The Midwest Museum of American Art has for 35 years acquired unique paintings, sculptures, drawings, photographs, and graphic works by American artists of the 19th, 20th, and now 21st Century. Throughout the years the MMAA Staff and Trustees have provided guidance of a growing permanent collection that now numbers nearly 6,300 pieces along with an American currency collection of 4,000 coins. Beginning in 1979, the museum provided a permanent display of works that afforded the opportunity to create educational programs for the public and guided tours led by volunteer Docents.

More than 400 temporary exhibits have traveled to Michiana during three and a half decades as well. Many of these shows would not have visited our area were it not for the professional management and stature of the Midwest Museum of American Art. Other highlights include the annual observance of Youth Art and an exhibit of selected works from the Elkhart and now Elkhart County school systems which plants the seeds to grow student interest in the visual arts. Another important benchmark has been the annual Elkhart Juried Regional art competition that has placed over $500,000 dollars in artists’ hands through awards. Today, the Midwest Museum of American Art is an active member of the Arts & Entertainment District and the renaissance of downtown Elkhart known as SOMA (an acronym for Saving Our Main Assets). Museum Director Jane Burns points out that SOMA really is a result of “sharing our main assets” over these many years. As Indiana’s Premier Museum of American Art by name and mission, the Midwest Museum of American Art celebrates its founding with the public during May as it prepares for the next three-decades-plus of similar accomplishments.

Special Lecture by Carol Line, Executive Director of Fernwood Carol Line, Executive Director of Fernwood Botanical Garden (since 2007), will present a Special Lecture about the brief history of American gardens, on Sunday, May 4, at 2:00PM. Ms. Line is an Illinois native and Purdue graduate. She received the First Award of Merit for exemplary people & programs in public gardens from the American Public Gardens Association at the 2012 conference. The talk will be held in the main gallery in conjunction with the museum’s 35th Anniversary Celebration and the current special exhibit of works from the MMAA Permanent Collection. This lecture is offered FREE to members and the general public.

The 35th Anniversary Celebration Gardens, Rivers, & Lakes: The American Landscape of Leisure

The Midwest Museum of American Art presents 58 paintings, drawings, etchings, and lithographs by 44 artists spanning 125 years that are represented in the permanent collection - over ninety percent of the works have never before been exhibited. “Gardens, Rivers, & Lakes: The American Landscape of Leisure” continues on view through the museum’s 35th Anniversary and concludes on Sunday, July 13.

The Midwest Museum of American Art is open Tuesday through Friday, 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM; Saturday and Sunday, 1:00 to 4:00 PM. Museum Admission is $5.00 for Adults & Seniors, $4.00 for Students. Sunday is Free Family Day with Docents available for discussion of exhibits. Learn more about other events at MidwestMuseum.US