The Stanley welcomes faculty from all disciplines to the museum to support learning objectives, including sharpening observation skills, studying artistic techniques, exploring culture, and building empathy. 

The University of Iowa was one of the first universities in the world to recognize the benefits of teaching with original works of art. In the 1920s, UI administrators called this the “Iowa Idea.”

The Stanley’s diverse art collection was assembled to serve the needs of faculty and students at the University of Iowa. You can explore the museum’s collection or contact Kathryn Reuter, academic outreach coordinator, to discuss ways that the museum can support your research or teaching.

contact kathryn

Faculty, staff, and students from the UI or another college or university may request an exhibition tour in our galleries or a specialized viewing experience of work in our visual laboratory and classroom through our online visit request form.

request a visit

Please submit your request at least one month in advance. Also note that space is limited in the Visual Laboratory and Visual Classroom. Classes larger than 25 students will need to schedule more than one session in these spaces.

The Stanley also offers guided public tours of its collection.

Semester- or Year-Long Object Display

The Visual Laboratory (VL) on the third floor of the Stanley Museum of Art offers faculty the opportunity to select up to 10 artworks to be on display for their students. The VL has cases along the periphery of the room that can accommodate a variety of objects. Tables in the center of the room provide students with a place to take notes and work collaboratively.

The VL is open during regular museum hours, but be aware that classes and other events may be scheduled in the space. To guarantee the VL is available for student or faculty research and teaching, we recommend requesting a time to work in the VL.

visual laboratory request

Faculty interested in selecting objects for semester- or year-long display in the VL must discuss their proposal with Kimberly Datchuk, curator of learning & engagement. Please email her to schedule a meeting. Planning for the VL begins at least one year in advance.

contact kimberly

Once granted preliminary approval, faculty will work in collaboration with Stanley staff to select objects for display. Please note that light sensitive objects, such as works on paper and textiles, are limited to one semester. Light stable objects, such as oil paintings and ceramics, may remain on view for up to two semesters.

The Stanley Museum of Art welcomes visiting scholars to research our collection. As you prepare for your visit, we recommend completing the request form as soon as possible. A maximum of four objects can be requested per visit.

request form

Requests must be placed at least 1 month in advance to allow the registrarial team time assess all requested objects to determine whether they can safely be removed from storage for study and prepare them for viewing. Visits are limited to normal museum hours and are dependent upon teaching, programming, and staff availability.

You can research our collection online through the Iowa Digital Library.

Please contact Sarah Luko, associate registrar rights and reproductions with questions.

contact sarah

Instructor Resources

In addition to museum visits, we offer instructor resources about the collection and programs.

instructor resources