Art in Bloom

Special thanks to our 2022 Art in Bloom Host Committee

We honor these mother-daughter pairs who each and together weave a significant legacy of time, talent, and treasure on behalf of the Friends and Mia.



Phyllis Colwell, Friends President 1983-85, Art in Bloom Founder, Art in Bloom Honorary Chair, 1988 and Carolyn Dahl, Friends President 2011-13, longtime Friends Member




Mary Agnes McQuinn, Delacroix acquisition donor, longtime Friends and Mia patron and Susan Arndt, Mia Guide(Docent), Chair of Friends Lecture Committee and several Art in Bloom Committees



Gretchen Holland, Delacroix acquisition donor, longtime Friends and Mia patron andHeidi Holland Ault, Delacroix acquisition donor, Preview Party Committee, Friends Fashion Shows Producer



Holly McDougall, Friends member and Mia Guide and Kristen McDougall, longtime Mia Guide and Chair of Friends Art & Architecture Committee





Margene Fox, Friends President 2001-03, Art in Bloom Co-Chair 1996 andAllison Greene, Mia Guide, Friends Membership Committee Co-Chair



Linda Boelter, Art in Bloom Co-Chair 2002 and 2011, Honorary Chair, 2016, Art Per Chance Co-Chair 2008 and Carrie Kilberg, Art Per Chance Co-Chair 2008, Art in Bloom Co-Chair 2016, longtime Friends Member and supporter



Elizabeth Whitbeck (In Memoriam), longtime Friends Member and supporter andBetsey Whitbeck, Art in Bloom Co-Chair 2012, longtime Friends Member, supporter, and advisor


Marilyn Sundberg Friends Board, Delacroix acquisition donor, Art Perchance and Art in Bloom Committees andMolly Van Metre Friends Board and Advisor, past Treasurer, Art Perchance and other Friends Committees



Connie Sommers, Friends President 2015-17, Art in Bloom Co-Chair, Centennial Committee, Mia Guide andWhitney Sommers, Friends Centennial Committee



Linda Goldenberg, Friends President 2003-05, Co-Chair Art Per Chance and Salon, Mia Guide andRachel Hanson, Friends Member and supporter


Art in Bloom is Back in Bloom

Art in Bloom is Back in Bloom April 28 – May 1, 2022!

Free and open to the public, Art in Bloom exhibits imaginative floral interpretations of selected works of art from Mia’s permanent collection, created by more than 150 individual and commercial florists.

We hope you will be able to join us for this four day festival! Highlights of the weekend are listed below:

Free daily public tours at 10:15 AM, 11:15 AM, 1:15 PM, and 2:15 PM *This year, tickets are required! Click here to register now!

Daily virtual tours at 2:00 PM

Wednesday, April 27, 5:30 PM – 9:00 PM: Preview Party (RSVP by April 18)

Thursday, April 28, 11:00 AM – 12:30 PM: Flower Power: Floral Themes in Art with Lisa Michaux, PhD

Saturday, April 30, 1:00 PM – 3:00 PM: Live & In Bloom: Floral Demonstrations by Bachman’s

Sunday, May 1, 10:00 AM – 1:00 PM: Art in Bloom Family Event

Tickets are now available for all Art in Bloom programming. Call 612.870.6323 to reserve your spot!



How You Can Help Support Art in Bloom!

Do you have connections to local professionals or businesses that might be interested in supporting Art in Bloom as a sponsor? Art in Bloom sponsors enjoy prominent visibility in front of a desirable audience, prime opportunities for brand and/or product placement, broad marketing and social media reach, VIP museum access, association with a beloved community tradition, and recognition as a supporter of arts and culture in our community. If you have prospects or ideas for partners that might be a good fit for Art in Bloom, Mia’s Advancement team would be happy to chat with you and explore next steps. Reach out to Claire Goulson in the Friends Office for more information.

