Michelle René Cobb is an award-winning African American painter, designer, and educator. Her career began as a designer for Time-Life Books and later she became the first African American Art Director for Sports Illustrated magazine. At Sports Illustrated she designed and art directed advertising campaigns for the Olympics, NBA, NFL, US Open, Kentucky Derby, World Series, NCCA, Indy 500, and the Superbowl. Michelle René co-founded New York City Design firm, Spellman, Bostic & Williams, which included the following clients; CBS, Bell Atlantic, Citibank, Time-Warner, Tony Brown’s Journal, United Negro College Fund, The Washington Post, National Council of Negro Women, Black Student Fund, Obama For America Campaign, Arthur Ashe Foundation, Yolanda Adams, The Black Student Fund, Terrie Williams Agency, and Wynton Marsalis Enterprises. Later she served as the Communications Director for an Independent school, where she designed major marketing and advertising campaign materials, a bi-monthly magazine, and a campus-wide Wayfinding Signage Program. Michelle is also serving in her 10th year as a College Board AP Studio Art Reader and Table Leader.
Michelle René’s love of painting began in the early 90s when she was fortunate enough to study oil painting with the late master painter, Edward Loper, Sr. For over 15 years working with Mr. Loper, she honed the classical and modern techniques and refined her unique sense of color and light. She has been invited as a guest artist to several prestigious art residencies around the world including France, Spain, Canada, Italy, Ghana, Nigeria, Benin, Togo, and Martha’s Vineyard.
Michelle René has taught traditional and digital art in Europe and the US for over 25 years including launching the first computer graphics program at the University of Maryland. She also taught at the University of Delaware, Montgomery College of Visual Art and Design, Delaware College of Art & Design, Lincoln University, the Studio Museum in Harlem, and the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Michelle René is currently the Chair of the Studio Art Department at a Washington, DC school.
Michelle René’s formal education includes a Masters of Fine Art from George Washington University and a Bachelor of Science degree in Art Education from Skidmore College. She completed additional studies at Pratt Institute, Rhode Island School of Design, Corcoran College of Art and Design, and United Digital Artists.
Stanford Libraries Collection: Michelle René Cobb’s Graphic Design files have been acquired by the Black Graphic Design Artists Initiative at Stanford Libraries, Special Collections section for use by students, faculty, and researchers from Stanford and Beyond.
2019 • Harlem Fine Arts Show • Howard University • Washington, DC
2017 • Solo Show – Woman’s National Democratic Club • Washington, DC
2016 • Group Show, Can Serrat, Spain
2015 • Solo Show – Woman’s National Democratic Club • Washington, DC
2015 • Chevy Chase Women’s Club • Chevy Chase, MD
2014 • Georgetown Day School Faculty Show • Washington, DC
2013 • Harlem Fine Arts Show • Martha’s Vineyard, MA
2013 • Chevy Chase Women’s Club • Chevy Chase, MD
2012 • University of Utah AP Readers Studio Art Show • Salt Lake City, Utah
2011 • Montgomery College of Art Faculty Show • Takoma Park, MD
2011 • Women’s National Democratic Club • Washington, DC
2011 • All Island Art Show • Martha’s Vineyard, MA • Honorable Mention
2010 • All Island Art Show • Martha’s Vineyard, MA • 2nd place Winner
2009 • All Island Art Show • Martha’s Vineyard, MA • Honorable Mention
2008 • All Island Art Show • Martha’s Vineyard, MA • Honorable Mention
2007 • All Island Art Show • Martha’s Vineyard, MA •
2008 • Venezuelan Embassy • Washington, DC
2008 • Art for Obama • Washington, DC
2007 • All Island Art Show • Martha’s Vineyard, MA •Honorable Mention
2006 • All Island Art Show • Martha’s Vineyard, MA
2005 • National Black Fine Arts Show • New York, NY
2005 • Edward Loper and His Students • Orange Street Gallery • Wilmington, DE
2004 • Edward Loper and His Students • Orange Street Gallery • Wilmington, DE
2004 • White Linen Nights • Thelma Harris Gallery • Oakland, CA
2001 • Edward Loper and His Students • River Front Museum • Wilmington, DE
Art Safari: Ghana, Nigeria, Benin, Togo
Quebec City, Canada
Les Tapies, France
El Bruc, Spain
Martha’s Vineyard, MA