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The Minneapolis Sculpture Garden has reopened, better than ever! This crown jewel of the city’s park system unites two of Minnesota’s most cherished resources—its parks and its cultural life. Since opening in 1988, the Garden has welcomed millions of visitors, showcasing more than 40 works from the Walker Art Center’s collections, including the iconic Spoonbridge and Cherry. A partnership between the Walker and the Minneapolis Park & Recreation Board, the Garden is must-see destination for visitors of all ages. Open 365 days a year, from 6 am to 12 midnight.

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The Heart of Minneapolis

Since opening in 1988, the Garden has welcomed millions of visitors, showcasing works from the Walker Art Center’s renowned collections of modern and contemporary art in the setting of an urban park. The Garden is a partnership between the Walker and the Minneapolis Park & Recreation Board, a national award-winning park system.

The Land You’re Standing On

This parkland has seen many changes over time. A landscape shaped by glaciers more than 10,000 years ago, the area was once an expanse of marshland used as a seasonal camp by Minnesota’s first people, the Dakota and the Ojibwe. In the late 1800s, the site held an armory and parade grounds. In the early 1900s, formal gardens and a series of sports fields were established by the Park Board. When the Minneapolis Sculpture Garden opened in 1988, it was one of the first major public/private urban sculpture parks of its kind in the United States.

The Nature of Art

The Minneapolis Sculpture Garden is home to more than 40 outdoor sculptures. Generations of artists from 10 different countries around the world created these artworks. Many of the works are site-specific and made especially for this public park—from the iconic Spoonbridge and Cherry centerpiece to structures that offer spaces for gathering, conversation, or dreaming. Rediscover the Garden’s art and natural beauty through Minnesota’s ever-changing seasons.   

It Takes a Village

What happens when experts from many fields—architects, curators, designers, artists, landscape architects, gardeners, environmentalists, writers, scientists, and many others—come together with community members to reimagine a beloved public space? The result of this multifaceted partnership is a forward-thinking design for the Minneapolis Sculpture Garden, which was fully reconstructed in 2017. The site features ecologically sustainable water management, a flourishing habitat for plants and wildlife, and creative landscape elements that showcase the artworks in nature.

Sustainability

To reconstruct the Minneapolis Sculpture Garden’s north end, the site—formerly a marshland—needed to be considered carefully. Landscape architects worked in partnership with the Mississippi Watershed Management Organization to envision ways that this land might be used to better support the art, plants, and wildlife, while also more responsibly managing stormwater as a resource rather than a waste product.

The Fresh Meadow

Improving the park’s sustainability, a fresh meadow filled with native plants and engineered soils helps absorb runoff from stormwater, returning the landscape to a more natural state. This environment is interspersed with three “islands” that showcase contemporary sculptures from the Walker Art Center’s collection.

Saving Water

At the center of the park is an underground cistern, or water collection tank, near the Spoonbridge and Cherry. This feature helps to water the garden and nearby ball fields and also keeps more than 4 million gallons of runoff out of the storm sewers each year, thus reducing pollution in the Mississippi River basin.

Flora & Fauna

Throughout the Minneapolis Sculpture Garden, more than 300 native trees, shrubs, perennial plants, and grasses not only create a natural frame for the art but also offer a thriving habitat for birds, butterflies, and other creatures. This dynamic ecosystem supports the long-term stability of the site, one of the crown jewels of the city’s park system.

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Self-Guided Tours

School groups and families visiting the Minneapolis Sculpture Garden on their own are encouraged to download our interactive self-guided tour experience.

Explore the Garden

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