The Indiana University School of Art, Architecture + Design has announced a $20 million gift from alumni Sidney and Lois Eskenazi.
The largest gift in the school's history will create an endowment for a new scholarship for first-year students who are interested in painting and will support a new Fund for Excellence that will be used for scholarships, fellowships, visiting artists and scholars, research funding, equipment, facilities, and other special projects.
The commitment follows a $15 million gift in 2016 from the Eskenazis to name the Sidney and Lois Eskenazi Museum of Art on the IU Bloomington campus as well as the donation of a collection of nearly a hundred works of art composed primarily of prints by twentieth-century European and American masters. In recognition of the couple's longstanding commitment to IU and the arts, the school will be renamed the Sidney and Lois Eskenazi School of Art, Architecture + Design.
"Lois and I are extremely pleased to be making this legacy gift to Indiana University, the university where we both received our education,” said Sidney Eskenazi in a statement. “We are very honored that the university chose to name the school for us, and we are very pleased to know that it will serve many generations of Indiana students. The opportunity to support the new school was overwhelming. Lois and I and our family decided it was something that needed to be done, and we are excited to help lead the development of the new school."
"This gift transforms their profound understanding of the role art plays in making us human into tangible support for the humans who make our art," said IU Bloomington provost and executive vice president Lauren Robel. "Lois's own gifts as an artist are so wonderfully honored by the scholarship in her name to support our student painters. This gift will aim the arc of this school's trajectory directly toward the heavens. What a legacy of beauty and humanity it represents."