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Sylvia Coles

Sylvia Coles is a photographer, writer, activist, and arts patron. Born Sylvia R. Meyn (the daughter of a Lutheran minister), she was raised in Perryville, Missouri. While attending a jazz club in St. Paul, Minnesota, in the 1950s, she met her future husband, Buffalo-born architect Robert Coles. After traveling the world, the couple settled in Robert’s hometown, and Sylvia received an MBA from SUNY Buffalo in 1980. She is a member of the Buffalo Society of Artists and a longtime volunteer at the Burchfield Penney Art Center. In 2013 she published a memoir, Living with an Architect and Finding Myself, chronicling their marriage over the course of sixty years, including the opposition the interracial couple faced early on. They have two children. 


Click here for Sylvia Coles's thoughts on writing her memoir.

Click here for a March 24, 2013 Buffalo News interview with Sylvia Coles by Charity Vogel.