Eternal James Dean: An Exhibit at the Indiana State Museum

From Marion, Indiana native to parking lot attendant/struggling actor to rising Hollywood star. That is the abbreviated version of James Dean’s life, with one notable omission: A fatal car crash on September 30, 1955 that cemented his status as an American legend and cultural icon. He will always be the *original* Rebel Without a Cause.

And now you can learn more him by visiting Eternal James Dean. The exhibit examines his bright-but-ephemeral Hollywood career and passion for motorcycles and racing. His Indiana roots are highlighted as well. The exhibit takes place now through June 2, 2013 at the Indiana State Museum in downtown Indianapolis.

Though he only stared in 3 major films before his untimely death, his impact was significant. In fact, his most celebrated film, Rebel Without a Cause, has been added to the preserved films of the United States Library of Congress’s National Film Registry as being deemed “culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant.”

A few of the more notable artifacts on display include Dean’s Motorcycle, his leather jacket and other Hollywood attire. And while the IMAX Film Weekend that featured all three of his feature films has already come and gone, it’s not too late to catch the Rollin’ with Dean Motorcycle Rally. This fun event will take place April 27, 2013, and is tailor made for almost any motorcycle enthusiast. It will kick off at the Indiana State Museum with a motorcycle show and ride. And to make things extra fun, a James Dean Look-A-Like contest will take place in addition to live music.

Generous loans from the Fairmount Historical Museum, the James Dean Gallery and the James Dean Estate played a major role in making this exhibit possible.

Event Info:

  • Indiana State Museum, 650 W. Washington St., Indianapolis, IN 46204
  • Through June 2, 2013
  • Tel. 317.232.1637
  • Website