I’m taking a field trip to Indianapolis this week. (It’s about 100 miles up the road from my home near Cincinnati.) As a Cincinnati Bengals season-ticket holder, I had fantasized about being in Indianapolis next Sunday to watch the Bengals play in the Super Bowl. No such luck.
But I do expect to see something to cheer about at the TURF Art Pavilion hosted by the Indianapolis Downtown Artists and Dealers Association (IDADA). The IDADA is a non-profit organization of studio artists, art galleries, and arts-related businesses within 20 blocks of the city’s center.
The goal of the TURF project is to promote the work of Indiana artists on their home turf as tens of thousands of sports fans, celebrities, corporate marketing executives, broadcasters, and journalists converge in Indianapolis for Super Bowl XLVI.
The TURF IDADA Art Pavilion is located in a historic building just 1700 yards from the site of this year’s Super Bowl—Lucas Oil Stadium. The pavilion is an experiential art and design gallery, with exhibits that appeal to the senses of sight, sound, and touch. It opened January 14 and will remain open through Sunday, February 5.
From 10 am to 7 pm on Tuesdays through Sunday, the IDADA Art Pavilion is free and open to the public. In the evenings, the pavilion will be used to private gatherings and parties.
TURF events will culminate Friday evening, February 3, with a gallery tour that will enable Super Bowl tourists to view the work of artists other than the 20 artists whose works are featured in the TURF Art Pavilion.
To create the venue, IDADA worked in cooperation with the Super Bowl Host Committee, the Arts Council of Indianapolis, and the Indianapolis Mayor’s Office.
“Indianapolis has a wide variety of high-caliber artists and galleries, and this is our chance to let the world know it,” says gallery owner Mark Ruschman. “To the best of my knowledge, this has never been attempted by a Super Bowl host city before.”
So, if the Bengals won’t be playing in the big game next week, I’m happy to root for the art team! Let’s hope the IDADA can break through some of the Super Bowl’s traditional brand-marketing-palooza and score some exposure for Midwestern artists and their ideas.