Today’s blog title ended up having a double meaning, although it wasn’t intended that way when I started writing it. I ended up m.i.a. yesterday when I missed the self-imposed deadline for my normal Monday morning blog post. Life has been getting in the way of my blogging hobby lately. I’ve been busy doing all kinds of things, none of which involve painting furniture. They don’t involve Valentine crafts either. So here I am on Valentine’s Day with a post that is not even slightly Valentine related and only vaguely furniture related, but I hope you’ll enjoy it anyway.
Mr. Q and I have an annual Super Bowl Sunday tradition. We go somewhere that is usually pretty crowded and we enjoy the fact that there is hardly anyone there. You see, neither of us are sports fans. This year we invited my sister Debbie to join us as well and we headed over to the MIA. That’s the Minneapolis Institute of Arts for you non-locals, and also the real reason for my mia blog title.
The entrance to the MIA always cracks me up a little. In typical Minnesota fashion, they have a grandiose front door but you aren’t allowed to use that entry.
Entrance to the MIA is free, which is pretty awesome. However, we always park in the paid lot across the street that costs $5 for the first hour and another $1 an hour after that. We also drop off our coats at the coat check because it always seems to be really warm inside and we don’t want to lug them around, so that requires a tip. Of course, they do have a huge donation box in the entryway too, so we put some money in there as well. We usually can’t resist getting a snack and a beverage (wine for me, coffee for Mr. Q) in the cafe too … so in the long run we shell out about $50. But you don’t have to do that, you could find street parking, hang onto your coat, skip the snack and not leave a donation making your visit entirely free. Or maybe just leave a little bit of a donation.
The MIA is huge. We never see the entire thing in one visit. This time we saw most of the third floor and just a smattering of the 2nd floor.
And see what I mean about Super Bowl Sunday?
Well, OK, the whole place wasn’t entirely deserted, but it was pretty empty.
My favorite thing to see at the MIA are the period rooms. Complete rooms that have been dismantled from somewhere and rebuilt inside the museum, like this Charleston, South Carolina dining room.
Is it wrong that I want to paint that sideboard? Wouldn’t it be gorgeous in Fusion’s Midnight Blue? Those chairs would be much improved with some grain sack upholstery too.
Believe it or not, this is another of the period rooms …
You might be thinking that it looks more like some minion’s horrible tiny office, but no. This is an art installation and you can read more about it here. I hope you’ll take the time to follow that link and read about both the room and the artist, it’s really a fun story. Basically, this is intended to be a lost curator’s office that was accidentally boarded up in the 1950’s and just recently unearthed. There are some great details, like the bar cart (who doesn’t kinda wish we could still have these at the office?) and some of the old 50’s office equipment.
While at the museum I also discovered a great use for those vintage crocheted doilies and pot holders, not to mention any vintage toys you might have lying around …
Now why didn’t I think of that?
You all know how I love to turn mirrors into chalkboards. This one would make a great candidate for that …
I could paint over the gold and black with some chippy Farmhouse White.
But finally, here is a piece of furniture that speaks my language, pardon the pun.
This is an 1870 pine cupboard that was painted by Aslak Lie, a Norwegian cabinetmaker who immigrated to the United States in the mid-1800’s. It was made to commemorate the marriage of John Eriksen Engesaethe to Brithe Grinde.
My favorite part of the cabinet is the Norwegian inscription at the back …
Which just says John son of Erik, Brithe daugther of Sjurs, Engesaethe, year 1870.
Even I would never dream of covering this up with some milk paint 😉
I’ll leave you with this beautiful view of Minneapolis that you can see from inside the museum …
as well as the realization that next year we are going to have to come up with an entirely new plan for Super Bowl Sunday. After all, next year the Super Bowl is taking place right here in Minneapolis. We may have to leave town to find someplace that isn’t crowded next year!