Eiteljorg Musuem Blog
  • Inside the Eiteljorg's Arctic Gallery

    by Johanna Blume, Eiteljorg assistant curator of western art | Nov 26, 2014

    artic-dogsledding blog
    Sleds have long been used for transportation of goods and people in the Arctic. Before contact with European and American explorers, Alaska Natives, pulled sleds with small teams of dogs harnessed alongside the sled, or with human labor. After contact, larger teams of dogs were harnessed to the front of the sled. Since many communities in Southwestern Alaska aren’t connected by roads, sleds are still a crucial mode of transportation in the fall and winter. Today many people use snowmobiles to pull their sleds, although dog teams are still a common sight. Dogsleds are also part of recreational life in the Arctic. Since 1973 dogsled teams from around the world have competed in the Iditarod, an annual dogsled race that runs from Willow, Alaska to Nome, Alaska.

    There are many objects in the Eiteljorg’s collection related to dogsleds, some of which are on display. In our Arctic gallery you can see a Yup’ik made dogsled, and an Inupiat carved walrus tusk that depicts a dogsled team and driver as well as a variety of animals the Inupiat traditionally hunt.

    artic - archives univ of alaska
    Bethel, 1939-1959
    Image Courtesy: Averill and June Thayer Photographs; Alaska and Polar Regions Collections, Elmer E. Rasmuson Library, University of Alaska Fairbanks.
    artic - leaving dawson
    Dogsled team preparing to leave Dawson for Nome, Alaska, Feb. 11, 1900
    Image Courtesy: University of Washington Libraries Special Collections, William E. Meed Photograph Collection, PH Coll 246

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  • Five Things You Didn’t Know About Jingle Rails: The Great Western Adventure

    by Tamara Winfrey Harris, Eiteljorg vice president of communications and marketing | Nov 24, 2014
    Jingle Rails: The Great Western Adventure, presented by Indiana Rail Road, has made its return for the holiday season at the Eiteljorg Museum. By now, you’ve probably made this exhibit a winter tradition. You know, even if you’ve visited our locomotive wonderland more than once, there are still plenty of new things to discover in the hand-crafted, intricate layout. Don’t believe us? Here are five things we’ll bet you didn’t know about our popular holiday exhibit.
    jingle rails - eiteljorg small
    1. One of the first replicas guests see upon entering Jingle Rails is the Eiteljorg Museum. The real-life museum exterior consists of nearly 12,000 pieces of hand-sorted Minnesota dolomite, a stone whose color and texture creates the feel of a Southwestern pueblo. The elves behind our holiday exhibit—Paul Busse and his team at Applied Imagination—have re-created the distinctive façade with a less exotic material—cork.

      Jingle rails - installation
    2. Setting up the full exhibit in the Eiteljorg’s Clowes Court takes only three days from the time trucks roll in carrying “pods” that are transformed into our nation’s national parks to when the final layer of “snow” is added.

      Jingle rails - lucas oil smaller
    3. Yes, that is the voice of Bob Lamey you hear booming from Lucas Oil Stadium in Jingle Rails. The original exhibit audio featured the veteran Indianapolis Colts radio announcer calling an iconic Super Bowl play by Peyton Manning. The audio was updated when Manning moved to the Denver Broncos in 2012.
      Jingle rails - glacier park
    4. It’s impossible to completely capture the awe-inspiring natural beauty and unique features of America’s parks. But Applied Imagination works extra hard to “wow” visitors to the parks re-created in Jingle Rails. The tallest point in the actual Glacier National Park is Mt. Cleveland, which stretches nearly 10,500 feet into the sky. The peak of our Glacier National Park is 69-inches—pretty impressive in its own right.
      jingle rails - state fair
    5. How do you replicate a building nearly every Hoosier knows, like the Indiana State Fair’s Normandy Barn? Easy! Well, easy if you’re one of the artists at Applied Imagination, who recognize that eucalyptus leaves make the perfect roof; acorn caps, mahogany pods and cedrella seeds can become weather vanes; coconut hulls look just like cows; sea grape leaves can become doors and contorted witch hazel a downspout.

