June 29, 2022

Lyme Academy of Fine Arts Receives Transformative $1 Million Gift From Charlotte Colby Danly — Former Student, Trustee Emeritus

A painting of a sculptor and surgeon Dr. Wayne Southwick by renowned artist and distinguished teacher, the late Deane G. Keller, took pride of place in the Sculpture Studio at Lyme Academy in August 2021. Keller taught Charlotte Colby Danley who has just endowed a Sculpture Chair in her name to teach figurative sculpture to students at the Academy.

Endowment Will Support Creation of New Sculpture Chair; Academy Invites Applications for Position

OLD LYME – Lyme Academy of Fine Arts has announced that it has received a $1 million transformative gift from Charlotte Colby Danly, a former student and trustee at the Academy, in support of the Academy’s mission to teach a new generation of artists in the figurative tradition.

The gift will allow the creation of an endowed chair in the donor’s name, the Charlotte Colby Danly Sculpture Chair, and establish a program to teach figurative sculpture to students attending the Academy.

The Academy is presently calling for applications for an Artistic Director of Sculpture to lead the effort.

Portrait of Charlotte Danly by Diane Aeschliman, artist and former instructor at Lyme Academy of Fine Arts

“Charlotte came to the Academy to study sculpture as an act of personal transformation when she was at a crossroads in her life. The gift that she has made will ensure that others can follow her path in what promises to be the country’s premier sculpture program,”, says Michael Duffy, who serves as chairman of the Lyme Academy of Fine Arts Board of Trustees.

Danly is an award-winning sculptor and artist, and a longstanding benefactor of Lyme Academy of Fine Arts. Having received her BA from the University of California, Berkeley, Danly began studying at Lyme Academy in 1988 under renowned sculptors Elisabeth Gordon Chandler, the founder of Lyme Academy, and her husband, Laci de Gerenday.

Danly’s work has been featured in Art Ideas, published by the American Renaissance for the Twenty-First Century, a nonprofit dedicated to a rebirth of beauty and life-affirming values in the fine arts. Previously a resident of Lyme, Conn., Danly now lives out of state.

Sculptures are found throughout the grounds of Lyme Academy of Fine Arts. as can be seen in this view looking alongside the Sill House

Danly was first elected to Lyme’s Board of Trustees in 1999 and served in that role for over a decade. In 2021, Danly was appointed a Trustee Emeritus, in recognition of her contributions and service to Lyme Academy.

She established Lyme Academy’s first endowed chair in 2001, the Deane G. Keller Chair in Classical Drawing and Figurative Art. Keller was a renowned artist and distinguished teacher at Lyme Academy for 25 years, who counted Danly among his best students. This Chair currently supports Co-Artistic Directors Jordan Sokol and Amaya Gurpide.

“The time that I spent with the founders of Lyme Academy of Fine Arts in the sculpture program was transformative for me, personally and creatively,” Danly recalls. “It is with great pride and appreciation for Lyme Academy that I endow a new Sculpture Chair, in my name, that will allow the Academy to continue to help others learn to sculpt in the figurative tradition.”

Plaster casts are currently on display in the Chandler Sculpture Studio at Lyme Academy of Fine Arts.

Lyme Academy is currently accepting applications for its new Charlotte Colby Danly Artistic Director of Sculpture.

Qualifications for the position are as follows:

  • The Artistic Director of Sculpture must unequivocally embrace the Academy’s mission of using time-tested techniques to teach basic artistic skills in sculpture.
  • The successful candidate must be an established artist with extensive experience teaching art in an atelier, academy, or other educational setting.
  • Candidates should also have a proven background in administration and in creating programming.
  • In addition to the community within the Lyme Academy, the Sculpture Chair will be fully immersed in the greater Lyme, Old Lyme, and Shoreline communities.

Artistic Director and Director of Painting, Jordan Sokol and Painting-Drawing Instructor Hollis Dunlap working in the Southwick-Keller Studio at Lyme Academy of Fine Arts.

“As with drawing and painting, Lyme Academy is committed to building the leading figurative sculpture program in the United Sates,” said Jordan Sokol, Co-Artistic Director of the Academy’s Deane G. Keller Chair. “Sculpture is a part of Lyme Academy’s DNA – our campus was literally built by and for it.”

To learn how to apply for the position of Lyme Academy’s Charlotte Colby Danly Sculpture Chair, visit lymeacademy.edu/opportunities.

The mission of the Lyme Academy of Fine Arts is to teach the foundational skills of drawing, painting, and sculpture in the figurative tradition. By its commitment to training students in these skills and an engagement with contemporary discourse, the Academy will empower a new generation of artists. Through its programs, the Academy is committed to enriching the cultural life of the community. Learn more by visiting www.lymeacademy.edu.

Editor’s Note: This article is based on a press release issued by Lyme Academy of Fine Arts.