NIAM has a home!

Thanks to the generosity of Umang and Paragi Patel, the National Indo-American Museum (NIAM), takes residence at its first “brick and mortar” home at 815 S Main Street, in Lombard, Illinois.

The NATIONAL INDO-AMERICAN MUSEUM builds bridges across generations and connects cultures through the diverse, colorful stories of all Indian Americans.

E/Merge: Art of the Indian Diaspora curated by Shaurya Kumar, Chair of Faculty and Associate Professor at School of the Art Institute Chicago, the exhibition includes artists that have traversed international borders and have adopted the United States of America as their new home.

In an essay for the exhibition’s catalog, Kumar wrote, “Works in the exhibition challenge the pre-conceptions of what and how Diasporic artists represent themselves and their histories, and investigates the notions of origins, narratives of dispersal, and cultural differences under the conditions of globalism. Where do we, as members of the Indian diaspora in the US and elsewhere, locate ourselves in a time of globalization and mass migration? How does the work of contemporary artists locate itself in time – past, present, or future? How does the meaning of a work change when an artist or an artwork attempts to unpack multiple and multi-site narratives beyond the binary of master and counter-narratives?” These questions form the premise of the inaugural exhibition E/Merge: Art of the Indian Diaspora at the Patel Center.

*Due to unavoidable circumstances we regret that the opening date of NIAM is being postponed.
We will announce the new dates in the coming days!

We regret any inconvenience*

NIAM is grateful for the efforts of Tamara Biggs, Director of Exhibitions at Chicago History Museum and a past president of NIAM’s board. She inspired our initiative to open the Umang and Paragi Patel Center with a meaningful art exhibition, was the main author of our grant to the NEA, and has guided the process of developing the exhibition and opening the museum.

Monthly programming during the run of the exhibition is in development. Current plans call for artist talks, scholarly panels, family art-making days, and a dance performance featuring art-inspired original choreography.

NIAM is supported in part by the Arts Work Fund, Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events, Gaylord and Dorothy Donnelley Foundation, Ralla Klepak Foundation, Studio Institute National Endowment for the Arts, US Bank, and many individual donors.

Covid protocols

Mandatory masks or appropriate face covering over nose and mouth.
Maintain six feet social distance at all times.
Required to carry proof of vaccination and/or negative PCR test and produce it if asked by museum officials.
Individuals displaying flu like symptoms or recently been exposed to the virus are requested to stay home.
Guests are requested to make of sanitizers provided and follow protocol at all times.
For more information visit cdc.gov.

Events

Indra Nooyi at NIAM GALA 2019

NIAM’s Gandhi Peace Program

About Us

Successful and highly regarded programs and exhibits as well as collaborations with leading Chicago institutions have established the museum’s reputation since its incorporation as a 501(c)3 organization in 2008. In recognition of its role as the first and only institution of its kind in the country dedicated to documenting, preserving and sharing the full spectrum of the Indian American experience in all its linguistic, religious, socio-economic and regional diversity, the museum changed its name from the Indo-American Heritage Museum to the National Indo-American Museum.
Click here to know more.

Our Values

ENGAGEMENT

Input from across generations, within and beyond the community, keeps us responsive to ideas and issues and true to our grass roots origins. We engage with the elders and with younger generations to document the past and build leadership for the future.

INCLUSIVENESS

As keeper and teller of stories of an incredibly diverse Indian American community, secularity and inclusiveness are in our very DNA and essential to our existence.

COLLABORATION

Collaboration, partnership and sharing are key elements that define us as an umbrella organization.

RELEVANCE

By relating aspects of Indian American history and heritage to contemporary issues and contemporary forms of expression, we aim to keep the stories from the community alive and especially meaningful to our younger audiences.

Testimonials