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Commencement Profile: John W. Latona

Commencement Profile: John W. Latona

Posted: May 16, 2018

SUNY Chancellor’s Award For Student Excellence

John Latona has earned a master of science in multidisciplinary studies, attaining a 4.0 GPA while becoming the first Buffalo State student to concentrate his graduate studies in fiber design.

He will receive the SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Graduate Student Excellence during the 5:00 p.m. master’s hooding and C.A.S. ceremony at Buffalo State’s 146th Commencement, Saturday, May 19, in the Sports Arena.

Latona consistently demonstrates creativity, passion, and motivation toward his studies and future career. His studio work centers on traditional fiber techniques such as weaving, dyeing, and silk screening as well as nontraditional mixed-media techniques resulting in two- and three-dimensional artwork. His projects are made with fine craftsmanship and reflect his personal commitment to fiber as a medium of expression.

His artwork was selected by an international jury for the prestigious International Mini-Textile Exhibition in Bratislava, Slovakia, in 2015, 2016, and 2017. In 2017, a series of his work also appeared in the Hands On SUNY Buffalo State fibers exhibition in Bratislava, which featured more than 60 student works that he helped install. His artwork was also chosen for the juried Art in Craft Media exhibition at the Burchfield Penney Art Center and the annual Student Design Show in the Czurles-Nelson Gallery on campus.

Mature, engaged, and innovative, Latona is always willing to broaden his perspectives. In 2015, he received an Improve the World Travel Award to join the college’s Anne Frank Project study trip to Rwanda. He shared what he learned from this experience with his peers and has carried those lessons into his work as a high school teacher at the Charter School for Applied Technologies in Buffalo.

While at Buffalo State, Latona earned a SUNY Diversity Graduate Fellowship, the School of Arts and Humanities Dean’s Award for Art Education, and the Edgar H. Turkle International Service-Learning Scholarship—each awarded as a testament to his compassion, intelligence, and exceptional thoughtfulness. As one who believes that producing artwork strengthens his ability to teach art, he truly embodies the concept of the teacher-artist.

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