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"My dream is to walk around the world. A smallish backpack, all essentials neatly in place. A camera. A notebook. A traveling paint set. A hat. Good shoes. A nice pleated (green?) skirt for the occasional seaside hotel afternoon dance." 
-- Maira Kalman

Maira Kalman

Illustrator, artist, designer

7 p.m. Wednesday, November 16, 2022
Event canceled.
A Creative Life conversation with WAMC’s Joe Donahue

UAlbany Performing Arts Center
1400 Washington Ave., Albany NY 12222

See map with parking info

Free and open to the public

Maira Kalman is one of America’s most beloved illustrators. Her art has been exhibited in galleries and museums around the world. She is also an acclaimed author of books for children and adults.


The creator of many covers for The New Yorker, her work adorns books by Gertrude Stein, Daniel Handler (Lemony Snicket), Michael Pollan, and the bestselling Illustrated Elements of Style by Strunk & White.


Her children’s books include Fireboat: The Heroic Adventures of the John J. Harvey and What Pete Ate from A to Z. She collaborated with David Byrne (The Talking Heads) on the 2020 book, American Utopia, with text from Byrne’s Broadway show, and more than 150 paintings by Kalman.


She has also designed fabric for Isaac Mizrahi, accessories for Kate Spade, sets for Mark Morris, and— with her late husband Tibor Kalman— clocks, umbrellas and other objects for MOMA.


In 2017, she collaborated with choreographer John Heginbotham to produce a theatrical and dance interpretation of her blog, "The Principles of Uncertainty," and performed with his company at Jacob's Pillow Dance Festival and the Brooklyn Academy of Music.  Following that, the two again collaborated on the dance/play Herz Schmerz for which she was a designer and performer.


Philippe Petit at UAlbany Oct. 3, 2019
Maira Kalman, credit Kimisa H

Maira Kalman, credit Kimisa H

A sample of Maira Kalman's illustrations.

A sample of Maira Kalman's illustrations. The "New Yorkistan" New Yorker cover was a collaboration with Rick Meyerowitz.

About "The Creative Life"

Created and produced by the New York State Writers Institute, University Art Museum, and UAlbany Performing Arts Center in collaboration with WAMC Northeast Public Radio, The Creative Life features leading figures from a variety of artistic disciplines in conversation with WAMC host Joe Donahue about creative inspiration, craft, and career.

Major support for The Creative Life is provided by The University at Albany Foundation, The John D. Picotte Family Foundation and Stewart’s Shops/Dake Family. Additional support is provided from the College of Arts and Sciences,  Office of Intercultural Student Engagement and University Auxiliary Services. 

More information on the Creative Life Series.

The Creative Life Series at the University at Albany
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