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Professor Andy Jones

In Memory of Professor Andy Jones

"Goodbyes are only for those who love with their eyes. Because for those who love with heart and soul there is no such thing as separation." - Rumi

Professor William Andy Jones passed away on Saturday, Jan. 25, 2020. He was born near Raleigh, N.C. and spent 20 years teaching painting and drawing in the Art & Art History department at Eastern Connecticut State University. Beloved by many for his kind nature and generosity, Professor Jones exhibited his artworks across the United States. His works can be found in private collections in the U. S., England and France. Professor Jones was an elected member of the Connecticut Academy of Fine Arts and the Connecticut Plein Air Society which is devoted entirely to landscape art. He was awarded an Artist Residency from the Weir Farm Trust in 1991 and an Excellence in Creative and Scholarly Activity Award at Eastern in 2001. In 1998, his pen and ink drawing of an oak tree, derived from one of his Connecticut landscape paintings, was selected as the winning design for the U.S. Mint Quarter Competition for the State of Connecticut. In 2008, Professor Jones' Connecticut quarter design was ranked best of the US Mint State Quarter Designs by the Houston Chronicle. Andy established the Andy Jones Visual Arts Scholarship in 2007 in conjunction with the ECSU Foundation with funds collected since fall 2000 from the sale of the “Connecticut Quarter” prints.

Andy began making art in response to the landscape in 1988. He loved to paint natural landforms under different atmospheric conditions. His subjects range from the rural northeast to the southern landscapes of Georgia and North Carolina. Andy was especially attracted to working farms in New England. His gentle personality is reflected in the special kinship he felt for the people who farm here and for their architecture, equipment, fields, and animals, and their daily rituals. In 2007, he began to explore subjects in the Southern United States when he painted landscapes at Providence Canyon in Georgia. Painting in Georgia gave him the opportunity to respond to a colorful landscape dramatically different from his New England scenes. His work in Georgia led him to explore the Appalachian Mountains of North Carolina. In recent years, he was working on a series of large scale works he titled, Blue Ridge Paintings, Appalachian Mountains.

A memorial service will take place in North Carolina in the spring. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Andy’s scholarship fund established for promising art students at Eastern. All donors that make a memorial gift of $50 or more to Andy’s scholarship fund will receive a matted print of the original Connecticut quarter design, numbered and signed by Andy.

Andy Jones' family obituary notice

Professor Jones certainly left a legacy and will be missed. Please add your thoughts about his life and work and influence on the faculty and students at Eastern in this Select Survey link.

In Memoriam -- Professor Andy Jones

Drew Hyatt
Environmental Earth Science
"I too was shocked to hear about Andy’s passing. We came to eastern the same year and it was my great good fortune to get to know Andy, working with him on several Art-Rocks projects that grew from a team-taught first-year program class to collaborations on our shared interest in landscapes. I always enjoyed spending time with Andy and he opened my eyes to many aspects of the arts that were new to me. We spent some time in the field in Georgia and places in Connecticut, and it was fascinating to watch him work. He was a truly gentle sole, and a gifted artist with the ability to engaging students across the Arts and Sciences. Andy also had an astute geologic eye that is evident in his landscape painting. Andy was a decent, decent person; I will miss our encounters and conversations and my heart goes out to his family."

June Bisantz
Professor Emeritus
Department of Art & Art History
"I can't believe this. I loved Andy - his gentle good humor, talent, dedication to his work and family.
Oh Andy - you will be missed!"

Thomas Hebert
Art & Art History
"RIP Art brother Andy Jones."

Michael Pernal
Emeritus faculty
"Many years ago, my wife and I attended a faculty exhibit and were immediately struck by Andy’s “The Lighthouse Keepers House.” I asked Andy if he was interested in selling the piece only to learn that Neil Williams had already laid claim to it. Andy suggested that I might wish to talk to Neil. To our delight, Neil consented to take his reserve off, and Maureen and I purchased it from Andy when the exhibit concluded.

I only mention the above for one reason. Last Saturday, Maureen and I were doing some housekeeping, and I took “Keepers House” off the wall to give it a good dusting. In those brief moments, Maureen and I talked about Andy - his gentle nature, his kindness, his dignity, and his wonderful talent as an artist.

He was a major reason why Eastern is such a wonderful place to study and work."

