By Jane Nambi
Songwriter, Bob Dylan has been voted into the American Academy of Arts and Letters as an honorary member of the group.
The academy has several categories including music, literature and visual arts.
He was voted as an honorary member because according to executive director Virginia Dajani, officials couldn’t decide whether he belonged for his words or for his music. Other honorary members of include as Meryl Streep, Woody Allen and Martin Scorsese. “The board of directors considered the diversity of his work and acknowledged his iconic place in the American culture. Bob Dylan is a multi-talented artist whose work so thoroughly crosses several disciplines that it defies categorization,” he said.
Dylan however has not yet accepted membership which is a requirement for the vote to go through.
Other honorary choices for the academy include Spanish architect Rafael Moneo, South African writer Damon Galgut and Belgian artist Luc Tuymans. Voted into the academy’s core membership were the novelist Ward Just, known for his stories set in Washington, D.C.; the influential minimalist artist Richard Tuttle and the acclaimed painter and printmaker Terry Winters.
The American Academy of Arts and Letters consists of 250 artists, musicians and writers, without the honorary members. Openings occur upon the death of a member. Members have to first agree to join the academy as part of the responsibilities.
It was founded in 1898 and based in upper Manhattan which previously concentrated on classical music.