One of the Midwest’s most iconic cultural weekends takes place June 25-26 in Indianapolis when the Eiteljorg Indian Market and Festival returns as an in-person event for the first time since 2019. More than 140 Native artists from across the United States and Canada will be at the Eiteljorg Museum to show and sell their jewelry, pottery, paintings, beadwork, weavings, carvings and more.
This year’s market weekend will be an especially meaningful celebration of Native arts: It is the 30th annual Eiteljorg Indian Market and Festival and coincides with the grand reopening of the museum’s newly redesigned Native American Galleries, a defining capstone project in the museum’s history.
At Indian Market and Festival, seasoned collectors and general market-goers alike appreciate the personal interactions with artists and learning about their artwork, process and cultures. The event forges relationships between artists and their collectors, builds support for and interest in Native art generally, and is a family-friendly cultural experience for those eager to learn more about Native peoples.
Since its inception in 1993, the annual Eiteljorg Museum Indian Market and Festival has grown in stature to become one of the top Native American art markets in the country, as well as a must-do event on the downtown Indianapolis summer calendar. For three decades, artists, performers and thousands of market-goers and art buyers have come together at the Eiteljorg to celebrate Native arts and cultures.
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic and state and local health precautions in effect at the time, the Eiteljorg could not hold an in-person market and festival in 2020 and 2021. Instead, in 2021 the Eiteljorg was able to support the artists and performers by hosting a successful all-virtual Indian Market that brought together artists and buyers online. The museum is pleased to be able to welcome back artists, collectors, performers and market-goers in person in 2022.
Artists partake in a juried selection and must be members of a federally or state-recognized tribe. Many of the artists also enter their artwork for judging as part of the weekend’s juried art competition, which includes awards and cash prizes across various categories. Artists’ booths will be inside the museum and outdoors on the Eiteljorg grounds.
All new Native American galleries
Market-goers this year will also get to experience the completely reconstructed and re-envisioned Native American Galleries featuring Expressions of Life: Native Art in North America, opening Saturday, June 25. The new galleries are designed to showcase Native art in a multi-sensory space creating a contextual experience — organized around the themes of relation, continuation and innovation — that demonstrates a continuum of Native art told through the voices of Native peoples.
For Eiteljorg members, free admission to Indian Market and Festival is available for the individual named on the museum membership card with a reduced admission price of $15 for two adult guests. Non-member adult tickets to Indian Market and Festival are $20 at the gate either day.
Advance discount tickets of $15 can be purchased online at Eiteljorg.org/IndianMarketandFestival or by calling 317.636.9378.
Youth and children ages 17 and under are free.
Tickets to Indian Market and Festival also include admission to the entire museum and the new Native American Galleries.
Eager art-buyers who want to get an early start on shopping can register for the Market Morning Breakfast at 8 a.m. Saturday June 25, which includes early access to the artists’ booths, and a breakfast catered by Kahn’s Catering. To register, contact Jennifer Hiatt at email@example.com or 317.275.1360.
There will be a variety of delicious food options at Indian Market and Festival, including delectable fry bread.
Visitors of all ages will enjoy a wide range of entertaining cultural performances, including music, dance and storytelling, as well as family art-making activities. Performers are scheduled on the Indian Market outdoor stage both days, June 25-26. They include:
Woodland Sky Native American Dance Company: Composed of Ojibwe, Lakota, Potawatomi, Menominee and Apache dancers, the group represents men’s and women’s Native American dance styles
Ed Kabotie and Tha ’Yoties: a reggae/rock band from Flagstaff, Arizona, notable for their lively performances
Randy, Rykelle and Raven Kemp: a family of storytellers, artists and musicians
Innastate: a reggae/rock band from Santa Fe, N.M., that honors their Indigenous heritage
Wade Fernandez: a multi-award-winning musical artist and educator.
Visit Eiteljorg.org/IndianMarketandFestival for a schedule of performances events.
The design for this year’s commemorative Indian Market and Festival T-shirt is the image of a beautiful turquoise necklace titled Kewa Birds, created by artist Mary Louise Tafoya (Kewa Pueblo). Shirts, tote bags and notecards will be available at the Eiteljorg Museum Store.
Celebrating 30 years
During market weekend, a new special exhibition that runs April 30 to Aug. 14 will be open inside the Eiteljorg Museum: Celebrating 30 Years of Indian Market and Festival, featuring award-winning Native works from past markets that are now in the museum’s collections. Visitors to the Eiteljorg during market weekend also can experience two other exhibits.
A traveling exhibition featuring Andy Warhol’s screenprint portraits of iconic Western figures, Warhol’s West continues through Aug. 7. Contemporary Native Art 101 looks at contemporary works by Native artists across several decades, and continues through July 2023.
All are included with Indian Market and Festival admission June 25-26, and with regular museum admission at other times.
About the Eiteljorg
A cultural pillar for nearly 33 years in downtown Indianapolis’ scenic White River State Park, the Eiteljorg Museum seeks to inspire an appreciation and understanding of the arts, histories and cultures of the Native peoples of North America and of the American West by telling amazing stories.
Located on the Central Canal at 500 West Washington St., the Eiteljorg is a 501c3 nonprofit organization. It was named one of the USA Today Readers’ Choice 10 Best Indiana Attractions.Indigenous art