Al Balinsky received his Master of Fine Arts degree in Photography from The City University of New York, Brooklyn College. He is Emeritus Professor of Fine Arts and the Founder of the Photography Programs (in 1980) at MIAD. Al has been teaching and photographing for over 30 years and is the recipient of numerous grants and awards; including a Wisconsin Arts Board / National Endowment for the Arts, and two Wisconsin Humanities Council / National Endowment for the Humanities Grants.
Al’s work has been exhibited and collected both Nationally and Internationally. His current photographic / oral history exhibition of People with Disabilities in the Workplace, created during a MIAD sabbatical, in conjunction with Independence First, Milwaukee, has been exhibited at over 35 venues in California, Illinois, Washington D.C., and Wisconsin, and is still being exhibited at this time. Al was awarded the National Council on Independent Living Advocacy Award, presented to him in Washington, D.C., for the People with Disabilities project. That project is currently being exhibited in DVD format.
“Paul Rand, Bradbury Thompson, Armin Hoffman, Wolfgang Weingart, and Herbert Matter have inspired my work to clarify information in order to inform the design and communication of messages. I look at the photographs of Dorthea Lange, Bruce Davidson, Henri Cartier-Bressan, and Peter Trunley and see a deep empathy and compassion for their subjects. In the work of Marc Chagall, I see the joyous use of color and line.”
“MIAD is filled with energy. Students and faculty from a mix of disciplines share a passion for creativity and invention. It is located on the Milwaukee River in a loft-filled corner of the city. Thousands of people circulate among galleries, museums, and studios on Gallery Night. “
“Communication Design students at MIAD bring an artistic sensibility to the classroom. Though digitally expert, they can appreciate and use handmade materials. The inclusion of Korean, German, and Polish students in my classes has made it possible to explore the challenges of designing for an international community.”
BA, Yale University
MFA, Yale University
Post-Graduate Study, Basel, School of Design
Society of Environmental Graphic Design, 2003 Merit Award and Special Award for Doing a Lot with a Little, for “Thinking and Making: An April Greiman Retrospective”
National Endowment for the Arts, Visual Artist’s Fellowship, Photography
National Endowment for the Arts, Design Arts Fellowship
Vice President, Director of Creative Development, Silver Burdett Ginn Professor
Department Chair, Graduate Studies Faculty, University of Cincinnati