Elements of Erudition – Rebecca Ekstrand & Tom Rosborough

About the Art

The atrium of Lagomarcino Hall features a digital film on glass panel mural depicting a collage of the School of Education. The central image is a face with a headpiece, which speaks to the goals of the college. This is expanding human potential through knowledge, inspiration, imagination, and innovation. The 4-sided design features images of concepts studied across disciplines. Throughout Elements of Erudition, which was installed in 2015, the use of bold imagery and colors reflect the vitality and energy of students and STEAM education. It illustrates and emphasizes the positive impact educators have on an individual student’s potential.

About the Artists

Rebecca Ekstrand is an artist who specializes in public art. Born in 1951, she has not confined herself to one specific approach. She creates artwork to fit the needs of the client and the desired site. She navigates between diverse mediums from glass and terracotta to metal or stone. Her collaborative experience working with other artists and design professionals has broadened her perspective, providing her with opportunities to advance her work in different ways at the intersection of public art, design, and architecture. Below, are a few of Ekstrand’s public art installations.

Calm Waters, 2010, Iowa City, IA

Water Essential, 2013, Hatch Hall, Iowa State University, Ames, IA

Balance, Motion & Transformation, bronze, Community Y, Marshalltown, Iowa

Connection & Knowledge, University of Arkansas, Fayetteville, Arkansas

Davidson’s Dream, 2015, Biorenewables Building, Iowa State University, Ames, Iowa by Rebecca Ekstrand & Tom Rosborough

Tom Rosborough is an interdisciplinary artist specializing in illustration and public art. Born in 1951, he was educated at the University of Chicago Academy of Art. He is an illustrator and graphic designer whose art has appeared in publications including the Minnesota Medicine Journal, and Chicago Tribune Magazine.

World Bandana, scarf, Conservation group selling bandana to raise awareness of the plight of wild animals around the world

Rosborough is one of the two artists who created Inferences Drawn in this book.

Relevant Terminology/History

STEAM is an acronym for science, technology, engineering, art, and mathematics. The term is typically used in the context of education policy or curriculum choices in schools.

Digital (film) art is a term given to artistic work that employs digital technology during the creation or presentation. This is widely seen in the animation, visual effects, and video game industries.

Erudition is the quality of having or showing great knowledge or learning

Learning Guide

  1. What do you think the title has to do with the art?
  2. Why do you think Number Charter 0 is speaking about the art?
  3. How does the shape of the red image with white numbers relate to the art spread?
  4. Why are all of Team Ten in a triangular shape?
  5. How does the hidden blue image relate to the art?
  6. What do you think the letters in the eye design on the upper leftside mean?
  7. How many rays are emanating from the head of the central face?  Can you think of any significance of the number of rays?
  8. If you had cut across the width of the pencils you used in school, would you have found a circle or hexagon? Which would your teacher have likely preferred? Why?
  9. Can you recognize any of the other shapes presented in the art?  How do they relate to education?  What disciplines do they relate to?