Traditional art museums are cool, but digital art museums are something of a whole different caliber. Starting June 2021, the Indianapolis Museum of Art at Newfields will open its doors to The Lume, the nation’s largest multisensory digital installation focused on the works of the legendary Vincent Van Gogh.

The exhibition will take over the entire fourth floor of the museum, becoming the first of its kind in the nation. The digital gallery has close to 30,000 square feet of space, which will come alive with the Dutch painter’s artwork. According to the museum’s formal announcement on Wednesday, October 7, the art will be projected via “150 state of the art digital projectors” from the floor to the ceiling, as depicted in the installation’s digital mockups.

The Lume Indianapolis
Van Gogh Irises, The Lume at the Indianapolis Museum of Art at Newfields.

To take the experience to the next level, The Lume will satisfy all of the senses. Grande Experiences (the company responsible for bringing the exhibit to life) notes that the projected artwork will be “synchronized with a stirring symphony of music and aromas that seamlessly and magically amplifies the beauty and wonder of masterpieces to unprecedented proportions.” Guests will also have the opportunity to indulge in food and drink tied to the artwork.

The Lume Indianapolis
Van Gogh’s Sunflowers, The Lume Indianapolis at the Indianapolis Museum of Art at Newfields.

Newfields CEO Charles Venable told IndyStar that this innovative museum has the potential to draw in more people than a traditional museum would. “The thing I always try to remember is that over 76 percent of Americans do not go to art museums,” said Venable, referencing statistics from the National Endowment for the Arts. 

“We’ve been looking for ways that we think will attract part of that 76%. We really believe The Lume is going to help us dismantle barriers where a lot of people, they don’t think they know very much about art and find museums off-putting.”

Indianapolis Museum of Art
Van Gogh’s Starry Night, The Lume Indianapolis at the Indianapolis Museum of Art at Newfields.

This installation comes at the heels of successful digital art installations across the globe—including Paris, Toronto, and Tokyo. They’ve even made an appearance in mainstream media. Emily in Paris fans watched the show’s protagonist, Emily Cooper (played by Lily Collins) attend the L’Atelier des Lumières in Paris. Similar to the future of The Lume, Collin’s character was transported into Van Gogh’s Starry Night.

Sign up for the Newfields newsletter for updates about The Lume, including when you can get tickets. We have a feeling they’re going to sell out fast.

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