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Bijan to be Honored with Design Legend Award

Samuel Hoi, president of Otis College of Art and Design, today announced the distinguished recipients of two special art and design awards. Dr. Bijan Pakzad, Chairman and Designer of House of Bijan will receive the Otis Design Legend Award, and artist Tyrus Wong, a 1932 graduate of Otis College and an illustrator at both Disney and Warner Bros. studios, will receive an Otis Alumni Achievement Award. The awards will be presented on Saturday, May 8 at the college’s 28th Annual Scholarship Benefit and Fashion Show at The Beverly Hilton.

†Each year Otis honors an individual or company whose name is synonymous with design and artful style,†said Hoi. “Bijan has a world-wide reputation for design elegance in menswear and fragrance. His boutique on Rodeo Drive is considered a Beverly Hills landmark. A self-described ‘perfectionist,’ Dr. Bijan Pakzad is the perfect choice for this special design award from Otis College.â€

In 1976, Bijan began establishing his global business by designing seasonal collections as well as complete wardrobes and accessories for the most powerful, well-heeled men in the world. Heads of state, captains of industry, presidents, kings and emperors are among his clients. Bijan’s legendary “by-appointment-only†showroom on Rodeo Drive in Beverly Hills is headquarters for his commercial empire, which includes menswear, jewelry, accessories, fragrance and the interior design of luxury cars and airplanes. Celebrating 35 successful years in fashion and design, the House of Bijan is a testament to the talent of the company founder.

“I want to recognize Otis Governor Adrianne Zarnegin and her husband Robert Zarnegin for their invaluable assistance in recruiting Bijan to accept our invitation,†said Hope Warschaw, chair of the Otis Board of Trustees.

Previous Otis awardees are: Bob Hurley, founder and chairman of Hurley International, and Sally Frame Kasaks, chairman and chief executive officer of Pacific Sunwear of California Inc. (2009), Anne Globe of DreamWorks Animation and Brad Globe of Warner Bros. Consumer Products (2008), Jacque Hall and Paul Fitzpatrick of Macy’s (2007), Joseph Abboud, Cirque du Soleil and Roxy (2006), Mindy Grossman and Peter Kolsky of Nike, Inc. (2005), Roger Williams of Warnaco Swimwear Group and Susan Crank of Lunada Bay Corporation (2004), Tim Kilpin of The Walt Disney Company (2003), Matt Bousquette of Mattel, Richard Baker of Op and Linda Platzner of Primedia (2002), actor/artist Dennis Hopper, sculptor Robert Graham and swimwear designer Anne Cole (2001), Max Azria of BCBG (2000), Bob McKnight of Quiksilver (1999), Todd Oldham and Dan Romanelli of Warner Bros. Consumer Products (1998), and Michael Gould of Bloomingdale’s (1997).

In announcing the recipient of the Otis Alumni Achievement Award, Hoi pointed out, “as Tyrus Wong approaches his 100th birthday, he will be honored by his 92-year-old alma mater.â€

Tyrus Wong brought his artistry and craftsmanship to Warner Bros. as a film production illustrator for nearly three decades. He also worked at Disney where he made groundbreaking creative contributions to the animated feature, Bambi. Wong sketched and painted striking storyboards and set illustrations that set the tone and drama for hundreds of films, including such classics as The Wild Bunch and Rebel Without a Cause. The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences presented his work in a 2007 exhibition, The Art of the Motion Picture Illustrator. A documentary about Wong’s life, Brushstrokes in Hollywood, is currently in development. Born in China in 1910, Wong immigrated to the United States when he was nine years old. Teachers at his Pasadena junior high noticed Wong’s artistic ability and arranged for a summer session scholarship at Otis Art Institute (now Otis College of Art and Design). Hooked on his art school experience, he left junior high and enrolled as a full-time Otis student, working as a janitor to pay tuition. Retiring in 1968, Wong has continued his artistry in painting and in creating colorful kites. In 2001, Wong was presented a Historymakers Award by the Chinese American Museum, and was also named a Disney Legend.

Dr. Bijan Pakzad and Tyrus Wong will receive their awards at the annual Otis Scholarship Benefit and Fashion Show on May 8, 2010 at The Beverly Hilton Hotel. Over 1,000 leaders in entertainment, fashion, business and finance as well as society patrons, press, celebrities, students, alumni and other supporters are expected to attend the gala. This annual event is Otis College’s largest fundraiser, grossing over $1 million in scholarships for art and design students.

Tickets and additional information are available at http://www.otis.edu/sbs or by calling (310) 665-6858.

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