eastern Long Island. Her second series Poston Provenance addresses the topography and emotional connection to the concentration camp where her relatives were held during WWII, and the family's eastward migration after the war.

Professor Sakai's Portfolio


Alumni News




An On-Stage Revival: Theatre Alumnus Returns as Professor

(Originally published January 8, 2018)
Intimate touch, live combat, a man dangling upside down by his ankles speaking in an Irish brogue. Welcome to the theatrical world of Matthew R. Wilson, CCAS MFA ’09.

Photo of Matthew R Wilson

Male actors performing on stage

S. Asher Gelman
MFA in Dance, '12

Gelman is the playwright of the esteemed off-Broadway show Afterglow, which Huffington Post called, "A Steamy, Stripped Down Look At Gay Intimacy."

Karen Vidangos

Karen Vidángos
MA in Museum Studies, '17

Vidángos has made a splash in the art community with her interview, "A Latina In Museums' Is Smashing Stereotypes In The Art World," where she talks about a collaborative movement of Latinas in museums all over the country.

Kerry Washington

Kerry Washington
BA in Theatre & Dance, '98

Washington is producing a new drama series in partnership with Facebook, entitled "Five Points," which follows the lives of five high school students living on the south side of Chicago.

Jorge Vascano's sculpture, Blossom

Jorge Vascano
Fine Art, '12

Vascano's sculptures were featured in the Oscar-nominated film, If Beale Street Could Talk.  

He created some of the sculptures that appear in the film as works by the central character, Fonny.  At the end of filming, writer and director Barry Jenkins bought Vascano's sculpture, Blossoming, for his personal collection.   

Dawn Stoppiello

Dawn Stoppiello
MFA in Dance, '14

Stoppiello was recently appointed as Assistant Professor of Practice in Dance & New Media at the USC Glorya Kaufman School of Dance, where she will be teaching courses on dance for the screen & other media.





Guerilla Projectionist, Robin Bell

OPEN, an installation of lights and projections by artist Robin Bell, is a celebration of transparency, belonging and accessibility.

Reflecting on the cancellation of the Robert Mapplethorpe exhibition at the Corcoran some thirty years ago, Bell intends for OPEN to serve a counterpoint to decisions regarding censorship, erasure and closure.

OPEN is a prelude to 6.13.89, an exhibition that opens in 2019 and examines the climate that led to the Corcoran Gallery of Art cancelling the Mapplethorpe retrospective. According to Bell, the decision to be open is not accidental or neutral. When you ask the public to be open, you are asking them to do more work—to not proceed as normal but to reexamine, to rethink.

OPEN is a goal: open borders, open thought, open dialogue. Through OPEN, Bell will debut site-specific works that takes into account the physical location of the Corcoran across from the White House, the cultural nexus in which the Corcoran exists, and the fundamental rights born in the First Amendment.

Open to the public from February 7 - March 31, on Tuesday–Friday 10am–6pm and Weekends 1–6pm.


Joe Gebbia sitting on desk

Airbnb Cofounder, Joe Gebbia

In October, Gebbia visited the Corcoran for a talk and Q&A session with about how he started Airbnb, giving back through design, the power of an idea and the future of design.

PIXAR Story Supervisor, Jason Katz

In November, Katz, a storyboard artist who has worked on "Toy Story," "A Bug's Life," "Toy Story 2," "Monsters, Inc.," "Finding Nemo" and "Ratatouille" came to speak with our students.

Students posed with Jason Katz in front of screen with movie Coco images