Pioneers and Innovators
When: 1810 to 1892
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Why: Cox was known as Indiana’s most noted pioneer painter, capturing the rural landscapes in and around Indianapolis. He also specialized in portraits and allegorical “fancy paintings.”
Where: New Castle
When: 1928 to present
Why: Born Robert Clark, he changed his last name in honor of his home state. His signature style was hard-edged paintings and sculptures, often with short three- or four-letter words incorporated into them. The standard-bearer is his LOVE painting and sculpture.
When: 1913 to 1993
Why: Hines was one of the pioneering African-American artists who embraced abstract art. His paintings implemented color and the interaction between different hues, letting the images created speak directly to the viewer.
When: 1932 to 1990
Why: As a teenager growing up in Evansville, Halston would make experimental hats for his mother and sister. That creativity blossomed in the 1970s, when he became America’s first superstar fashion designer.
Janet Payne Bowles
Why: A metal-smithing teacher in Indianapolis, Bowles also created jewelry, table settings and other metal pieces to make extra money. Her work was prized for its intricacy and quality, earning commissions from a number of Italian churches.
Elizabeth and Mary Overbeck
Where: Cambridge City
When: Elizabeth 1875 to 1936; Mary 1878 to 1956
Why: The Overbeck Sisters worked together to sell pottery out of their family home for more than 40 years. They never were married, and instead dedicated their lives to designing their ceramics.
Where: Fort Wayne
When: 1922 to 2002
Why: Blass was an influential fashion designer in the 1950s and 1960s, challenging the idea that Paris was the center of the fashion world. His elegant yet comfortable designs for women made him popular.
When: 1934 to 2015
Why: An architect by trade, Graves added a product design division to his firm in the 1980s. His belief was that items for the home should be both functional and well-designed.
When: 1809 to 1879
Why: Winter moved to Logansport in 1837, and his sketches, paintings and writings from the time serve as a rare document of Native American people at the time.
Where: Owen County, Brown County, Indianapolis and other locales
When: 1847 to 1926
Why: Indiana’s most famous landscape painter captured hundreds of scenes of the states wilderness. He was the most famous of the Hoosier School of American Impressionist painters.
Where: Indianapolis, Nashville
When: 1876 to 1963
Why: When he moved to Nashville in 1917, Hohenberger’s original plan was to photograph the famous landscape. But some of his most famous works are the images of the people living in Nashville at the time.
When: 1906 to 1965
Why: Smith’s sculpture tended to be large abstract geometric shapes made of steel, but at the same time the work had a deep engagement with nature. Smith is regarded as one of the giants of 20th century U.S. sculpture.
Teachers and Trainers
William Merritt Chase
When: 1849 to 1916
Why: After leaving Nineveh and then Indianapolis, Chase trained in Europe before settling in New York City. He helped train the next generation of master painters, including Marsden Hartley and Charles Demuth.
When: 1866 to 1913
Why: Seegmiller believed that fine art should be accessible to everyone, and worked locally and throughout the world to make that belief a reality. She also built a strong relationship with the John Herron Art School to provide a greater interest in art.
When: 1854 to 1935
Why: A contemporary to T.C. Steele, Forsyth established himself as a talented artist with his sketches, landscapes and still-lifes. Once his own career was established, he went to work teaching painting and drawing over a 40-year span.
When: 1922 to present
Why: Antreasian helped revive the printmaking technique of lithography, using oil-based ink and water to create images. His own art often involved experimentation with new material and technique.
Visionaries and Dreamers
When: 1930 to 1982
Why: Majors studied in Indiana before moving to New York City, where he became known for his paintings inspired by the religious art that he encountered in Italy. He also mixed calligraphy and biology into his compositions, using a language of shapes to express ideas about life on earth.
When: 1938 to present
Why: Celmins, a Latvian immigrant, studied lithography under Garo Antreasian and went on to become a worldwide sensation, with major exhibitions shown in art hot-spots such as New York, Paris and London.
Where: South Bend
When: 1907 to 2002
Why: Rickey’s kinetic three-dimensional works blend time and movement into what had previously been a static sculptural form. He liked to say that his tools included the laws governing movement, acceleration, gravity and momentum.
— Information from the Indianapolis Museum of Art