I invited my nine year old daughter to attend THE LUME at Newfields, the art museum in Indianapolis. THE LUME is a brand new permanent attraction at Newfields and the first show features the paintings of Vincent van Gogh. With the help of nearly 150 state-of-the-art digital projectors Van Gogh’s two-dimensional paintings are transformed into a three-dimensional world that guests can explore. With the help of additional elements, guests can experience the paintings using even more of their senses.
The Lume Van Gogh Exhibition at Newfields
The show is about one hour total. 40 minutes of the exhibition is made up of 30 of Van Gogh’s paintings. 20 minutes of the exhibition are short stories, called featurettes, with content created by up-and-coming digital artists, all of which are inspired by the work of Van Gogh. There are four featurettes, each lasting about 5 minutes.
The show plays simultaneously in all of the digital galleries spanning nearly 30,000 square feet. With many angles to choose from and plenty of space to spread out and enjoy the exhibition, you’ll never run out of things to see.
Soft, whimsical music plays as the art work dances to life. My daughter couldn’t help but join in with a whimsy dance of her own. While there are gorgeous moments that create the perfect backdrops for your photographs, the real magic happens when you aren’t peering at it from behind your screen.
There’s no time limit on your visit and no matter when you enter the galleries, you’ll be welcomed to a world of digital art running continuously throughout the space.
The Lume Cafe Artisan Snacks and Craft Cocktails
THE LUME Cafe offers beautiful snacks, treats and beverages inspired by some of the most popular works of Van Gogh. Guests are invited to return to the gallery with their LUME snacks and beverages to complete the multi-sensory feel of the experience.
Interactive Gallery Activity Space
Outside of the gallery there’s an interactive activity space called “Gogh Play” where you’ll get an up close look at original paintings by Van Gogh, Cezanne and Gauguin.
You’ll be able to step in to a photo station and “Van Gogh Yourself” using a variety of Van Gogh painting filters. You’ll be added to a gallery wall and then be able to send the photo to your email. There’s a Kinect type of activity that allows users to zoom in and scroll over Van Gogh paintings to see the details and layers.
As you leave the exhibit, stop by and take a photo in a recreation of Van Gogh’s bedroom. My daughter was fascinated with this Instagrammable set.
A Van Gogh themed gift shop is waiting at the end, followed by a lounge area where guests can stop and reflect on their visit.
Outdoor Van Gogh Spaces
THE LUME exhibit is all encompassed in the indoor gallery space on the 4th floor, but every department of the museum has created something to celebrate Van Gogh at Newfields. The horticulture department has planted several gardens inspired by specific Van Gogh paintings. Stroll through and see each one as you enjoy the grounds of Newfields. While THE LUME is not included in your museum general admission, all visitors will be able to see the gardens.
The Lume at Newfields with Kids
While there is nothing that’s not kid-friendly about THE LUME and there are so many elements that kids will love, I cannot wait to return without my children. My daughter (age 9) really enjoyed the exhibit and every part of the interactive areas and she really, really loved the beautiful cakes and cookies and LUME-nade, but I didn’t feel like I was able to spend as much time as I would have liked just enjoying the gallery. I wanted to see the exhibition in it’s entirety but she was interested in moving on and seeing what was next.
After seeing everything, my daughter was ready to return to the galleries and spend more time in the digital galleries. From that, I learned that if I return with my other children, I’ll likely take them through the whole experience, grab a lemonade and return to the galleries so we can really enjoy the experience and talk about what we’re seeing. I’m certain they’ll want to dance and point out their favorite parts and run to where new things are happening on the floors or the walls.
Kids LOVE the Van Gogh Yourself and the Van Gogh Bedroom and the beautiful treats. The moving walls and digital elements are right in their learning wheelhouse so it’s the perfect exhibit for children who love visual stimulation.
The Lume for Adults
THE LUME Cafe is really a special place. Sunflower cookies from Circle City Sweets, gorgeous photo realistic cakes from and artful lollipops from Gallery Pastry Shop are all so wonderful. The LUME & Tonic is absolutely an incredible sensory experience. Fresh flowers frozen in ice cubes slowly melt and bloom amidst the bubbles in your glass. The LUME-nade is delicious and in a little cup depicting a french man.
Tickets for LUME at Newfields
General Admission tickets do not include admission to THE LUME exhibition.
Youth (6-17) $17
Child (5 & under) Free
Member Ticket Pricing
Youth (6-17) $13
Child (5 & under) Free
Parking at Newfields
Newfields offers free parking in the main surface parking lot and the parking garage. Enter the building via the main museum entrance located right next to the parking lot.