Heritage museum fund memorializes artist
In tribute to his late wife’s dedication to art, learning, and Jewish heritage, Dr. Melvin L. Druin and his family have made a gift to the Jewish Heritage Museum of Monmouth County in Freehold for the establishment of the Marilyn Druin Memorial Fund for Education.
Created in memory of Druin’s wife of 39 years and announced on the eighth anniversary of her death, the fund will support learning initiatives for children at the museum, including on-site programs, workshops, and exhibits in the areas of history, religion, and the fine arts.
Marilyn Druin was an internationally acclaimed enamelist whose designs in metal and glass are represented in numerous private collections in the United States and Europe, as well as in the collections of the Smithsonian’s American Arts Museum, the Museum of Arts and Design, and The Newark Museum.
The gift represents the beginning of a three-year minimum commitment from the Druin family to help raise additional donations. Family members, said Dr. Druin of Freehold Township, are “very hopeful that the fund will continue to grow for years to come, from the further support from my family and donations from the numerous friends, individuals, and institutions of the arts, education, and Jewish communities that the Druin family has known and worked with over many years.”
A release from the museum said that in addition to “her lifelong passions for her art and her Jewish heritage,” Marilyn Druin, “was ardently devoted to children as the mother of three daughters and as a temple youth director.” She served in that capacity for a total of 20 years at Temple Shaari Emeth in Manalapan, Temple Sharey Tefilo in East Orange, and Temple Sharey Tefilo-Israel and Oheb Shalom Congregation, both in South Orange. She was also an instructor of enameling classes and workshops for children and adults, most notably through The Newark Museum.
Dr. Druin, a charter member of the museum board, shared an interest in enameling with his wife, which led to positions on the boards of the International Enamelist Society, the Enamel Guild/Northeast, and First Mountain Crafters. Their daughter Erica continues the tradition as an award-winning enamelist whose work has appeared in many juried shows throughout the mid-Atlantic states and in several publications.
The museum will mount an exhibit of the enameling artwork of Marilyn Druin and Erica Druin March 23-April 25.