Richard Jones-Bamman
Emeritus faculty
Bainbridge Island, WA
"I can't begin to process this sad, sad news. Andy meant the world to so many of us--such a kind, gentle man who always found time for those around him. I'm sitting here looking at the illustrations he did for my book, a project that kept us both laughing for weeks as we traded jokes about banjos and banjo players. That's how I'm going to remember him. Rest in peace, dear friend."

Immna Arroyo
Emeritus faculty
"I’m heartbroken and deeply saddened. Andy was an exceptional person. He was a joyful and gentle spirit; a loving family man, a great friend, a wonderful teacher and mentor. As an artist, his paint brush articulated the many wonders and beauty of nature. I visited his studio when he was working on the Turkey series. I left so impressed by his methodology and practice. He was disciplined and had a sixth sense connection with his subject matter. He carefully observed the wild turkeys on his property and seem to communicated with them in a very special way. Those painting are just wonderful. I’m already missing him."

Dwight Bachman
University Relations
"There was no more gracious and kinder person anywhere. So generous with his attitude of gratitude. The world needs more people like Andy. I traveled with Andy and Dr. Carter to the State Capitol when Andy was honored for his design that was placed on the Connecticut quarter. What a proud moment for Eastern, receiving national acclaim due to Andy’s talent. I hope to see Andy again."

Anthony Cornicello
Performing Arts
"So, so sorry to hear this. What a wonderful, kind person. He will be missed by all. I'm still in a bit of shock over this."

Raouf Mama
"If Tears could build a Stairway
And Memories A Lane,
I’d Walk Right Up To Heaven
And Bring You Home Again.

What words can possibly capture my sorrow at the passing of such a kind and gentle soul? May Peace passing all understanding be yours, my dear, Andy. You are and will forever be sorely missed."

Margo Mulholland
AccessAbility Services
"I’m so sorry to hear of this. Andy was a very sweet man!"

Mark Gerard McKee
Collections and Exhibition Associate
Art Gallery at Eastern
"I am very much saddened at the passing of Andy Jones. We've lost a dear friend and colleague."

Anna Kirchmann
"I'm heartbroken. Andy was not only very talented, he was a gentle person and a kind colleague. I will miss him."

Edmond Chibeau
"Andy Jones was a great artist and a great person. He will be missed."

Yulia Tikhonova
Art Gallery at Eastern
"As you might know, the Art Gallery has been planning to host Painting Faculty art exhibition from Aug. 18 through October 8, 2020. We would like this exhibition to be a memorial to Andy's work and to pay tribute to his legacy at Eastern."

Janis Mink
Art & Art History
"I am very sorry to hear of the too early death of Andy Jones, who just, it seems to me, was able to retire. I remember a very lively discussion with him about trees, and an orchard that he really loved to see in blossom. I did not know him well, but remember a gentle presence. No words are adequate, but a feeling of kinship in his love of nature, and loss."

La Shawn McBride
Human Resources
"Andy was a kind and humble man. I enjoyed conversing with him when he came to HR. Two of our children are the same age and knew one another, so we would talk about basketball and their accomplishments. As well as what they were doing presently. He was so genuine and loved his family. Those are the things that I will remember about him. I'm glad to have shared time and space with him."

Carmen Cid
Dean of Arts & Sciences
"Andy Jones was the best example of a brilliant artist who can influence diverse audiences without saying a word -- his quiet, kind ways made a very big impact on many. His ability to connect landscape artistic perspective to landscape ecological perspective was unique and showcased the value of a liberal arts education. We will continue to miss him as we pass by one of his naturally inspiring paintings on Eastern's campus."

Jeff and Rebecca Calissi
Performing Arts
"Andy had such a kind and gentle personality. It was always a pleasure to talk with him, especially about North Carolina and our shared love of the coast. "The ship will be protected now, Lost no more, tossed about no longer, Safe in a harbor to forever call home". May he rest in peace."

Eastern student
"My heart is truly broken. Andy was an amazing professor and person. I’ve taken three classes with him. The first class I had with him changed everything for me. Before Andy, I started to give up on art because I wasn’t very good at painting and drawing, my real focus was graphic design. After having my first class (Painting I) with Andy, he made me fall in love with studio art again. He saw my potential before I could even realize what I was capable of. No matter how frustrated I got with a painting, he always stood by me and never let me give up on my work. I made my best art pieces in his classes, art that I am most proud of, art that I never knew I’d be able to create until he inspired me and kept pushing me to become a better artist. After that first class, I knew I wanted to continue to learn under him. I took Drawing I and Watercolor next. He was always there to guide me through the process, always there to make sure I never gave up. I am so blessed to have known this amazing person. You will always be remembered. Thank you for everything."

