Naturally Inspired Paint Out

Apr 04

Naturally Inspired Paint Out

8:30 AM - 3:30 PM

Presented by The Great Frame Up Downtown
Artist Application

Experience the Zoo through the eyes of artists — both human and animal!

Each spring, the Zoo invites a group of juried artists to make art “en plein air” (outdoors) at Naturally Inspired Paint Out Day. This signature Zoo event is a great opportunity to showcase your talents in front of thousands of Zoo patrons while also supporting the Zoo’s mission of animal conservation. ​

During this annual event, artists transform a blank canvas or a hunk of clay into a truly extraordinary work of art inspired by the natural world, right here at the Indianapolis Zoo and White River Gardens.

This year’s Paint Out Day activities will complement the ongoing festivities that are part of the Zoo’s brand new xZOOberance spring festival, celebrating nature, performing arts, animals and more. Come to the Bicentennial Pavilion from 10-11:30am to show off your creative side during hands-on art activities guided by Keller Illustrations from 10-11:30am at The Perch.

Junior Paint Out

Have a budding artist in your life? Our Junior Paint Out program for youngsters ages 9-12 years is made just for them. They'll learn from an artist, explore nature and let their imagination soar as they create their own work of art!

Naturally Inspired Art Show
May 24-Aug. 21 • White River Gardens

After the artworks are complete and been professionally framed by The Great Frame Up Downtown, come and see them on display throughout the summer in the Schaefer Rotunda at White River Gardens. Plus, you also get to enjoy the works of some of our more artistically inclined animals. Who knows — you may see a penguin Picasso, a walrus Warhol, an elephant Escher and many others!

These colorful creations are a perfect compliment to the warm earth tones in the Rotunda. As you’re enjoying this year’s Naturally Inspired artworks, look up to take in the spectacular circular mural depicting Indiana’s agricultural heritage throughout the changing seasons. Painted in 1999 by Miami-based muralist Andrew Reid, “Midwestern Panorama” is a two-part masterpiece that wraps the Rotunda with 160 feet of seamless artwork. Special thanks to Bob and Cheryl Sparks for their generous gift that funded this piece of public art.

See a painting or sculpture that you’d like to have at home? Then join us for the annual silent auction and artists’ reception, 5:30-7:30pm on Thursday, Aug. 22, in the Hulman Riverhouse at the Gardens. Bid on your favorite artwork or just enjoy the show! You’ll also get to mingle with artists and other Zoo patrons, get after-hours access to the Hilbert Conservatory, with its beautiful views of downtown Indianapolis, and savor light hors d’oeuvres and wine. Plus, one of the 15 talented artists will receive the Members Choice award. Reservations are required for the reception and silent auction. For more information contact our Membership office at or 317-630-2046.​

RSVP for our Silent Auction