The Minneapolis Institute of Arts expansion opens; 34 new galleries

MINNEAPOLIS — The Minneapolis Institute of Arts, one of the nation’s leading encyclopedic art museums, held its grand opening in June for its major expansion and renovation. The redesigned MIA includes a new 113,000-square-foot wing designed by Michael Graves & Associates, and 49,000 square feet of building renovation, which together adds 34 new galleries and nearly 40 percent new exhibition space to the MIA.

William M. Griswold, director and president of the MIA, said, “Our renovated galleries provide one of the most expansive displays of Chinese and Japanese art in this country. Our new wing allows us to showcase our collections of 20th century and even contemporary art, and to host exceptional traveling exhibitions.”

Founded in 1883 by the Minneapolis Society of Fine Arts, the Minneapolis Institute of Arts is situated just south of downtown Minneapolis, occupying a 1915 neoclassical building. An expansion in 1974 added two modern wings to the east and west sides of the original building. The Graves design combines the neoclassical elegance of the MIA’s original building with the stark minimalism of the 1974 addition.

The MIA’s renowned permanent collection of almost 100,000 works of art represents more than 5,000 years of world history. The Chinese collection now occupies 20,000 square feet of gallery space, making it one of the largest installations of Chinese art in the country. Additionally, six new galleries are devoted to a larger and more complete presentation of the museum’s acclaimed Japanese art collection, giving the MIA the largest number of galleries dedicated to Japanese art of any museum in the country.

“The Surreal Calder Exhibition” is on view through Sept. 10. This premiere exhibition explores the Surrealist origins of artist Alexander Calder (1898–1976). While Calder is prominent in the story of modern art, he is rarely seen in the context from which he initially emerged as an artist.

“From Durer to Cassatt: Five Centuries of Master Prints from the Jones Collection” is on view through Sept. 17. This comprehensive exhibition presents the remarkable depth of the Herschel V. Jones Collection, the seminal gift at the core of the museum’s print holdings. Nearly 200 of the world’s most famous engravings, lithographs and woodcuts are featured, including dozens of rarely or never-before-seen masterpieces representing five centuries of printmaking. On view will be works by legendary printmakers such as Andrea Mantegna, Albrecht Durer, Lucas van Leyden, Rembrandt van Rijn, James McNeill Whistler, Mary Cassatt and Kathe Kollwitz.

“Highlights from the Harrison Collection of Fine Photographs” is on view through Oct. 8. This exhibition celebrates the museum’s outstanding photographs collection by showcasing 100 prints by such notable artists as Henri-Cartier Bresson, Dorothea Lange, Robert Frank, Werner Bischoff, Arnold Newman and other figures in the history of 20th-century photography.

The Minneapolis Institute of Arts is located at 2400 Third Ave. S. Museum hours are Sunday, 11 a.m.–5 p.m.; Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday, 10 a.m.–5 p. m.; and Thursday, 10 a. m.–9 p.m.; closed Monday. For additional information, call 612-870-3131 or log onto www.artsmia.org.

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