Get inspired. Get in free.
Gallery admission is free from 5 to 9 pm every Thursday night.
Target Free Thursdays Nights are a perfect night to experience the Walker in a new way. Every Thursday offers an array of free public programs that invite you to dive headfirst into contemporary art. Tap into local, national, and international contemporary art through exhibition-related programs in the galleries, art-making designed by artists, lectures, film screenings, performances, and more.
What does TFTN stand for?
Target Free Thursday Night. Our very generous sponsor for the free admission and programs on Thursday nights at the Walker is funded by the Target Corporation. This local corporation—headquartered just a stone’s throw away in downtown Minneapolis—supports arts and cultural experiences for all audiences.
Who do I go with?
You can visit the Walker with a date, with a friend, or with 20 of your friends! This night is open to all everyone and is always free. The more the merrier. Just no pets allowed, unfortunately. Or live plants. Leave your plants at home.
What do I do when I show up?
- Visit the front desk to ask what is in the galleries that night and what programs are happening if you didn’t know before. The programs for the evening are always on the marquee above the visitor desk. You can check out our website or magazine for updated schedules.
- Check your backpack in one of the lockers. Our amazing Gallery Assistants will ask you to check them since their job is to protect the art—and they are great at it!
Meh, art’s not really my thing. What do I do?
Oh come on, give art a try! You might find something you like. Plus it’s a great conversation starter: “Last Thursday when I was at the Walker Art Center I…”
Or try out these other things:
- Grab a drink or a bite in Esker Grove before you pop into the galleries. Make a reservation ahead of time, or simply find a seat at the bar. Dinner menu starts at 5 pm.
- Stroll through not one, but two Walker Shops full of books, jewelry, well-designed home goods, and more. Buy a gift for someone (or yourself).
- Wander through the 19 acres of the adjacent, recently reopened Minneapolis Sculpture Garden and Wurtele Upper Garden.
Which gallery do I start with? And where is that Dolphin?!
You can start in any gallery—some exhibitions will take up many gallery spaces and some just one. Ask a Gallery Assistant or check the calendar to see what’s on and where.
Unlike a traditional encyclopedic museum, the galleries at contemporary art museums like the Walker change pretty regularly. Exhibitions at the Walker can be up anywhere between three months and three years depending on the show. We can have from one to five shows up at any given time. You do the math.
If you saw a piece or an exhibition that you loved a few years ago, chances are the work might still be around, but the exhibition will have changed. Ever wonder where that Dolphin went (Dolphin Oracle II by Piotr Szyhalski)? Or that giant crashed car (Unpainted Sculpture by Charles Ray)? These are pieces in the Walker’s Permanent Collection that are pulled out for specific exhibitions that are designed by Walker curators, but not everything is on view at any given time. Learn more about our collections and our Visual Arts department.
What if I only like films?
Lucky for you, there are over 1,000 films in the Walker’s collection, and they are available for you to view any time in the Ruben/Bentson Moving Image Collection. On Thursdays we have special programs designed especially for you with playlists curated by Ruth Hodgins, who works in our Moving Image department.
The Moving Image department also programs a lot of free films in the Walker Cinema. Check out calendar for upcoming free screenings. Almost any film screened on a Thursday is free. Except for the British Arrows Awards—that’s a whole different thing.