Kristin (DiCarlo) Liguori - Class of 2001
Art Teacher at Branford Public Schools
"Andy was my first art professor at ECSU, in 1998. I took his class every year until I graduated with a degree in studio art. He was by far one of the most influential teachers I had. His attention to detail, patience and determination to help his students be the best they could be was admirable. His passion for watercolor painting rubbed off on me and without his guidance I would not be the artist and teacher that I am today. It’s often that I find myself using Andy Jones “ways” to reach my students and if I could be half the teacher that he was to me then I know my students will appreciate art.

I am devastated, as are a bunch of my peers that had him. We were his first class and a special group.

On a personal note, not only did Andy respect me as a student, but he trusted me to babysit his children from time to time. He had a wonderful family. I send my condolences to them as I know this must be a very painful time.

Thank you, Andy for being you. You will be greatly missed."

Eastern student
"Andy was a truly kind and generous person who inspired not only his students, but also the people around him. I remember he always used to talk about his family and children, as well as his favorite places to visit; they were some of his favorite subjects for his paintings. He was a truly remarkable person.

Andy was one of the first professors that I had here at Eastern and it was truly a joy to learn from him and his experiences. He made each student feel welcome and made time during his day for each and everyone person. I will forever appreciate the skills that he taught me; he is the reason that I love painting to this day. Without him I would not be on the career path that I am on currently and I wish that I had been able to let him know that. He will be greatly missed."

Eastern student
"Andy was my advisor, teacher, and mentor. I had him for at least one class every semester for all four years of my college career. Andy was one of my biggest inspirations, and learning from him was the greatest privilege. Andy helped me become the artist and person that I am today, teaching me valuable skills inside the classroom and out of it. One year my painting final got vandalized, and he sat with me for three hours while I cried carefully dissolving and cutting away paint to help me salvage my piece. He always took the extra time to make sure every one of his students felt proud of their work and felt truly cared about, instead of seen as just another student. There are no words to describe how much he grew to mean to me or how devastating this loss is."

Amy Dziewaltowski-Salcedo
Eastern student
"It's crazy how much someone can impact your life where you least expect it. Andy Jones wasnt just an art professor, but a role model, a mentor, and as I like to call him the "Bob Ross" of ECSU. I USED TO HATE painting till I took Andy's watercolor painting class my freshman year. During the 1st day of class, I painted my 1st EVER water color painting- of an apple. I was so proud of how beautiful that apple came out, and I was so suprised that I was even capable of painting something so nice. The way he taught class made me so inspired and fall in love with paint that I never turned back. I wholeheartedly give credit to Andy Jones for every painting I have made since then.

It wasnt until one of my last classes with him (during my super duper senior year) that we found out that he literally designed the Connecticut state quarter. That's his drawing on the quarter!!!!!! He was so humble when we called him out on it, he tried to change the subject and talk about another student's artwork in class.
Andy, thank you for inspiring and teaching the next generation of artists. Truly, truly...thank you."

Anne Dawson
Art & Art History

"I have so many special memories of Andy, but one of my favorites is what he did when the Iraq war broke out. Andy needed no words. He printed copies of one of his farm animal paintings (a mother feeding her lamb) and gave them to his department colleagues. I will never forget it."

Eastern student
"I am genuinely saddened by the passing of Andy. Confiding with him frequently, Andy was generous and unassuming with his advice. His presence is already sorely missed."

Eastern professor
"I was shocked and saddenend to hear of Andy Jone's untimely passing. He impressed and inspired me as a fellow teacher with his enduring excitement about painting and drawing, and his obvious devotion to students and teaching.I loved the way he brought students out into the countryside to paint from the landscape."

Eastern professor
"It's been so hard to write something. Each day I pass his office this week I want to stop as I so often would do and go in. So often Andy and I would share art and other magazines. He was assistant chair while I was department chair and made it joyous as we worked on projects and the schedule together, actually laughing about how complex it was. My fondest memory was when he decided to contribute to the Windham project. He said it would be a fish to go over the river and that he would create it with his students. Who knew it would be a 20 foot moving hand painted Bass and the star of the exhibition! As always his students were totally committed. Andy Jones was a friend, a colleague, a mentor, and a critical part of our department. He will be missed but not forgotten."

