Special Collections Department
403 Parks Library
Iowa State University
Ames, IA 50011-2140

RS 5/8/0/4
Iowa State University

University Museums
Publications, 1989-2011

Descriptive summary


Iowa State University, University Museums






0.42 linear feet (1 document box)

collection number:

RS 5/8/0/4


University Archives, Special Collections Department, Iowa State University.


Administrative information


Open for research

publication rights:

Consult Head, Special Collections Department

preferred citation:

Iowa State University, University Museums Publications, RS 5/8/0/4, Special Collections Department, Iowa State University Library.


Historical note

The University Museums at Iowa State University operates several facilities spread across campus and maintains thousands of pieces of artwork on campus and in its permanent collections. The museum facilities consist of the Brunnier Art Museum housed in the Scheman Continuing Education Building; the Farm House Museum; and the Christian Petersen Art Museum, housed in Morrill Hall. In addition to the University Museum's permanent collections on display in their galleries, the museum staff also maintains Iowa State University's vast and diverse Art on Campus Collection. The most recent addition to the University Museums is the Elizabeth and Byron Anderson Sculpture Garden, located between Morrill Hall and Beardshear Hall.

University Museums began as the Brunnier Gallery, a space dedicated in 1975 in the newly constructed Scheman Continuing Education Building, which is a part of the larger Iowa State Center building complex. Henry Brunnier, who was a graduate of Iowa State, and his wife were early donors to the Iowa State Center fundraising project, and as part of their gift they donated their large personal collection of dolls, glassware, enamels, porcelain, and other decorative artwork. The Brunnier Gallery became the Brunnier Gallery and Museum in 1980 and the museum was accredited in 1983 by the American Association of Museums.

The Farm House was the first structure built on the Iowa State University campus in 1860. For over one hundred years, the Farm House served as a home to college deans, faculty, and students. In 1965, the Farm House was declared a National Historic Landmark and the final residents, Dean Floyd Andre and his family, moved out in 1970. It was decided that the Farm House should be saved and restored to resemble what it may have looked like during its first 50 years. The Farm House Museum was opened to the public on July 4, 1976.

The most recent additions to the University Museums are the Christian Petersen Art Museum and the Elizabeth and Byron Anderson Sculpture Garden. The Christian Petersen Art Museum is named for the nation's first permanent artist-in-residence, Christian Petersen, who sculpted and taught at Iowa State and created many of the well-known works of art on campus. The museum was added in 2007 and is housed in the recently renovated Morrill Hall. The Anderson sculpture garden is named after Iowa State graduate Elizabeth Anderson and her late husband Byron. The sculpture garden displays an assortment of modern artwork alongside work of Christian Petersen. The sculpture garden is located south of Morrill Hall.

The University Museums also maintains the hundreds of pieces of art located on campus in the Art on Campus Colection. This artwork includes statues, murals, paintings, and other two- and three-dimensional works of art. The University Museums provides tours and online information for anyone interested in viewing Iowa State's rich collection of art.


Collection description

This collection (1989-2011) contains books and guides published by the Univeristy Museums. Several of the books are teacher's guides created for specific art exhibitions, and contain information on the artwork on display and study units for students. The University Museums has also published or sponsored the publication of numerous books on artwork, including When Tillage Begins, Other Arts Follow: Grant Wood and Christian Petersen Murals (call no. ND237 W795 D45x 2006), Christian Petersen Urban Artist, 1900-1934 (call no. NB237 P4 A4 2007); and University Museums Collections Handbook (call no. N512 A56 I59x 2000). These books and others can be found by searching the ISU Library catalog.

Related collections include the Art On Campus Collection, RS 4/8/5; the Mary Atherly Papers, RS 5/8/51; and the Christian Petersen Papers, RS 26/2/52. Also, oral history interviews with longtime University Museums Director Lynette Pohlman and Curator Mary Atherly are available in the Sesquicentennial Oral History Collection, RS 0/11/7.



This collection is arranged alphabetically.


Container list







Campus Icons: A Guide to the Art on Campus Collection for Educators




Christian Petersen, Sculptor: A Guide for Educators




Grant Wood's Main Street: A Curriculum Guide for Educators




Guiding Adventures in Visual Experience: A Docent Manual




Interpretations of the Interpretations: Photographic Explorations by King Au of Iowa State University's Art on Campus Collection




Land of the Loess! A Teacher Unit Prepared in Conjunction with the Exhibition: Land of the Fragile Giants: Landscapes, Environments, and Peoples of the Loess Hills




University Museums Collections Handbook


1 8 N.C. Wyeth's America in the Making 2011