The Maryland Institute College of Art commencement takes place two weeks from today. As you might expect from a world-class art institution, MICA has enlisted an admirable group of artists, critics, historians, and general geniuses to be on hand for the event.

  • Robert Farris Thompson, an art historian at Yale, will be giving the undergraduate commencement speech. Thompson is an expert on Yoruba art and, at 83, is apparently “an authority on hip hop culture.”
  • Rick Lowe, an artist and MacArthur Genius Grant recipient, will be giving the graduate commencement speech. In 1993, Lowe bought and restored a block of houses in a struggling Houston neighborhood. In the years since, the project has continued to grow and blossom.
  • Alison Saar, a sculptor, painter, and installation artist, will be receiving an honorary degree. Her work explores themes of African cultural diaspora and spirituality.
  • Maira Kalman, an illustrator, writer, and designer, will be receiving an honorary degree. You might’ve seen Kalman’s work on the cover of the New Yorker, in the illustrated 2005 edition of Elements of Style, or in a zillion other places.
  • Richard Tuttle, a conceptual artist, will be receiving an honorary degree. Tuttle is known for his highly influential minimalist sculptures and paintings.