Summer 2015

Welcome to the New Digital Newsletter

Welcome to the new version of the Friends digital newsletter. There are many new and important features. To make things easier, this content will always be available via the Site Navigation page, more on that below.
One of the important features added to the new format is the ability to filter the articles in two different ways.
• The Newsletter has a “Category” feature. The email you receive each month will include a link for the current issue. The email also includes a link for the newsletter site.
• The Newsletter also has a “Tag” feature
Categories are a filtering feature. Each month all articles will be categorized by the month they are published. To view the newsletter one month at a time click the provided link. To view specific categories click to discover all articles written in that same category. For example, clicking Collection Connection all Collection Connection articles will appear. This feature allows all articles to appear in one location. Readers may navigate back to the main newsletter by clicking the Home tab or clicking on the Friends logo.
Another filter feature available is article tagging. When an article is tagged it has been set into a smaller group of a category. The tags allow readers to view other articles with the same tag. For example, articles about the category Friends Funds will show all articles about Friends Funds. Clicking the Transportation Fund tag, will filter the funds articles showing only Transportation Fund articles. Tags will also filter by year. To read about Art in Bloom 2015, and not other Art in Bloom years, click the tag AIB 2015. The tag feature will become more helpful as content is added year after year into the same categories.
In the new format readers will notice the tabs at the top of the newsletter. By clicking the tabs readers will discover many important sections called pages. Pages are available for ordering tickets, accessing past lectures, new Friends members list, gifts to Friends and many other sections.
The new Newsletter is directly linked to the Friends website for readers looking for more Friends information. The website includes information about upcoming events, lectures, Friends funds, membership, and history of the Friends organization. Readers may navigate to the website by click on the “Friends Homepage” link on the left hand information side bar of the Newsletter. If you are on the Friend’s website, you can go directly to the newsletter by clicking, the Newsletter tab.


Sponsored by the Mark and Mary Goff Fiterman Lecture Fund
Gloria Groom:   “Impressionism: Dressing the Model, Muse and Mistress.”

Gloria Groom
Gloria Groom

Pierre-Auguste Renoir’s mistress, featured in more than thirty paintings wearing the most up-to-the minute fashions, served as Renoir’s calling card by advertising the artist as a painter of modern life. Gloria Groom, Senior Curator, David and Mary Winton Green, Curator of Nineteenth Century European Painting and Sculpture at the Art Institute of Chicago, will present such a story as part of her lecture, ”Impressionism: Dressing the Model, Muse and Mistress.”
The Impressionists portrayed modern life in their paintings and included modern styles of fashion. In the second half of the nineteenth century, the modern fashion industry was born and designers were transforming how clothing was made and marketed, department stores were on the rise, and fashion magazines began to proliferate. Both visual artists such as Claude Monet and Berthe Morisot and writers like Charles Baudelaire and Émile Zola were excited by the new fashion industry and the sense of style and modernity that was becoming so popular in Paris. These artists and writers expressed the new fashions in their paintings and literary works.
Gloria Groom, organizing curator of the internationally acclaimed exhibition “Impressionism, Fashion, and Modernity”—the first exhibition to uncover the fascinating relationship between art and fashion from the mid-1860s through the mid-1880s as Paris became the style capital of the world—presents a new perspective on the Impressionists, revealing how these early avant-garde artists embraced fashion trends as they sought to capture modern life on canvas.
Groom joined the Art Institute as a research assistant in 1984 and served as an assistant, then associate curator of European painting. In 1988, she was appointed the David and Mary Winton Green Curator, overseeing the museum’s renowned collection of nineteenth century painting and sculpture. An expert in French Impressionist and Post-Impressionist art, especially the work of artists Pierre Bonnard and Edouard Vuillard, Groom has published extensively in catalogues and journals. She isthe author of the monograph Edouard Vuillard: Painter-Decorator: Patrons and Projects, 1892–1912 (1993) and author and editor of, among other works, Beyond the Easel: Decorative Painting by Bonnard, Vuillard, Denis, and Roussel, 1890–1930 (2001) and Impressionism, Fashion, and Modernity (2012). Additionally she is the coeditor and coauthor of The Age of French Impressionism: Masterpieces from the Art Institute of Chicago (2008). Groom has curated and co-curated 11 exhibitions at the Art Institute, including Impressionism, Fashion, and Modernity (2013); Cézanne to Picasso: Ambroise Vollard, Patron of the Avant-Garde (2006–07); and Gustave Caillebotte: Urban Impressionist (1995).  She was named Officier dans l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres for her significant contributions to French art and culture. A member of the Midwest Art Historians Society, the Arts Club of Chicago, and the Association for Historians of Nineteenth Century Art, Groom also has served as a trustee for the Association of Art Curators since 2009. She received her B.A. from the University of Oklahoma, Norman, and her M.A. and Ph.D. from the University of Texas at Austin. Groom received a diploma from the École du Louvre and was a 2009 Fellow of the Center for Curatorial Leadership. In July of 2015 Groom received a prestigious honor from the French President and was named Chevalier (Knight), of the Legion of Honor.

