Minneapolis is one of only three cities on the Louvre exhibit tour (according to a docent) - along with London and Atlanta. Since its arrival in mid-October, the exhibit has often sold out so we were grateful for the open availability. It wasn't until halfway through the exhibit, that a docent politely informed me that I couldn't take photos since the items were on loan. Respectful person that I am, I'll refrain from posting my contraband photos (no matter how tempted I may be). However, you can learn about some of the amazing pieces and view them here. I'll admit that it was pretty incredible to see a Da Vinci work in person. My favorites though were: the Georges de La Tour and Johannes Vermeer paintings, the Lady of Auxerre statuette and the Peacock Dish.
And, the good news is that the rest of the museum was fair game for photo-snapping. The MIA offers one of the best views of the Minneapolis skyline (although you wouldn't really know it judging by the photo below; seems the winter doldrums are here to stay).
Here are some of my absolute favorites, starting with Van Gogh's Olive Trees.
And the Renoir.
And some Monet.
And Dali (my favorite of all the artists).
More Surrealism from Tanguy.
Then there was some Picasso.
And then there are some of my other favorites, in no particular order:
I love this one for its historical significance (Tornado over Saint Paul).
By far the most startling piece that we saw was the painting below. I call it startling only because it's found smack dab in the middle of the Classical rooms. The museum asked visitors to share their thoughts on the painting in a nearby notebook. Some other patrons also questioned the appropriateness of the juxtaposition with the classical art.
For lunch, we visited D'Amico's ArtsCafe, where I had a lunch combo with the ham panini and tomato basil soup. Both were superb. The panini had thick slices of ham, manchego cheese, red onions and a delicious fig chutney of sorts. And with the cold weather outside, the soup totally hit the spot. It was creamy and filled with nice chunks of real tomato. Mmm...mmm...good.