University Museums

Art on Campus Collection

BROWSE Art on Campus Collection
Iowa State has been commissioning and collecting public art for nearly 100 years and the intent has remained consistent - to create an intellectually and culturally stimulating campus environment. More than 650 significant, and more than 2,000 total, public works of art promote social, political and cultural discussions reflecting the diverse values and belief systems of the campus community. Public art is a partnership between the artist and the commissioning campus community and provides a unique sense of place while promoting the practice of visual literacy to the entire university. The Art on Campus Collection is continually growing through the Art in State Buildings (AiSB) Program, originally enacted in 1978 by the Iowa Legislature. The law requires one-half of one percent of state building construction funds be used for acquiring public art. The Art on Campus Collection also includes models, drawings, maquettes and works of art from the permanent collections, exploring the creative processes public artists use to research, create and install the public works of art in the Art on Campus Collection. This part of the collection is housed at The Christian Petersen Art Museum, which is the nation’s only campus museum devoted to teaching visual literacy campus-wide while focusing on public art as a major means of communication and expression to campus audiences.