Indiana State University Newsroom

Interactive sculpture dedicated at Reeve Hall

April 9, 2015

Indiana State University and Art Spaces Inc. on Wednesday dedicated the newest public art piece on the Indiana State campus.

"A Reading Place," consisting of multiple pieces of dolomitic limestone created by artist Madeline Wiener, stands on North Sixth Street Walkway between the two units of Reeve Hall, Indiana State's newest campus housing facility."While Reeve Hall is home to our sororities, this new art work is for all-the university and the Terre Haute community- to enjoy," said John Murray, dean of the College of Arts and Sciences. "Today we will add to the beauty of the area surrounding Reeve Hall by dedicating this new work of art. This is a great day in our history."

An interactive sculpture, "A Reading Place" features a solitary figure of a girl reading a book opposite back-to-back figures and two stacks of stone books. The artwork is designed so that viewers can sit on any of the figures or the books.

Wiener said the inspiration for her design came to her during a tour of the Indiana State campus.

"Books are a lasting icon for our cumulative knowledge that sustains and advances this institution," Wiener said. "I hope to remind future generations about books and their importance throughout history. The artwork is timeless, warmly engaging and poetically expressive of the nature of this learning institution."

Stone evokes value, permanence and a sense of honor in craftsmanship, Wiener said in explaining her choice of materials for the sculptures.

"There are exquisite examples of stonework at the university," she said. "This artwork will continue that legacy and create a confluence with the new buildings behind it."

Cheri Bradley, Indiana State's first lady and an Art Spaces board member, said the university's public art collection "is part of creating a wonderful learning environment and I am excited to have been involved in this latest addition to our campus. "A Reading Place" is a warm, interactive and whimsical sculpture upon which our students and other members of our community are invited to sit, read or just enjoy a beautiful day. I anticipate seeing a lot of "selfies" on social media as our students take advantage of this interactive artwork."

"A Reading Place" is the 15th piece in Wabash Valley Art Spaces' outdoor sculpture collection and the sixth commissioned in cooperation with Indiana State.

Mary Kramer, executive director of Art Spaces, thanked the university "for understanding that art, well-placed to create beauty, meaning, interest and conversation, enlivens the experience of education and provides a sense of wholeness and, ultimately, a visual manifestation of a shared humanity."

Kramer expressed pleasure at working with Wiener, whom she described as "an accomplished artist who so intently and capably brings forth sensitive, kind and welcome figures into our midst, all carved from a beautiful - and very hard - material, a good message and heartening to know it will live on."

Jade Rakes, a senior graphic design major from Terre Haute and a member of Chi Omega sorority, spoke on behalf of students residing in Reeve Hall.

"The students of Indiana State are going to enjoy this artwork, and I anticipate it will become a new gathering place on campus," she said. "On behalf of the students, I would like to express our appreciation to the university and Art Spaces for adding the beauty of public art to our campus."

Wiener has been carving stone since 1971 and creating sculpture for public spaces since 1991. Her works are uniquely designed to suit each project's individual characteristics. She studied at The New York School of Visual Arts from 1968-1974. Founder/director of The Marble Institute of Colorado, Wiener lives and works in Denver.

Photo: - "A Reading Place," an interactive multi-piece sculpture by Colorado artist Madeline Wiener, was dedicated April 8, 2015 outside Reeve Hall, an Indiana State University sorority housing complex. (ISU/Rachel Keyes)

Photo: - Linda Rector and her daughter, Lillian, try out "A Reading Place," following dedication of the interactive structure outside Indiana State University's Reeve Hall April 8, 2015. The Rectors are descendants of Helen Reeve, for women's residence hall director and dean of women for whom Reeve Hall is named. (ISU/Rachel Keyes)

Media contact and writer: Dave Taylor, media relations director, Office of Communications and Marketing, Indiana State University, 812-237-3743 or