Art in Bloom 2022

Eugene Delacroix, French, 1798-1863, Still Life with Dahilias, Zinnias, Hollyhocks, and Plums (detail), c. 1835, oil on canvas, Gift of funds from the Friends of the Institute in celebration of their 100th anniversary, with generous support from Nivin MacMillan, Mary Agnes and Al McQuinn, Sheila C. Morgan, and Mary and Douglas Olson

The 2022 Art in Bloom (AIB) committee held its first meeting on October 6th where they unveiled their signature image, Still Life with Dahlias, Zinnias, Hollyhocks and Plums. Dated: c. 1835. Artist: Eugène DelacroixThis piece was selected to honor the gift the Friends made to the museum during Mia’s Centennial year.

Co-chairs, Kris Bjorklund and Sheila Folkestad, along with an exceptional committee are looking forward to bringing Art In Bloom back to a live and in-person experience at the museum this coming spring. It’s also the Friends Centennial birthday, so we have much to celebrate.

We look forward to seeing you all at Art in Bloom.

Art in Bloom Co-chairs,
Kris Bjorklund and Sheila Folkestad


A note from chairperson Barb Champ. Nothing virtual about these results! 

Donations are still trickling in, but we expect our total revenue for Art in Bloom 2021 to reach $80,000! And since it was a virtual event, our expenses were very low (Mia did not charge for any production costs) so our net is $75,500!

These are excellent results considering the event, including lectures and tours, was free to the community. The exception was the Bachman’s workshop, which required a fee for the floral tool kit—the proceeds of which Bachman’s generously donated back to us.

The Art in Bloom website had average daily website hits of 3000. For comparison, a similar Mia online event that ran for much longer had an average of 1200 daily hits. We did very well in comparison!

Also worth noting is that in some cases each hit represented more than a single person as we know lots of people gathered in one household to view the floral arrangements, participate in the floral workshops, take a tour or view our panel discussion and lecture.

Our docent tours were extremely well attended. Total tour attendance was 1639 for the five-day event.  That means 327 participated a day!! Thank you to our wonderful docents. Their thoughtful use of the Professional Floral Arrangements was perfect and compelling.  The momentum built as the word got out that these tours were not to be missed. Hope you were able to catch one!

Those of you who participated in the Holly Young, Graci Horne, and Jill Ahlberg Yohe panel discussion learned as much about native culture as native floral art.  Their presentation was captivating.  We had 135 individuals participate online.

Deborah Pierce’s talk on stolen floral art was amazing.  Who knew how large the market was for stolen artwork, and sad to know there are some recoveries yet to be made. Total attendance for Deborah’s was 277.

Bachman’s two floral workshops were sold out!  It was fun to see our participants put together such beautiful floral arrangements under the guidance of Bachman’s own Jen Bevan.  Jen’s enthusiasm is contagious.  We had 43 participants overall.

Some who gathered together in groups to view the events took the opportunity to enjoy our Signature Cocktail, Lady Sipper, sponsored by Norsemen.  While we don’t have total Lady Sipper sales yet, we know it was a hit as demonstrated below in this picture of some of our own Friends, who sipped a Sipper during one of the lectures.

Katie Searl, Kathy Rein, and Barb Edin enjoy a Norseman Lady Sipper during Art in Bloom 2021.

As we celebrate Virtual Art in Bloom we have many to thank for their generous support.  Our lead sponsor; Bachman’s, our major sponsors; Artful Living, Martha Head, Samuel, and Patricia McCullough.  Additional support was provided by Tangletown Gardens, Christine and Robert D. Salmen, Norseman Distillery, and Twin Cities Orthopedics.  Thanks to the dedication of our Patrons, Sponsors, Friends of the Institute, Mia staff, and our Steering Committee whose philanthropical nature and belief in the cause; to support, enhance, and sustain the collection, programs, and influence of the Minneapolis Institute of Art, generated funds to support these needs of Mia during this unprecedented time.

