The Hoosier Group of Indiana artists (T. C. Steele, William Forsyth, J. Ottis Adams, Otto Stark, and Richard Gruelle) made their names and attracted national attention in the late 1800s by returning to their home state to paint what they knew best, after completing their fine art studies in Europe. Since then, Indiana artists have led the Midwest and the nation in recurrent movements to paint en plein air (on location).
Time and again, particular locations in the Hoosier state have attracted Hoosier artists for their subtle beauty, dramatic perspective, or uniquely Midwestern light. In addition to the famous “purple haze” of the Brown County hills, artists have painted Indiana scenes that engender wide-spread appreciation. Frank Dudley’s Indiana dunes on Lake Michigan; William Forsyth’s Corydon village-scapes and Irvington back yards; J. Ottis Adams and the Richmond Group’s Brookville and Metamora valleys; Steele’s Muscatatuck River, Bloomington campus, and snow-covered downtown Indianapolis views; and the famous vista of the Ohio River bend at Hanover have all been painted by generations of artists.