MIA Stories

  • MIA STORIES is the museum beyond the walls, outside the frame, at the lively intersection of life and art. From behind-the-scenes buzz to inspiring connections with current events, it’s the museum in conversation.

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MIA 1; Early Museum History

Once at MIA: At home in the galleries

It looks a little thrown together now, its glamour a little dated, like exhibition design by Norma Desmond—Dahling, you must see my bronzes. Ferns droop here and there. Sculptures balance on radiator covers and faux classical pedestals of the sort you might find today in a garden, propping up a birdbath. All that’s missing is a . . . Keep reading »


Once at MIA: Rauschenberg at Rest

Robert Rauschenberg, on the right, always played it cool. “Screwing up things is a virtue,” he said. He found beauty where others flinched. “I really feel sorry for people who think things like soap dishes or mirrors or Coke bottles are ugly, because they’re surrounded by things like that all day long, and it must . . . Keep reading »


Touché across time: Announcing the winners of our archive photo caption contest!

You don’t get to 1oo years old without a good sense of humor. So at our #BDayMIA Third Thursday last night, we asked visitors for captions to four historic images of the museum from our archives. And they delivered. Here are the winning captions, along with the photos that inspired them. And for (slightly) more serious discussions . . . Keep reading »


Charlie Hebdo and the French art of satire

It wasn’t long after gunmen slaughtered the editorial staff of Charlie Hebdo, and supporters of free speech around the world rose to support the French satirical magazine, that an uneasiness seeped into the discussion. Those cartoons of the prophet Muhammad: goggle-eyed, beak-nosed, stereotypically turbaned. Charlie may be many things—irreverent, irrepressible—but it is certainly not subtle. . . . Keep reading »

Once at MIA_Candid Camera

Once at MIA: Candid camera

He was photographing the MIA galleries, but he was almost certainly the best subject in them that day. This was 1937, and the young man—looking like he walked off the Hollywood set of a Yukon musical—was an early adopter of small, handheld cameras, what were then called “candid cameras.” Today, the MIA allows photography in most . . . Keep reading »