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Visionary Woman Awards

2019 VWA Honoree: Jill Bonovitz '74

Fine Artist 
Upon graduation from Columbia University, Jill Bonovitz taught children with special needs in New York City. After moving back to her hometown of Philadelphia, she studied at Moore College of Art & Design. In 1974, with four fellow Moore affiliated artists, Bonovitz founded The Clay Studio, which has become a vital and material ceramic arts center promoting the medium and the work of emerging artists worldwide. Bonovitz’s practice started in clay where her porcelain works, mostly within the boundaries of vessel form, explored the intersections of line, shape, translucency and aestheticism. Later, she experimented with wire, and she now works with both media. “The quality of fragility is common to all my work,” she says of her approach. “I am guided by intuition and engagement with the material and am never certain of a work’s destination. In wire sculpture, I am creating the edges of what is not there; in clay, I am creating the essence of what is.” Read more about 2019 VWA Honoree Jill Bonovitz '74.

2019 VWA Honoree: June Kelly

June Kelly is the owner and director of the art gallery that bears her name in New York City’s historic SoHo district. Established in 1987, the gallery specializes in contemporary paintings, drawings, sculpture and photography by emerging, mid-career and established artists. The gallery was elected to membership in the prestigious Art Dealers Association of America in 1996, and exhibits periodically in the annual ADAA art show. Kelly’s gallery represents over 30 artists. For each artist, she looks at their work conceptually, observes their process, discusses techniques and brings together a shared understanding of what they are trying to achieve. She sees her role as a guardian for the artist, pursuing connections to collectors and museums, and pushing the artist to the forefront. She has always conceived of June Kelly Gallery as a different kind of space than most, where people are not intimidated to come in, look around and learn about art. Read more about 2019 VWA Honoree June Kelly.

2019 VWA Honoree: Paula Scher

Graphic Artist
Paula Scher is one of the most acclaimed graphic designers in the world. Described as the “master conjurer of the instantly familiar,” Scher straddles the line between pop culture and fine art in her work. Iconic, smart and accessible, her images have entered into the American vernacular. She has been a principal in the New York office of the distinguished international design consultancy Pentagram since 1991, where she has designed identity and branding systems, environmental graphics, packaging and publications for a wide range of clients that includes, among others, Citibank, Microsoft, Bloomberg, Shake Shack, Museum of Modern Art, Tiffany & Co., The High Line, The Public Theater, Metropolitan Opera, Sundance Institute and the Philadelphia Museum of Art. During the course of her career, Scher has been the recipient of hundreds of industry honors and awards. She is a recipient of the National Design Award for Communication Design, the AIGA medal, and the Chrysler Award for Innovation in Design, among others. Scher has served on the Public Design Commission of the City of New York from 2006–2015. She is an established artist who exhibits worldwide, and her designs are in the permanent collections of the Museum of Modern Art, the Cooper Hewitt National Design Museum, the Library of Congress, the Victoria and Albert Museum and other institutions. Read more about 2019 VWA Honoree Paula Scher.