A mural in a classroom at Woodburn Hall depicting an image of a cross-burning by the Ku Klux Klan has created enough controversy at IU that an educational display is going up. Thomas Hart Benton included the Klan as part of the state’s history and to some, the images were disturbing. The response from university officials has been to educate students on the significance of the Benton murals to the state of Indiana and IU.
A new installation outside the lecture hall will include a panoramic reproduction of the entire Benton Mural series along with information about each panel.
Benton painted the 22 murals for the Indiana Hall of the 1933 Century of Progress Exposition in Chicago. The other panels are located in the IU Auditorium and IU Cinema.