Indiana State University Newsroom

Permanent Art Collection diversifies campus artwork

February 28, 2017

Emphasizing diversity at Indiana State University includes not only creating an inclusive environment for people, but also its artwork.

The Permanent Art Collection includes about two dozen works by Latin American artists, including three recently acquired works - two by Chilean artists and one by an artist of Argentinian decent - that were recently purchased as part of an effort to diversify the campus collection.

"Mango," a hand-colored etching on paper made by Hector Saunier of Argentina in 1970, is a non-representational work of wavy green, magenta and blue bands that is the favorite of university curator Jason Krueger, who purchases pieces for the collection.

"I like the play of the shape and color and it is tight and technically perfect, and it relates to the Tropicália art in Brazil, which is the kind of art that I was exposed to as a child," Krueger said. "The composition draws from Stanley William Hayter, who Saunier studied under, and evokes tropical feelings and South American themes."

It wasn't warm and fuzzy feelings that Krueger first experienced when he came across Sergio González-Tonero's "Skin-Diver," an etching on paper that was created by the Chilean artist in 1968.

"I almost didn't even get this piece," Krueger said. "But the more I looked at it, the turquoise and orange in it evoke colors of a coral reef, though the person viewing the piece can't be sure if the figure in the piece is going down or across the page."

But when it comes to "Cosmos" by Chilean-born artist Juan Gomez Quiroz's heavy use of black, white and yellow spots etched on the red background, Krueger sees the beauty in it.

"The red and black give people a sense of depth, and it reminds me of the way the galaxy clusters are organized," he said.

The three pieces incorporate more color and abstract art and help highlight the background of artists who are currently underrepresented in the university's art collection - one of several criteria Krueger considers before purchasing a piece of art.

While all three of the Latin American artist pieces remain in storage until they can be framed and displayed, Krueger has been able to bring the pieces into art classes, where they spark discussions among students about their meaning, as well as their beauty.

"Since I purchased these pieces, I have taken them to about three or four classes on campus, and it's been a great way to show the diversity of art makers," he said. "I like to take the pieces into class because there we are open to a lot more that we can talk about than when that art is hanging on an office wall."

Photo: - Jason Krueger

Photo: - A photo of artist Sergio Gonzalez-Tomero's "Skin-Diver," an etching on paper that was created by the Chilean artist in 1968.

Photo: - A photo of "Cosmos" by Chilean-born artist Juan Gomez Quiroz.

Photo: - A photo of "Mango," a hand-colored etching on paper made by artist Hector Saunier of Argentina.

Contact: Jason Krueger, curator, Permanent Art Collection, Cunningham Memorial Library,

Writer: Betsy Simon, media relations assistant director, Office of Communications and Marketing, Indiana State University, 812-237-7972 or