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Gateway was the community newsletter of Pratt Institute published monthly by the Office of Communications, in the Division of Institutional Advancement through spring 2014. For current Pratt-related news, visit the News page on Pratt’s website.


Pratt to Honor Fashion Week Founder Fern Mallis at 2012 Fashion Show + Cocktail Benefit

Calvin Klein will present Mallis with the award at runway show that will feature best fashion designs by graduating seniors


2012 Pratt Institute Fashion Industry Lifetime Achievement Award recipient Fern Mallis

Pratt Institute's senior class of fashion designers will present original looks for women and men at the Pratt Institute Fashion Show on Thursday, April 26 at 2 and 6 PM at Center548 at 548 West 22nd Street in Manhattan.

Fern Mallis, creator of New York Fashion Week, former executive director of the Council of Fashion Designers of America (CFDA), and former senior vice president of IMG Fashion, will be honored with the Pratt Institute Fashion Industry Lifetime Achievement Award at the 6 PM show. The award will be presented by designer Calvin Klein.

The show will be followed by a cocktail benefit in honor of Fern Mallis at PH-D Rooftop Lounge at Dream Downtown at 355 West 16th Street in Manhattan.

Tickets to the fashion show and cocktail benefit are available for purchase at www.pratt.edu/fashionshow. Proceeds from ticket sales will benefit student scholarships and Pratt's Department of Fashion Design.

"We are so thrilled to honor Fern Mallis, who has championed the importance of fashion design in New York City and worldwide," said Pratt Institute President Thomas F. Schutte. "We greatly appreciate all of our supporters who are helping to benefit the next generation of fashion design students at Pratt," he added.

The 2012 Pratt Fashion Show will feature the best work by graduating seniors from Pratt's Department of Fashion Design. The collections to be shown on the runway will be pre-selected by a panel of industry experts and press and will span several categories of fashion. One of the most prestigious colleges for art, design, and architecture in the world, Pratt Institute is home to the first fashion-design program in the United States.  

 "This year's runway show will be dynamic and experimental, simultaneously showcasing individual student collections as well as the students' work as a whole," said Jennifer Minniti, who was named chair of the Pratt Fashion Design department in summer 2011. "The presentation will celebrate the authenticity and strength of our students' creative approaches to design," she added.

Pratt Institute Fashion Industry Lifetime Achievement Award Honoree: 

Fern Mallis is president of her own leading fashion and design consultancy firm, Fern Mallis LLC. She formed the firm to advise, consult, create, and work with international and domestic fashion, lifestyle, and design companies on branding, image, creative business strategies, and event production. Mallis hosts a prestigious conversation series at New York's 92nd Street Y, titled Fashion Icons with Fern Mallis, which has featured guests including Fashion Industry Lifetime Achievement Award presenter Calvin Klein, Norma Kamali, and Donna Karan. Upcoming guests will include Tommy Hilfiger, Tom Ford, and Michael Kors. In addition, she hosts Fashion Insiders with Fern Mallis on Sirius XM's flagship celebrity talk channel, STARS, interviewing the best and brightest in the industry. Mallis recently celebrated the launch of her globally inspired jewelry line, titled Fern Finds: by Fern Mallis, available through QVC. She also made her theater stage debut this January in the Off-Broadway production of Nora and Delia Ephron's Love, Loss, and What I Wore

Mallis served as executive director of the CFDA for 10 years, where she furthered the organization's charter to promote American fashion as a "recognized branch of American art and culture" and helped to implement the foundation's burgeoning philanthropic goals to raise money for breast cancer and AIDS charities, design scholarships, and numerous other initiatives to benefit designers and the industry at large. "7th on Sixth," as it was first known, organized, centralized, and modernized the American runways, allowing American designers to compete head-on with Milan and Paris, forever changing the global fashion business. After "7th on Sixth" was acquired by IMG in July 2001, Mallis created new fashion weeks in Miami and Los Angeles, as senior vice president of IMG Fashion, and was instrumental in the expansion of IMG's fashion portfolio with events in Sydney, Melbourne, Moscow, Berlin, and Mumbai.    

