Sharif Bey is a Syracuse-based artist and educator. Shortly after the fall of the Soviet Union, Bey studied sculpture at The Academy of Fine Arts and Design in Bratislava, Slovakia. Later, he earned his BFA from Slippery Rock University, his MFA from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, and PhD (in art education) from Penn State University. Inspired by modernism, functional pottery, Oceanic Art and Art of the African diaspora, Bey’s works investigate the cultural and political significance of adornment and the symbolic and formal properties of archetypal motifs, while questioning how the meaning of icons and function transform across cultures and time.
His awards include: The United States Artist Fellowship, The Pollock-Krasner Fellowship, The New York Foundation for the Arts Fellowship, and The J. William Fulbright Scholarship. Beys works are featured in numerous public collections including: The Smithsonian American Art Museum, The Museum of Fine Arts in Houston, The Carnegie Museum of Art, The Columbus Museum, The Dallas Museum of Art, The Mint Museum, The Crocker Museum, and The Wichita Art Museum.