New Art Installation Connects Land and Biochemistry Students Across Generations

In the meeting room off of the atrium in the Hector F. DeLuca Biochemical Sciences Building (440 Henry Mall) hangs a new art installation. The piece, by local artist Chloris Lowe, was installed on October 20, 2023 and celebrates the past, present, and future of the courtyard among the biochemical sciences buildings.  

The installation, named “Connecting Paths” in English and “Hogiwe Hirokirere Hii” in Ho-Chunk, recognizes the Ho-Chunk history of this land and Lowe’s heritage as well as the more recent history of the courtyard, which has served as a place of meeting for generations of students, educators, researchers, and visitors.  

Connecting Paths was created using wood from a stately elm tree that graced the courtyard for more than 100 years. The tree, fondly known on campus as Elmer, stood at the center of the research complex, not only as a meeting place and landmark but as a constant, connecting generations of students and researchers with Elmer at the center of a shared, place-based experience. Sadly, Elmer fell ill with Dutch elm disease and, after several attempts to save him, Elmer was harvested in 2018.

You can learn more about Connecting Paths and the history of Elmer in the video below.