December 2021

President’s Letter

Dear Members,

In late November the ambient light has changed and moody skies invite reflection. It’s a special time for families and friends to gather, celebrate traditions and share savory meals. I am thankful for many things including my talented Board of Directors, our Operations Coordinator Claire Goulson, and the supportive staff at Mia. 

We are looking forward to Mia resuming regular hours. Starting Tuesday, November 23, Mia will be open every day from 10-5, and open Thursday evenings until 9 pm (closed on Mondays).

In December, Friends will have the opportunity to mingle in person at our appreciation sale. This happens on Wednesday, December 1 and Thursday, December 2 in the Wells Fargo Room from 10am – 5pm. This sale is open to Friends members and Mia staff. These are new items purchased for the AIB 2020, an event that was canceled due to Covid-19.

On January 20, 1922, 45 women met in the museum’s boardroom to officially form Friends of the Institute. On January 20, 2022, exactly one hundred years later, Friends plan to celebrate in a very special way. Look for your invitation to an in-person lecture and birthday luncheon to arrive in the mail. Dr. Eike Schmidt, Director of the Uffizi Galleries, will be the speaker. Current members will receive a beautiful complimentary coffee-table book Friends for 100 Years. Ticket sales open December 10. Don’t miss this festive event. 

I look forward to seeing you in person very soon. 

Centennial History Publication Column: Stepping Back in Time

Holiday Shopping on the Mind?

In 1956, Friends were asked to be in charge of ordering and sales of artwork reproductions primarily sold at the museum’s Sales and Information Desk. So, it was a natural transition to be asked by then Mia director Richard Davis, to run the museum’s gift shop. Friends agreed to take on this huge responsibility. Until the mid-1990s, Friends managed all hiring, staffing, accounting, selling, buying, and payroll duties for the museum shop. Profits were designated for Mia to cover costs of special projects. At the height of this time period, more than 60 Friends volunteers filled scheduled hours.

To maintain consistency in the duties and performance of volunteers, each volunteer received “The Museum Shop Volunteer Book of Knowledge.” As mentioned in the first page of the manual, “We are not a small shop run ‘for fun.’ We are a major contributor to the Acquisitions Fund of Mia. The Friends are extremely necessary to the well-being of the shop.”

The manual continues with general advice regarding restroom breaks, mentioning a volunteer never goes to the restroom or takes a break when there are 50 people in the shop. Also, volunteers are “never afraid of rain, sleet, snow, spiders, or dust!” In terms of expected attire: “We love to see you looking beautiful, but practicality must reign. Our new carpet is very nice to stand on, but comfortable shoes are a must. The climate of the shop varies quite a great deal. The best way to dress is in layers–you never know—sometimes we take off and sometimes adding on is a necessity.” Food is discouraged in the shop proper, and cigarettes may be enjoyed with the available coffee in the staff lounge. 

The manual continues to state that volunteers are not expected to know everything, but please ask if an answer is needed: “Never lie to a customer—they may know more than we think.” Never express negative comments to a potential buyer trying on jewelry. “We all have different tastes…keep comments in your head. And she who slammeth jewelry drawers, spendeth long hours straightening them!” And most importantly, we all know jewelry is lovely, but try them on while you are not working! And finally, keep those jewelry drawers locked: “We trust no one!”

One additional comment from the extensive volunteer manual recommends volunteers do not shop while on duty. “While you shop, so does the shoplifter. Thanks be to those who do not!”

Lastly, but perhaps most important, the volunteer manual stresses  “development and maintenance of a professional attitude in interactions with customers, staff members, and other museum shop employees. A positive outlook is contagious!”

Over the years, many treasures and gifts have been purchased in the museum’s gift shop to celebrate special occasions.  Now it’s time for Friends to commemorate and celebrate its own treasures on its 100th birthday that will take place on January 20, 2022. What better way to celebrate this milestone than attending the January lecture featuring Dr. Eike Schmidt, director of the Uffizi Galleries in Florence, followed by a ticketed luncheon filled with celebration. At this luncheon, each current Friends member will receive a complimentary copy of the Friends centennial publication, Friends of 100 Years, A Lasting Legacy.

 Centennial History Publication Committee

Pamela Friedland
Linda Goldenberg
Mary Merrick
Suzanne Payne
Connie Sommers

Delacroix Pledge Update

The Friends of the Institute, in celebration of their 100th anniversary, pledged a gift of $1,050,000 for the Eugene Delacroix’s Still Life in Dahlias, Hollyhocks and Plums (detail), c. 1835.

