NEW YORK AND PARIS, June 18, 2013—The New School has announced the appointment of Susan Taylor-Leduc, an art historian based in Paris, as the dean of Parsons Paris. Parsons Paris is a new academic center for Parsons The New School for Design, where students from around the world will pursue degrees in a range of design fields. Parsons Paris will strengthen the school’s long history in this cultural capital, having established a campus in Paris in 1921 and maintaining an active presence for nearly a century.
"The New School’s innovative approach to design education—both its international outlook and also its interdisciplinary, collaborative focus—was particularly intriguing to me,” said Taylor-Leduc. “I look forward to making Parsons Paris a key player in the European art and design community, and to educating a new generation of designers as informed global citizens.”
Taylor-Leduc will oversee academics at Parsons Paris, which range from undergraduate and graduate education to study abroad opportunities, and build connections with a range of cultural, business, government and academic partners across Europe. Parsons Paris represents the first step in a new global initiative at The New School, the academic home of Parsons, which recognizes that the growing interaction among cultures, markets, and regions of the world has revolutionized the practice of art and design. Parsons Mumbai, a partnership with the new Indian School of Innovation and Design, will launch later this year. Parsons is also exploring activities in other regions of the world where the university has engaged in student and faculty research and cross-cultural exchange.
Since 1994, Taylor-Leduc has taught international and American students in Paris, most recently serving as academic director and associate professor of Art History at Trinity College in Paris, which she co-founded in 2006. She has served as a visiting lecturer at the Graduate School of Design at Harvard University, the Fondation Nationale des Sciences Politiques in Paris, and Columbia University’s Global Center in Paris. Building on a background in 18th-century landscape design, Taylor-Leduc’s scholarship explores multiple periods and disciplines, such as the interconnections between gambling, play theory, and French picturesque garden design. Dr. Taylor-Leduc earned her Bachelor’s degree in art history from Trinity College and her Master’s and Ph.D. from the University of Pennsylvania.
"Susan shares a passion for our values, and for the kinds of teaching and learning we promote at The New School,” said Provost Tim Marshall. "We were impressed by her vision of creating an educational environment that brings together theory and practice, connecting students to the multitude of resources in Paris, and building on our history in the city to become an integral part of the art and design community."
In 1921, Parsons became the first American art and design school to establish a campus in Paris. Among its achievements, Parsons Paris was the birthplace of the Parsons table, an icon of Modern design, in a studio led by the designer Jean-Michel Frank in the 1930s. Parsons’ new academic center in Paris is situated in an intimate, atelier-like setting at 45 rue Saint-Roch in the 1st arrondissement, near many of the city’s important cultural destinations including the Louvre, l’Opéra, and Musée des Arts Décoratifs. The school will offer programs that reflect the areas of study at Parsons in New York, while contextualized to take full advantage of the city’s cultural resources. This includes programs in Fashion Design; Strategic Design and Management; Art, Media and Technology; Design and Technology; and Art and Design History and Theory.
Parsons Paris will enroll an international mix of students to study with a faculty of French and European art and design educators, and visiting professors from around the world. Students will become part of the larger community of The New School, a university that offers interdisciplinary study in liberal arts, social sciences, international affairs, management, public policy, media studies and the performing arts. Students will be able to study online or at its New York campus, supplementing their coursework with classes in other subjects.
"Today’s rapid globalization requires a new academic model, one focused on creativity as a core literacy that informs all aspects of society," said David Van Zandt, president of The New School. "Parsons Paris marks the beginning of our efforts to create a network of hubs in cities around the world, where students can fluidly engage both on site and online throughout the course of their studies, and prepare for careers in the creative industries in a global context."
For more information about Parsons Paris, visit http://www.newschool.edu/parsonsparis.
Parsons The New School for Design is one of the most prestigious schools of art and design in the world. Having established some of the first programs in the United States in fashion design, interior design, and graphic design, Parsons has a long legacy of art and design innovation. Among those educated at Parsons are the renowned artists Jasper Johns and Roy Lichtenstein; fashion designers Marc Jacobs, Donna Karan, and Tom Ford; photographer Steven Meisel; graphic designer Paul Rand; and a new generation of rising artists and designers including artist Ryan McGinley; fashion designers Lazaro Hernandez and Jack McCollough of Proenza Schouler and Alexander Wang; interactive designer Evan Roth; and art director Julia Restoin Roitfeld. Since 1970, Parsons has been part of The New School, a university founded in 1919 as a center of intellectual and artistic freedom. Among those who have taught and studied at The New School are such leading twentieth century figures as John Dewey, Martha Graham, Margaret Mead, Isamu Noguchi, Aaron Copland, Marlon Brando, and many others. For more information, visit www.newschool.edu/parsons.
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