The London Library was very saddened to hear of the death on 30th March of Drue Heinz, an internationally renowned Patron of the arts and literature, and a great supporter of the Library.
Mrs Heinz was a dedicated Vice-President and held an honorary post on the Library’s international supporters' group, the International Friends of The London Library (IFLL). A generous benefactor, she enabled the Library to transform extensive areas of the building and its facilities as part of the RIBA-award refurbishment project carried out by architects Haworth Tompkins earlier this decade. The Drue Heinz Literary Fund that she endowed has played an important role in enabling the Library to expand and develop its collection - nearly 10,000 books have been acquired so far through resources provided by the Fund.
Mrs Heinz’s support of the arts and literature internationally and elsewhere in the UK has been extensive.
She endowed the Drue Heinz Chair in American Literature at St John's College, Oxford, and the Drue Heinz Literature Prize at the University of Pittsburgh. In 1983, she founded the Hawthornden Literary Retreat, an international retreat for writers. In 1971 she co-founded Ecco Press and also served as publisher of The Paris Review from 1993 to 2008. Her numerous roles included serving as a fellow of the Royal Society of Literature, trustee of the Royal Academy of Arts and a council member of the Rothermere American Institute at Oxford. Mrs Heinz was also an active board member of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the MacDowell Colony, the Pierpont Morgan Library, the American Academy in Rome and served on the International Council of the Museum of Modern Art.
In 1995, she was named an Honorary Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire.
Howard Davies, Chair of The London Library, commented: "Drue Heinz was an internationally-renowned patron of the arts and literature and a generous supporter of The London Library. She will be greatly missed.”