What’s an art enthusiast to do in Minneapolis? To those unfamiliar with the larger of the Twin Cities, Minneapolis may seem like a drab, dull little hub in the Midwest. However, if you take a closer look, you will see that the city is filled to the brim with endless opportunity and plenty of festivities that will keep you entertained all year round. Here are our top 5 things to do in Minneapolis for art lovers.
Walker Art Center
Globally hailed as an international arts venue, the Walker Art Center is well-known for its extraordinary collection of art across multiple disciplines. The center holds contemporary visual art and design exhibitions, in addition to movie screenings, dance, theater, and music performances. Along with the installations permanently established within the Walker Art Center, admirers are also free to peruse Gallery 9, a digital exhibition that exists online.
Admission to the Walker Art Center is free for everyone under 18 and Walker members, with free general admissions available to the public on Thursday nights (5-9pm) and on the first Saturday of every month.
Additionally, more than 40 works of art from the Walker Art Center reside in the stunning Minneapolis Sculpture Garden. Some examples of well-known pieces in the park include the famous Spoonbridge and Cherry and September Room (Room with Two Reclining Figures and Composition with Long Verticals.) This 11-acre site, located nearby the art center in Parade Park, is known as Minneapolis’ crown jewel, the result of a collaboration between the Walker Art Center and the Minneapolis’ Parks and Recreation Board. The park is perfect for art enthusiasts looking to snap a few pictures.
Unlike the actual art center, the Minneapolis Sculpture Garden is open from 6am till midnight, 365 days a year.
Saint Paul Art Crawl
Though technically not in Minneapolis, the Saint Paul Art Crawl is still essentially a hop, skip, and jump away from Minneapolis, in Saint Paul. The event is also too massive to ignore, especially if you’re a bit of an art buff. This semi-annual event pulls in over 20,000 visitors to all the art the Twin Cities have to offer. During the Saint Paul Art Crawl, the city’s art studios open their door to inquisitive admirers, allowing them the opportunity to interact with local artists.
The art crawl can be dated back to 1977, when the abandoned warehouses in the Lowertown district of Saint Paul became the city’s newest art hub. A band of artists in Lowertown founded the Saint Paul Art Collective whose main objective was to protect spaces intended for artists in order to protect local art culture. It was from this group of dedicated artists that the art crawl was born. In 1977, the founding artists of the Saint Paul Art Collective hosted their first exhibition, and ever since then, this event has been known as the Saint Paul Art Crawl.
The Saint Paul Art Crawl offers art lovers a unique experience, in which the audience is able to engage in a dialogue with their favorite local artist.
The Cedar Cultural Center
The Cedar Cultural Center, also known as the Cedar, is a non-profit music venue that holds up to 200 events annually. Located right smack dab in the middle of Cedar-Riverside, Cedar was originally established in 1989, working out of a former movie theatre that had been constructed in 1948. With a mission statement to promote intercultural appreciation through the arts, the center has presented countless artists whose music can be anything, from local bluegrass tunes to a traditional percussion set that originated overseas.
One of Cedar’s most recent projects was in 2014, where it launched the Midnimo Project. This project, yet another example of the Cedar’s dedication to supporting multiculturalism in the arts, was created with the intention of promoting the Somali Muslim culture through music. With the Midnimo Project, and others similar to it, the local community and visitors to the Cedar, would acquire knowledge and understanding of the culture, therefore using art to bridge the gap between different groups of people.
Regardless of your preference for music, if you’re a lover of the fine arts or you’re looking to learn something new, visiting the Cedar Cultural Center would be up your alley.
Interact Center for Visual and Performing Arts
Founded in 1992, Interact is a non-profit center for visual and performing arts. Today, this venue is the only place in the nation that offers professional training, exhibitions, and exhibitions to artists with a wide range of disabilities.
At Interact, artists with disabilities are encouraged to explore their creative potential, debuting in the world of fine arts as actors, sculptors, painters, writers, musicians–anything under the sun regarding the arts. Here, all artists are given the opportunity to showcase their work. Artwork is curated by the Inside Out Gallery (located inside Interact) and placed in an exhibit, where artists are commissioned for their work.
Interact puts on about two original plays annually, so for theater-goers looking for original content, you might find something worthwhile at Interact.
No trip to Minneapolis is complete until you go see a stage play at Guthrie Theater. Founded in 1963, this theatre puts on a variety of different plays, ranging from classics by Shakespeare to contemporary works produced by a budding generation of actors, technicians, and playwrights. Guthrie strives to achieve their main objective of using the arts to help connect Minnesota to the rest of the world. Visitors to Guthrie Theater will especially appreciate their Shakespeare renditions. Check out their 2017-18 season here.