Estate of Clyde Fowler provides legacy gift of art for permanent display at UNCSA library

A major gift of art has been installed in the new library at the University of North Carolina School of the Arts (UNCSA), thanks to the estate of Clyde M. Fowler, Jr.

The gift comprises works on paper by Robert Motherwell, Willem DeKooning, Julian Schnabel, Robert Rauschenberg, Cy Twombly and Andy Warhol – six artists who left a transformative mark on the American cultural landscape.
 Clyde Fowler

Fowler, Director of UNCSA’s Visual Arts Program for 30 years, died in February 2016.

“Clyde’s connection to UNCSA will be permanently visible in the form of this legacy gift of art on public display,” said Will Taylor, current Director of the Visual Arts Program. “A phenomenal and caring individual, a dedicated and influential faculty member, and a beloved friend of our UNCSA community, Clyde was formative and inspirational to so many young artists over the course of his lifetime.

“With his keen wit and loving humor, Clyde shared an unyielding intensity for the creative process and a demand for artistic rigor that will be ever-present at UNCSA,” Taylor added.

In addition to this permanent display, an exhibit honoring Fowler’s own work is on display at the new UNCSA library through February 2017. It comprises 26 recent paintings and works on paper by Fowler and is on exhibition in gallery space on the library’s second and third floors.
 Clyde Fowler art

The gallery space in the new library was made possible by a gift from the Mary Duke Biddle Foundation, to honor Thomas S. Kenan, III, who recently retired from the Foundation’s board after more than 30 years of service. Kenan is a founder and longtime supporter of the School of the Arts.

A closing reception for Fowler’s exhibition will be held from 5-7 p.m. Feb. 3 on the fourth floor of the UNCSA library.

A native of Burlington, Fowler earned a B.F.A. in communication art and design from Virginia Commonwealth University. He studied drawing at The Art Students League and the National Academy of Fine Arts, both in New York. After graduation, he was an art instructor in the Alamance County Schools for several years before being picked by now-Dean Emeritus John Sneden of the School of Design and Production to head the new Visual Arts Program in 1975.

During his time at the School of the Arts, Fowler received an Award for Teaching Excellence in 1995, one of the many years that his students won recognition in the annual Scholastic Art Awards. He also taught in the school's Summer International Arts Program which was held in Rome and Florence. For six years he assisted in the supervision and planning of a Visual Artist Rockefeller Grant which supported lectures, exhibits and workshops on the UNCSA campus.

Fowler retired from UNCSA in 2005, when he was awarded the title of Emeritus Faculty.

Among his many contributions to the UNCSA campus and community, Fowler established two endowed scholarships with the UNCSA Foundation, Inc.: The Clyde Fowler Endowed Scholarship for Visual Arts and The Clyde Fowler Endowed Scholarship for Design and Production. 

Gifts honoring Fowler’s legacy may be made by donating online at; writing a check to the UNCSA Foundation and mailing it to the Office of Advancement, UNCSA, 1533 S. Main Street, Winston-Salem, NC 27127; or contacting the Office of Advancement at (336) 770-3330. Remember to indicate which scholarship your gift will support.

October 31, 2016