February 2018

Art and Architecture Tour Goes to Washington, DC!

Calling all Friends! Friends go to Washington, DC in June 2018. Come with us!

The 2018 Arts and Architecture trip, open to all Friends members, is to Washington, DC this June and we want you to join us. We have planned private Friends Only tours of some of DC’s best knows museums and cultural venues as well as private tours of several hidden gems.
The trip promises dinners and receptions in settings you can’t get into on your own as well as a special event: Cori Wegener, a former assistant curator at Mia will host us at the Society of the Blue Shield, a division of the Smithsonian. Here she will tell us about many success stories saving national treasures in war torn areas around the world and show us around their conservation lab. We’ve even obtained tickets to the Phillips Collection After Hours to hear live jazz set among their collection!
Click here for more details. If you have any further questions, please call Vanessa Blaisdell at Carrousel Travel 612.866.2503.  Call soon as it promises to be a great trip and there are only a few spots left.

Bring Your Friends to Meet Your Friends

Help grow Friends membership this month by bringing your friends to Mia with you.
Bring friends to Mia in February and introduce them to the Friends. It’s a great time to escape the cold temperatures and enjoy yourselves at Mia while helping our Friends membership to increase each month by encouraging our friend to join us at Mia.
Be sure to attend the Friends Lecture Series in Pillsbury Auditorium on Thursday, February 8 at 11PM. Mia Curator and Head of the Department of Photography and New Media, Yasufumi Nakamori will present “Exploring Humanity through ‘The Family of Man’.”
While on your way to the auditorium:

  • Stop by Miao Clothing and Jewelry from China on exhibit in Gallery 218,
  • Look at “I Am Somali”: Three Visual Artists from the Twin Cities in Gallery 255,
  • Wander up to Gallery 353 to an exhibit of Minnesota artist George Morrison: Drawings and Small Paintings,
  • Stay for the 1PM public tour of A Celebration of African Art in History.  

The Friends support the museum in many ways, by providing free public lectures, buses to bring schoolchildren to the museum for docent tours, artwork for the permanent collection, and funding for innovative children’s art education programs. Our major fundraiser, Art in Bloom, helps to make this support possible. To become a member, follow this link.

Exploring Humanity through the Family of Man (1955) as Traveled to Japan and Minneapolis

Yasufumi Nakamori, PhD, Curator and Head of the Department of Photography and New Media at Mia, will speak on February 8 as part of the Friends Lecture Series sponsored by the Friends of the Institute.
Yasufumi Nakamori, PhD, Curator and Head of the Department of Photography and New Media.

Yasufumi Nakamori will speak on February 8 at Mia as part of the Friends Lecture Series sponsored by the Friends of the Institute.
In 1955, this museum hosted a traveling exhibition called “The Family of Man,” a blockbuster curated by the Museum of Modern Art in New York. (You can read an appreciation about it here.) An array of 503 black-and-white photographs, from postcard to billboard size, filled Mia’s galleries with the relatively new art form.
Photography galleries in the Minneapolis Institute of Art are fascinating rooms to spend time. From “old friends” often visited in many familiar photographs, to intriguing video installations, to very contemporary images, a visitor can count on art pieces stretching the imagination and demanding introspective thoughts.
Yasufumi Nakamori, Curator and Head of the Department of Photography and New Media at Mia, is tasked with filling these galleries with the brilliant treasures of the museum’s collection as well as the tentacles he possesses throughout the world to obtain the great loans on exhibit.
Free tickets are available for this lecture for Friends members and the public now through artsmia.org or 612.870.6323. Overflow seating is available.

Friends Only Book Club meets Friday February 16

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Perla by Carolina De Robertis

The Friends Only Book Club will meet to discuss Perla by Carolina De Robertis on February 16.
The Friends Only Book Club will meet Friday, February 16 for 10:30AM docent tour and 11:30AM discussion of Carolina De Robertis’ novel, Perla (2012). Meet us at 10:30AM in the Curtis L. Carlson Family Foundation Studio (114) for our docent tour, then 11:30-12:30 discussion over coffee, tea, and treats.
“Perla, sheltered as an Argentine university student and naval officer’s daughter, seeks her moral compass as family secrets of her father’s support of Argentina’s Dirty War unravel.” For a full review click here.
If you’re new to Friends, or just haven’t come to Friends Only Book Club, this month’s book is a great incentive! Please join us on February 16. For more information contact Jeanne Scheiderer and Ellen Archibald at friendsonlyevents@artsmia.org.

What to Give the Person who doesn't need anything? A School Bus!

Pam Friedland's grandson, Asher,
Pam Friedland’s grandson, Asher, is delighted to play with great-grandmom’s yellow bus!

Or “The Story of How Great-Grandma Got a Birthday Bus!”
Many of us puzzle over the perfect birthday gift for a loved one who says, “Oh, I don’t need a thing!”—and mean it.  Pam Friedland solved the problem creatively, with the gift of a “school bus” to Mia for her mom’s birthday.
As a docent and former Friends President Pam has seen on many levels the life-changing effect a visit to Mia can have on kids who have never been to a museum.  “For some, this is their very first real encounter with fine art.  Seeing our beautiful galleries and being led by a friendly, accepting guide makes what could be intimidating into a warm, personal experience. And often, these kids take ownership of the art they’ve seen. They love attending the museum with their families, sharing their new-found knowledge,” Pam said.
So Pam’s daughter, Stephanie Goldman, and grandchildren Asher (pictured) and Greyson, presented the gift of a bus to Pam’s Mom, Joyce Martin, for her birthday. Joyce was delighted that her birthday gift was also a gift to schoolchildren, while Asher and Greyson were delighted to play with Great-Grandma’s yellow school bus.
This past year 65  bus grants were made to underserved schools in the Twin Cities. These grants are essential to these schools so that their students have the opportunity to tour Mia’s outstanding art collection and to be inspired by the wonder of art. Each grant is funded by the Friends Transportation Fund, made possible by each $175 gift to the fund. As a token of the gift, each recipient is given a toy-sized yellow school bus!
Solve your gift giving-problems by calling the Friends Office (612.870.3045) to buy a bus for $175.  Remember, it’s nearly Valentine’s Day!

