When a big exhibition comes around, a museum likes to throw on a big party to celebrate it. Such was the case this past weekend at the Minneapolis Institute of Arts as it marked the opening of "The Louvre and the Masterpiece."
Now I don't often make opening parties - by that time I've usually gone to a press preview of the show, have reported on the exhibition, and am ready to move on to the next story. But I know that many people have their notions about museums and galleries, and the kind of people who show up to their events. "Too snooty for me" some friends say, or "boring!" So, armed with a Flipcam, I decided to attend Saturday's opening and bring back tangible proof of what one of these events is like. Maybe I'd do some myth-busting, or maybe I'd simply confirm those preconceptions.
I have to say, when I first walked into the MIA Saturday night, I was surprised. There was a bass beat booming that was audible from the coatcheck, and the regular museum lights had been replaced with violet flourescents that made the main halls feel more like a downtown club than an encyclopedic museum. There were drink stations EVERYWHERE, as well as dancers clad in 18th century French frocks performing on little stages. People were kicking back in comfy furniture next to centuries old roman sculpture, and watching light shows around the fountain.
The people-watching was worth the price of admission, in my opinion. Just seeing how folks dressed up, some with a French flair, was fun. But take a look at the clip and tell me: does this look like a fun party to you? Are you now more or less tempted to go to a museum opening? Why? Would you feel comfortable at a party like this? Entertained? Bored? And how does it compare to the image you had in your head? If this isn't your cup of tea, what kind of art party would you rather attend?
My little revelation of the evening: museums don't serve red wine. It's just trouble waiting to happen.
Looks like a great time to me. Actually I would make it to many more openings if they were along these lines. Lovely transformation of the gallery, nice tunes, I'd be ready to disco.
No red wine looks like the only con.
I went to the day-time preview on Friday - no wine, no music, but I had plenty of time and space to look at the art. I hope these folks will come back and take time to experience the exhibit - and to drop a few dollars to the MIA which is a treasure.
Looks like a lot of fun to me. If I was there, I probably would have been trying to find ways to get the party dancing in the main fountain rotunda. If you like the music, it is mixed by local DJ, Gigamesh.
Great party! The DJ was fantastic. Not stuffy at all, and AWESOME people watching. Overall, I thought it was a great party. The MIA is our greatest art treasure--thanks for the coverage! I think they should leave the beaded curtain up in the rotunda. Nice touch.
We went with another couple that had never been. They were surprised that it was as fun as it was. Wish we could get more gay couples out to events that support the city and the arts rather then in the same old gay bars. Mixed crowds actually are more mysterious.
DJS: Strangelove & Gigamesh were you mixologists for the evening.
Strangelove is a resident DJ @ Envy Nightclub, Barrio MPLS, Solera in the Summer, and Crave in The new West End.
He is also involved in booking the Saloon stage for Pride, the Dixie's Stage @ Grand Old Day, amongst other big events in Minneapolis.
Gigamesh is always producing sick music, and DJ's around town quite often. He is the remixer for the group Discotech.