Atheneum Visitors Center
Historic New Harmony’s Atheneum houses visitor information, the Museum Shop, and is the starting point for their guided walking tours of historic structures. In the Atheneum there are exhibits on the communal history of New Harmony, a large theater where an orientation film on the town is shown.
Historic New Harmony offers other programs & special group tours. Call 812-682-4488 for more information.
Completed in 1979, the Atheneum is an internationally celebrated and award-winning example of modern architecture that celebrated its 40th birthday in 2019. Notable for its light and clean spaces, the Atheneum is a three-story building with a long ramp and overlaying grids that provide beautiful views of the town, Wabash River and surrounding countryside from just about anywhere inside and on the spacious viewing deck on the roof. It was designed so that visitors can take a specific path through the building and then emerge into New Harmony itself.
The Atheneum was a breakthrough commission in Richard Meier’s career. It was his first major commission; and the model and architectural drawings are now part of the permanent architecture collection at New York’s Museum of Modern Art. Construction began in 1975 and was completed in 1979. The structure is clad in white porcelain panels and glass attached to a steel frame.
Pedestrian circulation through the building is a continuous experience all the way to the roof terrace and, from the ramp, to the community beyond. The Atheneum has received numerous design awards, including the Progressive Architecture Award for 1979, the American Institute of Architects Award in 1982, and the Twenty-five Year Award in 2008.
Open Tuesday through Saturday 9:30 a.m. – 5 p.m. Open Sundays 12:30 – 5:00. Closed on Mondays. Closed for the months of January and February
Daily Tours (other than Monday): 1 p.m. March 15 – October 31, weekend tours only November 1- December 31.
Museum Shop Information:
A distinctive museum shop offering an extensive selection of books relating to New Harmony’s history, handmade local artisan items, and labyrinth design gifts.
Open daily 9:30 a.m. – 5 p.m. Closed January and February.