Rob Sunderman

Faculty/Staff Profile: 

Rob Sunderman graduated from the University of Iowa with a BFA, MA, and MFA in Fine Art. He has been the Resident Scenic Designer, Scenic Artist, and Associate Professor of Theatre Design at Iowa State University for the past 18 years. Prior to taking his position at ISU, he was the Scenic Designer, Scenic Artist, Master Carpenter, and Technical Director at Iowa Public Television. He has designed and scenic painted over 275 shows during his theatre/TV career and been in over 200 fine art exhibits. Rob has received Iowa Film awards, National Broadcasting Designers awards, and Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival awards for his Scenic Designs and also many fine art awards. At ISU Rob teaches Introduction to Theatre Production and Design, Design I, Scenic Design, Stagecraft II, Scenic Painting, and various Independent Study classes. He also is teaching Fine Art classes at the Des Moines Art Center. He is dedicated to bringing out and nurturing the creative soul within all his students and colleagues. Rob continues to pursue his scholarly work for regional/national theatre, opera, TV, industrial events, and various fine art venues. Recently he has been designing sets and scenic painting for Cedar Rapids Opera/Theatre and Bow and Arrow Productions on a regular basis. This past year he designed and painted the sets for Cedar Rapids Opera Theatre’s productions of Cavalleria Rusticana, Pagliacci, and Turadot and Cedar Rapids Revival Theatre’s production of Grey Gardens. This year he designed and painted the sets for Iowa State University Theatre’s productions of Out of the Fire, A Christmas Carol, and Oklahoma. He will be attending the United State Institute of Theatre Technology in March where he will be exhibiting his design work for the Cover the Walls Exhibition. Rob has exhibited and sold his fine artwork in numerous galleries regionally and nationally. He recently has been working on a number of fine art series of work dealing with renewal, fleeting moments, human intervention of natural cycles in a variety of mediums. One of his favorite quotes is from Leonardo Da Vince “Art is never finished it is only abandoned”. Rob’s work can be found at

Production Member Credits: 

Creative Team