Ludwig Stein, revered professor of painting in the College of Visual and Performing Arts' (VPA) Department of Art, died on Tuesday, Jan. 13, in Cancún, Mexico. He was 76.
Stein, who had recently retired and moved to Oneonta, N.Y., taught painting and drawing at VPA for 42 years. He was a past chair of the Department of Art and the Department of Foundation. He coordinated the graduate painting program for 28 years and taught for Syracuse University Abroad in Florence and London.
“Ludwig will be missed,” says Ann Clarke, dean of VPA and a colleague of Stein’s on the art faculty. “He had an abiding commitment to the University and a passion for undergraduate and graduate education. That passion will live on in the countless students whose lives he touched over the years."
“Whenever I visited Ludwig at home, he would show me his latest work or read from a book he was authoring,” recalls Barbara Walter, Stein’s friend and a professor of jewelry and metalsmithing in the Department of Art. “He was incredibly prolific. He was never afraid to experiment or change approaches. I admired that about him. One day he called me saying that one of his paintings was hanging on the wall in a scene on a TV program. I wanted to start working bigger so my work would look good on a monitor too.”
Stein, who earned a master of fine arts degree from Temple University’s Tyler School of Art, exhibited his own work in solo and group shows in cities around the world, including Guayaquil, Ecuador; Basel, Switzerland; and London. His work is included in many permanent collections, including those of the University of London, the Everson Museum of Art and SUNY Upstate University Hospital in Syracuse, American Airlines and JPMorgan Chase. He received grants from the New York State Council on the Arts, the British Council Arts Group and the Ford Foundation, among others.
In 2009, Stein exhibited “Selections” at VPA, which spanned his many years of teaching on the Syracuse University campus as well as in London and Florence.
“I want my viewers to understand that each artist must find their muse and, within that finding, show love for themselves, the object of desire, the painting and the viewer,” said Stein of the exhibition. “My intention as an artist-teacher is to pass this passion and knowledge on to my students, knowing full well that discovery and understanding are personal.”
A service will be held on Monday, Jan. 26, at 2 p.m. at Eaton-Tubbs Funeral Home, 7191 E. Genesee St., Fayetteville, N.Y.