Herron School of Art lands major sculptural installation for 'welcoming campus' initiative

  • March 17, 2016


INDIANAPOLIS -- Twelve life-size figures cast in iron and glass will soon grace the Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis campus, taking up residence along a path southeast of University Library.

"Horizons," an outdoor installation of work by internationally known Icelandic artist Steinunn Thórarinsdóttir (pronounced Stay-nun Thor-orens-daughter), is scheduled to arrive at the Herron School of Art and Design today, with placement of the statues to begin Friday, March 18.

The 400-pound figures are slated to flank a diagonal sidewalk running from the northwest corner of Blackford and New York streets to the library greenspace. Herron associate professor of sculpture Eric Nordgulen and director of landscape architecture Mark Ramsey will oversee the installation, scheduled for completion by March 23. The public art will be on view for 18 months.

Gallery directors and critics around the globe have described Thórarinsdóttir's work as spiritual, distilled, elemental, raw and forceful.

The public art project is tied to a broader effort to make the IUPUI campus more welcoming for students, faculty, staff, alumni and community members. First announced at Chancellor Nasser H. Paydar's installation and shared in his Report to the Community address, this effort will provide IUPUI the opportunity to reshape its campus into one that is a more inspiring and welcoming destination for all.

"This remarkable installation not only speaks to the power of art to transform public space but will also deeply enrich the experiences of visitors to the IUPUI campus," said Paydar. "I can think of no better symbol for the changes that will reshape our campus than Thórarinsdóttir's powerful and compelling installation."

As an introduction to the exhibit, Herron will host lauded documentary filmmaker Frank Cantor, who will give a public talk and a screening of his 28-minute film about "Horizons" beginning at 6:30 p.m. March 30 in the Basile Auditorium at Eskenazi Hall, 735 W. New York St.

"'Horizons' is a compelling installation that will surely engage the IUPUI community as well as the many visitors to our campus," said Herron dean Valerie Eickmeier. "Frank Cantor will bring an added educational component through his documentary."

While in Indianapolis, Cantor will also work with students from Herron and the School of Informatics and Computing at IUPUI during studio visits.

Cantor specializes in art-related subjects. His current projects include "The Art of Collaboration," a series of 10 behind-the-scenes portraits for The National Gallery of Australia that reveal artists such as Herron alumnus Ken Tyler (M.A.E.'63), Roy Lichtenstein, Helen Frankenthaler and Jim Rosenquist. Visitors to Herron can see one of Rosenquist's works, "Time Dust," just outside of the Basile Auditorium in Eskenazi Hall.

"Horizons" seated statue in Chicago exhibit

"Horizons" seated statue in Chicago exhibit

Print Quality Photo

"Horizons" in Orlando exhibit

"Horizons" in Orlando exhibit

Print Quality Photo

Diane Brown