New on the Minneapolis Arts Scene
A trio of new Twin Cities arts and culture projects provides more reasons to get out on the town.
American Swedish Institute
The American Swedish Institute’s (ASI’s) Turnblad mansion reopens in November with new amenities, just in time for ever-popular holiday exhibits and events. New renovations to the 1908 structure, which has housed the ASI for 80 years, are part of a campus expansion that includes the new Nelson Cultural Center to be completed in June 2012.
The ASI hosts a reopening celebration November 12, with the launch of its annual “Julmarknad” (Christmas Fair) and exhibit, “A Nordic Christmas.” Through January 8, see the Turnblad mansion decked out in the holiday décor of Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Iceland, and Finland, and enjoy holiday events including music, crafts, and storytelling.
A new elevator and stair tower bring improved access to all floors of the Turnblad, and lower level renovations include new classrooms, archives and reading areas, and collections storage as well as historically preserved rooms. The American Swedish Institute is located in south Minneapolis.
The Cowles Center
The Cowles Center for Dance and the Performing Arts, a flagship for dance in Minnesota, opened its doors in September. The inaugural season includes performances by local companies such as Ragamala Dance, James Sewell Ballet, Minnesota Dance Theatre, Zorongo Flamenco, Zenon Dance, and Black Label Movement, as well as national dance companies and productions by Illusion Theater and Cantus Vocal Ensemble.
For those who have always wanted to study ballet, belly dancing, breakdancing, or other global styles, the Cowles Center offers instruction. Remote students can also learn via videoconference.
This new downtown Minneapolis arts complex consists of three buildings: the 1910 Shubert Theater (now newly refurbished and renamed the Goodale Theater), the 1888 Hennepin Center for the Arts (home to dance and performance companies and schools), and a gleaming, new great hall and education center connecting the two.
Weisman Art Museum
After a year-long closure, the Weisman Art Museum (WAM) reopened in October with expanded galleries and a newly embellished north façade on this iconic Frank Gehry-designed building.
Perched on the shores of the Mississippi River in the center of the University of Minnesota campus, the WAM’s sculptural steel and minimalist brick form has been an attention-getter since it debuted in 1993. Gehry designed the museum at a quieter phase of his career and returned as a “starchitect” to oversee the expansion.
The WAM has added a creative collaboration studio, a new north façade and walkway, and three new galleries to display its signature collections of American modernist paintings, sculpture, ceramics, photography, and prints.
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