Released May 8, 2019

New experience featuring artist Felrath Hines to open at Indiana State Museum

INDIANAPOLIS (May 8, 2019) – On June 22, a new experience exploring the life and work of artist Felrath Hines will open at the Indiana State Museum.

It’s About Time: The Artwork of Felrath Hines” will highlight Hines’ work as an artist and art conservator. More than 20 original paintings will be on display – including “It’s About Time,” “Open End” and “Midnight Garden” – as well as personal items from Hines’ life.

Hines’ interest in art first began during his youth in segregated Indianapolis, where he attended art classes on Saturdays at the John Herron School of Art. He later graduated from Crispus Attucks High School in 1931 before continuing his formal art education in Chicago and pursuing art in New York City and Washington, D.C.

Hines served as a professional art conservator for noted artist Georgia O’Keeffe and became the first African American chief conservator for the Smithsonian Institution’s National Portrait Gallery.

“While Hines was well-known and highly respected in the field of art conservation, many are just now discovering his talents as a gifted artist,” said Mark Ruschman, senior curator of art and culture at the Indiana State Museum and Historic Sites. “Historically, African American artists were often overlooked, and Hines’ opportunities were also hindered by his choice to paint in an abstract style. Undeterred, Hines remained true to his creative process and produced an exemplary body of work, which we share in this experience.”

Upon entering the experience, visitors will have an opportunity view one of Hines’ paintings and learn about different ways to enjoy abstract art, even for those new to art appreciation – while also understanding there is no “right way” to interpret the artwork.

Visitors will step into Hines’ creative mindset by listening to a soundtrack of jazz music. Jazz often served as inspiration for his work, which features bold colors, geometric shapes and clean lines. Then, visitors can change the colors in one of Hines’ pieces to see how his choice of color and shape communicated different ideas.

“We want to provide our visitors with a place to explore their own creativity through one-of-a-kind experiences,” said Cathy Ferree, president and CEO of the Indiana State Museum and Historic Sites. “By engaging with Hines’ story and artistic process, our visitors can do just that.”

“It’s About Time: The Artwork of Felrath Hines” will be open June 22 through Sept. 29. The experience is included with purchase of general museum admission.

FOR MEDIA: Media can tour the gallery as early as June 19. To schedule a media tour, contact Renee Bruck at [email protected] or 317.260.3506. Photos of Hines’ work can be found here:

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The Indiana State Museum and Historic Sites is located in White River State Park in the heart of downtown Indianapolis. It is Indiana’s museum for science, art and culture, offering a place where you can celebrate, investigate, remember, learn and take pride in Indiana’s story in the context of the broader world. Even the building is a showcase of the best Indiana has to offer in architecture, materials and sculpture. Easy and convenient parking is available in the attached underground garage.