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Memoir

John H. Stephenson
Regent's Proceedings 244

John H. Stephenson, Catherine B. Heller Professor of Art and former acting
dean of the School of Art, retired from active faculty status on December 31,
1994.

Professor Stephenson received his B.A degree from Iowa State University in
1952 and his M.F.A degree from the Cranbrook Academy of Art in 1958. He
joined the faculty of the former College of Architecture and Design as an
instructor in 1959 and was promoted to assistant professor in 1962, associate
professor in 1964, and professor in 1968. He was named Catherine B. Heller
Professor of Art in 1989. Professor Stephenson was also awarded an
honorary doctorate from Grand Valley State University in 1993.

During his tenure, Professor Stephenson taught beginning, intermediate,
advanced, and graduate ceramics and also participated in teaching courses in
two- and three-dimensional design in the freshman program. His dedication
to teaching and his rapport with students has resulted in a number of his
students having achieved high visibility in the field of ceramic art. Over the
course of his career, Professor Stephenson also taught at many other
institutions in the United States and abroad.

Professor Stephenson's research has gone beyond the boundaries of classical
tradition and opened up a contemporary approach to American ceramics. He
has received grants to travel and work in Japan and to study large-scale
ceramic sculpture, explore ceramics and mixed media, and to study the use
of color in three dimensions. Professor Stephenson has participated in
numerous workshops and symposia and in major exhibitions, which traveled
across the nation and abroad. In 1965, he was awarded the city of Faenza
(Italy) gold medal in Concorso Internationale della Ceramica D'Arte. His
work is included in major private, corporate, and public collections,
including the Everson Museum in Syracuse, New York; the Cranbrook
Museum of Art in Bloomfield Hills; the Detroit Institute of Art; the Museum
of Contemporary Crafts in New York City; and the Faenza Museum in Italy.

The Regents now salute this distinguished faculty member for his dedicated
service by naming John H. Stephenson the Catherine B. Heller Professor
Emeritus of Art.