Eiteljorg Musuem Blog
  • 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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  • Day of the Dead | The Exhibition (Through Nov. 6)

    by Daniel Del Real, Nopal Cultural Center | Oct 23, 2014
    Now through Nov. 6, Eiteljorg visitors will have the opportunity to experience a remarkable Day of the Dead exhibit curated by a small multicultural arts organization called Nopal. Inside of the museum's Lilly Theatre, guests will see several ofrendas (altars honoring the dead) adorned with pictures, paintings and items that belonged to deceased loved ones as well as paintings and photographs for sale by local artists.
    Nopal has also partnered with the museum to host a celebration event for the exhibition to be held from 10 am. - 4 p.m., Saturday, Oct. 25.  It is through partnerships like this that the Eiteljorg expands its reach into the community. The following blog post was written by Nopal Cultural Center's Daniel Del Real.

    ofrenda 3
    In my world, the letter "A" has always stood for Art.
    The letter "B" has stood for Bird.
    The letter "C" has stood for Color.
    Lately, I've had to change my meaning of "C" - from "Color" to "Community."

    On Jan. 16, 2014, Nopal Cultural Center (a multicultural arts organization seeking to enhance Latino-American arts) started planning Day of the Dead: A Contemporary Exhibition and Celebration Honoring the Lives of our Dead, at the Eiteljorg.

    ofrenda 2

    When word got out about having our event at the Eiteljorg, our arts community's ofrenda - Frieda 1excitement was instantly renewed. More and more volunteers and movers and shakers joined our team to cover all the corners that Nopal could not. Some of the outrageous ideas we had, turned out to be not so outrageous. And, every week, new people started to come to our meetings to bring different things to the table like models for our Catrina runway show, musicians, templates for paper banners, paper flowers and elements for our altars.

    It started to become not just about making something happen, but also something to look forward to. And, our many volunteers felt a sense of belonging.

    In fact, Mechelle Henderson, one of our volunteer models, said that she has felt welcomed into our community, even though she is not Latina.

    Valdora White Water and her husband DJ Payne of the Oklevueha Native American Church of Indiana Apache & Cherokee Nations were invited to create an altar in representation of American Indians. Valdora says she has felt welcomed by Nopal where in other avenues she experienced rejection. 
    daniel dod community
    "C" is for community.

    The community we formed has created a beautiful event but has also inspired the individuals within it in different ways. Some have learned new traditions, some have discovered ancient ones. Others have learned new skills and new appreciation for old techniques. One thing is certain, we all have come out of it with a sense of pride to be a part of something bigger and better that each can call theirs.

    This is why C is for Community. 

    Day of the Dead: The Exhibition runs through November 6, 2014. The celebration event is on October 25, 2014 from 10:00 am to 5:00 pm. 

      ofrenda - daniel and friedaDaniel Del Real
    Nopal Cultural Center
    1043 Virginia Ave. Suite 205
    Indianapolis, IN 46203
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  • Exciting New Objects in the Native American Galleries

    by James H. Nottage, Eiteljorg vice president and chief curatorial officer | Oct 03, 2014


    Delicate pendants by Kevin Cranmer in the Northwest Coast section of the Native American galleries. (pictures 1 and 2)
     Change, as the saying goes, is inevitable at the Eiteljorg Museum. If you have not visited the Native American Galleries for a while, there are wonderful new acquisitions that you should see.  Changes themselves come about for two primary reasons. Some objects are taken off of exhibit so that they are not overexposed to damaging light. Some objects are placed on exhibit because they are new acquisitions that allow us to tell stories more effectively. Some changes are subtle while others are more dramatic.

                While it is not obvious, there are new prints and fiber art on exhibit in the gallery that explores the art of Alaskan and Inuit peoples. By contrast, the Northwest Coast section is featuring two splendid carved masks and a panel by  Kwakwaka’wakw artists  Ryan Cranmer and Richard Patterson along with a carved and painted panel by David Boxley, Tsimshian. One new case features seven beautiful carved and painting miniature pendants by Kevin Cranmer. The biggest changes are in the Southwest and California sections.  An open platform featuring California baskets has been replaced with a huge exhibit case with many examples of Apache and California baskets.  These splendid objects are from many different donors, but highlights are from the Mel and Joan Perelman, Helen Cox Kersting, and Brook and Margaret Berger collections. They range from miniatures to examples over three feet high. Finally, the open panel that features Navajo and Apache weavings and garments has been completely re-done to feature important historical and contemporary weavings from the Kersting Collection. A number of these have never been shown before and are now available for your enjoyment for the first time.
    The rug on the left by Rose Benally (Navajo), was commissioned by donor Helen Cox Kersting through the Heard Museum Shop in Phoenix, Arizona. It was presented to the Eiteljorg in 2005 to commemorate Jingle Rails: The Great Western Adventure. If you look very closely, you'll see trains running across tracks.

               These changes are a collaboration between several of our curators and the exhibitions and collections departments.  They give new vitality to the galleries, especially as we move toward a new season of school group visitors.

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