Our media relations team can respond quickly to your requests. Please contact director of marketing and communications, Bert Beiswanger via email at or call 317.275.1317, public relations manager, Bryan Corbin via email at or call 317.275.1315 or communications coordinator, Hyacinth Rucker via email at or call 317.275.1388.

Eiteljorg Museum’s new exhibition focuses on dogs as heroes, workers and companions

by | Dec 06, 2016

Howard Post - Stormy Monday - Eiteljorg Dogs exhibit

INDIANAPOLIS -- A new featured exhibition at the Eiteljorg Museum in Indianapolis in 2017 will explore the fascinating stories of dogs in Native American cultures and the West. Opening March 4, Dogs: Faithful and True is a five-month-long celebration and examination of dogs as workers, companions and heroes.

Historic and contemporary paintings, sculptures, weavings, photographs and artifacts about the bond between dogs and people in the West and Native American cultures will be highlighted during the multifaceted exhibition, along with numerous demonstrations and visitor activities, including some outdoor programs that dogs can attend with their owners.

Among the striking art works in the exhibition are paintings and sculpture by renowned Western artists such as Charlie Russell, Native American artifacts such as colorful and elaborate Cree dog blankets and impressive black-and-white images of working dogs by contemporary photographer Michael Crouser.

Community partners including the Humane Society of Indianapolis, the Purdue University College of Veterinary Medicine, the therapy dog group Paws & Think and others are collaborating with the Eiteljorg on programs throughout the spring and summer. Look for pet adoptions and vaccinations, dog obedience and agility demonstrations, dog-friendly concerts and a special presentation by an Iditarod participant and one of her sled dogs.

“Dogs were among the first animals domesticated by ancient peoples. As protectors, trained helpers and companions, dogs have been essential to the ways of life of Native peoples and also integral to all cultures in the American West. Pet ownership is so important to many families today, and through the Dogs: Faithful and True exhibition, we hope visitors of all ages will develop a deep appreciation of the important ways our canine companions have shaped American history and our society,” said John Vanausdall, President and CEO of the Eiteljorg Museum.

For the past year, the Eiteljorg Museum curatorial staff worked to develop the Dogs: Faithful and True exhibition, drawing upon the museum’s permanent collection of Western art and Native objects as well as securing fascinating objects – both historic and contemporary – that are on loan from other institutions.

Dogs and their interactions with people figure significantly into many art works in the exhibition, such as historic paintings of dramatic Western scenes of dogs protecting humans from grizzlies and other dangers. Native objects include an Inuit dogsled and a model Mandan-Hidatsa travois that reflect dogs’ roles as draft animals, hauling cargo across long distances. Photographs and contemporary art highlight the roles that dogs play today on ranches and reservations in the West.

Running from March 4 to August 6, Dogs: Faithful and True will feature interactive programming, including films, art-making workshops, talks by veterinary experts on dog breeds and dog demonstrations.  On April 7 and 8, Karen Land, writer, storyteller and three-time Iditarod participant, will describe her race experiences in Alaska while accompanied by one of her dogs. Veryl Goodnight, renowned Western artist, will hold a presentation highlighting working dogs and offer an interactive drawing demonstration. All events are included with regular museum admission, and special programming will be held one Saturday per month from March through July 2017.

The Eli Lilly & Company Foundation Inc. is the presenting sponsor of Dogs: Faithful and True. For more information, including a daily calendar of events during the Dogs exhibition, visit  

About the Eiteljorg
The Eiteljorg Museum of American Indians and Western Art seeks to inspire an appreciation and understanding of the art, history and cultures of the American West and the indigenous peoples of North America. The Eiteljorg is located on the downtown canal in White River State Park, at 500 West Washington St., Indianapolis. For general information about the museum and to learn more about exhibits and events, call 317.636.WEST (9378) or visit  

Laura Wilson  - Frank Perry - Eiteljorg Dogs exhibit

NOTE:  Images of two of the many objects in the Dogs: Faithful and True exhibition are attached. Here is caption information:

Howard Post
Stormy Monday, 1991
Acrylic on Canvas

Laura Wilson
Frank Perry, cowboy, Tucumseh Ranch, 1988
silver gelatin print, black and white photographic, fiber-based

Media Contacts:

Bert Beiswanger
Director of Marketing and Communications
Eiteljorg Museum

Bryan Corbin                                        
Public Relations Manager                     
Eiteljorg Museum                                 

Hyacinth Rucker
Communications Coordinator
Eiteljorg Museum

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