    Jingle Rails highlights include:

    • Seven ultra-sized G-scale/gauge model trains
    • Nearly 1,200 feet of track
    •  13 overhead walkunder bridges
    • More than 30 features including the Indianapolis, Soldiers and Sailors Monument, One America Tower, Mt. Rushmore, The Grand Canyon, Old Faithful geyser (It actually erupts!) and Golden Gate Bridge

    Jingle Rails
    closes on Monday, January 19.Jingle Rails is sponsored by: Indiana Rail Road, One America and Chase Bank.

    CSP-13-303-10While you're here for the trains, stay for the art! Through Feb. 8, 2015, visitors can experience an exhibition of contemporary prints from emerging and established artists. New Art 2.0, highlights work from more than 50 Native and non-Native American artists.  The exhibit presents approximately 90 limited-edition prints –all archivally framed, offering protection from light exposure. Prices for the work range from $350 to $3,800. (Pictured: Rick Bartow, Bird Hat, monoprint, 30 1/8 x 22 1/2)

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  • Social Media & Development Intern at the Eiteljorg

    by Emily Kryder-Reid | Nov 17, 2014


    This May, I was awarded the privilege of working at the Eiteljorg as an intern for Hyacinth Rucker, New Media and Web Coordinator. While my exposure to social media was, like most 22 year olds, substantial, I didn't have much sense of how I'd be utilizing it for marketing purposes. Within two days, Hyacinth showed me not only the power of the web, but also how important it is for a non-profit to have a strong online presence. Whether covering events, gallery openings, important museum visitors or local festivals, I've learned how to promote an organization using the power of social media, and the diligence necessary to do so successfully. 

    In addition to my enriching time with Hyacinth, I joined Sarah Farthing as a development intern this past October. Although our time working together was brief, she further confirmed my love and true enjoyment of working in development.

    All of this professional development aside, the biggest thing I'm taking away from my time at the Eiteljorg is the connection I've made with the staff here. In just six months, I've met and built relationships with some of the most incredibly talented, driven and passionate people I've ever met. From those in marketing to development to the guides and security at the museum, I've had the pleasure of meeting so many wonderful souls that bring so much to the museum each day.

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  • Olympian Billy Mills To Share His Life Story at the Eiteljorg, 1 p.m., Sat. Nov. 8

    by Martha Hill, PhD | Nov 03, 2014

    Billy Mills’ (Oglala Lakota) life has been on an incredible journey: one that started on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation in South Dakota in 1938. That journey has taken him from the reservation to the medal platform at the 1964 Tokyo Olympics and beyond.

    On Saturday, Nov.  8, 2014, at 1 p.m., the Eiteljorg Museum will proudly present Running Bravely Through Life - a screening of the film, Running Brave and an inspirational session with Billy Mills. The film chronicles Mills’ early life and journey to the Olympic Games. Following the film, Billy and his wife Pat discuss what it takes to discover your passion and fulfill your dreams. Mills will also sign his book, Wokini: A Lakota Journey to Happiness and Self-Understanding, following the program.

    Running Bravely Through Life will afford community members the opportunity to hear from a man who had a dream and a goal and focused his young life toward achieving that goal. At the 1964 Olympics in Tokyo, Mills took gold in the 10,000 meter race. Considered one of the greatest upsets in Olympic history, Mills outran several international track greats to become the first and, to date, only American to win gold in the 10,000 meter event, while also setting an Olympic record.

    Mills’ early journey is the subject of the 1983 film Running Brave. The audience will be introduced to the young man who was orphaned by the time he was 12 and sent off to boarding school. It wasn’t until high school in Lawrence, Kansas that he discovered he had a passion for running. He earned a full athletic scholarship to the University of Kansas. But Mills’ life was difficult. He even considered suicide and related, “he felt broken by the racism around [him and looked] toward Native American virtues and values to overcome that.”
    “Though, his

    Running Brave is the story of a journey to the Olympics. However his journey did not end with winning gold. That was just the first step. Today he works closely with American Indian youth across the country through his foundation, Running Strong for American Indian Youth. He is an inspirational speaker with the message of looking inside yourself, discovering your passion, working hard and achieving success and happiness. This is the message and the challenge that he will give to the community in Running Bravely Through Life.