Pratt Institute Fashion Industry Lifetime Achievement Award Presenter: 

Calvin Klein is an award-winning fashion icon globally recognized as a master of minimalism. His name ranks among the best-known brands in the world with Calvin Klein, Inc. reaching over $7 billion in global retail sales. He has been recognized with the prestigious Coty American Fashion Critics' Award—the fashion industry's equivalent of the Academy Award—and was the youngest designer ever elected into the Coty Hall of Fame in 1975. He has also received seven awards for outstanding design from the CFDA, including a Lifetime Achievement Award in 2001.

Text: Amy Aronoff
Photo: David S. Rubin


Pratt Scientists Work to Unravel a Painting’s Mystery 

The story starts at the Bergen Art Museum in Bergen, Norway’s second-largest city. The head conservator, Yngve Magnusson, found a copy of Raphael’s Sistine Madonna in the museum's storage room.

This was no surprise; the work of Raphael (1483–1520) has long been copied by painters. This one was attributed to the 18th-century German painter Anton Mengs. However, when museum officials looked more closely, they wondered whether the work might be from an earlier time, perhaps even as early as the 16th century. A number of clues pointed to the possibility. For instance, a patch on the left side of the painting may indicate that the work had been restored. But it may also reveal that the painting was made during a time when people painted on scraps of canvas.

So what did Magnusson do? He called Pratt, where chemistry Professor Eleonora Del Federico oversees a lab dedicated to investigating scientific questions in art. The painting is now at Pratt, where Del Federico and a post-doctoral fellow are studying the painting.

Del Federico and her team will analyze the painting, then share their evidence with other art historians, conservators, and curators. Within the next year, all these experts should have a clearer understanding of when this painting was created.

The Pratt Institute Mobile Laboratory for the Scientific Study of Art is funded by the Camille and Henry Dreyfus Foundation and by the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation.

Text and Production: Abigail Beshkin
Video and Production: Jonathan Weitz


Forbes Magazine Picks Pratt Alumni to Watch on Its “30 Under 30” List

Pratt alumni Kiel Mead, Samuel Cochran, and Amanda ClellandThree recent Pratt graduates are on a list of “30 Under 30” rising stars compiled by Forbes magazine. Included in the elite group are Samuel Cochran (B.I.D. ’05) and Kiel Mead (B.I.D. ’06), who made the Art and Design list, and Amanda Clelland (B.F.A. ’07), named on the Media list.

To determine the up-and-coming stars of the future, Forbes asked its readers—who number close to one million—and 12 panels of experts these four questions: “Who is reinventing the world? Who should you hire today? Who will you be working for in 20 years? Who, in short, under the age of 30, matters?”

Famed portrait artist Chuck Close (Hon. ’01) served on the panel of experts for the Art and Design category. The magazine’s reasons for selecting the Pratt alumni are as follows:

Samuel Cochran (B.I.D. ’05), age 29, is CEO, co-founder, co-designer, and director of Sustainably Minded Interactive Technology. Cochran was chosen for creating a leaf-like Solar Ivy commercial energy device and GROW hybrid solar/wind panels, which are now held in The Museum of Modern Art’s permanent collection. He began work on these projects as a Pratt student and developed them as part of the Pratt Design Incubator for Sustainable Innovation, which helps start-up companies build socially and environmentally responsible businesses.

Kiel Mead (B.I.D. ’06), age 28, a furniture and jewelry designer and founder and principal of Kiel Mead Designs, was chosen for using ordinary objects such as matchsticks, car keys, or previously chewed gum to create witty jewelry.

Amanda Clelland (B.F.A. ’07), age 27, is associate creative director at Droga5, a cutting-edge ad agency in New York’s East Village. She was chosen for her award-winning work for numerous clients, including Puma, one of the world’s leading sport lifestyle companies.

Read the entire Forbes article and find out who else made the list!

Text: Adrienne Gyongy
Kendall Mills, Courtesy of Samuel Cochran, Courtesy of Amanda Clelland