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Around Town: Sculpture Garden on Loan

The Walker and Minneapolis Sculpture campus renovation will be completed with the reopening of the Garden on June 3, 2017, created an integrated 19-acre campus. Numerous changes—the addition of 18 new artworks and more than 300 new trees, eco-friendly landscape features, and a water reuse system—will improve the Garden’s aesthetics, accessibility, and long-term stability. As spring haltingly […]

Brower Hatcher, Prophecy of the Ancients, 1989, on loan to the City of Minneapolis and Gold Medal Park. Photo: George Heinrich, October 2016.

Brower Hatcher, Prophecy of the Ancients (1989), on loan to the City of Minneapolis and Gold Medal Park. Photo: George Heinrich, October 2016

The Walker and Minneapolis Sculpture campus renovation will be completed with the reopening of the Garden on June 3, 2017, created an integrated 19-acre campus. Numerous changes—the addition of 18 new artworks and more than 300 new trees, eco-friendly landscape features, and a water reuse system—will improve the Garden’s aesthetics, accessibility, and long-term stability. As spring haltingly arrives in Minneapolis, installation of returning works, as well as those newly commissioned or acquired, continues apace. While we look forward to welcoming more than 30 artworks back to the Garden, there will be some familiar faces missing.

Mark di Suvero, Molecule, 1991, on loan to the City of Minneapolis and Gold Medal Park. Photo: George Heinrich, October 2016.

Mark di Suvero, Molecule (1991), on loan to the City of Minneapolis and Gold Medal Park. Photo: George Heinrich, October 2016

Nearly all the previous Minneapolis Sculpture Garden artworks were placed in storage during construction. Leveraging innovative partnerships across Minneapolis with the Gold Medal Park Conservancy Fund, the Minneapolis Institute of Art (Mia), and the Weisman Art Museum, the Walker relocated several of the most beloved sculptures through long-term loans, allowing the works to remain accessible to the public. The loans are renewable each year and partnering organizations have agreed to the arrangement for up to five years, after which time the loans will be reevaluated.

Tony Cragg, Ordovician, 1989, on loan to the City of Minneapolis and Gold Medal Park. Photo: George Heinrich, October 2016.

Tony Cragg, Ordovician Pore (1989), on loan to the City of Minneapolis and Gold Medal Park. Photo: George Heinrich, October 2016

Brower Hatcher’s Prophecy of the Ancients (1988), Mark di Suvero’s Molecule (1977–1983), and Tony Cragg’s Ordovician Pore (1989) were loaned to Gold Medal Park, which sits adjacent to the Guthrie Theater, the Walker’s former neighbor, along the Mississippi Riverfront.Jacques Lipchitz’s Prometheus Strangling the Vulture II (1944/1953) was loaned to the Minneapolis Institute of Art, aligning with the institution’s robust bronze collection. Frank Gehry’s Standing Glass Fish (1986) is on loan to the Weisman Art Museum, housed in the iconic Gehry–designed building on the University of Minnesota’s Twin Cities campus.

Frank Gehry, Standing Glass Fish, 1986, installed in the Weisman Museum at the University of Minnesota. Photo: Rik Sferra, February 15, 2016.

Frank Gehry, Standing Glass Fish (1986), installed in the Weisman Museum at the University of Minnesota. Photo: Rik Sferra, February 15, 2016

Take Action: Sound off on Saving the NEA, NEH, IMLS, and CPB

As the leader of the Walker Art Center, an arts institution created with major support from the federal government and launched by a belief that national investment in the arts is essential to the health of our democracy, I was extremely disappointed to see that the Trump Administration’s federal budget proposal, released on March 16, calls for the elimination of […]

2015winterwalker0207ffs Visual Arts; Education, Community Programs. Family Events; Free Events; Parties and Special Events; Free First Saturday. Winter Walkerland, Part of 75 Gifts for 75 Years; Target and Friedman Galleries, Free Family Art-Making Activities in the Art Lab, February 7, 2015. Celebrate the Walker’s 75th anniversary as a public art center with an eventful community weekend featuring free gallery admission and activities for the whole family. Ice skating in the Garden, Art Hotline, gallery views. 75 Gifts for 75 Years, Target and Friedman Galleries, February 5, 2015 – August 2, 2015. Photos by Lacey Criswell for Walker Art Center. Ice skating in the Minneapolis Sculpture Garden; Spoonbridge and Cherry; Art Lab; Gallery views; kids.

