• Craig Prater

March Madness artwork helps fund artists

Nearly 600 visual artists, musicians, dancers, spoken-word artists, curators, and other creative-industry professionals will turn downtown Indianapolis into a sidewalk art gallery and a three-week cultural festival when Swish tips off. All experiences are free and open to the public and will take place outdoors. Swish will shine a spotlight on the city’s creative talent as Indianapolis prepares to welcome all 68 men’s college basketball tournament teams and fans from across the nation. The initiative will also employ central Indiana artists who have lost significant income during the pandemic due to event cancellations and venue closures. The Arts Council of Indianapolis put out a public call for artists in February. “In Indianapolis, arts and sports have always made great teammates, and this powerful collaboration will allow the city’s amazing artists and creatives to reach, and connect with, an even bigger audience,” said Julie Goodman, president and CEO of the Arts Council of Indianapolis. “Indy was ‘made for this moment,’ and Swish will take things to a level that will truly enable us all to showcase what we are made of.” Swish is funded through a Lilly Endowment Inc. grant received by Indiana Sports Corp to create a safe, welcoming environment for residents and visitors during the tournament