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MIA Celebrates Major Gift of
Photographs with New Exhibition

The Search to See:
Photographs from the Collection of Frederick B. Scheel

Part I: July 7–November 4, 2007
Part II: December 1, 2007–March 30, 2008

Minneapolis, June 29, 2007—An exhibition in two parts will highlight an extraordinary gift of fine photographs from Frederick B. Scheel to the Minneapolis Institute of Art (MIA). Collected over a period of nearly forty years, this gift of more than six hundred prints comprises work by 106 masters of photography from the late nineteenth century until the 1960s. Notable names include Margaret Bourke-White, Berenice Abbott, August Sander, Edward Steichen, André Kertész, Sebastião Salgado, Minor White, Roman Vishniac, Jerry Uelsmann, Ansel Adams, Henri Cartier-Bresson, Andreas Feininger, Bill Brandt, Brassaï, Paul Strand, Edward Weston, and numerous others. The first part of “The Search to See” opens July 7 and runs through November 4. Part two opens December 1 and will be on view through March 30, 2008.

“We are incredibly grateful for this unprecedented gift,” said Dr. William M. Griswold, Director and President of the MIA. “The integrity of Mr. Scheel’s vision and his keen connoisseurship are represented in his collection of master photographs, which will have a transformative impact on the MIA’s photography holdings.”

The Scheel collection represents one man’s vision after years of personal study. Scheel paid astute and informed attention to both the history of photography and art market activity of fine photographs. Scheel’s personal vision and knowledge, combined with his passion for excellence, are apparent in the broad representation of work displayed in this exhibition. In order to adequately present the collection, the MIA decided to produce this exhibition in two parts, doubling the usual duration of shows in the museum’s Harrison Photography Gallery.

“The Scheel collection is not a textbook collection,” said Carroll T. Hartwell, Curator of Photographs at the MIA. “Fred has always collected according to his own lights and not until recently did he entertain the notion of donating his collection to a museum. Through the years his admiration of the MIA’s permanent collection and exhibitions has grown and now we are the beneficiaries of this wonderful gift.”

Altogether the two parts of this exhibition contain close to two hundred photographs drawn from the larger collection of more than six hundred prints. Interspersed is a modest selection of Scheel’s own photographs, which stand on their own as the product of a finely honed eye and sensibility in the tradition of Strand, Adams, Brett Weston, Kertész, and others who have been Scheel’s inspiration and, in several instances, his artistic mentors. Born in 1921 in Moorhead, Minnesota, Scheel lives in Fargo, North Dakota, and is a recently retired partner of Scheels All Sports, Inc.

Begun in 1973, the MIA’s collection of photographs includes the work of more than nine hundred photographers. The collection consists primarily of twentieth-century American work, with increasing emphasis on photographs from all countries and contemporary color prints. The collection has developed and continued to grow because of the active and generous support of loyal donors. They have provided gifts of art, acquisition funds, and named galleries.

About the Minneapolis Institute of Art
The Minneapolis Institute of Art (MIA), home to one of the finest encyclopedic art collections in the country, houses nearly 100,000 works of art representing more than 5,000 years of world history. Highlights of the permanent collection include European masterworks by Rembrandt, Poussin, and van Gogh; modern and contemporary painting and sculpture by Picasso, Matisse, Mondrian, Stella, and Close; as well as internationally significant collections of prints and drawings, decorative arts, Modernist design, photographs, prints and drawings, and Asian, African, and Native American art. General admission is always free. Some special exhibitions have a nominal admission fee. Museum hours: Sunday, 11 a.m.–5 p.m.; Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday, 10 a.m.–5 p.m.; Thursday, 10 a.m.–9 p.m.; Monday closed. For more information, call (612) 870-3131 or visit

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