Visitors pose with Robert Indiana’s LOVE (1966–1998) in the Walker galleries, 2015. Photo: Lacey Criswell for Walker Art Center

As the leader of the Walker Art Center, an arts institution created with major support from the federal government and launched by a belief that national investment in the arts is essential to the health of our democracy, I was extremely disappointed to see that the Trump Administration’s federal budget proposal, released on March 16, calls for the elimination of all funding for the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA), the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH), the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS), and the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB). Without question, these agencies are critical to art organizations’ ability to serve their communities as educational and economic assets. 

In particular, the NEA, NEH, and IMLS award tens of thousands of grants to organizations, schools, and artists in thousands of communities across the United States. They also have an incredible leveraging effect on other state, local, and private sources. The nonprofit arts industry generates $135.2 billion annually in economic activity, supports 4.1 million full-time-equivalent jobs in the arts and related industries, and returns $9.6 billion in federal income taxes. There has been a tradition of strong bipartisan support of these agencies over the decades, and with your help it can continue into the future.

epp2017student-tour0110 Education, Public Programming; Student Tour Groups, January 10, 2017. Students visit the galleries with EPP Educators leading tours to the exhibition Question the Wall Itself, and the Target Project Space featuring the Frank Big Bear collage. Views of the Main Bazinet Lobby also included. Photo by Alice Gebura for Walker Art Center.

A student tour group checks out The Walker Collage, Multiverse #10 (2016) by Frank Big Bear Bear, January 2017. Photo: Alice Gebura for Walker Art Center

As a longtime member of the Association of Art Museum Director (AAMD), I am proud to share with you a statement recently issued by the organization:

The arts are a shared expression of the human spirit and a hallmark of our humanity. Art touches people throughout their lives—from toddlers first learning about the world, to those with Alzheimer’s disease reconnecting with someone they love. Museums offer art programs to help teachers and homeschoolers prepare lessons, to train medical students to be better doctors, to ease the suffering of veterans with PTSD, and to share with people across the country the best of creative achievement. The NEA, NEH, and IMLS are essential partners in this work, providing grants to many types of nonprofit organizations and helping to bring the arts to every part of America, from rural areas to military bases to urban centers.

It’s also important to note that the arts and culture contribute more than $2 billion annually to Minnesota’s economy and support more than 104,000 artist and creative worker jobs in this state. The proposed elimination of the federal arts agencies would hit Minnesota even harder than other states because the arts are such a big part of our quality of life and sense of place. In fact, a recent study showed that Minnesotans attend the arts and create art themselves at a rate exceeding the national average.

Olgo Viso (front left, with "ART" sign) and others at Arts Advocacy Day 2017. Photo: Minnesota Citizens for the Arts

Olgo Viso (front left, with “ART” sign) and others at Arts Advocacy Day 2017. Photo: Minnesota Citizens for the Arts

Since arriving in Minnesota nine years ago, I have been proud that the Walker Art Center and Minneapolis Sculpture Garden offer a welcoming civic space for the public to not only be introduced to and be inspired by art we present but to also bring a multiplicity of perspectives into respectful consideration and focus. The elimination of the NEA, NEH, IMLS, and CPB would make it harder for the Walker to fulfill its mission to serve as a catalyst for the creative expression of artists and the active engagement of audiences. More importantly, it would be a step backwards for our great nation, which has long benefited from the federal government’s modest investment in the arts.

I urge Walker members, visitors, and arts enthusiasts everywhere to learn more about this issue by visiting Americans for the Arts. That link will enable you to easily contact your legislators to let them know right now that you strongly oppose the elimination of the NEA, NEH, IMLS, and CPB.

Your voice can make a difference in saving these important federal agencies and affirming that the arts are critical to the fabric of our society.

epp2017ffs0204 Education, Public Programs. Family Events, Free Events. Free First Saturday: Off the Wall, Feburary 4, 2017. Part of the exhibition Question the Wall Itself. Photo by Alice Gebura for Walker Art Center, Minneapolis. Main Bazinet Lobby, Hennepin Lounge, Art Lab, Cargill Lounge. Art-Making: Map Montage. Star Tribune Foundation Art Lab. Discover and create new places to explore as you add, remove, and change transparent layers on a Walker Art Center map projected on the wall. Art-making: Pop-Up Cards. Hennepin Lounge. Create a surprising three-dimensional greeting card to share with someone or keep for yourself. Performance: Narrative Art. Cargill Lounge. Local storyteller Alexei Casselle brings stories to life during performances inspired by the exhibition Question the Wall Itself.

Family art-making at the Walker’s Free First Saturday, February 2017. Photo: Alice Gebura for Walker Art Center

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