For Luck, What does it mean to you?

Examine Rick Bartow’s drawing at a most personal level in this month’s Collection Connection.

By Susan Arndt, Mia docent

For Luck, 2003
Rick Bartow

What do you see when you look at Rick Bartow’s drawing, For Luck?  How does it make you feel?  What do you see that makes you say that? Take a minute and really look.
To people who are not familiar with the contemporary artist Rick Bartow, he can seem to be an enigma.  His work can be pleasingly puzzling or downright unnerving, and capable of taking any viewer on a journey, if you are willing to go.
Friends of Bartow’s have described his process as intuitive, frenzied, consuming, messy.  Bartow seemed to thrive on the mystery of the origin of inspiration.  To him, it was a cherished gift that passed through him to the viewer.  Bartow said, “Once it begins, the battle is on! The many marks go back and forth until the war is done. It must play out until resolution, and make cognitive the blindly thrashing marks, line, and color.”  What is left in the wake of creation is to be interpreted personally by all.  The meaning will be the one you attach to it.
Music was also an inspiration to Bartow and a big part of his life. He was both a writer and performer and called music another extension of expression.  A musician from a young age, Bartow was tasked with playing music to the dying during his tour of duty in Vietnam.  The exposure left him broken.  It was his art, music, and heritage that he turned to for healing.
Themes in Bartow’s work have dealt with the emotional pain mined from his life.  PTSD, addiction, loss, personal transformation, and redemption.  Charles Froelick, who represented Bartow when he was living and now represents his estate, has called Bartow “an artistic omnivore, constantly searching the internal and external worlds for emotional, spiritual, intellectual, and poetic inspiration.” Bartow was influenced by artists such as Fritz Scholder, Francis Bacon, John Bevon Ford, and Joe David.  He had also traveled extensively, to Mexico, Japan, Germany, and Africa. Collaborating with others,  studying storytelling traditions and world mythology added to the rich traditions embedded in his Native American roots.
As a member of the Mad River Band of Wiyot from the Humboldt Bay area of northern California; his visual language included the shape-shifting tricksters Raven, Owl, Coyote, and Bear. Though his work contains Native American imagery, it defies categorization.  The genius of Rick Bartow is that he was a careful observer bringing together many influences and drawing on universal truths to create stories that speak to our very being. His travels teaching him that in this world, people are more alike than not.

Thank You Rochester Friends

Coffee and treats provided by our “Southern” neighbors.
At all Friends monthly lectures during the 2017–2018 season, guests enjoy coffee and treats provided through funds donated by the Rochester Friends. To experience this hospitality yourself, come to the Regis Fountain Court before the lecture.
Thank you to Rochester for providing this treat. Join us in thanking them for this welcome gesture of hospitality!

The Center of Everything: A New History of Chicago Art

On Thursday, March 8, Mia’s Patrick and Aimee Butler Curator of Paintings, Robert Cozzolino will speak as part of the Friends Lecture Series sponsored by the Friends of the Institute.
Visiting the Art Institute of Chicago as a high school student affirmed his fascination with the field of art. When viewing great paintings this time, instead of dinosaurs, Cozzolino felt himself “lost inside the image, with reality quieted and faded at the edges.”  To this day, art retains that capacity for him to transform daily encounters in rather delightful, and yet harrowing terms.

Robert Cozzolino, Patrick and Aimee Butler Curator of Paintings at Mia
Robert Cozzolino, Patrick and Aimee Butler Curator of Paintings at Mia

Cozzolino states his family has been a bit baffled by what a curator actually does. Of course, they develop a sense of his accomplishments when viewing exhibitions he creates, but Cozzolino tries to clarify his job description with a list of 90 adjectives. For example, he sees a curator just to name a very few, as an accomplice, conductor, defender, diplomat, dismantler, educator, gatherer, instigator, juggler, magician, orator, strategist, tight-rope-walker, and weathervane.
Gaining his knowledge to be all of these indeed may have started when Cozzolino earned his Ph.D. from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. His work on American art placed emphasis on alternative traditions, often being termed the “curator of the dispossessed” when championing the underrepresented artist as well as the uncommon perspectives of well-known artists.
Cozzolino has joined Mia as the Patrick and Aimee Butler Curator of Paintings. His extensive experience with American painters has been an exceptional asset for the museum. Previous to this appointment, Cozzolino was the senior curator of Modern Art at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts. There he enjoyed extraordinary success in gaining over 1000 objects as gifts, as well as a dedication to increasing representation of female artists for the Academy’s collection.
Free tickets are available for this lecture starting Thursday, February 15 for Friends members through artsmia.org or 612.870.6323. Tickets are available February 17 for the general public. Overflow seating is available.