Joe Lewis (artist)

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Joe Lewis
Joseph S. Lewis III

1953 (1953)
Known forDigital art, Photography

Joe Lewis (Joseph S. Lewis III) (born 1953 in New York City) is an African-American visual artist, photographer, musician, and art critic. His visual art often focuses on digital manipulations of the image and is represented by The Phatory in New York.[1]

Life and work[edit]

Lewis received his M.F.A. in 1989 from Maryland Institute, College of Art and a bachelor’s in 1975 from Hamilton College, where he was a Thomas J. Watson Fellow. Lewis was also a post-graduate student at CAiiA (now the Planetary Collegium): the Centre for Advanced Inquiry in the Interactive Arts: Sciences, Technology and Art Research, at the University of Plymouth.

Lewis was co-founding director of Fashion Moda in New York, where he curated and mounted numerous exhibitions and performance events. He also early on has been associated with Colab and ABC No Rio and has thus lectured extensively on public art, community-based artmaking and the alternative space movement.

He has written on art for Art in America, The LA Weekly and Artforum, and has been published in anthologies and peer-reviewed journals.[2]

As a visual artist, photographer, conceptual artist and performing artist, Lewis has had numerous exhibitions of his work both nationally and internationally and has participated in several residency programs including Anderson Ranch, CO; Cité des Artes in Paris; and the Darkroom Projectes in Milan. In 2008, he was named New York Foundation for the Arts Deutsche Bank Fellow in Photography.

Lewis is the recipient of many awards, commissions and fellowships, including an Award of Excellence from Communication Arts, several National Endowment for the Arts grants, a Ford Foundation Fellowship and a Thomas J. Watson Fellowship.

Lewis has served as chair at the Department of Art at California State University, Northridge from 1995 to 2001, and as a faculty member at California Institute of the Arts (CalArts) from 1991 to 1995. Lewis also has been dean of the School of Art & Design in the New York State College of Ceramics at Alfred University in New York, which boasts a rigorous curriculum with significant interdisciplinary partnerships between art and technology and as dean of the School of Art and Design at the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York.[2] He was dean of University of California, Irvine's Claire Trevor School of the Arts from 2010 until 2014, when he returned to Art Department Faculty after a Title IX investigation found he had violated UC sexual misconduct policy, which he has denied.[3]

Lewis currently is on the boards of Project Hope Alliance, California Lawyers for the Arts, and president of the Board of Trustees for the Noah Purifoy Foundation in Los Angeles. He is also past president of the National Council of Art Administrators, and former board member of the College Art Association and NASAD. He has worked as an administrator for the Public Art Program, Department of Cultural Affairs, City of Los Angeles and as a project manager for the Jackie Robinson Foundation in New York.


  1. ^ "Joe Lewis", The Phatory.
  2. ^ a b Joseph S. Lewis III named dean of Claire Trevor School of the Arts, UCI Today, University of California, Irvine.
  3. ^ "Former UCI dean maintained majority of salary after sexual misconduct".


  • Carlo McCormick, The Downtown Book: The New York Art Scene, 1974–1984, Princeton University Press, 2006.
  • Alan W. Moore and Marc Miller, eds. ABC No Rio Dinero: The Story of a Lower East Side Art Gallery New York: ABC No Rio with Collaborative Projects, 1985.

External links[edit]