Dorothy (Zautner) Buley grew up in Albany and attended college at the urging of her parents, who required her to choose a state school. She selected Buffalo State for its art program and completed her degree in art education in 1954.
Following graduation, Buley moved to New York City to pursue a career in art. She soon connected with an artist from
California, and the two began experimenting with new and vibrant colors, including orange and pink combinations that would become wildly popular. Buley then established a business selling specialty pillows through Bloomingdale’s, Abercrombie & Fitch, and other high-end stores and museums.
A noted pastel artist, watercolorist, and photographer, Buley is comfortable in many media. Her artistic experience includes running her own business—called Handwoven Fabrics—that produces original woven textile fabrics for the decorative arts trade. More recently, she has explored reflections in water in both pastel paintings and photography. In the early 2000s, she was accepted for a monthlong residency at the Vermont Studio Center, an international creative community. Her drawings, photography, and paintings have won numerous awards and been included in juried shows at the von Liebig
Art Center in Naples, Florida; the Big Arts center in Sanibel Island, Florida; the New England Watercolor Society; and the Lakes Region Art Association in Laconia, New Hampshire.
Buley and her husband, David, who trained extensively in metallurgy, started a company in New Hampshire that made high-end parts for customers including NASA.
The Buleys, who have two sons, are longtime supporters of the arts and established the Dorothy Buley Fellowship at the Vermont Studio Center.
Recently, the Buleys provided a major gift to Buffalo State to establish a fellowship for students interested in exploring the artistic medium of weaving. A weaving studio on campus will be named in their honor.