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University of Iowa News Release


August 31, 2010

PHOTO: OLD CAPITOL FIRE, 1971. A fire that was set in front of the Old Capitol Museum, from the 1971 Hawkeye Yearbook.

Old Capitol Museum exhibit to showcase tumultuous 1960s and 70s

"Chaos and Creation on the Pentacrest," is a new exhibition offering a historical look at the University of Iowa during some of the nation's troubled and changing years, 1965 - 1975. But it's a lot more than just an exhibit, featuring the creation of a psychedelic mural, the recreation of a UI dorm room from the 1968-69 academic year, a film series with discussion panels and a children’s screen-printing workshop.

The exhibition opens Friday, Sept. 10, in the Hanson Family Humanities Gallery on the lower level of the Old Capitol Museum and continues through May 22, 2011. Opening day receptions, which are free and open to the public, will be held from 4 to 5 p.m. and 7 to 8 p.m. on the ground floor of Old Capitol Museum. Light refreshments will be served.

The opening of the exhibition also features an edition of WorldCanvass with Joan Kjaer, the monthly television and radio series produced by UI International Programs. The program will be broadcast live from 5 to 7 p.m. in the Old Capitol Museum Senate Chamber. "Documenting Humanity: A Sense of Place," will include a segment featuring author and UI Professor Emeritus Robert Sayre as well as Kathrine Moermond and Shalla Ashworth of the Old Capitol Museum, David McCartney from UI Libraries’ Special Collections, Ryan Watson from the UI film studies department, and other UI students, all of whom will discuss the formation of the exhibit and its educational programs.

"With this exhibit, we hope to provide a forum for UI and community members to think back and remember the times when they sat on the couch with their meatloaf and watched Walter Cronkite narrate the first televised war and man's first steps on the moon. For younger generations, the exhibit will demonstrate the passion, grief and anger that people felt over civil rights, war, politics, science and culture," said Ashworth, director of operations for the UI Pentacrest Museums.

The museum exhibition features a timeline, which runs throughout the gallery and documents important local and national events from the 1960s and 1970s. Other activities and events include the following:

--UI alumna Maggie Yocius will return to the Old Capitol Museum to create a psychedelic mural featuring momentous quotes from local and national figures.

--Old Capitol will recreate a dorm room from the 1968–69 academic year, which will give older patrons the opportunity to recognize familiar objects from their college years while at the same time giving younger people a sense of what college life was like during that time period.

--On Saturday, Oct. 9, from 1:30 to 5 p.m., Kathrine Moermond and Maggie Yocius will conduct a screen-printing workshop for children ages five and up in the Old Capitol Museum Supreme Court Chamber. A representative from the UI Museum of Art will show slides of screen prints from the UIMA collection. The workshop is free and open to the public, but participants must register by calling the museum at 319-335-0548. Paints and paper will be provided, but participants may bring an item of clothing on which they can create a screen print.

--A series of films from and about that era begins on Sunday, Sept. 19, with "Born on the Fourth of July," directed by Oliver Stone and starring Tom Cruise. Ryan Watson, a UI doctoral candidate in film studies who specializes in films from the period, will host the series. All films will be screened in Macbride Hall Auditorium at 1:30 p.m. and contain content that may not be suitable for a younger audience.

The Nov. 14 film, based on Kurt Vonnegut’s novel, "Slaughterhouse Five," will also feature live readings and a panel discussion including Christopher Merrill, director of the UI International Writing Program.

The complete film schedule is as follows:

— Sept. 19, "Born on the Fourth of July."

— Oct. 10, "The American Experience: LBJ," from the PBS television series.

— Oct. 17, "Hearts and Minds."

— Nov. 14, "Slaughterhouse-Five."

— Feb. 20, "A Grin Without a Cat (Part 1) and "The Sixth Side of the Pentagon."

— March 20, "Monterey Pop."

— April 10, "High School."

— May 1, "The Sixties, The Years That Shaped a Generation," by PBS.

For more information visit the Old Capitol Museum website

STORY SOURCE: University of Iowa News Services, 300 Plaza Centre One, Iowa City, Iowa 52242-2500

MEDIA CONTACTS: Kathrine Moermond, Old Capitol Museum,, 319-335-0546; Steve Parrott, University Relations, 319-384-0037,; Writer: Brett Janecek