Skip to main content
ISU University Museums
Main Content

George Washington Carver

Three Exhibitions Campus-wide
February 1 – July 26, 2024

George Washington Carver's graduation photo“I have no words to adequately express my impressions of dear old I.S.C. All I am and all I hope to be, I owe in a very large measure to this blessed institution.” -George Washington Carver, May 1921

Nearly 75 years ago in 1949, then Iowa State artist-in-residence Christian Petersen carved a plaster sculpture of notable graduate George Washington Carver. Fifty years later, the sculpture was cast in bronze and placed in the courtyard of Carver Hall, creating a commemoration in public art to Carver and his achievements. George Washington Carver’s legacy has been honored over the years through numerous works of art in the University Museums’ permanent collection and Art on Campus Collection.

Carver, the budding artist, was inspired and encouraged by former Farm House resident Etta Budd. Carver, the student, was clearly impacted by the professors and leaders at Iowa State as catalogued in a six-page letter written by Carver to Louis Pammel in May of 1921 in response to Pammel’s inquiry into Carver’s life story and impactful individuals.

 

George Washington Carver,
The Student & Artist

Farm House Museum
February 1 – July 26, 2024

Several works of art from the permanent collection by Carver’s advocate Etta May Budd, and a ceramic vase attributed to Carver are exhibited at the Farm House Museum, Iowa State’s oldest building. Along with these objects, portraits and decorative arts that relate to the many individuals Carver noted in his letter of 1921 are highlighted.  In conjunction with the exhibition World Fairs, Expositions & Centennial Celebrations of the Victorian Era a brief look at Carver’s artistic and military connections to the 1893 Chicago World Fairs are examined.

Farm House Museum
601 Farm House Lane
Ames, IA

Green vase with sculpted rose and texture

George Washington Carver,
The Student & Innovator
 

Dean's Art Gallery, Curtiss Hall
February 1 – July 2024

This installation explores through portraiture the influence on Carver the Iowa State faculty, administration and students had on the success of Carver becoming the innovator he is celebrated today.

Curtiss Hall
513 Farm House Lane
Ames, IA

Painting of George Washington Carver

George Washington Carver,
The Student & Visionary

Multiple Sites
February 1 – July 2024

This self-guided exhibition tour explores, through historical and contemporary portraiture, the encouragement of young Carver by Iowa State faculty and administration that allowed for his success while on campus and led to him becoming the visionary person he is celebrated today.

Click the button below to view and/or download the brochure.

View/Download Brochure

Blue ceramic vessel with handles and lid and portrait of George Washington Carver

Exhibition Programs

Find full descriptions of programs on the University Museums Calendar. All programs are free and open to the public. Registration is not required unless noted. Click the event title for more information and/or to register. Programs are subject to change. Check the University Museums Calendar and Facebook page for the latest events information.

 

Art Walk | Celebrating George Washington Carver

Wednesday, February 28, noon–1:00 p.m.

Begins at Curtiss Hall, 2nd floor rotunda

In honor of Iowa’s George Washington Carver Day, walk through the works of art honoring George Washington Carver found throughout the Art on Campus Collection. Meet at Curtiss Hall 2nd floor rotunda. Led by docent Steve Petska.

 

Through the Eyes of George Washington Carver – The Student & Artist

Thursday, April 18, 5:00–6:00 p.m.

Farm House Museum

Carver, the student, came to Iowa State at the suggestion of Etta Budd, former Farm House resident, and was clearly impacted by the professors and leaders he met as catalogued in a six-page letter written by Carver to Louis Pammel in May 1921. Tour the Farm House Museum with curator Allison Sheridan highlighting the objects on exhibition in George Washington Carver, The Student & the Artist.  

Support for this program provided by Carol Pletcher. 

 

Through the Eyes of George Washington Carver – The Student & Visionary

Thursday, May 16, 5:00–6:00 p.m.

Food Sciences Building, south entrance near circular drive

Carver, the student, was clearly impacted by the professors and leaders at Iowa State as catalogued in a six-page letter written by Carver to Louis Pammel in May of 1921. Tour sites across central campus with educator Nicholas Scott highlighting the exhibition George Washington Carver, The Student & Visionary

 

Through the Eyes of George Washington Carver – The Student & Innovator

Thursday, June 6, 4:30–5:30 p.m.

Curtiss Hall, 2nd floor rotunda

Carver, the student, was clearly impacted by the professors and leaders at Iowa State as catalogued in a six-page letter written by Carver to Louis Pammel in May 1921. Tour with Curator Allison Sheridan the exhibition George Washington Carver, The Student & Innovator in the Dean’s Art Gallery, College of Agriculture and Life Sciences. 

 


These exhibitions are curated and organized by University Museums with support from Jim and Marcia Henderson Borel (ISU ’79) and University Museums Membership.

Images from top:

George Washington Carver's graduation photo, 1893
Iowa State University. Special Collections and University Archives

Vase, 1890-1893
Attributed to George Washington Carver (American, c. 1861-1943)
Painted ceramic/clay
Gift of the grandchildren of O.S. and Lurana Jane Carpenter: Martha Lou Malmanger Hutton, Bernice Malmanger, Mary B. Berry Wassom, Lloyd Berry, Ray O. Berry, Marvin W. Carpenter, Marilyn K. Carpenter Lee, and Linda M. Carpenter Peterson. In memory of LaVern B. Carpenter. In the permanent collection, Brunnier Art Museum, University Museums, Iowa State University, Ames, Iowa. 
UM2011.181

George Washington Carver, 1999
Youssef Asar (Egyptian, 1935-2012)
Oil on linen
Funded by the George Washington Carver Artist in Residence Program. In the Art on Campus Collection, University Museums, Iowa State University, Ames, Iowa.
U2000.62

George Washington Carver Vessel, 2020
Roberto Lugo (American, b. 1981)
Porcelain, china paint, and luster
Commissioned by University Museums with funds from the Joyce Tomlinson Brewer Fund for Art Acquisition. In the permanent collection, University Museums, Iowa State University, Ames, Iowa.
UM2020.19ab

© 2024 University Museums, Iowa State University. All rights reserved.