It’s great to be a Friend!  You will not only enjoy private tours with curators, book club, and monthly lectures; you will also be able to attend the pre-lecture tours and Friends-only events.
It’s not too late to take advantage of the Friends holiday BOGO.  Renew your membership during December (regardless of when it expires), and you will receive a gift membership to give to a friend or family member.  Your membership will be extended a full year beyond its expiration date.
It makes a thoughtful holiday gift!  To take advantage of this offer, please call Mia at 612-870-6323 or the Friends Office at 612-870-3045.


Join the Friends of the Institute for a NAPLES DATE in 2016, a delightful tradition in support of Art in Bloom. This year’s reception will be held at Artis-Naples home of the Baker Art Museum and Naples Philharmonic in Naples, Florida, on February 27, 2016. You’ll enjoy an evening of plentiful hors d’oeuvres and cocktails, conversation, art and flowers, surrounded by the enchanting sounds of the Naples Youth Quartet.  All this will take place in the company of friends from Naples and Minnesota.
Co-Chairs Ann Laurent, Meridy Shoger and Anita Sullivan are excited about the special evening they are creating. Involved in chairing this event for years, this talented trio hopes you’ll combine your warm-weather get-away with this first taste of Art in Bloom 2016.
“Our Naples party will be very arts-oriented this year,” says Anita. “It will be like a mini-Art in Bloom with an exhibit by local artists and interpretive arrangements by a local florist. We think our guests will love it!”
Save the date for Saturday, February 27, 2016, at The Figge Conservatory from 5:30 to 8:00 PM, and watch for a formal invitation in January.
To top off your evening, make reservations for “100 Years of Sinatra”, performed by the Naples Philharmonic led by Jack Everly, Conductor. Call the box office at 1-800-597-1500 for ticket information.
Lead Sponsor: Bachman’s
Honorary Chair: Linda Boelter
Generous support provided by Martha Head, Lakewood Cemetery, Bob and Barbara Scott, Lakes Area Realty, Michael Birt, Lucille Amis, and Mary Olson.
Additional support provided by David and Margene Fox, Sam and Patty McCullough, Mary Grau, and an anonymous donor.


What do those 3 things have in common…Mia and the Friends of the Institute!  The Friends Transportation Fund annually awards grants to Twin Cities K-8 elementary and middle schools. This year grants equal $175 per bus for a maximum of two buses per school.  Preference is given to schools with higher financial need, based on the percentage of free and reduced lunches at the school. In order to qualify for free and reduced lunches a family of four must have an income of  just under $24,000, according to the 2014-15 USDA guidelines.
The application process  concluded in early October and 74 schools will be receiving grants to bring their students to see Mia’s world-class art collection.  Thanks to Art in Bloom’s Fund-A-Need, this year we are able to provide grants to 21 high schools as well (28% of total grantee schools).
That is 111 buses that will be bringing kids to see, experience and enjoy the wonder of art!
by Transportation Fund Co-chairs: Mary Bachhuber and Barbara Proeschel


By Ron Hovda, Honorary Docent
For the past two decades I was a docent at Mia and a folk painter.  The Western Europeans latched on to the classic themes in floral expression. The exposure came from church interiors, book illustrations and nature. The Germans created Bauernmalerei, The Dutch- Hindeloopen, the Welsh – Barge Art and the Swedes – Kurbitzmaling.  Well, because I’m of Norwegian descent, I chose to study and execute Rosemaling (translation: flower painting).
From 1700 to 1850, this style of painting emerged in southwestern Norway. Each major valley area developed its own unique style. The Minneapolis Institute of Art has a nineteenth century cupboard in the Valdres style by Aslak Lie; built and painted for a bridal couple. It also has on display a wedding Chest by Ivar Kvalen in the Gudbrandsalen design commemorating the wedding of his daughter.   Both are found in the American galleries.

Writing Desk, c. 1760, artist unknown, Italy. Wood, paint, gilt, gilt bronze, Gallery 308;76.74
Writing Desk, c. 1760, artist unknown, Italy. Wood, paint, gilt, gilt bronze, Gallery 308;76.74

Western art contains the inspiration for the many folk designs throughout Europe.  Scroll and tendril designs with flowers and leaves are found in most folk art expressions. For example the large carved and gilded rococo Writing Desk contains flower paintings of Venice, Italy. The German Center Table (about 1690) of Hans Daniel Sommer has been described as a tour de force of tendril, floral and scroll -shaped areas in pewter, tortoiseshell, brass, marble, horn and ebony. These design shapes, folk painters have grasped onto for centuries!
As you walk through the galleries you will notice many painted frames especially in the medieval Renaissance area. Some excellent examples are:  Portrait of a Cardinal in his Study by Lorenzo Costa; the central strip is delicately painted with leaves, tendrils, flowers and scrolls.
The portraits of Moritz and Anna Buchner by Lucas Cranach the Elder contain folk like painted areas. Boy with Butterfly Net by Henri Matisse also contains some interesting folk like painting in its frame.
I would like to call to your attention to other areas of related interest. The Fountain Court, Corinthian columns contain florets, scrolls, tendrils and acanthus leaves with the barrel vaulted ceiling full of rose blossoms.  The final area is the Chinese section with its pottery and beginning of designs thousands of years ago containing scrolls, tendrils, flowers, and leaves in profusion.
So, in conclusion, expand your visual expertise to include the decorative motives included in so many of the works of art at the splendid Mia.

The Holiday Season is upon us!

