Alfred University News

Alfred Ceramic Art Museum awards Ackerman Internship to SOAD student Diabou Hubbard

Diabou Hubbard, a third-year student in Alfred University’s School of Art and Design, New York State College of Ceramics, has been awarded the spring 2024 Jerome Ackerman Internship at the Alfred Ceramic Art Museum.

As an art student, Hubbard’s focus has been on painting and fiber-related artwork, and she brings an interest in African traditionalism and modernity to her work, acknowledging a deep interest in the cultural diversity of the African continent and specifically her Senegalese cultural heritage.

 Hubbard’s curiosity about the Museum began in a history of Asian Ceramic Art class taught by Megan Jones, Alfred University Associate Professor of Art History. The students in this class spent time in the Museum archives viewing and handling historical, modern and contemporary ceramic art works, an experience that inspired Hubbard to seek employment in the Museum. She began working for the Museum in the fall of 2023, and that experience led to her application for the Ackerman Internship, supervised by Curator of Collections Susan Kowalczyk.

 Hubbard writes in her application letter that her previous experience deepened her appreciation for the Museum, “but also made me eager to further explore the intricate world of museums, specifically immersing myself in the role museums play in preserving cultural heritage.”  

 “Diabou is an exceptional student dedicated to her intellectual and artistic growth,” says Museum Director Wayne Higby. “We are pleased to have a student working for us who comes from a textile-fiber art media background.”

 Higby also noted Hubbard’s internship epitomizes the spirit of the Ackerman Internship program. “Diabou’s artistic engagement with textiles echoes that of Evelyn Ackerman who in collaboration with her husband made a significant impact on modernist design in America. As she looks toward the future, she will have professional museum practice to add to her resume, and we are happy to offer her that possibility as a result of the Ackerman Internship.”

 Laura Ackerman-Shaw established the Jerome Ackerman Internship at the Alfred Ceramic Art Museum in honor of her father Jerome “Jerry” Ackerman (MFA ‘52) a designer-craftsman whose artistic collaboration with his wife, Evelyn Ackerman, was at the heart of California's Midcentury Modernism movement. The couple established the Jenev Design Studio in West Los Angeles, and as highly visible artists participated in every edition of the influential California Design shows at the Pasadena Art Museum, from 1954 to 1976.

 “This internship has become a cornerstone of generosity that has offered significant professional practice experience for the art school students who have received it,” Higby says.

 Applications for the fall 2024 Ackerman Internship are due by April 10th and are accepted in person at the Museum’s front desk, on Handshake, or by email – applications must include a letter of interest, resume and two professional letters of recommendation. Applicants should have good organizational skills with strong attention to detail as well as good written and oral communication skills and a proficiency with Microsoft Office Suite and Adobe Photoshop. For additional information, call the Museum office extension at 607-871-2047.