Make sure to get your ticket to the luncheon following the lecture.  The menu will be posted once determined. Follow this link for reservations to both the lecture and luncheon starting August 15th:

For more information on ticketing, please see the Ticketing Information page.

Speakers for Friends Lecture Series

Sponsored by the Mark and Mary Goff Fiterman Lecture Fund
Sept. 10, 2015: “Impressionism: Dressing the Model, Muse and Mistress”
Gloria Groom, the David and Mary Winton Curator of 19th Century Painting and Sculpture at the Chicago Institute of Art who created the highly successful recent exhibition, “Impressionism, Fashion and Modernity,” will enlighten us with stories of the impact fashion had on the Impressionist and how they captured the Paris fashion scene.
Oct. 8, 2015: “Van Gogh: The Artist and the Man”
Axel Rüger, Director of the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam, will give us new insights into one of the most famous and intriguing painters of all time. He will share the technical research and how the Van Gogh Museum is giving us new ways to appreciate Vincent Van Gogh.
Nov. 12, 2015: “Seeing Clearly: What Photography Reveals about Native American Identity and Perception”
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.
Dec. 10, 2015: “The Corset: Fashioning the Body”
Valerie Steele, Director of the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York City as well as a fashion historian and curator, gives a fun, innovative and academic perspective on undergarments for women through history. Steele is known as the “Freud of fashion.”
Jan. 14, 2016: “Cellini and Renaissance Jewelry”
Denise Allen, Curator of Sculpture and Decorative Arts at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City, and former curator of Renaissance painting and sculpture at the Frick Collection, will dazzle us with stories of Renaissance jewelry.
Feb. 11, 2016: “The Art of Building Community”
Theaster Gates, Director of Arts and Public Life at the University of Chicago, and internationally renowned Social Practice Installation Artist, fuses the art world with community activism in a new approach to dealing with urban issues in communities.
March 10, 2016: “Poussin’s Death of Germanicus: Staging Roman History in Papal Rome”
Sebastian Schütze, Professor of Art History at the University of Vienna, Austria, is an expert on Baroque art as well as Italian art and culture. He is widely published in academic research which includes, Poussin and Caravaggio. He will have wonderful insights into the MIA’s Death of Germanicus by Poussin.
April 14, 2016: “Historic Rooms and Museums: Romance, Reality and Relevance”
Thomas Savage, Director of Museum Affairs at the Winterthur Museum in Delaware, will enlighten us with colorful anecdotes, historical details and insights that bring the past to life.
May 12, 2016: “Tales of Stolen Art”
Chris Marinello, founder and CEO of Art Recovery Group in London, formerly the general counsel for The Art Loss Register, will share stories of art recovered after being seized by the Nazis as well as many other high profile art thefts and recoveries.

Lecture Day Tour for Friends Members

Please join us for the first Friends-Only pre-lecture tour of the 2015-2016 season. The tour complements Gloria Groom’s September 10 lecture Impressionism: Dressing the Model, Muse and Mistress.
Space is limited and these popular tours fill quickly, so please reserve your tour spot with the Friends-Only Events co-chair, Shelly McGinnis. Email is preferred: or call 612-735-6828 on or after the 15th. You will receive a confirmation. Confirmed names do NOT need to reserve a ticket through the MIA for the Fiterman lectures. Tours will be filled on a first come/first served basis. Tours begin promptly at 10:00 a.m. so please arrive early at the MIA meeting place in the Third Avenue Lobby under the Chihuly Sun. Tour participants will receive lecture tickets with reserved seating at the end of the tour.
We ask that you cancel your tour RSVP if a conflict arises; we anticipate a waiting list.

