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

  • "Ginnever: Transforming Perspectives," through fall 2022

Brunnier Art Museum | contact

Mondays and Tuesday by appointment only; 10 a.m.- 4 p.m. Wednesday-Friday; 1 p.m.-4 p.m. Saturday-Sunday; closed on university holidays and during break (Nov. 30-Jan. 26), $8 suggested donation

  • "Contemplate Japan," Japanese woodblock prints, bamboo baskets, ikebana floral arrangements, kimono, ceramics and contemporary sculpture, through Fall 2020
  • "A New World: 600 BCE - 600 CE," an exploration of life in the ancient world across many cultures including China, through Fall 2020
    • "The Public and Private Lives of Roman Women," Nov. 5, 4:30-5:30 p.m.

    Christian Petersen Art Museum | contact

    Mondays and Tuesday by appointment only; 10 a.m.- 4 p.m. Wednesday-Friday; 1 p.m.-4 p.m. Saturday-Sunday, closed Nov. 30-Jan. 26, $8 suggested donation

    • "Who am I?" will show how art can signify a place, a time, and stories about the world or just one person, through Fall semester 2020
    • "From Time Immemorial: Art as Commemoration," through Summer 2021
    • "Body Image Conflict: From Hostility to Harmony," reACT Exhibition Series, through Oct. 26 through Nov. 20

    Farm House Museum | contact

    Central campus, noon-4 p.m. Monday-Friday when ISU is in session, $8 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, through Nov. 20
    • "Judging Books by Their Fanciful Covers," through March 31, 2021

    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
      • Memorial Union Art Gallery, 1568 Memorial Union, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Monday-Friday, 1-4 p.m. Sunday
      • 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 Rosene Sr. and Walter Bennett
      • 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

        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 2,500 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.

        University Museums' Collection

        You can take a virtual look at the University Museums’ Collection of over 30,000 objects Digital Art on Campus project.