As part of our celebrations of the 75th anniversary of the Kinsey Institute as part of the Indiana University community, we have commissioned a series of artworks on Indiana University buses that circulate on the Bloomington campus. We hope they catch your attention and spark some conversations about sexuality, relationships, and identity, and how these are shaped by their historical context.
75th Anniversary Full Bus Wrap
Our first bus hit the streets in early January, sporting a full bus wrap celebrating the Kinsey Institute’s new 75th anniversary logo and our mission to explore sexuality, relationships, and wellbeing. The purple base and graduated color play on the transition from pink to blue, speaking to the variety of human sexual experience and identity, and a slight nod to the historical Kinsey Scale of sexual orientation which replaced the heterosexual/homosexual binary with a continuum of sexual behavior. As with all our decorated buses, it includes our social media handle @kinseyinstitute. Be sure to tag us with your selfies!
The King and Queen panels appear on one side of the bus. These smaller graphic installations can be found on additional campus buses, and will celebrate different aspects of the Kinsey Institute’s rich research and preservation heritage and our ongoing exploration of human sexuality and intimate relationships.
The curb-side Queen panel focuses on the Kinsey Institute’s embrace of diversity in gender, sexual orientation, and relationship dynamics. IU Studios designer Abigail Godwin explains her nuanced use of color and shape and her choice of floral decoration: “[I] use the man/woman shape fills to show the complexity and diversity of gender and sexuality. The male couple on the far left use LGBTQ+ floriography (the green carnation popularized by gay icon Oscar Wilde) and a gradient inspired by the genderfluid flag. The trio in the middle have a gradient inspired by the transgender flag, violets (for bisexual women), and a gradient inspired by the pansexual flag. The couple to the right symbolizes a bisexual woman in a relationship with a straight man. In the spirit of inclusive PRIDE, I was attempting to demonstrate that even though the shapes read as man or woman at first glance, there is a multitude of diversity within.”
Our street-side King panels will highlight two pieces from the Kinsey Institute Library & Special Collections. Using historical images and artwork in the panels, we are able to engage with issues that continue to be important in human sexuality and identity.
The first King panel, launching in Winter 2022, features an image from an unknown photographer called “Woman looking over top of fan” (gelatin silver print, 1920). This work from the Kinsey Institute Special Collections was exhibited in 1997 as part of the exhibition The Art of Desire: Erotic Treasures from the Kinsey Institute, and was the cover illustration of the exhibition catalog. Gazing at us from over 100 years in the past, she reminds us that as much as we know about human sexuality today, there is still so much more to discover. Sexual attraction and desire remain personal and mysterious – and entice us to continue our explorations.
Our second King panel will launch in the second half of 2022 and features the drawing by illustrator Boris Artzybasheff of Dr. Alfred C. Kinsey in his iconic bowtie, and framed by birds and bees. This drawing was later reproduced on the 1953 TIME magazine cover devoted to coverage of the brand-new publication Sexual Behavior in the Human Female, the second of the famous bestseller books known as the “Kinsey Reports.”
We hope you enjoy these mobile artworks, and are able to catch a sight of them if you are travelling in Bloomington. Be sure to grab a selfie and tag us on social media @kinseyinstitute!