Three student sculptures on the campus of Southern Illinois University Edwardsville were vandalized over the weekend, and the cost to the students and university is not yet known.
SIUE’s “Sculpture on Campus” program allows 12 students per year to design and install an outdoor sculpture throughout the campus, which remains on view for a full year. The students receive a $500 stipend, and a sculpture walk is held once a semester.
Three of the pieces were vandalized this weekend, according to a statement sent out to the university community by Chancellor Randall Pembrook. The nature of the vandalism and which three sculptures were damaged was not immediately released.
“Criminal vandalism is illegal, disrespectful and completely contrary to our values and culture, and will not be tolerated at SIUE,” Pembrook wrote. “SIUE’s rich liberal arts tradition is exhibited through the beautiful sculptures throughout our campus. These displays are a wonderful opportunity for our campus community and visitors to experience students’ creativity and to see the university for the breadth of our programming and thoughtful stewardship of resources.”
Pembrook said the university will work with the student artists to restore their pieces, but it will entail additional costs and effort. “Criminal behavior has no place at SIUE and I ask for your help in restoring and maintaining the trust and beauty that exemplifies our campus,” Pembrook wrote.
A reward is being offered for anyone who has information leading to an arrest. Anyone with information is asked to call SIUE Police at 618-650-3324.