River of Milk</i>, detail<i>

Public Art in Iowa

The State of Iowa has a rich art culture that includes many wonderful works of public art. These artworks may be commissioned by the state, by private organizations, or even by generous individuals, and can be found at airports, in hospitals, schools and universities, and even alongside highways! The Daily Palette is happy to feature these works created for the enrichment of our communities and the delight of our visitors.


MICHAELA MAHADY
River of Milk, detail, Etched glass, 2009

Ms. Mahady received a B.A. in studio art from Macalester College in 1973 and a Master of Architecture degree from the University of Minnesota in 1986. She is Principal Emeritus at SALA Architects Inc., and the co-founder of Pegasus Studio, Inc., where she creates architectural glass artworks, like the River of Milk mural at Iowa State University. Follow the link below to see more of her work at Pegasus Studio!

River of Milk was commissioned for the Iowa State University Dairy Farm's visitor's center as part of Iowa's Art in State Buildings program. It was installed there in January 2009, on the "visitors'" side of a set of windows looking into the milking parlor. There it delights the thousands of people who visit the dairy farm each year! This detail shows a farmer (whose face is modeled on the late actor, Christopher Reeve) standing next to a calf, while a "river of milk" flows by. The whole mural tells the history of milk production in Iowa, and the ways it has changed as dairy science has evolved. Ms. Mahady carefully etched images of five different dairy breeds into the glass, and the depiction of a woman scientist is modeled on Dr. Diane Spurlock, Associate Professor of Animal Science at ISU. The "river of milk" flows through and frames the entire mural, and Ms. Mahady engraved the word for "milk" in 27 languages into the marble set below the windows.

Pegasus Studio online

This page was first displayed
on May 05, 2017

Find us on Facebook