Artist Todd Siler ’75 is to be honored with the Leonardo da Vinci World Award of Arts, presented by the World Cultural Council November 10, 2011, at the University of Tartu in Estonia.
The Mexico-based organization bestows the award each year, honoring an artist for individual achievements as well as the ability to inspire innovation in others.
A self-described cerebralist, Siler left Bowdoin with an art history degree and a Watson Fellowship, which took him to Paris before earning a Master in Visual Studies degree at MIT. Later, as a Fullbright Fellow, he would travel to India, before returning to MIT to earn a Ph.D. in interdisciplinary studies (psychology and art).
With skills ranging from art and writing to computer software, Siler was named Artist of the Year by the New York City Teachers Association and the United Federation of Teachers, and holds patents for his “Spatial-Tactile Human-Computer Interfaces for Computer-Aided Design and Manufacturing” and several other inventions.
His writing explores the complexities of the mind, providing methods to integrate various areas of intelligence and practical applications for learned creativity. Although Siler’s highly cerebral books have been acclaimed by the likes of New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, President Mills remembers him as the “guy who used to draw on my window in Coles Tower.”
Siler’s visual art has been exhibited everywhere from the Solomon R. Guggeheim and Metropolitan Museums of Art in New York City to the Pushkin Fine Arts Museum in Moscow.