Elizabeth Cowles
"I went home and gazed upon Andy's Charter Oak print when I learned about his untimely death. He shared his creativity and passion with our students and the Eastern community. His art is timeless."

Eastern student
"Professor Andy Jones has been a most important and influencial person in my life. I first met Andy when I was in printmaking studio at Eastern. Andy has just received back the plate back from the government after winning the design competion for out Connecticut State Quarter. My young daughter was with me in studio and graciously invited us to help turn the first forty prints from this plate. He continued to influence our artistic journey through the years, always encouraging and helpful to all he came in contact with. We will always remember Professor "Andy" Jones fondly. I wish I could have been in his presence at least one more time."

Eastern professor
"It's been so hard to write something. Each day I pass his office this week I want to stop as I so often would do and go in. So often Andy and I would share art and other magazines. He was assistant chair while I was department chair and made it joyous as we worked on projects and the schedule together, actually laughing about how complex it was. My fondest memory was when he decided to contribute to the Windham project. He said it would be a fish to go over the river and that he would create it with his students. Who knew it would be a 20 foot moving hand painted Bass and the star of the exhibition! As always his students were totally committed. Andy Jones was a friend, a colleague, a mentor, and a critical part of our department. He will be missed but not forgotten."

Eastern student
"This is very sad news for me to hear. As an artist, he had a profound impact on me. I first met him at the beginning of my freshman year at ECSU for a painting class. Over the next several years I had several other classes with him at Shafer Hall and later at the new Fine Arts Center. Andy reintroduced me to painting in oils and helped develop the style of landscape painting that I use today. My junior year we created a booktrout sculpture (with a few other classmates) made of metal, for the MyWindham Project. It was displayed under the garden on the bridge in Willimantic. I have fond memories of doing watercolor demonstrations for his classes, building frames, hanging art shows at ECSU, and visiting art events outside of school. One of my last memories of him was going to his home where he showed me where he hung my painting in his living room and his amazing art studio and maple syrup shack. Andy will be dearly missed by all."

Eastern student
"Never did I think leaving our landscape final would be the last time I saw or spoke to Andy. He was so special to so many of us, not just a professor but a true mentor, role model and father figure. One of the most kind and gentle souls I have ever met. I will take with me all the lessons he taught me in my drawing and painting classes, and I will cherish all the memories we had forever. From joking in the halls, to van trips to our landscape locations- where he would always have snacks for us, our trip to the Florence Griswold Museum where we stopped at the gallery next to it to see his painting and all of us students were so proud to see it. He believed in all of us and made us all feel important. I have always been so scared to show people my work but I was never afraid to show Andy. I was always so excited to show him because I couldn't wait to hear what he thought I could improve on. I will never paint a landscape again without thinking about him. Andy, you are missed and so loved here, and Eastern has truly lost one of their best. I hope you're painting all the landscapes up in the sky."

Andreas Halidis
Class of 2004
"I’m very sad about Andy passing. He was a great teacher of mine and we all loved him very much. Thank you Andy for your guidance kindness and mentoring during our years at Eastern."

Eastern alumni
"Professor Andy Jones was my advisor and favorite professor during my undergraduate program at ECSU. He was always friendly, helpful, and taught me many ways to grow my skills as an artist. He will be missed."

Eastern alumni
"Andy was one of the most talented and kindest instructors of the arts department. It was a true privilege to have known and learned from him in his time with us at Eastern. I will never forget his unending support and love for the arts and all his students. My heart goes out to his family during this time. Rest in peace, Andy Jones. You are loved and will never be forgotten."

Tommy Nicoll J
Eastern alumni
"Andy always encouraged me and taught me so much about art and I'll never forget hanging out in his office talking about art and life. He was such a good person and an amazing artist. I always loved the animals, CT Quartet and the one he did of the old Ken's ice cream shop in Willimantic. I will miss you friend."

Eastern Alumni
"Being an art major is like nothing else, you become a family, you truly get to know the people in your class including your professors, and you get to create. Andy made me see that I was an art major, before I was an art major... He showed me how to see the world differently. He was an amazing mentor. I will never forget him, or what he taught me."