Year in Review: Best of 2015 at SACI


SACI welcomes you to 2016! 2015 was a great year at SACI. If you missed any of the highlights of the past 12 months, here is a re-cap of the biggest events and news items that happened at SACI.

SACI Artists Council JurySACI held the 2015 International Art Exhibition Award and announced the winners in January 2015. Artists of any age, students and professionals, from all over the world were invited to submit their work in any medium and theme. Entries were juried by members of the SACI Artists Council.

SACI 40th anniversaryIn April 2015, SACI celebrated its 40th Anniversary with an Alumni Reunion, attended by numerous alumni who returned to SACI from near and far to attend events and talk about the SACI Alumni Association and new upcoming Alumni website. Since 1975, more than 10,000 students have traveled to Florence, Italy, to immerse themselves in art and culture at SACI.

SACI MFA in Studio Art 2015 Commencement

On April 24th, 2015, SACI held its first MFA Commencement Ceremony which was held in the Sala Luca Giordano in Florence’s Palazzo Medici Riccardi, during which the school awarded its first two-year MFA in Studio Art degrees to eight new graduates. Artist Lawrence Carroll eloquently delivered the keynote address. Elizabeth A. Sackler, PhD, Chair of the Board of the Brooklyn Museum and SACI alumna, received an honorary degree.

Jean-Pierre Roy, Nachlass, 2015, oil on canvas, 50 × 38 in, 127 × 96.5 cm.

The best SACI Alumni stories this year came from SACI Alum Jean-Pierre Roy (Fall 1994) when actor and art collector, Leonardo DiCaprio, purchased his painting, Nachlass. Later in the year, in the October issue (V. 37) of Hi-Fructose Magazine, Jean-Pierre’s work was featured on the cover and in an extensive article.

Jennifer Allora and Guillermo Calzadilla during an Art21 interview on PBS

And other SACI Alumni, Internationally renown artist duo, Allora & Calzadilla, who met while they were students in Florence at SACI (Spring 1995) and have been collaborating together ever since, were invited to participate in the 56th Biennale di Venezia, in the Arsenale, where they presented In the Midst of Things

SACI Consortium ResidencyIn June 2015, the SACI Artist/Scholar Consortium Residency recipient, Dana Saulnier, spent a month at SACI working in the studio and presenting to SACI students and instructors where he talked about his work and his experience during the residency. The SACI Consortium Residency provides artists and scholars with living and studio space in the historic center of Florence during the month of June. The next deadline to apply is February 12, 2016.

Venice (photo by Lorenzo Pezzatini)In July 2015, SACI inaugurated its 4-week Summer Venice Program with great success. Participants earn 3 studio art credits in Digital Photography and 3 art history credits in Contemporary Art. (Contemporary Art: Biennale and Beyond during the summers when the Venice Art Biennale is in progress; Contemporary Art in Historic Venice, in the alternate years). The deadline to apply for the Summer 2016 program is May 15, 2016.

SACI_CDmfa_headerIn October 2015, SACI announced its new 2-year MFA in Communication Design program in Florence, Italy, accredited by NASAD, beginning in Fall 2016. SACI’s MFA in Communication Design students have the unique opportunity to research the roots of Western visual conventions through direct experience of the extraordinary Italian artistic heritage while living in a country that is at the cutting edge of Communication Design innovation. Deadline for applications is March 15, 2016.

Godwin Bradbeer, "Blue Portrait-Fragment Three," Chinagraph pencil, pastel, silver oxide, ink 2012 (for the CAD exhibition series). Courtesy of James Makin Gallery, Melbourne.

In November 2015, SACI hosted an international Symposium on Global Drawing and a Master Drawing Workshop in conjunction with an exhibition of Contemporary Australian Drawing: 90 Australian Artists. The events were attended by artists and students from around the globe.

Apuan Alps marble valley

In December 2015, SACI announced a “master/class” 2-week SACI Alumni sculpture workshop, April 25 – May 9, 2016 in Seravezza, Italy, taught by SACI Instructor, John Taylor. Located beneath the Apuan Alps,​ this special two-week workshop for alumni and friends provides a unique opportunity to learn the rich history of the area while gaining practical experience working with the white marble for which it is famed. Deadline to apply is March 1, 2016.

SACI logoSACI looks forward to sharing this new year with you. Stay tuned for upcoming announcements and calendar events. For more information, see the SACI website:


About SACI

SACI is a US non-profit College of Art and Design in Florence, Italy, for undergraduate and graduate students seeking accredited instruction in studio art, design, conservation, art history, and Italian language and culture. Founded in 1975, SACI offers the following programs: Academic Semester/Year Abroad, Summer Studies, Venice Summer Program, Post-Bac in Conservation, MFA in Studio Art, MA in Art History.

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