Arts and attractions

Fountain of the Four Seasons

Fountain of the Four Seasons sculpture by Christian Petersen.

Exhibits Calendar

Anderson Sculpture Garden | contact

South of Morrill Hall, free

Brunnier Art Museum | contact

Monday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.; Sat and Sun, 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. (while ISU is in session), $3 suggested donation

  • "Contemplate Japan," Japanese woodblock prints, bamboo baskets, ikebana floral arrangements, kimono, ceramics and contemporary sculpture, through July 31, 2020
  • "Iowa and Contemporary Pottery," the collections of several donors reflect various aspects of ceramics making, from the functional to the abstract, along with a diverse range of techniques and materials, through July 31, 2020

    Christian Petersen Art Museum | contact

    Morrill Hall, 11 a.m.-4 p.m. Monday-Friday, $3 suggested donation

    • "Creating Global Understanding: World Languages and Cultures and University Museums," the diversity of cultures studied and represented among the faculty of the World Languages and Cultures department lent itself to an exhibition that explores the diversity in University Museums' permanent collection, Campbell Gallery, through July 31, 2020

    Design on Main Gallery | contact

    203 Main St., 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Tuesday-Saturday (until 8 p.m. Thursday)

    • "The Good Sport," Rachel Merrill, associate professor of art and design, Grand View University, Des Moines, a cultural critique of competition, performance and sportsmanship, Feb. 11-March 13, 2020.

    Farm House Museum | contact

    Central campus, Noon-4 p.m., Monday-Friday when ISU is in session, $3 suggested donation

    • "Farm House 160," showcasing the many purposes the building has served over 160 years, and how campus was impacted by global events during that time, Feb. 3-Nov. 1, 2020

    Gallery 181 | 515-294-7428

    College of Design, 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday-Friday, free

      Memorial Union | contact

      Gallery, viewing based on room availability, free

      • "Smoke and Chaff," Naomi Friend, Feb. 19-March 30, 2020

      Pioneer Room, viewing based on room availability, free

      Multicultural Center, 8 a.m.-11 p.m. Monday-Thursday, 8 a.m.-5 p.m. Friday, 5-11 p.m. Sunday, free

      Parks Library | contact

      Special Collections and University Archives, 403 Parks Library, 8 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday-Friday, free

      • "Our Trip Will Long Be Remembered," an exhibition following the trail of a bird-watching road trip of Walter M. Rosene, Sr. and Walter Bennett, through summer 2020
      • Online exhibits:

      Throughout Parks Library

      • "Art in Parks," features contemporary women artists, ongoing

      Reiman Gardens | contact

      9 a.m.-4:30 p.m. Monday-Friday, $9 (youth $4.50, free for members)

      Hughes Conservatory

      • "Magical Fairy Woodland," tiny exotic plants, imagination and wonder reveal the world of fairies, including how they travel with butterflies, adapt like plants and inspire innovation in humans

        Textiles and Clothing Museum, Mary Alice Gallery | contact

        1015 Morrill Hall, 11 a.m.-4 p.m., Monday-Friday, free

        • "Collegiate Fashion and Activism: Black Women's Style on the College Campus," Feb. 3-April 17, 2020
        Reiman Gardens

        Reiman Gardens

        Campus attractions


        Best public rose garden

        Iowa State's Reiman Gardens has been named the best public rose garden in the U.S.

        Most beautiful campus

        Iowa State's campus includes over 600 public works of art and was rated as one of America's 25 most beautiful in the book, The Campus as a Work of Art.


        The 10-bell carillon chime installed in the Campanile in 1899 was the first scientifically tuned bell chime outside of England; the carillon has 50 bells today.

        Building of the 20th Century

        Iowa State's Stephens Auditorium was named Iowa's "Building of the 20th Century" by the American Institute of Architects (AIA), Iowa Chapter.

        Most Grant Wood murals

        Iowa State has the largest Grant Wood murals in the nation, including two WPA projects located in Parks Library -- "Breaking the Sod" and "When Tillage Begins, Other Arts Follow."

        Seamless curtain

        The main stage curtain in Stephens Auditorium is seamless, made entirely of silk, measures 85 by 35 feet and weighs 3,000 pounds. It was woven in Kyoto, Japan, on the world's largest continuous loom.

        Accredited museum

        The University Museums at Iowa State is one of only 10 percent of museums in the nation to be accredited by the American Association of Museums.

        Medallion site

        Iowa State's central campus was one of only three university campuses to make the American Society of Landscape Architect's 1999 centennial listing of "Medallion Sites."

        Most Christian Petersen sculptures

        Iowa State holds the nation's largest campus public collection of sculptures by Christian Petersen, who was artist-in-residence from 1934 to 1955.

        Online art tour

        You can take a virtual look at some campus art with University Museums' Digital Art on Campus project.