A Letter from Friends President Connie Sommers

Hello Friends!
Connie SommersThe days of summer have arrived, but they are neither lazy nor hazy in the Friends office. As a new board begins their work, the Friends lecture series kicks off with a new slate of speakers on September 10th. Tickets will be available beginning August 15th. Kate, our office administrator, celebrates her one year anniversary with us. I am honored to begin my term as your President.
July marks the halfway point of the MIA’s 100 Birthday Year’s celebration and surprises. The excitement around the museum is palpable and continues to build. Friends can be proud of their $500,000 support of this once in a lifetime experience. It’s not over yet, and in many ways just beginning. I look forward to the second half of this celebration year.
Plans are progressing for a full calendar of events for Friends’ friends. There will be something of interest for everyone. So please stay in touch and drop by the Friends office. We’d love to see you. Coffee’s always hot and the chocolate dish is full.
Enjoy the remainder of summer,
Connie Sommers

Friends-Only Book Club

Plan to attend Friends-only Book Club. Join us on Friday, September 18 at 10:30 a.m. in Studio 114 for a docent-led tour of our first book All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr. The winner of the 2015 Pulitzer Prize for fiction, the book follows the lives of a perceptive blind French girl and an orphaned German boy whose paths cross in occupied France during World War II. Discussion and light treats will follow from 11:30 to 12:30 p.m. Please call the Friends office (612) 870-3045 to register. We have spots for up to 25 members. Friends event co-chair, JeanMarie Burtness, is looking forward to seeing you.
Going forward:
October 16: The Botany of Desire: A Plant’s Eye View of the World by Michael Pollan
November 20: What I Loved by Siri Hustvedt.


Collection Connection this month is dedicated to the exhibition Leonardo Da Vinci, the Codex Leicester. The heart of this rare exhibition is the presentation of one of Leonardo’s original notebooks. There are few people known worldwide for hundreds of years by just one name: Leonardo. The Mona Lisa and The Last Supper come to mind when one hears his name, but additionally he is known as an architect, engineer, scientist and philosopher of magnificent proportion. He was curious about weather, geology, rivers and mountains and his notebooks reflect this appetite. His clever observations of the world were documented in detailed notebooks that during the Renaissance did not become fully known because he was always drawn by new experiments and inventions. In this view of these extraordinary notes one will see Leonardo’s left handed writing from right to left on the pages. Reading is accomplished with the use of a mirror.
Visiting Leonardo’s work one will see a section on the power of water. His notebook reveals his obsessive observations with the issues of water.

Leonardo da Vinci and the Power of Observation (Codex Leicester)
The Codex Leicester [detail], 1510 Leonardo Da Vinci, Italian Codex manuscript Courtesy Bill Gates / ©bgC3
Bill Gates, who owns the Codex Leicester, wrote: “[Leonardo’s] scientific ‘notebooks’ are awe inspiring not simply as repositories of his remarkable ideas but as records of a great mind at work. In the pages of the Codes Leicester he frames important questions, tests concepts, confronts challenges and strives for answers.” (In Preface to Leonardo Lives, Seattle Art Museum, 1997).
The Codex Leicester is  paired with contemporary artists whose work resonates with Leonardo’s interests and creative practice. Bill Viola’s video, The Raft, puts viewers in Leonardo’s shoes as we watch the force of water crashing against a crowd of people in beautiful slow motion. Viola’s planning notebook, also on view, shows us how he created it. Watching water powerfully circle around objects may have also mesmerized many of us but the curious Leonardo asks the question, why.
Guest will also enjoy see Scott Olson’s creations. The following video will introduce readers to his contemporary creations: Scotty Olson video
Leonardo The Creative Mind is a not to be missed exhibit running June 21 – August 30, 2015 at the Minneapolis Institute of Art.  A great way to connect to our permanent collection:
Lead Sponsors: 3M, Thomson Reuters, Fredrikson & Byron, P.A., Sit Investment Associates
Major Sponsor: Delta Air Lines
Generous Supporter: Carlson Family Foundation
Media Partner: Star Tribune
Additional support provided by the Italian Cultural Center of Minneapolis/St. Paul.
MIA 100th Birthday Year Presented by: Best Buy Co., Inc., Friends of the Institute, U.S. Bank

