LeMoyne Arts’ main drawing and painting studio in its new arts education center will be named Ron Yrabedra Drawing and Painting Studio.
This tribute is intended to honor the role Yrabedra played in the development of LeMoyne and to keep the memory of the beloved artist, teacher and friend of the Tallahassee art community alive. As such, LeMoyne is looking for friends of Ron Yrabedra, who died at 78 on February 18, 2022, to donate so that his legacy lives on in the next generation of artists.
“Our plan is more than putting Ron’s name on the space; it is to create a space that pays homage to it and evokes its spirit. LeMoyne executive director Arielle Raff said.
“Our goal in creating this teaching space is to make it the best it can be to continue its legacy in arts education.”
A dedicated teacher and mentor for over 40 years, Yrabedra has fostered a love of art in children of all ages and guided young artists as they discovered their own capacity for creativity and appreciation of art. .
When LeMoyne’s plans for his new education center became a reality, the idea arose to incorporate into the new center a recognition of Yrabedra’s important role in LeMoyne and his life of service as a inspiring teacher and mentor, extraordinary artist, witty storyteller and generous friend.
LeMoyne intends to carry on its rich heritage through its state-of-the-art and accessible classrooms and studios. The education center will include drawing, watercolor/acrylic/oil painting, fiber arts, mixed media, digital media, glass arts and a flexible open studio and space of workshop.
A representative from the LeMoyne Board of Directors met with Yrabedra in February 2022 to discuss initial concepts with him. Yrabedra was impressed with the plans for the new education center and very happy to learn that the studio will be named in his honor. He had hoped to be able to see the completion of the project, but sadly, he passed away shortly after this meeting.
Among the plans is a Yrabedra-style border atop the studio walls, which will infuse his spirit into the studio. The border will be created by his friends and fellow artists. Other ideas being explored include poetry reading nights and community studios open to LeMoyne on a monthly or quarterly basis, continuing the type of arts-centric nights he enjoyed sharing with others.
“Ron had a special brilliance, not only in creating distinctive art rich with symbolism and messages that go to the heart of great art, but also in his dazzling ability to share that passion,” said longtime friend Mary Ann Lindley. . “He could explain classical art down to the last brushstrokes and why revered paintings and drawings commune with generations through the ages.”
Yrabedra joined LeMoyne as an Affiliate Artist in 1977 and served as a volunteer Executive Director from 1983 to 1986. He recalled his active days at LeMoyne with great fondness stating, “I loved those years at LeMoyne. We had a lot of fun moving everything forward. »
He remained involved with LeMoyne over the years that followed, and in September 2017, Yrabedra’s works were featured in a ‘one-man’ exhibition, which filled the entire gallery. The exhibition included not only the gold-lined paintings for which he was best known (using images such as bulls, birds, lilies and palm trees), but also contemporary paintings, hand drawings pen and ink and ceramics.
Yrabedra was Emeritus Professor of Arts Education at Florida A&M University, where he taught for 34 years. He maintained his personal art studio in Railroad Square where he created and exhibited his art and hosted friends, students and patrons in a manner reminiscent of the Parisian art salons of the 1920s. He and his studio were an institution on Tallahassee’s popular First Fridays studio tours.
LeMoyne Arts has been at the heart of Tallahassee’s cultural and visual arts for nearly 60 years. LeMoyne’s education programs have nurtured the artistic talent of four generations of Tallahassee families. It made the arts more accessible to people of all ages and economic levels, stimulated awareness and interest in the visual arts, and promoted and supported the work of local artists.
At LeMoyne Arts, “naming gifts” not only provide the opportunity to pay tribute to a very special person such as Ron Yrabedra, but they will also help LeMoyne continue his mission of arts education and service to our community for the years to come.
How to make a donation
To honor Yrabedra’s memory and preserve his legacy in arts education, you can donate online at LeMoyne.org/YrabedraStudio. Additionally, checks payable to LeMoyne Arts for Yrabedra Studio can be mailed to LeMoyne at 125 N. Gadsden St., Tallahassee, FL 32301.
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