I have always been a huge art lover and grew up spending a lot of time at the Indianapolis Museum of Art. After having my children, I was thrilled to see the addition of the Star Studio space, as it encouraged hands on exploration of the arts. It’s a perfect space for children of all ages to get introduced to the museum and the basic concepts of the visual arts.

The Star Studio just got a facelift and we have the inside scoop on all of the new features! Jen Mayhill, Manager of Play-Based Learning at the Indianapolis Museum of Art provided us with some great insider information about the space. The following information and images are courtesy of the wonderful staff of the IMA!

The Star Studio is designed to provide families with young children opportunities to imagine, explore, create, share, and collaborate with art in new ways. 

In the Imagine section, guests can learn about the basic elements of art including line, shape, color, texture and space.  Using traditional and non-traditional mediums, visitors are invited to make a work of art to take home.


The Explore section is designed as a sensory play experience by interacting with a life size Lite Brite wall.  The wall promotes the basics of color theory and the development of motor skills.


The Create section is divided into three parts.

  • Guests are invited to engineer a structure made with building blocks in order to learn basic architectural design principles and simple physics.
  • Guests are also invited to create their own bug using the Bug Builder app developed by Sago mini.
  • New to this section, guests are invited to discover how light interacts with transparent and translucent colors at our large light table.  Guests can create a work of art on the table that is either 2-dimensional or 3-dimensional.2015mu-pa-st0084

New in the Share section, guests may dress-up as an artist.  A “Look Book” within this section highlights ten various dress-up possibilities from famous painter, Vincent Van Gogh to fashion icon, Vivienne Westwood.  Once a guest has donned their costume, they are invited to take a picture using the Artist Photo Booth app, which allows a guest to email their photo to friends and family.  Guests may also design their photo background using the large-scale chalk wall.


The Collaborate section features a series of hand-drawn frames inspired by the IMA’s permanent collection and her own creative process.  Guests can use their imagination to complete the gallery wall by drawing a picture inside the frames.

Not included in a particular section, guests are also able to read one of many art-related books with their kiddos.


*Images and information courtesy of the Indianapolis Museum of Art.