Art in Bloom 2015 Was A Success

Pictured above from left to right: Cathy Steyaert, Pamela Friedland, Connie Sommers and Barbara Edin at the Bachmans Floral Workshop.
The 32nd Art in Bloom was a welcome gift to the community. Over 41,000 people visited the museum during Art in Bloom, which was an attendance record-setter for the Minneapolis Institute of Arts. It was made possible because of the outstanding volunteer efforts of more than 500 volunteers. Thank you to our dedicated Art in Bloom Committee which has been planning all year. Thank you also to the volunteers who worked tirelessly to ensure that all the events and activities ran smoothly. Much appreciation goes to the Pedestal Floral Artists and the Commercial Florists for their beautiful arrangements and displays. They captured our imaginations and delighted us with their creativity. Kudos to Kate Smith, Friends Office Administrator, for her hard work and superlative organizational skills, along with all the efforts of the Friends interns, Caroline Byrd and Kaitlin Gross. What great support they provided! We thank Pamela Friedland, for her valuable guidance throughout the planning process. We also acknowledge the amazing support of our Art in Bloom Advisors, Carolyn Dahl, Betsey Whitbeck, and Carol Burton Gray. Our appreciation would not be complete without thanking the hardworking staff of the MIA who worked with us to help ensure that Art in Bloom would be successful. We could not have done it without their topnotch teamwork. In closing, we are pleased that Art in Bloom raised much needed funding to support transportation for K-12 students to come to the MIA. A big thank you to all the volunteers who helped make the 32nd Art in Bloom so successful.
JeanMarie Burtness and Arna Yetter, Art in Bloom 2015 Co-Chairs

Co-Chairs with Signature Image and floral arrangement by Julie Holland.
Co-Chairs with Signature Image and floral arrangement by Julie Holland.

Lead Sponsor: Bachman’s
Honorary Chairs: Teresa Pfister and Joan T. Smith
Generous support provided by Gabberts Design Studio & Fine Furniture, Lakewood Cemetery, Martha Head, Nordic Ware, SpartanNash, Lucy and Bob Mitchell, and Tom and Lynn Schaefer.
Additional support provided by E.M. Birt, Edina Eye Physicians & Surgeons, Olson Law Firm, Caldrea, Helen W. Leslie, Mary Grau, Patty and Sam McCullough, D’Amico Catering, Acendas, Len Busch Roses, Susan Arndt, JeanMarie Burtness, Pamela Friedland, Julie Holland, Katie Remole, Connie Sommers, Arna Yetter, Maxine Wallin, B.T. McElrath Chocolatier, and Prism Research.
Media Partner: OUTFRONT Media

Many thanks to the Art in Bloom 2015 Commercial Floral Artists!

Our local commercial floral artists designed spectacular floral arrangements that appeared outside to greet visitors and throughout the galleries at the Minneapolis Institute of Arts during Art in Bloom in May. These innovative architectural wonders wowed our Art in Bloom visitors with spectacular blossoms and memorable motifs. The extraordinary designs were very popular for photos with family and friends. The Friends of the Institute are extremely grateful to be able to share the work of such talented commercial floral artists during our springtime event.
Please thank the following contributors for their Art in Bloom support when you visit their shops! Acanthus Floral Art, Arts & Flowers Design Studio and Steven Ward, Bachman’s, Best Wishes Floral, Camrose Hill Flower Studio & Farm, Garden Gate Flowers & Studio, GARDENhouse on Maryland, Harvest Home, Hennepin Technical College, Koehler & Dramm Institute of Floristry, Martha’s Gardens, Minneapolis School of Flower Design, Richfield Floral & Gardens, Richfield Flowers and Events, RJKramer Designs, Roger Beck Florist, and Wisteria Design Studio.

Highlights of the Art in Bloom Pedestal Floral Artists

Visitors attending Art in Bloom selected their favorite floral arrangements from over 150 arrangements created by imaginative volunteers. This year over 2,000 people voted. We are pleased to share the winners of the 2015 People’s Choice Awards.
Best Interpretation Winner: Tornado over St. Paul by Mayumi Redin
Honorable Mention: The Poet with the Birds by Amy Chapman
Most Creative Winner: Chariot Finials with Bird by Karla Newman
Honorable Mention: Your Dog by Wendy Lutter and Stephanie Ross
Personal Favorite Winner: Avalokitesvara by Beena Brown
Honorable Mention: Celestial Horse by CandaceMcCloskey, Matt Bierwerth, and Courtney Ashby
The MIA’s Media and Technology team produced a lovely video of Art in Bloom which opens with the MIA’s Guardian Lions decorated with flowers for the Art in Bloom 2015 Birthday Surprise.
Local photographer Jim Nash and volunteer Beth Tesler created a slideshow of the beautiful floral arrangements throughout the museum. Enjoy and be inspired!