Commissions Bring Real Life Lessons to Classroom

  • Sister Cities Collaboration

For Immediate Release
April 6, 2010

(Philadelphia, PA) Moore routinely collaborates with Philadelphia’s many not-for profit organizations to provide students with a wide range of cultural opportunities that enrich their development as artists. In this way, Moore benefits from and adds to the rich cultural life in Philadelphia. Bringing such projects to the classroom enhances the student experience and provides a real life lesson in networking and working collaboratively.

Two recent projects of this kind can be found in Dawn Bergmaier’s junior/senior Small Metals Class. The first is a commission for the International Visitors Council of Philadelphia (IVC), which is offering students the chance to have a piece of their work chosen to be in the permanent collection of diplomatic gifts in its Sister City of Incheon, South Korea.

The second is a commission for a gift from the Samuel S. Fleisher Art Memorial in Philadelphia, to be presented to the winner of its 2010 Founder’s Award, this year honoring arts advocate Carol Haas Gravagno. The award recognizes her significant contribution to people’s participation and access to the arts.

Four students will compete for the $400 commission from the IVC of Philadelphia. A panel of judges will choose the winning piece of artwork. “If we like all the submissions, we might be able to use them for another city as well,” said Nancy Gilboy, IVC president.

The Sister Cities program links Philadelphia to the world by creating special relationships with ten Sister and Partnership cities and one Partners for Peace city with the Iraqi city of Mosul.

“I thought we should have something made by someone in Philadelphia,” Gilboy said. “We shopped at The Art Shop (at Moore) and it made me think that I’d rather support local artists to do this. This is more significant for us and very exciting.”

Students in Bergmaier’s class are invited to attend the International Visitors Council’s annual meeting on April 29, where their individual works will be on display.

For their other project, students will present their original artwork to a jury from Fleisher on April 29; its members will select a winning art object to be presented to Gravagno at the Founder’s Award gala on June 18.

The selected student will receive a $400 honorarium and will be invited to attend the gala. Images of the student’s work will be featured in marketing materials for the event.

Senior Emma Pouncey, a fine arts major, said she’s thrilled by the opportunity to design for a commission. “With the guidance of our professor, we have come up with some really interesting pieces,” she said. “These opportunities really help to build your ideas and confidence. It is so exciting to know that the wider community is already seeing you and your work.”


Moore College of Art & Design educates students for inspiring careers in art and design. Founded in 1848, Moore is the nation's first and only women's art college. Moore's career-focused environment and professionally active faculty form a dynamic community in the heart of Philadelphia's cultural district. The College offers nine Bachelor of Fine Arts degrees for women. A coeducational Graduate Studies program was launched in summer, 2009. In addition, Moore provides many valuable opportunities in the arts through The Galleries at Moore, a Continuing Education Certificate program for adults, the 91-year-old acclaimed Youth Art Program for girls and boys grades 1-12, The Art Shop and the Sculpture Park. For more information about Moore, visit

April 6, 2010
Dawn Bergmaier’s junior/senior Small Metals Class are completing two commissions this semester. Working with the Fleisher Art Memorial and the International Visitors Council of Philadelphia student's are gaining real world experience and making important cultural connections.

Published on April 6th, 2010