Yale Center for British Art Director Receives a Prestigious 2017 Soane Foundation Honor
The Sir John Soane’s Museum Foundation honored Amy Meyers (Yale PhD 1985), Director of the Yale Center for British Art, on Wednesday, September 27, at the Rainbow Room in New York City. Meyers was presented with a 2017 Soane Foundation Honor for her leadership, under which the Center has become one of the foremost destinations in the world for the study of British art and culture. Every year this foundation celebrates Sir John Soane’s singular contributions as an architect and educator by bestowing Soane Foundation Honors on present day innovators, leaders, and visionaries in the fields of architecture, design, urban planning, museums, architectural education, and philanthropy at a celebratory gala dinner in an architecturally significant venue in New York City.
“Amy embodies the spirit of Sir John Soane,” noted Lisa Ackerman, Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of the World Monuments Fund, in her presentation of the honor. “Both stand for excellence in scholarship and education. Both want the world to be a better place through providing opportunities to enrich our lives through discovery, beauty, and engagement.”
Over the past fifteen years of her directorship, Meyers has created a robust research and education program, attracting a range of international scholars and expanding the museum’s reach to a larger, more diverse audience. One of her most enduring contributions is the conservation and revitalization of the landmark building designed by Louis I. Kahn to house founder Paul Mellon’s (Yale College, Class of 1929) extraordinary gift to Yale University. With meticulous attention to Kahn’s design, Meyers guided the project through three phases of renovation, in accordance with a unique conservation plan developed under her leadership, ensuring that the Center’s unparalleled collection of British art would have a properly distinguished home well into the future.
This year’s Soane Foundation Honor recognizes Meyers’s visionary spirit and acknowledges her work as a highly respected art historian who affirms deeply the importance of collaboration among colleagues and institutions. The Center has collaborated with Sir John Soane’s Museum on numerous projects and programs over the years, including the exhibitions Mrs. Delany and Her Circle (2009–10), Enlightened Princesses: Caroline, Augusta, Charlotte, and the Shaping of the Modern World (2017), as well as the forthcoming The Paston Treasure: Microcosm of the Known World (2018).
In addition to Meyers’s recognition, the renowned English architect Sir David Chipperfield also was honored during this year’s Visionaries Gala Dinner. Previous Soane Foundation Honorees with Yale affiliations have included the architect Robert A. M. Stern (MArch 1965) in 2008; Yale University Press (accepted by John Donatich) in 2010; Allan Greenberg (MArch 1965) in 2011; and Norman Foster, Lord Foster of Thames Bank (MArch 1962, DFAH 2003), in 2013.
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