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Nocturne 5: New Art on Campus Acquisition by Karen LaMonte installed in Morrill Hall

Posted on April 18, 2018 at 10:46 AM by Nancy Gebhart

University Museums at Iowa State University announces a new art acquisition, Nocturne 5 by Karen LaMonte, installed in the west landing of Morrill Hall on Monday, April 16, 2018. This monumental cast glass sculpture is in LaMonte's Nocturnes series, which is inspired by the beauty of night and the tradition of the female nude in art.


About Nocturne 5

University Museums has an encyclopedic glass collection, one that is often used as an educational tool within various courses across campus as a way to discuss cultural history and visual literacy. With the Art on Campus Collection there has also been an emphasis on the figurative tradition, examining the human figure in relationship to the culture and educational values found within a campus. This figurative tradition began with Iowa State's first artist-in-residence on campus, the sculptor Christian Petersen, and continues today.

"An extraordinary cast glass life-size sculpture by Karen LaMonte will add to the growing contemporary glass collection, which continues to build upon the historic glass collection given to University Museums in the 1960s by Ann and Henry Brunnier. By placing the sculpture on central campus, it will also further inform the figurative tradition found in the Art on Campus Collection, adding the medium of cast glass as a method of exploration of the human form to this unique public art collection,” says Adrienne Gennett, Associate Curator at University Museums.

University Museums is always seeking opportunities to deepen connections with ISU's sister museum on campus, the Textiles and Clothing Museum. LaMonte's exquisite attention to detail in the draping and placement of the dress on the body, along with its allusions to historic costuming will allow both University Museums and the Textiles and Clothing Museum to easily incorporate the work of art into curriculum throughout campus and work more closely together.



Nocturne 5 was installed on Monday, April 16, 2018 on the renewed west landing in Morrill Hall, in front of the large arched window. The sculpture is joined in the space by other works of art from the Art on Campus Collection, including the large chandelier-like sculpture Zoopsia by Iowa artist Susan Chrysler White. The prominent placement allows the sculptures to be visible to visitors entering and exiting both the Christian Petersen Art Museum and the Textiles and Clothing Museum. Just outside of the window is an area of the Anderson Sculpture Garden that includes Christian Petersen's Reclining Nudes, a sculpture that speaks directly to the figurative tradition University Museums is continuing with the acquisition of one of LaMonte's cast glass figures. Visitors passing through that west door to enter or exit will easily be able to relate Petersen's graceful bas-relief figures to Nocturne 5 just inside the door.

"Nocturne 5 is an important addition to University Museums Art on Campus Collection because of the continuation of the figurative tradition on campus along with the unique campus interactions that will ensue for years to come,” says Lynette Pohlman, Director and Chief Curator at University Museums.

Find more information about artist Karen LaMonte at

Media Information

To schedule interviews and/or to photograph exhibitions or events, please contact Adrienne Gennett, assistant curator at University Museums (515-294-3342, or Dan Gallant (

Thank you to our donors!

The acquisition of Nocturne 5 is made possible by donations from Mary and John Pappajohn, Claire Andreasen, Martha Allen, Cal and Frankie Parrott in honor of Callie Parrott Bower, Rachel Flint, Susan and Philip Sargent, Arthur Klein, Diane and James Patton, an anonymous donor, the estate of Neva Petersen, Phyllis and Larry Lepke, Debra and David Engle, Lynette and John Pohlman, Carole Horowitz, Dana Schumacher, and the University Museums membership.

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