a couple stand in front of an outdoor sculpture

It was a snowy day in the Sculpture Garden.

There was a sense of anticipation on the bus. Everyone, students and community members alike, was peering out the window, wondering if we had finally arrived at our first location.

Within minutes, we’d hopped off the bus, passed through the doors and wandered beneath a huge chandelier shaped like an exploding sun. We’d finally reached the Minneapolis Institute of Art.

The Minneapolis Institute of Art, or MIA, was just the first of four stops that the Art Department scheduled for this past Saturday. After we’d gotten our fill of Matisse, impressionism, and Japanese art exhibits, we swiftly moved on to the Walker Art Center and sculpture garden to experience a series of modern art exhibits.

When we arrived at our next location, the Northern Clay Center, we had the opportunity to explore galleries as well as student workshops. Our final artistic stop was at the Weisman Art Museum, which is part of the University of Minnesota campus. This space hosted a plethora of photography and modern art, including a permanent piece that imitated the hallway of an apartment building.

We finished up the day in Dinkytown, where we had a little over an hour to find dinner at a local restaurant. After that, we hopped back on the bus and headed back home.

Winona State University hosts this trip at least once per year and it is open to students and community members alike. This time around, it only cost ten dollars plus whatever food or souvenirs we purchased on our journey.

It is an experience I would recommend to anyone, regardless of their interest in art. I learned a lot simply by participating, by exposing myself to such a variety of artistic forms and locations–and I think everyone else on the trip would agree.

When the bus pulled up to Watkins Hall at the end of the day, we were all exhausted from a busy day but thrilled to have experienced so much.