My daughter asked if we could take a trip to Indianapolis to check out the art museum as she’s a digital media major in college and this is her passion. The thought of spending the weekend in Indianapolis with her was enticing, but an art museum – there was so much more to see in Indianapolis. She was persistent, and we ventured over to Newfields Art Museum for the weekend.
I was amazed by this museum – which is so not a boring art museum. The museum contains 54000 works of art and is located in one of the largest museum art parks in the country with 152 acres. To understand how this beautiful museum and art park came into being, lets explore a few historical highlights surrounding it’s making.
1883 – May Wright Sewall, principal of the Girls’ Classical School of Indianapolis, and 17 other residents of the city signed articles of incorporation to found the Art Association of Indianapolis. As the Art Association’s membership increased over several decades, so did its diverse collection.
1906 – The John Herron Art Institute formally opened in its permanent home, a building designed by Arthur Bohn of the Indianapolis firm Vonnegut & Bohn, on November 20.
1970 – Krannert Pavilion, the first in a series of pavilions planned for the new Indianapolis Museum of Art, opened October 25 on the new Michigan Road campus. Krannert Pavilion, and later the Clowes and Showalter Pavilions, were designed by Ambrose Richardson, with landscape design by Sasaki, Dawson, DeMay & Associates.
1987-1989 the first full-master plan was created for The Garden.
2002 – The IMA unveiled the newly restored mansion. A National Historic Landmark, Oldfields-Lilly House & Gardens is notable as one of the Midwest’s outstanding examples of an intact American country place estate. Ground was also broken for a $74 million Museum expansion project designed to improve guest services and increase access to the collections. Architect for the project was Jonathan Hess of Browning Day Mullins Dierdorf.
2017 – The IMA announces it will unify the entire campus under one name—Newfields, A Place for Nature and the Arts. Newfields becomes the home for the Indianapolis Museum of Art, Fairbanks Park, The Garden, Lilly House, and the Elder Greenhouse. Newfields’ Miller House and Garden extends the Newfields brand into southern Indiana.
This stunning campus is open 7 days a week, year round. To verify the times they will be open during your visit, we strongly recommend checking out their website. Museum is closed on certain holidays and can have shortened hours when a special event is taking place.
While I was not overly joyed to head to Indianapolis for the sole purpose of vising this museum, my thoughts took a turn once we entered the museum. The different works were displayed well and appealed to children and adults alike. Newfields even offers family activities for younger visitors to do.
After you are done inside the museum, make sure you head over to the Lilly House followed up by a stroll through the expansive gardens. Take your time as there is so much to explore here. Do yourself a favor and get a yearly membership and spend as much time enjoying the artwork, ambiance, and scenery as possible. One day is simply not enough to explore and see all that Newfields has to offer.
Newfields does host special traveling exhibits and these can be extremely popular, so I would recommend purchasing tickets online in advance.
4000 Michigan Rd
Indianapolis, IN 46208
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