Avron "Avi" Soyer '60 (BardCorps)


Avron "Avi" Soyer '60


Interviewee Role


Significant Quote

“Every question that is worth asking is a personal question; every intellectual question worth asking is a personal question, and that you don’t do it for the money and you don’t do it just because of tradition.”


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Academic Program



Marna MacGregor '14


Avron “Avi” Soyer talks here about how he came from a family of artists and actors, and came to Bard through one of his father’s art students. From Bard, he notes that he learned to pursue his interests even if they were not his profession, and got in the habit of following through on big questions that others would not want to focus on until he found a satisfying answer. He speaks of Professor DeGre, Heinz Bertelsmann, Ted Weiss, and Irma Brandeis and their impacts on him as a student and as a person. Avron appreciated getting to learn from the faculty at Bard, but also from the people that visited campus to give lectures. He feels strongly that if one is teaching something to others, they should know about what they are teaching in an encompassing way: “only if you see everything is all part of one project.” He also discusses the relationship between poetry and painting: “In poetry as I experience it, an extra syllable ruins the poem, there is no room for anything extra. So it helps me in painting … you have to be able to read the painting, know when something is living in it, and add only what that needs; not to overwork.”


Bard; Gerard DeGre; America; Egypt; Nile; New York; European; Phoenix House; Heinz Bertelsmann; Plato; Republic; Germany; Theodore “Ted” Weiss; Irma Brandeis; Cornell University; Andrews Wanning; Stefan Hirsh; Emil Hauser; Louis Schanker; The Beatles


Bertelsmann Campus Center

Interview Date


Interview Duration


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