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Eskenazi Museum of Art, Bloomington

4.4
#6 of 21 in Things to do in Bloomington
Art Museum Specialty Museum
The Eskenazi Museum of Art at Indiana University opened in 1941 under the direction of Henry Radford Hope. The museum was intended to be the center of a “cultural crossroads,” an idea brought forth by then-Indiana University President Herman B Wells. The present museum building was designed by I.M. Pei and Partners and dedicated in 1982. The museum’s collection comprises approximately 45,000 objects, with about 1,400 on display. The collection is substantiated by a wide range of works, including a large collection of ancient jewelry and paintings by Pablo Picasso and Jackson Pollock. In May 2016, after the announcement of the largest cash gift in the museum's history, the museum was renamed the Sidney and Lois Eskenazi Museum of Art in honor of Indianapolis-based philanthropists Sidney and Lois EskenaziThe museum is free and open to the public Tuesdays through Saturdays 10:00 a.m.—5pm, and Sundays noon–5:00pm, and is located on the Indiana University Bloomington campus at 1133 E. Seventh Street.HistoryThe Eskenazi Museum of Art opened in 1941 in a gallery space in Mitchell Hall under the newly appointed head of the Department of Fine Arts, Henry Radford Hope. The first exhibition, Sixteen Brown County Painters, opened on November 21, 1941. The catalog for the event contained a statement describing the goals of the gallery at the time: “The purpose of the Art Center Gallery… is to bring temporary loan exhibitions to the campus so that students may have an opportunity to study and see original works of art. Examples of diverse character will be brought to this gallery in order to show the multiple aspects of art both past and present.”
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96 reviews
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4.8
  • This is an amazing museum; the architechture is absolutely spectacular. The visiting exhibit, "A Step in Time Across the Line: Recent Work by Chee Wang Ng" was utterly fascinating. There was a musical...  more »
  • Beautiful architecture (I.M.Pei), nice cafe/ gift shop, but it's the collections that really shine. Excellent selection of modern art on first floor... great teaching/learning resource. Greek, roman, ...  more »
  • Had some time to spare while on the IU campus yesterday and decided to visit. The museum is a short walk up the hill from the parking lot of the Union (look for the red ring modern sculpture out front...  more »
Google
  • For a rather small city such as Bloomington, this museum is excellent. The art inside is as impressive as the I.M. Pei designed architecture of the building. I've been a handful of times and every time I return there's always something new and fascinating I didn't see the previous time, the last time being Vik Muniz's exhibit. They know how to bring the right artists through there.
  • A great collection of art in an amazing facility. I really enjoyed the recent Vik Muniz exhibition here.
  • One of the top college museums in the country. Will be closing spring of 2017 for a three year renovation
  • Truly a fantastic display of various cultures right here in Bloomington. Take the time to come in and see how privileged we are to have such a collection that would be the envy of any major metropolitan area, let alone college campus. This is a wonderful place to just come, unwind, and relax while looking at some breathtaking exhibits.
  • This is one of the most impressive places to visit at IU. They house a variety of pieces by very famous painters and artists, such as Vik Muniz, Picasso and Monet. On top of that there is no entrance fee and the gift shop is really neat.