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Welcome Race Fans Artwork Draws Support for Local Artists

Each year, Indianapolis comes alive as Hoosiers embrace and celebrate the spirit of the Indianapolis 500 presented by Gainbridge, and a centerpiece of that celebration is Welcome Race Fans artwork that blankets Central Indiana and welcomes race fans from around the world to our city.

This year, the COVID-19 pandemic has impacted thousands of creative Hoosiers. The Indianapolis Motor Speedway and the Arts Council of Indianapolis are teaming up to raise money for Central Indiana artists with exclusive, high-quality reprints of past and current Welcome Race Fans artwork. In this collaboration, Welcome Race Fans signs will be available for purchase as limited-edition, top-shelf, archival-quality inkjet “giclee” prints that will add the perfect “500” spirit to your home or office for $150.

This high-octane welcoming is the result of a longstanding partnership between the IMS and the Arts Council. Since 2016, these signs have celebrated “The Greatest Spectacle in Racing” as commissioned artists create unique Welcome Race Fans signs using their own style and materials.

While the 2020 edition of this program still features five new, stunning pieces of art from five talented artists, a much smaller portion of the world will get to see these wonderful works of art around Central Indiana due to the pandemic. The 104th Running of the Indianapolis 500 will be held on the rescheduled date of Sunday, Aug. 23 and will run without fans in the venue. Coverage of the race begins at 1 p.m. ET live on NBC.

With this in mind, IMS and the Arts Council are increasing their support for local artists who are struggling during these extraordinary times, with the exclusive “giclee” prints and in other ways.

Every year, the new, original Welcome Race Fans artwork is for sale, with the proceeds going directly to the artists, and that is unchanged for 2020. Additionally, some original artwork from years past is still available for purchase. Anyone interested in purchasing original works of art and making a big impact on local artists should contact the Arts Council directly.

In addition to the “giclee” prints, all five 2020 Welcome Race Fans signs can be purchased as posters for $10 apiece, or fans can purchase all five for just $25. However, race fans must act quickly because these limited-quantity posters will go fast!

Proceeds from the sale of Welcome Race Fans art will help local artists continue their passion and weather this extraordinary time as 79 percent of Indiana creatives have been negatively impacted by COVID-19, and 53 percent have reported a significant loss of income.

A portion of the proceeds also will support the next phase of the Indy Arts & Culture COVID-19 Emergency Relief Fund, which gave 950 rapid-response grants of $500 each from March through May to help local artists cover their basic needs and is preparing to enter Phase 2 of supporting local artists.

Race fans can purchase their favorite Welcome Race Fans art at shop.ims.com. You can also donate to the Indy Arts & Culture COVID-19 Emergency Relief Fund at indykeepscreating.org. Don’t forget to show your support by tweeting photos of your purchased artwork using the hashtag #IndyKeepsCreating and by tagging @IMS and @artscouncilindy.

Check out this year's Welcome Race Fans Artwork:

Josh Betsey"May Victory Swift"

Martin Kuntz "Infield Turn 3"

Joy Hernandez "Lunar Spectacle"

Jingo de la Rosa "Sign of the Times"

Becky Hochhalter "Back Home Again"

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