Inaugurating RISD’s 17th President

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The Rhode Island School of Design is throwing a crazy house party this Fall Weekend. Kicking off on Friday, RISD’s annual alumni and parents’ weekend, RISD By Design, will conflate with the art school’s 17th Presidential Inauguration. As we mentioned last February, these ceremonies will formally introduce Rosanne Somerson to the community as RISD’s 17th President (and first ever female alum to be president!). In true RISD fashion, the Inauguration weekend is demarcated by its very own taxi cab-yellow graphic identity. For those of you sticking around campus for the long weekend, here’s a highlight reel of RISD events you can crash (a comprehensive list can be found here):

Friday October 9th, 2015

12 p.m.

RISD classes conclude in preparation for the Inauguration!

2 p.m. 

Inauguration commences underneath a tent at Roger Williams National Memorial. Three female RISD graduates, Janine Antoni, Kara Walker, and Nicole Miller, will deliver speeches.

5:30-6:30 p.m.

Adam Silverman, who received an Architecture degree from RISD in 1988, will deliver a keynote address about his multi-faceted career spent co-founding cult 90s fashion brands like X-Large and X-Girl (beloved by 90s It girls Chloë Sevigny and Sofia Coppola), and directing the wildly popular Heath Ceramics studio. Silverman will be speaking in RISD’s Metcalf Auditorium.

6 p.m. 

Then after the show, it’s the after party… RISD takes over Market Square, Moore Terrace, and Benefit Street. Lightning Bolt and other noteworthy RISD bands are slated to perform. Food (and drinks for those 21+ with cash) will be served.


10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

RISD’s Graphic Design Triennial, a survey of the department’s best work, will be on view at the Woods Gerry Gallery (62 Prospect St) until October 18th. 


RISD Craft, a juried sidewalk sale of art and other products made by RISD students and alums, dominates Benefit St. between Hopkins and Waterman. Come for the candy set in resin, stay for the food trucks.

9:30 p.m.

MADE by RISD, the school’s e-commerce boutique for selling student artwork, launches their fall collection at RISD’s Exposé Gallery (204 Westminster St).


For the first time in recent history, RISD gets a fall holiday off, too. We like President Somerson already!

Maybe you’re new here, and maybe you think RISD is just another acronym for a club or a dining hall on Brown’s campus. You can do your research via President Somerson’s website, which gives you the cold, hard facts about the art school sitting at the base of College Hill, before you head down. See you this weekend!

Images via and via.

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