The USD 465 Foundation looks forward to managing the school art collection in cooperation with the board of education following approval of a working agreement between the two organizations.
“This is a win-win for art education in Winfield,” foundation president Bob Gottlob said.
The school board and foundation have been working on an agreement for the past year. The school district will continue ownership of the collection, but authorizes the foundation to manage fundraising for the collection preservation and conservation program and to increase the use of art in Winfield public schools.
“The foundation, with its mission to acknowledge and promote student scholarships, is the perfect organization to take on the responsibility for growing the collection and seeing that it is used increasingly in education,” Gottlob said.
Gottlob acknowledged the role of former district superintendent J.K. Campbell in reviving interest in the collection. The community advisory committee formed by Campbell in 2012 will continue as the Foundation’s conservation committee.
“This agreement continues the vision to conserve and use the collection for art appreciation well into the future,” said Campbell, a member of the foundation board.
The school collection was started in 1929 by Winfield High School Principal Evan E. Evans and artist Sue Jean Covacevich. There are more than 100 items in the collection. Artists represented with connections to Winfield and Kansas include Covacevich, Grace Raymond, Mary Jo Williams, Herschel Logan, Edith Dunlevy, Pat Behler and the honored members of the Prairie Printmakers organization. Perhaps the most widely known artist represented is Birger Sandzen, who was an early supporter and contributor to the collection.
Two recent exhibits at the Winfield Public Library have featured selections from the collection.