Hans D. Strauch, a Lesley University Trustee and president of the Mosse Foundation, established the new fund.
The Strauch-Mosse Endowed Fund for Visiting Artists has been established through a $1 million gift. This commitment through the Mosse Foundation will fund visiting artists at the University, in keeping with the University’s mission toward cultural and artistic literacy as a bedrock of a democratic society.
The fund is established as Lesley University plans to relocate the Art Institute of Boston at Lesley University from Boston’s Kenmore Square to Porter Square in Cambridge. The new facility will house street level art galleries and exhibition space, infusing the commercial district with cultural activities and the energy of students in artistic exploration.
Strauch’s gift will provide funding for honoraria and stipends to locally, nationally, and internationally renowned artists for exhibitions and gallery shows, lectures, and workshops. More than a third of Lesley University’s 8,000 students are engaged in the arts, through AIB’s undergraduate and Master’s of Fine Arts Programs, the Master’s of Education Program in Creative Arts in Learning, Master’s of Fine Arts in Creative Writing, and undergraduate and graduate programs in Expressive Therapies.
The University has a long tradition of attracting compelling artists and writers from various disciplines through its schools. Recent visiting artists have presented a diverse panorama ranging from internationally acclaimed Chinese installation artist Xu Bing and graphic artist Luba Lukova to former Poet Laureate Robert Pinsky and Wicked author Gregory Maguire.
“This unique gift has a transformative effect in perpetuity, both for our students and for the community” said Lesley University President Joseph B. Moore. “Artists, their creations and the process of creating art challenge our perceptions, and force us to examine important questions that shape our thoughts and actions. We prepare students to be catalysts who shape a more just, humane and sustainable world and artistic and cultural inquiry is an important component of that preparation.”
“The Strauch-Mosse Endowed Fund for Visiting Artists extends the opportunity to engage with artists and their art for our students, our neighbors and the many artists and art lovers of Greater Boston,” said Moore. “This fund will energize AIB’s new home in Porter Square.”
Hans Strauch, noted area and international architect, was named to the Lesley University Board of Trustees in 2004, and chairs the Board’s Campus Planning Committee. He is the President of HDS Architecture, Inc., based in Watertown. He lives in Belmont with his family.
The Strauch-Mosse Visiting Artist series will premiere in Fall 2009, with artists selected by a committee to be formed by University Provost Martha McKenna.
“Lesley University is unique in that its mission reaches far beyond its own student body to engage neighboring communities, schools and organizations. We are proud to play a role in not only furthering Lesley University students’ education through exposure to influential visiting artists, but by extending this exciting cultural offering to the general public,” said Strauch.
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