What is Lindenwood’s Boyle Family Art Gallery and how it came to be


Photo by Sofiya Melnychuk

Alumni Collection exhibition at the Boyle Family Art Gallery in J. Scheidegger’s Center for the Arts.

Sofiya Melnychuk, Editor-in-Chief

The Boyle Family Art Gallery at J.Scheidegger’s Center for the Arts has been a part of Lindenwood University since 2009.

Located on the first floor in J.Scheidegger, The Boyle Gallery is a way for students, faculty, and the St.Charles community to learn about local and national art as well as its diversity.

Senior Professor of Art and Design John Troy was a part of Lindenwood when the plans about opening the gallery came to be.

“That [opening the gallery] was a really big occasion for us,” Troy said. “When they built this building, we decided we want exhibition space here. We wanted a professional, top-of-the-line, fully technological gallery, which at the time wasn’t really done so much.”

The gallery now has two drop-down plasma screens that can show any digital artwork, projector screens that cover the walls completely, and parabolic speakers. This gallery is a 1,100 square feet room which is considered luxurious for a university gallery, said Troy.

“The other thing that is a huge benefit to us is security. This gallery is fully secured and the doors are only open if there are monitors or faculty [sitting] here,” Troy said. “Our old exhibition space in the old Harmon Hall was basically a lobby. It was not secure, so we couldn’t get some of the best professional artists to show their work because it [the work] was worth a lot of money.”

Dennis Spellmann, the university’s president at the time (1990-2006), and the Dean of Communications Marsha Parker took the initiative and worked hard to procure a large Fine and Performing Arts Centre.

While J.Scheidegger’s Center was still in the process of construction, Spellmann died, and James Evans (2006-2015) took the seat and became Lindenwood’s new president.

Shortly after, Evans appointed Richard Boyle as vice president of human resources. Troy said Boyle, often referred to as Rick, was dedicated to supporting the gallery and its progress.

“We had a big reception for the opening exhibition,” Troy said. “It was very nice. Rick was a regular patron, always making sure he got to see the exhibitions we had. He was very supportive.”

Every school year, the Art Gallery hosts up to 10 exhibitions of different art pieces. After gaining popularity, some of the exhibitions turned into annual showcases. The fall high school art show has been an annual exhibition for many years now; high school artists from the St. Charles area have a chance to submit their best student work and be recognized.

Troy said the main mission of the gallery is to expose Lindenwood students to professional work. Spring semesters are the ones that are usually devoted to students.

“Their [students’] work is progressed by spring semester, so they’re ready to exhibit it,” Troy said. “We have a full juried student show where we bring an outside professional to select and judge students’ [art] pieces.”

The art and Design department has an exhibition committee that follows through the process of artwork selection and exhibits. Troy said the planning takes a minimum of six months with both inside (Lindenwood students) and outside (local and national artists) university requests. Local artists see the Art gallery as a promising opportunity to showcase their artwork. Showcases include student capstones, professional artists’ exhibitions, and Art and Design Faculty Exhibitions that are held every two years.

“What is very critical for any art program is a faculty exhibition,” Troy said. “It’s important for students to see what their instructors do so they can see if they’re [the instructors] putting into what they’re preaching.”

The current showcase at the gallery exhibits the works of Lindenwood’s alumni over the years. The exhibition is open to the public and is available until Nov. 13.

For more information about the gallery and upcoming exhibitions, click here.

Corrections made to the article: Richard Boyle’s title was corrected from vice president and head of finances to vice president of human resources. Another correction made was to the name and title of Marsha Parker, the Dean of Communications, originally stated as Marshall Parker. 

Lindenlink corrects all confirmed errors that are brought to reporters’ or editors’ attention once the errors are confirmed.