Here at the Friends office we’d like to add the personal touches of the Friends to this year’s seasonal decorations by collecting some of your holiday cards. They are so much fun to see and they’ll look great in a little display, so we’d love to receive as many of your cards as we can.
If you’d like to participate, please send your holiday card to:
Friends of the Institute
2400 3rd Ave South
Minneapolis, MN 55404
Be sure to swing by soon to see what others have sent in!  While you’re here, don’t forget to head over to The Store at Mia and our Delacroix Exhibition Turkish bazaar pop-up shop to find truly unique items. Rich textiles, one-of-a-kind jewelry, imported foods and gifts, all inspired by the color and splendor of Delacroix’s paintings. Great for gift-giving!
Browse the artfully curated Store at Mia, including the Mia + Etsy Chef’s Table. You’ll find gifts to delight the chefs and artful entertainers in your life. The Store has partnered with Etsy wholesalers to feature handmade, artisan products for the kitchen and dining table, only available at Mia.  Plus you’ll find Rooftop Gold Honey from the Mia hives.
And it wouldn’t be Mia’s Birthday Year without a surprise! The Store has partnered with Faribault Woolen Mills to produce a custom blanket and scarf.  Watch the making of these scarfs here. Inspired by the classic, clean lines of the historic mill’s heritage craft pieces and in celebration of the museum’s 100th Birthday Year. The limited edition blanket and scarf are a limited run, only available at Mia.


As you may have read in the October newsletter, this year we will be updating the Friends membership directory.
We have removed the information of those who have already requested it, but we’d like to extend another opportunity for you to review your information. Please note that our membership directory will list email and home address, as well as phone numbers, for each of our members. This is a frequently used tool to help facilitate volunteering in our wonderful organization.  If you would not like your information shared, please contact the Friends Office at, or 612-870-3045. If you do not contact us, we will include you automatically in the directory. The deadline for information removal will be December 10th.
Remember that this will not be public information, but will be available to Friends members.
Thank you!

Friends Holiday Luncheon

Following a lecture by Valerie Steele, please join the Friends in the Villa Rosa Room for a delicious winter luncheon of sauteed salmon with peas, fingerling potatoes, and charred tomato relish. Lemon almond cake with lemon custard filling will complete the menu. You may request a vegetarian option when you reserve.

RSVP: 612.870.6323 or click here. The cost is $25, and all reservations must be received by 5 p.m., December 1.


Be part of a delightful rite of spring and add Art in Bloom to your 2016 April/May calendars.
Art in Bloom relies on more than 200 volunteers to make this annual event a success. Choose from a variety of volunteer opportunities that will connect you to other Friends members and contribute to the success of this largest Friends fund-raiser. Plus it’s just plain fun!
Volunteers are needed Wednesday, April 27 through May 1, 2016. We will use Sign Up Genius, an electronic system for signing up for volunteer times and positions. Watch for more details in the coming months!
For more information contact Volunteer Committee Co-Chairs Patty Williams and Ruth Shields .


Tom Jones, Assistant Professor of Photography, University of Wisconsin, Madison, will explain how his Ho-Chunk identity helps him to challenge our perceptions and assumptions of Native people with new perspectives of tribal members as active agents in the Twenty-first century.
All tickets for this lecture are currently reserved. We would love to have you join us in the Wells Fargo Community Room to view a live HD video stream of the lecture while enjoying coffee and treats. We hope to see you in overflow!

Valerie Steele, "The Corset: Fashioning the Body"

Steel Photo v2Thursday, December 10, 2015, Pillsbury Auditorium 11:00 AM 

Valerie Steele’s career was transformed after her study of corsets. The subject of corsets and their cultural implications was an epiphany to Steele. “I read two articles in a scholarly feminist journal that argued about the meaning of the Victorian corset. Was it oppressive to women or liberating?” says Steele. “It was just as though a light bulb went on. I had gone to graduate school to do cultural and intellectual history-and I suddenly realized that fashion was part of culture and I could do fashion history.” Steele will give a fun, innovative and academic perspective on undergarments for women. The Corset: A Cultural History, is a work that details her findings from two decades of research.
Valerie Steele is the director and chief curator of the Museum at the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York City.  Steele has organized more than 20 exhibitions since 1997, including: Shoe Obsession, Daphne Guinness, Gothic: Dark Glamour, Love and War: The Weaponized Woman, and The Corset. She is also the founder in chief and editor of Fashion Theory: The Journal of Dress, Body & Culture.
Steele explains the history of the corset and how it has evolved over time. “I worked off and on for 20 years on the history of the corset, and all of that passionate research went into the exhibition which interrogated myths like the 16-inch waist or the idea that only ladies of the leisure class wore corsets. The exhibition also explored how diverse fashion designers have re-envisioned the corset in many different ways: as a symbol of erotic femininity, a trope of Victorianism, a sign of the sexually dominant woman, an image of the wounded body.”
Steele has been called the “Freud of fashion” for her study and analysis of the meaning of clothing and its place in culture and in the Washington Post, Steele was described as one of “fashion’s brainiest women.” Steele has a Ph.D. from Yale University. She has authored and co-authored more than a dozen books, including, Fashion Designers A-Z: The Collection of the Museum of F.I.T.,  and Women of Fashion: 20th Century Designers, and Japan Fashion Now.
Steele has been instrumental in creating the modern field of fashion studies and in raising awareness of the cultural and social significance of fashion. Please join us for what promises to be a stimulating and informative lecture.
The Mark and Mary Goff Fiterman Lecture Series is presented by the Friends of the Institute and Mia

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