Content | Navigation |

Memorial Union



In 1969, Catherine Cater, Chair of the graduate program in English, acted as an advisor and mentor to the NDSU Student Government in the acquisition of a significant collection of modern art. The student government chose to invest a portion of student activity fees to purchase works that would later comprise seven different collections of artwork representing hundreds of artists, themes and styles. A diverse group of NDSU students, faculty and staff members became the overseers of this selection process. By leveraging an allocated annual budget, these committees found matching funds from the National Endowment for the Arts  (NEA) to expand contemporary art purchases. Each year, a committee, now called the Memorial Union Gallery Advisory Board, reviews artworks from all over the world to purchase for NDSU’s expanding collection of art. 

Today, NDSU’s art collection has grown to several hundred pieces, including work by Andy Warhol, Judy Chicago, Oscar Howe, James Rosenquist, and Jaune Quick-To-See Smith. Areas of focus within the collection include contemporary Native American art, Midwestern regional art, and work by NDSU students and alumni. 

The collection was purchased for students, community members and researchers to provide meaningful encounters with the objects and allow for active interpretation of the works. The Gallery encourages research and interaction with artworks within the collection through active research, written exercises, collaborative projects, curated exhibitions and special programming.

Interested in previewing some work from the Collection: CLICK HERE
Interested in using the Collection for research? Please send an e-mail to with the subject headline: Collections Research

The Memorial Union Gallery Collection includes seven distinct collections: 1. The Student Art Collection includes works purchased through an annual purchase awards and acquisition through dealers/juried exhibitions. 2. The Printmaking Education and Research Studio (PEARS) Collection was developed as a partnership with the Visual Arts Department and PEARS and includes work by established visiting artists as well as current students. 3. The Ralph Engel Memorial Collection was donated to students as part of the Engel estate and includes art collected from local, regional and national artists that once filled the walls of his home. 4. The Lakeside Studio Collection was donated by the Lakeside Studio Gallery in 1977 and includes works by master printmakers 5. The Jim Falck Collection was donated as part of an endowment in 2015 and includes paintings and drawings from the artists. 6. The Memorial Union Collection consists primarily of student work and a sub-section of poster prints. and 7. The NDSU Collection is a smaller collection of works that have been donated to the University over the years.

 Some of the artists in the NDSU Collections are Andy Warhol, Judy Chicago, Oscar Howe, James Rosenquist, Jaune Quick-To-See Smith, Ben Shahn, Gustav Vigiland, Tracy Linder, Walter Piehl, Jr., Harvey Breverman, David Shapiro and Robert Weaver, Pablo Picasso, Utagawa Toyokuni III, Robert Nelson, Jasper Johns, Johnny Friedlander, Ben Shahn, Joan Miro and Frank Stella.

Each year the Memorial Union Gallery Advisory Board researches and selects artwork to be purchased for inclusion in the Collection. If you have work that you are interested in being considered for purchase please submit Five (5) high-resolution images (no more that 1000px on the long side) to under the subject line Collection Acquisition. Please include a current CV and contact information along with your images.



Student Focused. Land Grant. Research University.

Follow NDSU
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • RSS
  • Google Maps

North Dakota State University
Administration Phone: +1 (701) 231-8241
Campus address: Memorial Union
Physical/delivery address: 1401 Administration Ave., Fargo, ND 58102
Mailing address: NDSU Dept. 5340 / PO Box 6050 / Fargo, ND 58108-6050
Page manager: Memorial Union

Last Updated: Thursday, August 11, 2016 12:32:46 PM
Privacy Statement