Seven years after its opening in 1976, the Art Gallery was formally named after Dr. Wallace L. Anderson at a ribbon-cutting ceremony in late Fall, 1982. Dr. Anderson was Vice-President, Academic Affairs at Bridgewater from 1972 – 1982 and ardently and unabashedly supported the arts.
Under his skillful stewardship, the erudite Dr. Anderson was highly instrumental in gaining approval of the art major in 1975 and facilitating the move (1976) of the art department from its modest confines in Boyden Hall basement to its current location. It should be noted that the Art Center Building was originally constructed in 1905, serving initially as a college/town gymnasium. Its 107 year-old history establishes it as the oldest campus building
A distinguished administrator and scholar, Dr. Anderson arrived in Bridgewater in August 1972 from the University of Northern Iowa and served the college loyally until his retirement in 1984. A man of letters, Dr. Anderson was internationally recognized as an expert on the career and writings of the esteemed American poet, Edwin Arlington Robinson (1869 – 1935). Dr. Anderson was also a pivotal figure in creation of the Aviation Science major.
-Prof. Stephen Smalley