University of Minnesota  Administrative Policy

Campus Public Art

Policy Statement

Campus Public Art (Public Art) creates, maintains, and enhances an enduring cultural legacy for the University and the State. It is a form of knowledge that advances the University’s educational mission and contributes to the climate of the campus. It includes art in all forms that is physically or visually accessible to the public through permanent or temporary installation that contributes to the experience of the natural or built public spaces, both indoors and outdoors, on University real estate. This policy does not cover the acceptance of small commemorative plaques in buildings or works of art included in museum collections, gallery exhibitions, personal workspaces, reception areas, or meeting rooms.

In accordance with Board of Regents Policy, this administrative policy applies to commissioning, siting, and installing works of art funded by the State of Minnesota in connection with major campus construction projects that are governed by Minnesota Statutes: 16b.35 Art in State Buildings. It also serves as a framework of best practices for art that is similar in installation or intent.


Consistent with Minnesota Statute, a portion of the project budget must be allocated to Public Art for State-bond–funded projects. The following thresholds and Public Art budgets are established:

  • For projects $35 million or less: up to 1% of the project budget.
  • For projects larger than $35 million: up to $350,000.

Selection Process

The process for choosing and creating Public Art is one of consultation or collaboration with the University’s publics or communities. While the entire University community (students, faculty, staff, and visitors) are beneficiaries of Public Art, a Campus Public Art Selection Committee (CPASC) is assembled for individual projects.

A CPASC will balance institutional and project stakeholders, with attention to equitable, diverse, and inclusive representation, including representation from or recommended by:

  • building users and primary tenants, including faculty, staff, and students
  • disciplinary experts in the visual arts (art, art history) and design (architecture, landscape architecture, interior design)
  • campus community at large
  • Office of Equity and Diversity
  • University Architect (ex officio)
  • CPM Project Manager (ex officio)
  • Project Architect (ex officio)
  • Campus Public Art Lead (ex officio, facilitator)

A CPASC is tasked to:

  • review and understand training materials on implicit bias;
  • define the primary community or specific public to be engaged;
  • understand the communities’ priorities and define criteria for the project;
  • engage local or regional public arts community members as appropriate;
  • develop an inclusive selection process based on the best approach for an individual project and the process that will yield a diverse pool of artists; 
  • recommend the artist and engage with them throughout the development of the art project;
  • consult with various campus communities throughout the process; and
  • if applicable, and in collaboration with the artist, develop any plans as necessary to address potential controversy, transition to another collection, or decommissioning.

Artists selected to create campus public art:

  • must seek to understand the University's broad, diverse, and engaged communities;
  • should be able to define their (the artist’s) process, values, and interests, including how those align with the priorities and criteria defined by CPASC and the campus;
  • must have the ability to work with the CPASC, the University community, and engage these constituencies in development of their art.

Public Art commissioned or purchased:

  • responds to the values, priorities, and criteria established by the CPASC;
  • reflects the diverse audiences within the campus community and its broader publics;
  • responds to the history and future of the physical site in which it is placed, including building design and landscape architecture as well as the human and environmental history of the land;
  • grows out of the artist’s own creative research and artistic concerns while also considering the work’s physical place within the campus environment, university values, and its community now and in the future;
  • advances the public’s understanding of the values of the building’s community and the University.

Siting of Campus Public Art

Board of Regents Policy: Campus Public Art provides for indoor or outdoor installation. In determining where to site a Public Art installation, the selection committee will consider:

  • compliance with adopted campus master plans, including campus planning’s identified strategic locations;
  • impact of location on achieving artist’s intent/message;
  • public accessibility;
  • impact of siting on artwork, such as durability and maintenance over time.

