University of Iowa Museum of Art thrives while awaiting new facility

The University of Iowa Museum of Art (UIMA) has continued to bring art to Iowans even though a flood forced the museum to leave its building nearly 10 years ago.

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The University of Iowa Museum of Art (UIMA) has continued to bring art to Iowans even though a flood forced the museum to leave its building nearly 10 years ago.

Kathy Edwards, senior curator at UIMA, has been dedicated to moving forward and helping the museum thrive since the 2008 flood. 

“What is utmost in my mind hasn’t changed from the day I was hired, through the flood, to today,” she said in a press release. “My driving motivation has been to care for, research, exhibit, and teach the permanent collection.”

UIMA has continued to offer everything it had before the flood, and museum staff has continued outreach to city officials, the state of Iowa and individuals around the country. 

“I think that’s a valuable thing for us to do whether or not we have a building,” Vero Rose Smith, assistant curator for the Legacies for Iowa Collections-Sharing Project, said in the release. “Our collection belongs to everybody in the state of Iowa.”

Smith has curated five shows per year at UIMA and has permanent display throughout Iowa.

The state of Iowa is reviewing plans for a new building for UIMA. The $50 million project will be located at 160 W. Burlington St. if approved by the Board of Regents. 

“There has already been a lot of discussion and planning to take advantage of all the new opportunities for study and audience engagement in the new building,” Edwards said.

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