INDIANAPOLIS — In April, when more than 70 artists at the Stutz spiff up their studios and display work for visitors to buy, it will mark the 20th anniversary of what's now the Raymond James Stutz Artists Open House.
The event began in 1993 when building owner Turner Woodard, an abstract painter himself, joined with a few other artists to host an open house. They threw some beer on ice and invited some friends.
Now, the event attracts 5,000 people every year, bringing to the historic Stutz building art lovers of all types who welcome the chance to wander through artists' studios.
"Lots of people have been to art galleries and art fairs, but what's different at the open house is that you get the chance to see where and how the work is created," said Tom Potter, co-chair of the 2013 event.
Artwork ranges from paintings, drawings, and photography to sculpture, jewelry, and furniture. In addition to being a great place to buy one-of-a-kind gifts, the event offers a rare chance to see vintage cars in the historic Stutz car factory. Visitors also enjoy special gallery opening activities such as acoustic music and food vendors.
The 20th anniversary celebration will be 5:30 to 10:30 p.m. April 26 and 2 to 7 p.m. April 27 at the Stutz Business Center, 212 W. 10th St. Guests should enter from Bearcat Alley off of 10th or 11th streets.
Admission is $15 at the gate and proceeds support the Stutz Residency Program, a scholarship that provides free studio space and utilities for emerging local artists. It is one of the largest grants to individual artists in the state. Advanced sale tickets are available for $10 at the Stutz Business Office.
Surrounding the largest group of artists under one roof in the Midwest, the exterior of the yellow brick buildings that comprise the complex have changed little since the Stutz motor car was made there. Located on an entire city block in downtown Indianapolis, the interior of the 400,000-square-foot former car factory has been renovated into studios and office space. The Stutz is now home to artists, designers, architects, creative professionals, and other small businesses.
For more information, call 503-6420 or visit the website at StutzArtists.com.