Photo gallery shows progress on new home for studio arts

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Monday, April 11, 2016

The new Visual Arts Building is a clean slate—a beautiful and bright one—and it’s nearly ready to engage UI art students.

Did you know?

The innovative “Iowa Idea” of bringing artists and scholars together in an academic context was first formulated in the 1920s by UI President Walter Jessup and Graduate College Dean Carl Seashore. It subsequently became the model for many arts programs around the nation.

Construction on the replacement for the original Art Building complex, which was flooded in 2008, is in the final stages. Students will begin using the 126,000-square-foot facility in the fall of 2016.

Natural light is featured throughout in the new building, which was designed by Steven Holl, of BNIM Architects, and built by Miron Construction. The atrium-like central skylight, channel-glass walls, and assorted square windows help make the building the ultimate creative space for budding visual artists. Among the academic units that will call it home are printmaking, ceramics, 3-D design, metal arts and jewelry, sculpture, painting and drawing, graphic design, intermedia and video art, and photography. In addition, the building will house five galleries and a 70-seat auditorium.

After the flood, UI administrators worked quickly to secure and transform space in an old Menards store south of campus for students in the UI School of Art and Art History. When the new building opens just north of Art Building West, the school will be reunited on the main campus.

 Check out a construction webcam.