Sawyer Business School Professor Moonlights As Public Artist

Suffolk’s Sawyer Business School recently published an article about management and entrepreneurship professor Jenni Dinger’s recent foray into public art.

This past summer, 60 Boston artists—including Dinger—spent at least 70 hours each “sanding, priming, painting and decorating” pianos at the Seaport District’s Innovation and Design Building as part of “Play Me, I’m Yours,” a public art project that “places decoratively painted pianos” throughout Boston and Cambridge. The show opens September 23rd and runs until October 10th.

Dinger elucidates the connection between public art and “the very community-driven field” of entrepreneurship: “Our students are interning at various start-ups in the Boston community and pursuing their own business ventures. By my being more engaged in the community, I can help them become more successful in the community.”

The design for Dinger’s piano was inspired by the Michelangelo biography The Agony and the Ecstasy and a quote from Desmond Morris, an English zoologist, who likened cities to “human zoos” as opposed to the more common concrete jungle comparison. She painted a “blue sky atop her piano and bright green leaves on the sides,” then added photographs of Bostonians “around the lower part of the piano” in an effort to contrast the city’s monochromatic concrete.

The major goal of the project is very much in line with Dinger’s research at Sawyer, which focuses on the impact of the community on the entrepreneur. She explains that the pianos are meant to to bring people together by getting them to “stop, look and interact with others walking by.”


About the Author

Jonathan Pfeffer

Jonathan Pfeffer joined the Clear Admit and MetroMBA teams in 2015 after spending several years as an arts/culture writer, editor, and radio producer. In addition to his role as contributing writer at MetroMBA and contributing editor at Clear Admit, he is co-founder and lead producer of the Clear Admit MBA Admissions Podcast. He holds a BA in Film/Video, Ethnomusicology, and Media Studies from Oberlin College.

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