Indiana State University Newsroom

New sculpture to be dedicated March 26

March 9, 2009

TERRE HAUTE, Ind. - Wabash Valley Outdoor Sculpture Collection and Indiana State University are pleased to welcome a new sculpture by internationally known artist Chakaia Booker.

The sculpture, part of the Terre Haute Arts Corridor, will be installed on the Indiana State campus in front of the New Theater. Designed specifically for this site, the sculpture will become part of Indiana State's Permanent Art Collection.

The project is a collaborative effort between Art Spaces and Indiana State University offices of Facilities Management, Permanent Art Collection, University Art Gallery and the ISU Recycle Center.

Booker is best known for sculptures and wall reliefs created with rubber from used tires. While we best know rubber tires to be gritty, utilitarian and round, they are transformed through her masterful manipulation into complex, highly textured and captivating works of art revealing an alluring and unending variation on the color black. Simultaneously energizing and sublime, they invite us to examine our assumptions about pattern, texture, and function and to extend this examination beyond the material into a symbolic realm -- from there one might also consider assumptions regarding role, diversity and value in the human sphere.

Booker's sculpture will be dedicated Thursday, March 26, at 4 p.m. in front of the New Theater, located at 540 N. Seventh Street. A reception will follow. Free parking for this event is available in Lot M across from the theater.

She will give a public lecture about her work that day at 5:30 p.m. in the Music Recital Hall of the Performing and Fine Art Center located at the corner of 7th and Chestnut Streets. All of the events are free of charge and the public is invited.

Booker, represented by Marlborough Gallery in New York, lives in New York City and works out of her studio in Allentown, PA. She completed a bachelor of arts degree in sociology at Rutgers University and a master of fine arts degree from The City College of New York.

She found her way into art through observation and participation in textile work of her grandmother and sister. In addition to free standing sculptures and wall-reliefs she is also known for creating wearable art and begins each day by sculpting herself.

Booker's works are included in many permanent collections throughout the United States including the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Bronx Museum of Art, Neuberger Museum of Art, Studio Museum of Harlem and the Queens Museum of Art in New York, the Laumeier Sculpture Park and Museum in Missouri and the Frederik Meijer Gardens and Sculpture Park in Michigan, among others.

Most recently nine of her works have been featured in downtown Indianapolis in an exhibit that opened in July 2008 and runs through March 2009.


Contacts: Sculpture and dedication - Mary Kramer, ArtSpaces, 812-244-4216 or 

Lecture: Melissa Vandenberg, University Art Gallery, 812-237-3787 or