It is also important to acknowledge the small but mighty Art in Bloom Steering Committee that brought a virtual vision to life.  Thank you to Therese Blaine, Maria Reamer, Barbara Proeschel, Kari Jaksha, Barb Mikelson, Stephanie Wright, Katie Searl, Laurie Fontaine Junker, Maria Eggemeyer, Julie Holland, and Nancy McRae.

As we wrap up another Art in Bloom, in a time where this pandemic has oftentimes made us weary, we must remember the words of Lady Bird Johnson,  “where flowers bloom, so does hope.”

Congratulations everyone! Virtual Art in Bloom 2021 was a “ bloomin “ success.

Barb Champ

2021 Art in Bloom Chair

Barb Champ and Bachman’s Jennifer Bevan on WCCO TV

Floral Artists Inject Floral Beauty into second COVID Spring

A note from Therese Blaine about Art in Bloom Pedestal Floral Artists

Thousands of Mia guests were fortunate to experience Art in Bloom in a new way thanks to the continued dedication and creativity of the floral artists who paired their creations with 96 Mia artworks—some of which are rarely on view. We are grateful to every floral artist for creating truly inspired floral creations.

Visitors to the website found joy in viewing and discussing the floral arrangement/artwork pairings in real-time with family and friends in other cities, states, and countries! A true gift of virtual technology that keeps on giving because this year Art in Bloom will be archived on Mia’s website for an indefinite period, allowing future discussions among friends, and potential use in classrooms and long-term care facilities.

The new frontier of virtual technology also brought Art in Bloom guests fun videos including two time-lapse videos of floral artists creating their work. Many thanks to Amy Chapman and Karla Newman for the additional effort and hours of filming that went into creating the final product: minute-long video wonders! If you haven’t seen Amy and Karla at work, the videos are worth two minutes of your time.  Prepare to be amazed. Click here to view these as well as a wonderful History of Art in Bloom video charmingly narrated by Friend Theresa Luterbach, and four testimonials from florist Cana Potter, Mia guard Tim Petrowski, Friend Carolyn Dahl (daughter of Art in Bloom founder Phyllis Colwell), and local influencers the Minnevangelists.  These short videos remind us all of why we are Friends and why our financial support and service is not only a gift to Mia, but to the broader community.

Commercial Floral Artists—A non virtual Art in Bloom experience!

Even though Art in Bloom 2021 was virtual this year, the sight and smell of real flowers were still a part of this event through the efforts of 12 Commercial Florists. These businesses created beautiful installations at their storefronts ranging from interpretations of Floral Legacy to a bicycle vignette. One installation even included a salon chair with a floral hair drying hood!

A big shout out and a huge thank you to: Acanthus Floral Art, Joy De Fleur Floral Design, Lake Harriet Florist, Martha’s Gardens, Blommonster, Studio Louise Flowers, Ergo Floral, Arts & Flowers Design Studio, Gerten’s Greenhouses, Tangletown Gardens, Best Wishes Floral, and Bachman’s Floral.

One of our commercial florists summed up this year’s Art in Bloom experience by saying, “I think it was a creative way to let the commercial florists continue to be involved with the event, even though it was virtual. It provided a great opportunity for people to get “out” and do something unique while staying safe and not having the health and safety concerns of a large event.”

Top Ten Reasons to attend virtual Art in Bloom

Art in Bloom Chair Barb Champ channels David Letterman with her “top ten” list.

