Eleanor Boyer

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Eleanor Boyer (left) and Karen Peugh. (Source)

Eleanor Clay Boyer (née: Anderson) was born in Houston, Texas. Boyer graduated from Lamar High School in 1956 and completed a Bachelors of Fine Arts at the University of Arizona in 1960. Afterwards, she completed a Master of Fine Arts at the University of Iowa in 1963. Boyer was Instructor in Art in the Department of Art at Texas Christian University in Ft. Worth, Texas from 1963 to 1965. After moving to Chicago in 1965, she completed post-graduate courses in art history at the University of Chicago and took courses in the history of film at Northwestern University.

Boyer came to video in the mid-1970’s, when portable video first became available to individuals outside of the broadcast profession. Between 1975 and 1987, as an independent video producer working in conjunction with Chicago area women’s organizations such as the Loop YWCA, Mujeres Latinas in Accion, and Midwest women’s Center, she made educational and documentary videotapes on women’s issues including violence against women, women and the justice system, women’s health, women in sports and women in the arts. Her focus was on promoting individual and institutional change by educating on the issues affecting women, by showing the realities of women’s lives and by providing alternatives to female stereotypes in the media.

Boyer was among the initial members of the Chicago Videomakers Coalition, a grass-roots organization formed in 1977 to increase the level of co-operation and technical standards among independent video makers through the sharing of knowledge and production experience. The role of the Videomakers Coalition was largely superseded with the establishment of the Chicago Editing Center in 1979 (later named Center for New Television), a non-profit regional arts center which provided high-quality video editing equipment, technical workshops and exhibition space for video makers. Boyer was an active member and served for eight years on the Board of Directors of the Center for New Television whose mission was to facilitate the making of innovative independent video and foster the use of television by community institutions for socially useful purposes.

From 1987 to 2003 Boyer collaborated with her husband, Wayne Boyer. They maintained a film and video production studio in Evanston, Illinois. The majority of their clients were non-profit cultural and social organizations such as the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Northwestern University, and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Their productions have been widely distributed and recognized with awards. (Source)