$1,050,000 goal will bring the Delacroix into full bloom! $747,613 raised to date!

 

 

 

$747,613 raised to date

 

 

 

 

As the Friends celebrate their legacy with this beautiful gift to Mia in their centennial year, the progress made towards fulfilling our commitment will be featured by bringing the painting into full bloom with generous gifts from you! Thanks to those who contributed $2,000 since last month!

Checks can be made out to “Friends of the Institute” and sent to the Friends office. Please indicate that your donation is for the Delacroix Fund. For gifts other than checks, please contact the Friends Office for assistance by calling 612-870-3045.
Our address is: Friends of the Institute, Minneapolis Institute of Art
2400 Third Avenue South, Minneapolis, MN 55404

December Friends Lecture

December 9, 2021 11:00 am

Zoom

Ticket Price: Free

Rose B. Simpson

Rose Simpson’s work is powerful, earthy, with an independent voice.  Born in 1983, she comes from the Santa Clara Pueblo in New Mexico, famous for ceramics the women have produced since the 6th century, C.E.  She is a mixed-media artist, whose work includes ceramics, sculpture, metals, fashion, performances, music, installation, writing, and custom cars.

Rose still lives and works in the pueblo where she was born. It is the center of her world, the center of the earth, and where she finds inspiration.  Her life and her work goals are to find the tools to use to heal the damages she has experienced as a human being in our postmodern and post-colonial era objectification.  These tools are sculptural works of art that have a healing function that she hopes will become useful for everyone.

She is the daughter of Roxanne Swentzell, a renowned sculptor, and metal artist, and Patrick Simpson a wood, and metal sculptor.  Rose received an MFA in ceramics from the Rhode Island School of Design, an MFA in creative nonfiction from the Institute of American Indian Arts, and while an artist in residence at the Denver Art Museum, she acquired a certificate in auto body in the New Mexico College automotive science program.  With that knowledge she customized a lowrider car, painted it in the black on black style of Maria Martinez, another well known pueblo artist, named it “Maria,” and installed it at the entrance to the Hearts of our People exhibit at Mia a few years ago.

It can be said that Rose Simpson’s work is ultimately about the human condition.  She is forced to grapple with cultural insensibility, but sees the fight against the racial determination of her work as a privileged engagement.  Some of the decisions she makes are intentional to deconstruct stereotypes around culture and gender.

Rose B. Simpson is an exciting, creative, expressive, skilled, thoughtful person who uses her art to express her thoughts, ideas, and feelings about the issues that are important to her and, she hopes, to everyone.

We have the privilege of seeing, and hearing her virtually December 9 at 11 am via Zoom. Please join us.

Get Tickets

You’re Invited: Friends Appreciation Sale

Mark your calendars! To show our appreciation, the leadership of the Friends of the Institute are hosting a holiday sale exclusively for Friends members and Mia staff.

Stop by the museum on December 1 or 2 when merchandise from the 2019 and 2020 Art in Bloom shops will be sold at 50% off. Come and browse large and small home décor, kitchen items, garden tools, and women’s apparel and accessories. Note that 2019 merchandise has already been marked down to sell, and 2020 merchandise was never sold publicly.

When: 
December 1–2
10 am to 5 pm

Where: 
Wells Fargo Community Room

Minneapolis Institute of Art
2400 3rd Ave S
Minneapolis, MN 55404

More information on directions and parking here.

What you need to know:
Credit card purchases only.
All sales are final. No refunds or exchanges.
We are unable to hold merchandise.

We strongly encourage you to bring your own bags. Limited paper bags will be available. Wrapping stations will be available if you wish to wrap your purchases.

Please reach out to the Friends office at friends@artsmia.org if you have additional questions. We hope to see you at the sale!

Friends Only Tour with Mia Guide Mary McMahon

December 1, 2021 11:00 am

THIS EVENT HAS PASSED

Zoom

Ticket Price: Free

Join us to “Journey into Blue” 

You’re invited to our December tour on Wednesday, December 1 at 11 AM on Zoom. This month, we welcome our speaker, Mary McMahon, from the Mia 2015 Docent class.

Mary will join us for the hour to present this month’s topic: “Journey into Blue.” Through an art history lens we will explore the color blue and its never-ending fascination for artists through the centuries.

Space is limited to 30 participants. RSVP by Monday, November 29 to friends@artsmia.org or phone: 612-870-3045.

This event is a Friends Only Event. Join the Friends today and attend the event!

Join The Friends