Barb Champ, Art in Bloom 2021 Chairperson

10. No social distancing or masking required

9. No need to search for parking

8. Jumping on the website in your pajama’s is cool

7. Seasonal allergies will not negatively impact your experience

6. Eating a meal or enjoying a cup of coffee or cocktail/mocktail while participating is completely acceptable

5. Creating a beautiful fresh floral arrangement at home without ever having to leave your house

4. Your visit to Art in Bloom will not be cut short to let your pet out

3. Partake in lectures and docent tours, all free of cost

2. View beautiful floral arrangements any time of the day or night

And (drumroll, please) the number one reason to attend virtual Art in Bloom? You can help keep this tradition alive and easily donate via the website from your personal device.  You can feel good that your gift will support and sustain Mia’s collections and programs during this year of extraordinary pandemic disruption.  Know that your contributions to the Friends are more welcome and gratefully accepted than ever this year.

2021 Virtual Art in Bloom 

Enjoy the spirit-boosting floral interpretations, speakers, and workshops you expect, in virtual form. 

Virtual Art in Bloom

April 28–May 2, 2021

The beautiful blooms, creativity, camaraderie, and more move online this year!

Join us for our perennial spring fundraiser presented by the Friends of the Institute at Mia. Now in its 38th year, this beloved event offers the same caliber of day-brightening floral interpretations, speakers, and workshops you expect, only this year all the fun will be found online at


Wednesday, April 28

View photos of nearly 100 floral interpretations of Mia artworks 

View Art in Bloom signature DIY cocktail/mocktail recipe, crafted by Norseman Distillery

Daily docent-led Zoom tours (must pre-register)* 

Thursday, April 29

View photos of floral interpretations of Mia artworks 

Daily docent-led Zoom tours (must pre-register)*

10AM – 6PM Commercial Floral Artist displays open for viewing at select Twin Cities locations

11AM Bachman’s floral ZOOM workshop with delivered-to-home kits ($75, must pre-register)*

7PM  Panel featuring Holly Young, creator of Floral Legacy,  artist Graci Horne, and Jill Ahlberg Yohe, Mia’s associate curator of Native American art (must pre-register)*

Friday, April 30

View photos of floral interpretations of Mia artworks 

Daily docent-led Zoom tours (must pre-register)*

9AM – 6PM Commercial Floral Artist displays open for viewing at select Twin Cities locations

11AM Bachman’s floral ZOOM workshop with delivered-to-home kits ($75, must pre-register)*

7PM Lecture by retired FBI agent Deborah Pierce on floral art heists (must pre-register)*

Saturday, May 1

View photos of floral interpretations of Mia artworks 

Daily docent-led Zoom tours (family-friendly, must pre-register)*

9AM – 5PM Commercial Floral Artist displays open for viewing at select Twin Cities locations

Sunday, May 2

View photos of floral interpretations of Mia artworks 

Daily docent-led Zoom tours (family-friendly, must pre-register)*

*Registration for all events will open here starting April 5.


Pedestal Floral Artists lean into digital Art in Bloom

Mia curators offer an unprecedented number of artworks to PFAs 

Art In Bloom floral artists at work

Pedestal floral artists (PFAs) are the heart of Art in Bloom. They enthusiastically plan and execute floral interpretations of Mia artworks and engage with Art in Bloom visitors. 

This year is no exception, and all the more remarkable, because nearly 100 PFAs will be creating floral arrangements that can only be viewed online, starting April 28. 

PFAs feel honored to create floral arrangements that are admired in situ next to beloved artworks. In a typical year, the weight of this privilege coincides with apprehension that their floral work is a worthy complement to the artwork interpreted. For virtual Art in Bloom, PFAs have the added challenge of designing a floral arrangement that translates well to a two-dimensional photograph. This is no small feat. 

Many thanks are due to the generous PFAs who continue to contribute their artistry and time to make Art in Bloom special every year.

This year, Mia curators offered an unprecedented number of artworks for PFAs to select from. No fresh flowers in the museum means no water, no pollen, and fewer rules, allowing the curators to make textiles, photographs, and works on paper available for interpretation. As a result, half of the works selected by PFAs this year are “not on view” in the galleries. Our Art in Bloom 2021 PFAs, by pairing florals with rarely seen works, will expose visitors to a new perspective on Mia’s encyclopedic collection.