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March 04, 2024

Cleveland Institute of Art announces Curlee Raven Holton Inclusion Scholar Program

Curlee Raven Holton is an award-winning artist and printmaker who graduated from CIA in 1989.

First visiting scholar, celebrated international artist Clotilde Jiménez, will take part in public event March 7 at CIA


March 4, 2024

CLEVELAND—The Cleveland Institute of Art has launched the Curlee Raven Holton Inclusion Scholar Program, which provides established and emerging artists from traditionally marginalized groups—such as African American, Latinx, Native American and other groups—opportunities to engage with students in professional development and networking at CIA.

Inclusion Scholars will visit CIA on an annual basis to encourage open dialogue about the practices and strategies used by successful practicing artists. During their three- to seven-day visit to CIA, Inclusion Scholars will engage surrounding communities in gatherings designed to broaden the understanding and appreciation of the critical role that the arts play in our personal lives and greater cultural vitality.

Curlee Raven Holton is an award-winning artist and printmaker. He’s the founding director and Master Printer at Raven Fine Art Editions, and previously, he served as the founding director of The Experimental Printmaking Institute at Lafayette College in Easton, Pa., where he also taught Printmaking and African American Art History. Holton earned his BFA in Drawing and Printmaking from CIA in 1989 and is a National Director of CIA’s Board of Directors.

“I wanted to support a program that promoted artistic and cultural inclusion by direct artist, student and community engagement,” Holton says. “I also wanted to provide support and encouragement to the careers of artists of color and give students a chance to have mentorship and professional access to those established artists.”

CIA President + CEO Kathryn J. Heidemann says the Curlee Raven Holton Inclusion Scholar Program, which was launched as a result of Holton’s support of CIA’s “Student Access + Success” fund, is an impactful initiative for CIA.

“Fostering a sense of belonging and preparing aspiring artists and designers for their careers are important at CIA. The Inclusion Scholar Program will play a crucial role in accomplishing both by connecting students from traditionally under-represented communities with successful professionals who have shared cultural experiences,” Heidemann says. “I applaud Curlee Raven Holton’s vision for this program, and I’m excited to see how the art and design practices of CIA students grow through engaging with visiting scholars.”

CIA’s first Inclusion Scholar will be celebrated international artist Clotilde Jiménez, whose autobiographical multimedia collage work employs repeat motifs—such as boxing gear, tropical fruits and painted fingernails—combined with Mexican visual imagery to explore themes of race, gender, sexuality and spirituality. Now based in Mexico City, Jiménez earned his BFA in Printmaking from CIA in 2013.

The public is invited to attend “In Conversation: Clotilde Jiménez + David C. Hart” at 6pm Thursday, March 7 in CIA’s Peter B. Lewis Theater. During this curated conversation with CIA Art History professor David C. Hart, PhD, Jiménez will share his thoughts on being a practicing artist, student and resident in Philadelphia, Cleveland, London and Mexico City as well as his reactions to the cultures there and others’ reactions to him.

“Any opportunity to share my experience and story is valuable to me,” Jiménez says. “On the one hand, as a student, I remember how important it was for me to be able to see myself reflected in someone and to have, if not a role model, someone to look up to. To connect with someone in that position, a professor or artist, allowed me to envision my own future as an artist. I hope this talk will jump-start the creative juices in the students and have them thinking with a new perspective on things.”

Jiménez will also discuss his use of collage and other multimedia works in his artistic practice—and the pros and cons of discipline specificity—as well as the evolution of his thoughts (and education) about the art world, art education and artistic practice. Jiménez has exhibited in New York, Paris, London, Seattle and Orlando, and recently, he was selected to participate in the Paris 2024 Artistic Poster program, part of the Paris 2024 Cultural Olympiad that coincides with the Paris 2024 Olympic & Paralympic Games.

“In Conversation: Clotilde Jiménez + David C. Hart” is free and open to the public. For more information, visit

Michael C. Butz
Cleveland Institute of Art
Director of College Communications + External Relations
216.421.7404 /

Cleveland Institute of Art is a private, nonprofit college of art and design that has been the training ground for countless students who have gone on to make important contributions to the fields of creativity and innovation since it opened in 1882 as the Western Reserve School of Design for Women. Its students have designed internationally recognized products, their artwork has been exhibited in major museums and private collections around the world, and their entertainment media has been enjoyed by audiences and game players for generations. It enrolls about 600 students nationally and internationally and has a faculty of about 100 full-time and adjunct members, all of whom are practicing artists, designers and scholars.

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