One of the Midwest’s most iconic cultural weekends takes place June 24-25 in Indianapolis when the Eiteljorg Indian Market and Festival returns for its 31st year. Approximately 120 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. Visitors can enjoy onstage cultural performances such as music, storytelling and dance.
At Eiteljorg 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,” Alisa Nordholt-Dean, vice president for public programs and Beeler family director of education at the Eiteljorg, said. “Artists, performers and thousands of market-goers and art buyers have come together at the Eiteljorg to celebrate Native arts and cultures.”
To show and sell art at Eiteljorg Indian Market and Festival, artists must be enrolled members of a federally or state-recognized tribe. Many of the participating 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.
Market-goers also can experience the completely reimagined Native American Galleries featuring the exhibition Expressions of Life: Native Art in North America, which opened in June 2022. The new galleries 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.
Visiting the Market
Eiteljorg Indian Market and Festival admission is free for Eiteljorg members, with a reduced admission price for two adult guests of a member for $20 each. Non-member adult tickets to Indian Market and Festival can be purchased for $25 at the gate either day.
Advance discount tickets also will be available beginning May 1 for $20 online at Eiteljorg.org/IndianMarketandFestival or by calling 317.636.9378.
Youth and children ages 17 and under will have free admission on market weekend. Tickets to Indian Market and Festival also include admission to the entire museum and the new Native American Galleries, as well as the Eiteljorg’s other ongoing exhibitions.
Eager art-buyers who want to get an early start on shopping can register for the Market Morning Breakfast taking place at 8 a.m. Saturday, June 24, at the museum; it includes early access to the artists’ booths, and a breakfast catered by Kahn’s Catering.
For reservations ($50 for members, $60 for non-members), contact Jennifer Hiatt at firstname.lastname@example.org or 317.275.1360.
There will be a variety of delicious food truck options at Indian Market and Festival, including fry bread.
Visitors of all ages will enjoy a wide range of cultural performances, including music, dance and storytelling, as well as family art-making activities. Performers are scheduled on the Indian Market outdoor stage under The Sails both days, June 24-25, and are included with admission.
Performance groups are:
- Yellow Bird Dancers of Phoenix, Arizona, a professional family dance company performing songs, dances and stories, and led by Ken Duncan (San Carlos Apache Tribe)
- Firefly the Hybrid of the Penobscot Nation, a multimedia artist from Maine who performs traditional and contemporary music
- Randy, Rykelle and Raven Kemp, a family of storytellers, artists and musicians from the Choctaw, Euchee and Muscogee Creek peoples of Oklahoma
- The Levi Platero Band (Navajo Nation), an award-winning act that performs guitar blues and rock.
Visit Eiteljorg.org/IndianMarketandFestival for a schedule of performance times.
The signature image for the 31st annual Indian Market and Festival depicts a quillwork and beadwork bag, created by artist Monica Jo Raphael (Anishinaabe / Sičáŋğu Lakota), titled Nuh-Mah-Nuh Daawina Akiin (Homelands of the Comanche People). The image will appear on commemorative Eiteljorg Indian Market and Festival T-shirts that will be available through the Eiteljorg Museum Store.
This year also will be the final Indian Market and Festival in which Eiteljorg President and CEO John Vanausdall will preside at the market’s arts awards presentation. Vanausdall is retiring June 30 after nearly 27 years leading the museum.
“I have enjoyed greatly the friendships with artists, collectors and market-goers at Indian Market and Festival over the years,” Vanausdall said. “The Indianapolis community has embraced the event. It is rewarding to see many artists return to participate in the market each year and bring their families – and to see the children of some of those longtime market artists become artists themselves.”
About the Eiteljorg
A cultural pillar for nearly 34 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.