To the editors and President Clayton S. Rose:

As alumni of Bowdoin College and the visual arts program, we are deeply saddened and disappointed to hear that the college is terminating its relationship with John Bisbee. We believe this is an error. Over the last two decades, Professor Bisbee’s teaching has become a legendary staple of the Bowdoin experience not only for the excellent results he gets from his students but also due to the pedagogical diversity he brings to campus and because his impact and influence extend well beyond his classroom.

Bisbee loves inspiring his students. He moves them to search vigorously and critically for a creative trajectory that is both meaningful and tenable. He does everything within his power to accommodate even the outermost proclivities—provided the student demonstrates resolve, passion and sufficient pragmatism—by supplying additional spaces, materials, hours and supervised access to his shop. He invigorates artists through the example of his own creative process and career, and continues to push them after they graduate. Every year, alumni return to thank Bisbee for causing them to look at the world in a different way.

If the visual arts department is to maintain its vibrancy and merit, retaining John Bisbee is just as essential as the creation of a digital media position. We urge the school to reconsider its decision.

Loretta Park ’11,  Sam Gilbert ’10.  McKay Belk ’11. and  Tom Ryan ’12

Park collected stories and notes from other alumni about Professor Bisbee.

Alumni Stories about Professor John Bisbee by bowdoinorient