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Alumni Award for Excellence

Photography alumnus Chad Hunt (1994) is our 2013 Alumni Award for Excellence recipient.

2014 Nominee Bios

Please note, the bios below are based on information provided by the nominator.

Steven Bindernagel (2002)
Inka Essenhigh (1991)
Bruno Grizzo (1996)
Manjari Sharma (2004)
Fred Valentine (1975)

Steven Bindernagel—Fine Arts 2002

Steven Bindernagel was born in Cleveland, Ohio, in 1978. He received his BFA in painting from CCAD in 2001 and his MFA from the School of Visual Arts in 2006. He continues to live and work in New York City. His most recent exhibitions include the 2013 solo shows In Conversation at CRG Gallery in New York and Chasing the Ghost at beta pictoris gallery in Birmingham, AL. A full CV and selected press may be found at Visit his website:
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Inka Essenhigh—Fine Arts 1991

Born in 1969, Inka Essenhigh lives and works in New York and is represented by Victoria Miro in London. She has a solo show, Large Paintings on Paper, this spring at Pace Prints in New York; she has also shown at Museum of Modern Art, New York; The Royal Academy of Art, London; Domus Artium 2, Salamanca; São Paulo Biennial; Museum of Contemporary Art, North Miami and the Fruitmarket Gallery, Edinburgh. Her work is in the collections of major museums including Albright-Knox Art Gallery, Buffalo, NY; Museum of Modern Art / P.S.1 Center for Contemporary Art, New York; San Francisco Museum of Modern Art; Seattle Art Museum; Tate, London; and Whitney Museum of American Art, New York. She earned her BFA from CCAD in 1991, and her MFA from the School of Visual Arts in New York in 1994. Visit her website:
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Bruno Grizzo—Fashion Design 1996

In his career as a fashion designer, Bruno Grizzo has worked for Calvin Klein, Lanvin, Frank Tignino, and Marc Jacobs and opened his own Bruno Grizzo label in 2006. His first collection was a series of eight dresses, each based on a staple of a woman's wardrobe: lingerie, T-shirt, shirt, sweater, denim jacket, suit, coat, and evening dress. He made history at the GenArt and Motorola Styles Fashion Awards as the first designer to win two Motorola Design Vision Awards for women's eveningwear and ready-to-wear. Shape is the main focus of Bruno Grizzo designs; his details are subtle and his silhouettes are simple yet striking.

In 2010, Grizzo began to illustrate for companies such as Halston, Kate Spade, Ann Taylor, Coach, the Neue Galerie, and Jonathan Adler. His work has also been featured in Surface, Victor, and Town and Country magazines. Visit his website:
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Manjari Sharma—Media Studies, Still-Based 2004

Manjari Sharma (born 1979) is an internationally published photo-based artist born and raised in Mumbai, India, and based in Brooklyn, New York. In addition to various private collections, her work can be found in the permanent collection of the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, and has been showcased in group and solo shows both in the United States and worldwide. Her most recent solo exhibition was Darshan, seen this spring at the Richard Levy Gallery, New Mexico. Sharma's images have appeared in Forbes India magazine, Vogue India, Geo magazine, and America Online. She has had features and interviews with the New York Times, Wired Raw File, NPR, Time, Huffington Post, CNBC Mumbai, and The Times of India.

Sharma holds a BS in Visual Communication from S.V.T College, Mumbai, and a BFA in Still Photography from CCAD. She is represented by ClampArt Gallery in New York City and Richard Levy Gallery in New Mexico. Visit her website:

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Fred Valentine—Fine Arts 1975

Fred Valentine is an artist with a strong focus in painting and drawing. His 30 years of experience an art teacher/therapist with children and adults with psychiatric and developmental issues often feeds back into his studio practice. For about 20 years starting in the early 1990s, he was also part of a group of artists, activists, and organizers of guerrilla theater performance, happenings, and art exhibits in Williamsburg (Brooklyn) and Europe. In the spring of 2011 he divided his studio and opened a gallery called Valentine that shows a combination of veteran, overlooked, and emerging artists, often simultaneously. Valentine has a B.F.A. from CCAD and an M.F.A. from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. His work has been reviewed and featured in the New York Times, Bomb Magazine, Time Out NY, and other publications. He received a grant from the Pollack Krasner Foundation, a residency at Yaddo, and a 2014 Guggenheim Memorial Foundation fellowship. He was recently included in Brooklyn Magazine's list of the 100 most influential people in Brooklyn culture.

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