2019 Awards for Distinction

Ronald Leax, detail, Alien Laboratory, 2016.

Posted by Liam Otten March 26, 2019


Sculptor and longtime faculty member Ronald Leax, the Halsey C. Ives Professor Emeritus of Art, will be honored with the Dean's Medal for outstanding service to the Sam Fox School of Design & Visual Arts at Washington University in St. Louis.

Leax will receive the Dean’s Medal Thursday, April 4, as part of the Sam Fox School's annual Awards for Distinction dinner. In addition, six outstanding art and architecture alumni will be recognized for demonstrating creativity, innovation, leadership, and vision in their respective fields.

Distinguished Alumni in architecture will be Rajeev Kathpalia (MArch84/MUD84), a partner at Vāstu Shilpā Consultants, the multidisciplinary practice founded by 2018 Pritzker Prize Laureate Balkrishna Doshi; and Peter Tao (BA79), a founding principal of TAO + LEE Associates in St. Louis.

Distinguished Alumni in art will be Lauren Rebecca Weinstein (BFA97), a celebrated cartoonist whose work has appeared in The Village Voice, The New Yorker, The New York Times, and Bookforum, among others; and Paula Jane Wilson (BFA98), a widely exhibited multimedia artist whose many honors include the Joan Mitchell Artist Grant.

Designer Daniel DuGoff (BA10), founder of the menswear brand DDUGOFF and the swim brand HOMOCO, will receive the Recent Alumni Award. Also receiving the Recent Alumni Award will be Vita Eruhimovitz (MFA15), a multimedia artist whose work is inspired by her background in computer science and bioinformatics.

The awards ceremony will take place at The Coronado, 3701 Lindell Blvd. For additional information, contact Sue Schienberg at sschienberg@wustl.edu or 314-935-7382.

About Ronald Leax

Widely recognized as an influential artist, mentor and professor, Leax earned his Bachelor of Arts in Art from Brown University in 1969 and his Master of Fine Arts in Sculpture from Cranbrook Academy of Art in 1980. He began teaching at Washington University in 1986 and served in numerous capacities, including sculpture area coordinator, director of the graduate program, associate dean, and dean of the College of Art. He was appointed emeritus professor in 2016.

During his time on campus, Leax taught at all levels, from first-year foundation courses to the sculpture majors to the graduate program. His students have been recognized with numerous national and international residencies and honors, ranging from the Sam Fox School’s Milliken Foreign Travel Awards to Fulbright Awards, Joan Mitchell Foundation Awards, a Daedalus Foundation Award, a Guggenheim Fellowship, and an Oscar. They have had impactful careers in sculpture, painting, performance, poetry, and teaching.

Leax has displayed his work in more than 40 one- or two-person exhibitions and more than 100 group exhibitions throughout the United States, Canada, Scotland, Germany and France. He has been honored with the College Art Association’s Distinguished Teaching of Art Award, and the Washington University Alumni Association’s Distinguished Faculty Award. He was named a 2013-2014 Washington University Art/Sci Fellow. He has been awarded creative research grants from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, Blanche Colman Foundation, Michigan Council for the Arts, Missouri Arts Commission, and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

Leax has been a resident artist, visiting artist and speaker at 66 academic and arts organizations. His work has been exhibited in nine museums and is represented in numerous public and private collections including Purdue University, Yale University Art Galleries, Cranbrook Art Museum, and the Mildred Lane Kemper Art Museum.

Leax is married to art historian Susan Waller, PhD. They live and work in Georgetown, Maine, and St. Louis, Missouri.