A New Look at American Art: The Looking Glass Alliance

The galleries that display the IMA’s collection of American art will debut in April 2023. This update is one of Newfields’ first steps in sharing new stories about the IMA’s permanent collections. Sharing new stories means changing whose voices we include in the museum. We worked with five Indianapolis-area residents who named themselves the “Looking Glass Alliance,” to look at American art in new ways, revealing stories that have always been there but weren’t always seen.


What Is the Looking Glass Alliance?

The Looking Glass Alliance is composed of five individual Indianapolis-area residents who created content for this gallery refresh. The installation and collaboration are some of Newfields’ first steps in changing how the organization works, expanding whose voices are highlighted in the museum, and sharing new stories about the IMA’s permanent collections.


Why Looking Glass Alliance?

The Looking Glass Alliance participants are using the idea of a looking glass to turn upside down the White, heteronormative interpretations of art and the American mythos that have traditionally been communicated in museums. They invite Newfields and the public to join them as they reflect on these practices, disrupt damaging narratives, and make marginalized voices, places, and people visible.



Spotify Playlist

Listen to a playlist curated by Looking Glass Alliance participants.


Meet the Looking Glass Alliance Participants



Nasreen Khan

Nasreen Khan (she/her) is a writer, visual artist, teacher, and mother. She grew up in West Africa and Indonesia and has recently made a home in Indianapolis. Her teaching and artistic practices, rooted in questions of equity and earth-based spirituality, grapple with questions of belonging; celebrate cultural margins; and confront colonization, racism, and misogyny.

Explore Khan's paintings and the stories she shares about immigrant experiences.

IG: @heyitsnasreen

Learn more


Tatjana Rebelle

Tatjana Rebelle (they/them) is a mother, activist, writer, and spoken word artist. They have lived in Indianapolis most of their life and use their writing to give voice to their lived experiences as a nonbinary, first-generation Afro-German and queer person in the United States.

Explore Rebelle’s creative work responding to three artworks.

IG: @tatjanarebelle




Kyng Rhodes

Kyng Rhodes is called to painting by his observations of society, a long-held love of graphic expression, and his own spirituality. Formally trained as a graphic designer, Rhodes moved away from commercial work to illuminate topics he hopes to see more collective reflection and dialogue around–environmental sustainability, care, and familial relationships.

View Rhodes’s paintings in response to two artworks.

IG: @@kyngrhodes



Jordan Ryan

Jordan Ryan (they/them) is an architectural historian, archivist, and activist-scholar, who works on built environment, land use, and other site-specific research projects under the independent consulting firm The History Concierge. Their scholarship centers on built environment history and policy, urban planning, historic preservation, marginalized communities, and spatial equity.

Twitter: @JordanRyanArch



Bobby Young

Bobby Young is an emcee, songwriter, producer, and learning specialist. He is also the co-founder of Native Sun, a band whose music promotes messages of peace, positivity, education, and self-love. He has performed at many noteworthy venues across the country including Red Rocks Amphitheater and The Fillmore Detroit.

IG: @icanonlybeyoung




Return to exhibition page