Installing and Maintaining Campus Public Art

Capital Project Management is responsible for coordinating the installation of Public Art. The commissioning process and installation must not be restricted or limited by a specific project’s construction schedule, though it is desirable that they align whenever possible. Once installed, responsibility for maintenance is assigned to:

  • Crookston: Facilities Management
  • Duluth: Tweed Museum
  • Morris: Facilities Management
  • Rochester: Facilities and Operations
  • Twin Cities: Weisman Art Museum


This policy does not regulate commissioning, purchasing or installing a work of art that is not Public Art, including the acceptance of small commemorative plaques in buildings, works of art included in museum collections, gallery exhibitions, or murals or other works displayed in personal workspaces, reception areas, or meeting rooms. 

This policy does not govern instances where the subject of the Public Art is being broadly challenged. In situations where this is the case, the Provost or the Chancellor of the applicable campus will define a process for how the topic will be addressed. In situations where a recommendation is made to uninstall or decommission a work, the President will make a recommendation to the Board of Regents, which has reserved authority for uninstalling or decommissioning Public Art.

This policy does not govern commemorative statues of or memorials/monuments to a person or people. Review and approval of commemorative statues, memorials, and monuments is the purview of the All-University Honors Committee and the Board of Regents.

Reason for Policy

To implement Board of Regents policy: Campus Public Art (PDF) and to provide guidance for implementing Minnesota Statutes: 16b.35 Art in State Buildings, which provides funding for commissioning or purchase of public art, not to exceed one percent of the total appropriation for construction or alteration of any state building. This Policy and Statute establish guidelines and a funding source for the University's acceptance, commissioning, development, acquisition, installation, and maintenance of Public Art.


University ArchitectMarc Partridge612-626-5907[email protected]
Campus PlanningMonique MacKenzie612-624-3565[email protected]
Crookston CampusDave Danforth218-281-8490[email protected]
Duluth CampusJeremy Youde218-726-8981[email protected]
Morris CampusBryan Herrmann320-589-6113[email protected]
Rochester CampusBarry Standorf507-258-8217[email protected]
Twin Cities CampusAlejandra Pena Gutierrez612-625-9686[email protected]
Responsible Individuals
Responsible Officer Policy Owner Primary Contact
  • Executive Vice President and Provost
  • Vice President for University Services
  • Director, Weisman Art Museum
  • Assistant Vice President for Capital Planning and Project Management
  • Marc Partridge
    University Architect, Capital Project Management


Campus Public Art
Art in all forms that is physically or visually accessible to the public through permanent or temporary installation that contributes to the experience of the natural or built public spaces, both indoors and outdoors, on University real estate.
Campus Public Art Selection Committee
A project-specific committee assembled to select and engage an artist in the development of public art.
Campus Public Art Lead
The individual on each campus who is responsible for facilitating the CPASC process and overseeing the public art collection.
Campus Public Art Plan
A document prepared and managed to assure consistency with other University master plans for all buildings, public spaces, and related facilities. Each Campus Public Art Plan complements and promotes the planning principles set out in each campus master plan. The purpose of each Plan is to provide a framework for decision making for individual public art projects as they occur. A Plan provides a broader vision for public art on each campus than what is possible when doing public art projects one at a time, guiding decisions regarding future public art investments.
A free-standing carved, cast, or modelled figure of a person or animal.


Engage with the CPASC, the Campus Public Art Lead, and the campus community to produce an art installation that is consistent with the criteria and values outlined by the CPASC and this Policy.
Campus Public Art Selection Committee
Ensure an open and transparent process that engages the community and produces a final installation that reflects the uniqueness of the specific project and the diversity of the campus community. Review implicit bias training materials and remain mindful of and mitigate implicit bias during the artist selection process.
Campus Public Art Lead
Facilitate all aspects of the Campus Public Art program. Serve as a resource for CPASC members and artists. Work with campus planning on long-term vision for Campus Public Art in relation to established master plans.
Vice President for University Services
Works with the Campus Public Art Lead to review and approve proposals from CPASC and Artists. Has delegated authority for acquisition of all public art pieces, systemwide.


August 2021 - policy established