Honoring the Past, Celebrating the Present

Arrow up  “Keeping a Tradition Alive” by Len Tantillo, 2011, Oil on Canvas, Collection of Excelsior College, 24 x 40 in.

In honor of Excelsior College’s 40th anniversary in 2011, Excelsior President John F. Ebersole commissioned artist Len Tantillo to create a commemorative work. The painting, “Keeping a Tradition Alive,” shows traveling educators in the 19th century, an historical nod to how Excelsior College brings educational opportunities to students. The painting pays homage to those who pursue learning as well as to those who provide the education. Tantillo’s research on the lyceum movement, an early form of organized adult education in the United States, influenced his concept and led to a direct connection with Excelsior as an online institution. When asked what he hoped people would take away from his work, Tantillo said: “The idea, at the most ground level, that people’s desire to learn is universal and timeless. If the desire is strong enough, you’ll make time to do it.”