A Patron of TC Art
If you page through some of the exhibition catalogues and other publications produced by the Art and Art Education Program at Teachers College, you’re likely to come across the following acknowledgement: “This publication has been made possible through the generous support of the Florence H. and Eugene E. Myers Charitable Remainder Unitrust.”
It would be easy to overlook the acknowledgement tucked amid the glossy photos and lithographs. What isn’t so easy to overlook, however, is the influence of the late Colonel Eugene E. Myers (M.A. ’47) and his wife,
The trust funds created by Col. Myers in the 1990s (and since renamed the Myers Foundations) have funded an array of art education publications, exhibitions, and other initiatives at both TC’s Macy Gallery and the Gottesman Libraries.
“The funding has had a major influence at TC,” said Judith Burton, Director of the Art and Art Education Program. “It’s allowed us to improve the quality of
Colonel Myers was a decorated war veteran, museum administrator and philanthropist. During World War II, he served in the Pacific and was later appointed chief of protocol and chief of the Air Force Presentation Support Division based at the Pentagon. He received his master’s degree from TC in drawing, painting and graphics in 1947, and was an instructor at the College from 1940 to 1941.
He retired from the Air Force as a colonel in 1966, and became dean of the Corcoran School of Art in
In 1997, Myers established the trusts to support art in higher education and selected TC, as well as other institutions he had attended, to receive funding. Today, the foundations support a wide range of projects and facilities around the country, including the Col. Eugene Myers Gallery at the
At TC, the support has made possible the preservation of five major art collections in the Gottesman Libraries, including one by Edwin Ziegfeld that numbers more than 300 paintings, drawings, prints, and collages made by young people from 32 countries. Ziegfeld was a TC faculty member from 1945 to 1970 and was founder of the International Society for Art Education, a division of UNESCO. Myers was a student of Ziegfeld’s during his years at TC.
Brian Hughes, Associate Director of the Gottesman Libraries, said funding has also allowed the library to create a digital art residency program, which brings artists to TC to conduct research and create artworks. The digital art developed by the artists is exhibited at the library. Last year, the library hosted three artists, and Hughes said plans are to bring another cohort to the College this summer.
“The residency program has allowed us to do something that adds to
The money also supports gallery space in the library and production of outreach materials related to the various installations and exhibitions. In addition, the library, Hughes said, is planning to use some of the funding to commission art. Plans are in the works to have an artist create artwork focused on community building as part of orientation for new students in the fall.
“We really try to make good use of that funding,” Hughes said. “We’re able to able to do a lot of good things with art in terms of collecting and exhibiting works that we wouldn’t be able to do otherwise.”
The funding also has helped the Art and Art Education Program publish a number of monographs, exhibition catalogues and other publications.
“Colonel Myers was very