This article was previously published in the special edition, ALUMNAE (December 2018).
Few have been so devoted to The Courtauld, so consistently or for so long, as Jane Ferguson. Alongside art history and a prolific philanthropic career, Ferguson has been instrumental in developing a productive community around The Courtauld and its alumnae.
Having heard of The Courtauld while studying for her first degree at McGill University in Montreal and admired its reputation for art history, Ferguson first joined the Institute working for the Slide Library at Portman Square, where she mounted slides and operated the manual Leitz projectors in lectures and seminars. The now outmoded role of projectionist not only provided visual evidence for students, but also exposed Ferguson to an enormously diverse range of art.
Soon returning to her own formal education, Ferguson stayed at The Courtauld to study the Early Modern Abstract (1912-39) as an MA student, before marrying and spending a decade abroad. Once her youngest child had started at school, however, she returned to offer her services again. In 1989, she and Pro