Professor emeritus recognized for contribution to metalsmith community
Kurt J. Matzdorf
NEW PALTZ -- Kurt J. Matzdorf, professor emeritus of gold and silversmithing and founder of the metals program in the Art Department at the State University of New York at New Paltz, has been awarded the 2006 Lifetime Achievement Award from The Society of North American Goldsmiths (SNAG). This is the society's highest award, which recognizes a lifetime of exceptional service to the metalsmith community.
Matzdorf is nationally known for his ceremonial work, especially his 16 university maces, 20 presidential chains of office and 10 presidential medallions. He is exhibited in major public museums on both sides of the Atlantic, including Victoria and Albert Museum in London and the Jewish Museum in Berlin.
Matzdorf is the designer and creator of the SUNY New Paltz mace and chain of office, which was commissioned for the inauguration of Alice Chandler (SUNY New Paltz president emeritia, 1981-1996) in May of 1981.
Matzdorf taught at SUNY New Paltz from 1957 to 1985. He completed his undergraduate work in sculpture at London University and his Master's of Fine Arts in silversmithing at the University of Iowa.
The Society of North American Goldsmiths, an international nonprofit organization founded in 1969, is the premier metal arts organization for jewelers, designers and metalsmiths. SNAG encourages professional excellence, supports education and advances the jewelry and metal arts, and is dedicated to creating greater public awareness and appreciation of the metal arts.
Note to editors: A photograph of Kurt J. Matzdorf is available on the SUNY New Paltz Web site.
Located in the heart of a dynamic college town, 90 minutes from metropolitan New York City, the State University of New York at New Paltz is a highly selective college of about 8,000 undergraduate and graduate students.
One of the most well-regarded public colleges in the nation, New Paltz delivers an extraordinary number of majors in Business, Liberal Arts, Sciences, Engineering, Fine and Performing Arts and Education.
New Paltz embraces its culture as a community where talented and independent minded people from around the world create close personal links with real scholars and artists who love to teach.