BiographyVirginia A. Myers was born May 8, 1927 in Greencastle, Indiana. She attended the Corcoran School of Art and George Washington University (Washington, DC), where she earned a BA in 1949. Two years later she received an MFA from the California College of Arts & Crafts, (Oakland). Post-graduate studies with Lee Chesney at the University of Illinois (Champaign), Mauricio Lasansky at the University of Iowa (Iowa City), and Stanley William Hayter at Atelier 17 in Paris, solidified her interest in printmaking. In 1962 she was hired as a printmaking instructor at the University of Iowa, where she continues to work as a full professor in the printmaking department.
Myers has had more than 118 one-woman shows and participated in countless group exhibitions, including West ‘79/The Law Exhibit, Minnesota Museum of Art, St. Paul (1979); Seven Iowa Printmakers, Centro Internazionale della Graphica, Venice, Italy (1989-90); The Regilded Age, Newark Art Museum, NJ (1991); and Ausstellung der University of Iowa, Osnabruck, Germany (2000). Her work is in the San Francisco Art Museum (CA), the Nelson-Atkins Museum, Kansas City (KS), the Toledo Museum of Art (OH), the National Collection of Women’s Art (Washington, DC), the U.S. State Department, and several college and university collections. She is the recipient of a Fulbright Grant to Paris (1961); Arts Endowment Grants from both the State of Iowa Arts Council and the National Endowment for the Arts (1974, 82 & 85); numerous Developmental Leave Grants from the University of Iowa (1973, 78, 84, 89, 94-95 & 2000), and two Old Gold Summer Fellowships, also from the University of Iowa (1984 & 90).
Her interest in the possibilities of incorporating reflective surfaces into prints via the use of metallic foils led her to develop a foil printer prototype in 1986. Based on principals of industrial roll stampers, the prototype promised a safe, affordable means for individual artists to explore the aesthetic possibilities of foil printing in their own studios. Technical assistance form Daniel Wenman and James Phillips, and practical experience from students in her first foil-stamping class at the University of Iowa (1990) led to a patent on the Iowa Foil Printer in 1992, and subsequent UL listing by Underwriter’s Laboratories in 1998. A manual, Creating Original Prints with Hot-Stamped Foil and the Iowa Foil Printer, was published in 1993.
There are four works by Virginian Myers in the Luther Fine Arts Collection. The Mantilla, Helené, and To Iowa and Mollybrooks were purchased by the College from it’s Fine Arts Festivals in the 1960s. William Heintz gave Landscape with Bovines to the College in 1997. The Mantilla is currently missing and presumed stolen.
Source of BiographyKuhlmann, Gary, "First Impressions," Iowa Alumni Magazine, June 2000;
Myers, Virginia, Foil Imaging: A New Art Form, Cedar Rapids, IA: WDG Publishing, 2001;
Who’s Who in American Art.