By Joe Garvey

Noah Scalin, an award-winning Richmond-based artist, author and activist who describes his work as “organizing the noise of American culture into new signals – ones that illuminate the things we should be prioritizing when we’re so easily distracted by the spectacle of our society,” will serve as artist-in-residence for the 2023-24 academic year at Old Dominion University’s Strome College of Business, Dean Kenneth Kahn announced on Aug. 23.

Scalin in 2001 founded Another Limited Rebellion, an art and innovation consulting firm that has helped thousands of industry leaders expand their companies’ creative capacity.

“Noah Scalin is distinguished from other artists in that he has ample experience working with business. Such experience is invaluable to helping our students look at business problems through different lenses – in this case, an arts lens,” Kahn said. “This enhances our students’ abilities to think critically and differently when addressing the various problems that can exist in today’s business environment.”

Man leading a class

"I've seen first-hand that the leaders of tomorrow need to be creative leaders if they're going to have the capacity to solve the unknown challenges that lie ahead,” Noah Scalin said. Courtesy photos

Most recently, Another Limited Rebellion created an experiential-learning course for executives at General Electric that encouraged leaders “to embrace a new mindset around innovation, one that would enable them to get to new ideas quicker, adopt a more agile mindset, and see possibilities before obstacles,” according to the the ALR website.

“I'm really looking forward to working with the faculty and students of ODU's Strome College of Business,” Scalin said. “In my work as a consultant at Another Limited Rebellion, I've seen first-hand that the leaders of tomorrow need to be creative leaders if they're going to have the capacity to solve the unknown challenges that lie ahead.”

This fall, Scalin will conduct in-person and virtual presentations with faculty and students around the theme of creativity’s return on investment.

“I'm happy to be bringing the unique perspective of an artist into the academic environment and providing hands-on tools for outside-the-box thinking, unique interactions and powerful collaborations,” Scalin said. “I want to help students feel capable and confident that they can be creative themselves – and support the creativity of others – which will give them a significant leg up in the professional world.”

He will also install a large-scale artwork in the atrium at Constant Hall in late September.

“The hope is that as our students come into the atrium, they will get an ‘aha moment’ and be inspired to think about business and business problem-solving in new ways,” Kahn said.

Scalin will speak at a Chamber Strome Business Series event on Sept. 26 in the Big Blue Room at the Ted Constant Convocation Center and conduct a faculty workshop on Oct. 23.

Scalin was artist-in-residence at Virginia Commonwealth’s School of Business during the 2016-17 academic year. He was the first person to serve in that type of role at a business school in the United States. He continues to teach as an adjunct professor.

At VCU, he created an approximately 10-by-30-foot portrait of Maggie L. Walker, a Richmond native and the first African American woman to charter a bank and to serve as a bank president. The artwork, which was displayed on the floor of the business school’s lobby, was made of arranged clothing that was later collected by students, faculty and staff and donated.

Scalin created the Skull-A-Day project, which won a Webby Award for excellence on the internet from the International Academy of Digital Arts and Sciences. He also created the collaborative science fiction universe and performance art project League of Space Pirates. He was the grand-prize winner of Artfields 2022, and his collaboration with Old Navy was one of the most viewed commercials of 2020.

Scalin’s art has been exhibited internationally, including installations in Times Square, the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, Mütter Museum in Philadelphia and multiple solo exhibitions in the Krause Gallery in New York City. He has written six books and was a co-host of the Emmy-nominated Virginia Public Media PBS program “The Art Scene.”