Barbara Nesin Named Department Chair of Art Foundations at The Art Institute of Atlanta

Atlanta, GA, Sept. 17, 2009 – Artist and educator Barbara Nesin has been named department chair of art foundations at The Art Institute of Atlanta. The announcement was made by Dr. Sally Parsonson, Dean of Academic Affairs.

Nesin grew up in New York City, where she earned a B.F.A. from the Pratt Institute and an M.B.A. with distinction from Long Island University. She has taught art K through 12 in public schools, served as visual art program director at Colorado’s largest community college, and, most recently, chaired the art department at Spelman College in Atlanta.

"We are very proud to have Barbara join our faculty,” said Dr. Parsonson in making the announcement. “She brings with her such a wide range of experience that we know she will greatly benefit both her students and her colleagues.”

For 12 years following her graduation from Long Island University, Nesin worked in the financial industry, where she was a registered representative of the New York Stock Exchange and a vice president and department head of pension trust administration. Then in 1996, as a “non-traditional student,” she completed the terminal degree in studio art, an M.F.A. in drawing and mixed media at Indiana State University.

The overarching theme of her creative work is to visually bridge cultural differences by making connections to all aspects of her mixed diaspora heritage. Currently, her work is being exhibited in Havana, Cuba, where she also participated in two collateral exhibitions of the 10th Havana Bienal in March and April, 2009. Her work was also featured in a solo exhibition at the National Museum of Ghana in Accra and in numerous solo, invitational, and juried exhibitions throughout the U. S., including Wilmer Jennings Gallery at Kenkeleba House (New York), The Puffin Foundation (NJ), Holter Museum of Art (MT), Ceres Gallery (New York), An Art Place (Chicago), and Hammonds House Galleries and Mason Murer Fine Art (both in Atlanta), in addition to many college and university galleries. She has traveled to Africa, Europe, the Mid-East, and the Caribbean, including numerous trips to Haiti. Her research, which informs her creative work, has been published in “Anales del Caribe,” “Higher Education Exchange,” and the “Journal of Haitian Studies.” Her current projects include two book manuscripts in progress and a creative collaboration with English faculty from Birmingham-Southern College funded by a grant from Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. Nesin is active in several professional associations, having served as president of Foundations in Art: Theory and Education (FATE), and currently on the Board of Directors of the College Art Association, the Haitian Studies Association, and Southeast Community Cultural Center, Inc. She maintains a studio at The Arts Exchange in the Grant Park section of Atlanta.

The Art Institute of Atlanta is an accredited institutional member of the National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD). The Art Institute of Atlanta, including its branch campuses — The Art Institute of Atlanta – Decatur, The Art Institute of Charleston, The Art Institute of Tennessee – Nashville, The Art Institute of Washington, and The Art Institute of Washington – Northern Virginia — is accredited by the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools to award associate and baccalaureate degrees. Contact the Commission on Colleges at 1866 Southern Lane, Decatur, Georgia 30033-4097 or call 404.679.4500 for questions about the accreditation of The Art Institute of Atlanta. The Art Institute of Atlanta is one of The Art Institutes (, a system of over 40 educational institutions throughout North America, providing an important source of design, media arts, fashion, and culinary arts professionals.

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