Avra Liakos

Avra Liakos, 1979
Courtesy: NIU Archives

Avra Liakos, who taught art history in the NIU School of Art and Design from 1968 to 1999 passed away, April 29 at the age of 86.

Avra was born in Athens, Greece and attended the University with the intention of studying law, but her love of art won out and she earned her degree in art history and archeology. After some years working as a lecturer at educational organizations around the world, she met and married her husband, Dimitri.

The couple came to DeKalb when Dimitri accepted a visiting professorship at Northern Illinois University, and soon accepted one of her own. She eventually joined the Art and Design faculty full-time and received NIU’s Excellence in Teaching Award in 1982. According to her obituary, her lectures at NIU, “spanned prehistoric art, Minoan and Mycenean art and Egyptian art.” She and her husband co-founded ALPHA: Friends of Antiquity while at NIU, and she spearheaded numerous visits for students and the community to both The Oriental Institute Museum of the University of Chicago and the Field Museum, most notably during the famous Tutankhamun Exhibition of 1977.

Her family requested that in lieu of flowers, donations be directed to the Avra Liakos Scholarship in the NIU Foundation or The Parkinson’s Foundation.