Penn State's library will be home to an art-education collection donated by noted feminist artist, author and educator Judy Chicago.
The university on Tuesday called the donation one of the most important private collections in feminist art education.
Penn State archivist Jackie Esposito said it will include instructions and pieces to create Chicago's best known work, "The Dinner Party," along with examples of past Dinner Party exhibits. The piece has 39 place settings around a triangular table, with each setting representing a woman of historical note, from ancient goddesses to artist Georgia O'Keeffe.
Chicago rose to fame in the 1970s. She housed the collection at her home in New Mexico, and an art education graduate student will travel there this summer to inventory and package the collection.
Chicago is also the founding director of the nonprofit feminist art organization Through the Flower. In conjunction with the gift, Through the Flower has given The Dinner Party Curriculum Online Project to Penn State's College of Arts and Architecture for that school's art education program.
The combination of the collection and online project would give students and visiting scholars interested in art education "an unprecedented opportunity to work with original source materials of a key founder of the Feminist Art Movement," said art education and women's studies professor Karen Keifer-Boyd.
An exhibit of collections materials will open this fall. Esposito said Penn State plans to set up its own "Dinner Party" piece in 2014 to celebrate Chicago's 75th birthday.