Bus tour hopes to share campus art

The Office of the Art in State Buildings Program will host a campus bus tour of the artwork in the state’s permanent art collection during Saturday’s Artists in Bloom Festival.

Kenneth Falana, professor of art and chairman of the department of Visual Arts, Humanities and Theater, will lead the tour along with program administrator Harris Wiltsher, an assistant professor of art.

The tour will visit a number of facilities containing artwork acquired through the program, which was established in 1979 by the Florida Legislature. The university acts as the custodian of the artwork with the responsibility of maintenance and security.

“We want to acquaint the community with the art in public places we have here on campus,” Falana said. “A lot of people are not aware of the diverse collection of artworks we have located in buildings like the New Beginnings Educational Research Center and the School of Architecture building.”

The tour is scheduled to begin at 11 a.m. after the unveiling ceremony for artist Frank Martin’s sculpture, “Spiritual Substance,” at the Frederick Humphries Science Research building.

Martin is an associate professor of art and the director of the sculpture program at Spelman College. His work includes the sculpture titled “Scholar,” which is located at the west entrance of Coleman Library.

Another featured artist of the tour will be Chester Williams, creator of the sculpture of Jake Gaither located outside of Gaither Gymnasium. Chester will discuss and answer questions about the piece.

The tour group will be bussed around campus, stopping at various facilities such as the Federick Humphries Science Research building, the Foster Tanner Fine Arts Building, the School of Architecture building and many others. Visual arts students will be at each site to greet groups and offer insights into the pieces being viewed.

“The art work in each of the buildings has a theme,” Wiltsher explained. “In the Foster Tanner Band building the theme has to do with music and in the New Beginnings Research Center building the theme deals with children.”

While the bus tour will only be able to accommodate a limited number of people, the buildings are open to the public. The community is invited to visit the studios and various sites to enjoy the artwork as well as the current student work.

Lisa McIntosh can be reached at msmac84@hotmail.com