Eiteljorg’s new exhibit features man’s best friend

By Zoie Richey

INDIANAPOLIS — Eiteljorg Museum’s new exhibit has something to offer for dog lovers and people of all ages.

“Dogs: Faithful and True” features different paintings, photographs, and other various artworks and artifacts that explore the role of dogs and their connection with humans.

The exhibit opened March 4, and is already being enjoyed by museum visitors from around the state. Beth Bowers and her daughter, Mia, traveled from Columbus, Indiana to see the exhibit. They enjoyed making connections between the exhibit and the things they’ve learned in their own lives.

This interactive part of the exhibit allows museum visitors to “pack” an a dog for an Iditarod. It teaches visitors what items are necessary for an Iditarod race. Photo by Zoie Richey, TheStatehouseFile.com

“My students in middle school had just finished reading a story about the Iditarod, so I’m enjoying seeing the section on the Iditarod and learning a little bit more about those dogs,” Beth Bower said.

The exhibit features an interactive activity that teaches visitors how to pack a dog for an Iditarod race, which covers a rugged 1,000-mile course from Anchorage to Nome in Alaska. The dogs, Alaskan malamute and the Siberian husky, pull a musher and a fully-packed sled for the journey on snow-covered trails.

Jennifer Complo McNutt, the museum’s curator of contemporary art, was inspired to create this exhibit by her love of dogs and art. Complo McNutt is also a dog trainer.

“Pets mean a lot to me. For one thing, they are my hobby, so I spend a lot of time with them,” Complo McNutt said. “They also are a kind of break from the everyday world, especially if I am teaching somebody how to handle their dog.”

Beth Bowers and her daughter Mia participate in the drawing station within the exhibit. The station allows visitors to express their creativity. Photo by Zoie Richey, TheStatehouseFile.com

Complo McNutt said the exhibit uses a topic that everyone knows about to introduce them to other parts of the museum that explore western, Native American and contemporary art.

The exhibit also features other interactive displays and special programming that allow museum visitors to get hands on knowledge and experience. Visitors can use their artistic abilities to create their own dog based art with a drawing station within the exhibit.

Special programming will be held on certain days of each month that corresponds with the exhibit. Some of the programs include a pet photography workshop and a presentation by Iditarod musher Karen Land.

The exhibit will run through Aug. 6. A full list of special programs and ticket prices can be viewed on the museum’s website.


Zoie Richey is a reporter for TheStatehouseFile.com, a news website powered by Franklin College journalism students.

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