    Billy Mills with gold medalRunning Bravely Through Life
    Saturday, Nov. 8, 2014
    1 p.m. – 3 p.m.

    *This event is part of the 2014 Spirit & Place Festival, which runs from Nov. 7-16, 2014.

    Thank you to our sponsors: Citizens Energy Group, IUPUI, NCAA and Purdue University


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  • New Art 2.0 | Exhibit and sale opens Saturday, Nov. 1

    by Jennifer Complo McNutt and Ashley Holland | Oct 29, 2014
    Bird Hat 

    Rick Bartow (Wiyot of Northern California), Bird Hat, 2013, monoprint, edition 1/1, 30 1/8 x 22 1/2 in. Print courtesy Crow’s Shadow Institute of the Arts. Photograph by Hadley Fruits.

    Collector. Patron. Donor. These are a few of the words museum insiders like to use. They sound impressive. How can someone become associated with one or all of these words? How do they become more than words that give meaning to people’s lives, both personally and for the public? It is art, but is it good? Who makes those determinations? How? It was these questions and ideas that led to the creation of New Art 2.0.

    Feddersen and Lavadour
    Feddersen (Colville Confederated Tribes) and James Lavadour (Walla Walla), Untitled (Amongst Friends series), 2010, monotype, edition 1/1, 15 x 22 3/8 in. Print courtesy Crow’s Shadow Institute of the Arts. Photograph by Hadley Fruits.

    The New Art of the West series is not a new concept. It is the exhibition that helped to establish the Eiteljorg contemporary collection and in particular planted the seed of interest in Native American contemporary work that has become the hallmark of the contemporary collection. The series promoted cultural variety and diverse traditions as well as time-honored practices in landscape, portraiture, and still life. New Art 2.0 takes its cue from the exhibition that produced nine shows and catalogues and highlighted the best emerging and established contemporary artists working in the West today.

    Eva Lake, Golden
    Eva Lake (American, born 1956), Golden no. 2, 2012, lithograph, edition 14/14, 30 x 30 in. Print courtesy Crow’s Shadow Institute of the Arts. Photograph by Hadley Fruits.
    We are grateful to the patrons and collectors who supported our initial efforts at collecting during the museum’s 25 years. As the museum looks to the next 25, it also ushers in a new generation of patrons and collectors with New Art 2.0. This next exhibition is a fitting complement to the collecting opportunities found in Quest for the West and our annual Indian Market and Festival.

    Working in partnership with Crow’s Shadow Institute of Art , with a little help from Todd Bockley Gallery in Minneapolis, Minnesota, New Art 2.0 includes prints by Native and non-Native contemporary artists and features many artists whose work is already in the Eiteljorg permanent contemporary collection. Native artists Joe Feddersen, Marie Watt, Jim Denomie, Truman Lowe, and Kay WalkingStick, to name a few, are coupled with non-Native artists such as Dale Chihuly and Storm Tharp.

    Damien Gilley, Everything Incorporated
    Damien Gilley, Everything Incorporated, 2014, lithograph, edition 1/12, 22 x 30 in. Print courtesy Crow’s Shadow Institute of the Arts. Photograph by Hadley Fruits.

    So to answer a few questions new patrons and collectors may have, owning artwork creates an affinity and affiliation with artists and organizations, and a curiosity and empathy for broadening world views. Patronage at any level indicates a responsibility and embodies idealism toward humanity and the musing of mere mortals.

    Can one piece of art really incite so much? We have seen it happen again and again. Let it happen to you.

     New Art 2.0 is an exhibition of prints, many created by Eiteljorg Fellows and contemporary Native and Non Native artists. It is a blend of “op art,” landscape, political and environmental statements as well as portraiture. Approximately 90 limited edition prints will be on exhibit and available for sale with prices ranging between about $500 - $4000. 


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