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Press Release:



FAU Exhibition Features Internationally Acclaimed Graphic Designer, Rick Valicenti

BOCA RATON (January 21, 2010) – The University Galleries in the School of the Arts in  Florida Atlantic University’s Dorothy F. Schmidt College of Arts and Letters presents an exhibition of Chicago-based artist, graphic designer and founder of the design firm Thirst, Rick Valicenti from Saturday, February 13 through Saturday, April 3 in the Schmidt Center Gallery on FAU’s Boca Raton campus. The exhibition, titled “Curiosities: Rick Valicenti & 21 st Century Thirst,” was developed with FAU Professor of Art Stephanie Cunningham, who teaches graphic design in the department of visual arts and art history. An opening reception for the exhibition, beginning with a lecture by Valicenti, will be presented on Friday, February 12 from 7 to 9 p.m. The lecture, opening and exhibition are free and open to the public.

“Curiosities” presents a wide variety of art and design work created since 2000 by Valicenti and Thirst, the design firm he founded in 1988. Posters and other printed work will be complimented by motion graphics, computer animation, video, web-based projects and selections from a recent suite of 500 ink drawings, “Notes to Self,” that Valicenti created in 2008 and 2009.

            Valicenti was born in 1951, and like other designers of his generation, his career as a graphic designer developed in step with the expansion and proliferation of computer aided design. Valicenti has often embraced computer technology as a primary tool in the development of his work, yet he is also devoted to maintaining a connection to the human-made, and even more so, to human emotion as a driving force in both his commercial design and his own art work. Valicenti’s work tackles sexual politics, seduction, emotion as advertising, ego, uniformity and visual wordplay.

In 2006, Valicenti received the AIGA Medal, the highest honor in the graphic design profession. He is also a member of the Alliance Graphique International and was awarded the AIGA Chicago Chapter Fellow in 2004. Valicenti has been featured in and received awards from leading design magazines such as Eye, ID, Graphis, Communications Arts, Print, Step, and i4 Design. His work has been exhibited in the Museum of Modern Art and Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Musuem. Various works are in the permanent collections of the Denver Art Museum, Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum, The Newberry Library and the Society of Typographic Arts Chicago design archive. Valicenti has lectured at colleges and events across six continents, most recently at 2009 Design Indaba, the world's largest multi-disciplinary annual conference in Cape Town, South Africa.

          In association with Valicenti’s exhibition, the department of theatre and dance’s FAU Dance Ensemble (February 5-7) will premiere a work that Valicenti is collaborating on with graduate students in dance and visual arts.  The work includes elements of graphic design in human motion. It will take place in the University Theatre on the Boca Raton campus. Also, from February 14 through March 15 a student exhibition titled “Wastefool,” will challenge FAU graphic design students to, in Valicenti’s words, “reposition waste and public point of view with imagination, intelligence, craft and wit.”  The exhibition is presented  in association with Moving Design, a national collaboration of socially motivated designers including Valicenti. The exhibition will take place at the 2nd Street Studio Gallery on the FAU Fort Lauderdale campus.

The University Galleries at FAU are open Tuesday through Friday, 1 to 4 p.m. and Saturday, 1 to 5 p.m.  Class and other groups are welcome and can be accommodated during public and other hours by appointment. The University Galleries are supported in part by grants from the Palm Beach County Cultural Council and the R.A. Ritter Foundation.  The University Galleries Museum Education Programs are made possible in part by the Julius Kaufman Fellowship and Beatrice Cummings Mayer.

            For further information about the Valicenti exhibition and University Galleries programs, visit or call 561-297-2966.


About Florida Atlantic University:

Florida Atlantic University opened its doors in 1964 as the fifth public university in Florida. Today, the University serves more than 28,000 undergraduate and graduate students on seven campuses. Building on its rich tradition as a teaching university, with a world-class faculty, FAU hosts 10 colleges:  College of Architecture, Urban & Public Affairs, Dorothy F. Schmidt College of Arts & Letters, the Charles E. Schmidt College of Biomedical Science, the College of Business, the College of  Education, the College of  Engineering & Computer Science, the Harriet L. Wilkes Honors College, the Graduate College,  the Christine E. Lynn College of Nursing and the Charles E. Schmidt College of Science.  

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