Best of

the Twin Cities

BEST MUSEUM EXHIBITION

"The Louvre and the Masterpiece," Minneapolis Institute of Arts

The Twin Cities' splashiest big-ticket exhibit of the last year was also the best. "The Louvre and the Masterpiece" brought more than 60 works of art from the world's greatest museum to MIA in October for a three-month run. The exhibit, sparely but elegantly hung on dark-gray walls, spanned 4,000 years of visual art, from ancient Egyptian statuary to Renaissance drawings by Michelangelo and Da Vinci to 17th- and 18th-century paintings by Vermeer and Chardin. The concept behind the show may have been a bit heady and diffuse: What is a masterpiece, and how has the definition changed through time? And in this case, the "masterpieces" were generally minor works by well-known artists (the Da Vinci was a tempera drapery study supposedly painted in his teens; the Michelangelo was a messy page of sketches). Even so, the exhibit's two showpieces entirely lived up to their billing: Vermeer's surprisingly small The Astronomer, showing a scientist gazing at a globe in the warm light of Vermeer's famous window, and Antoine-Louis Barye's Lion With Serpent, a large, dramatic bronze sculpture depicting a lion crushing a snake. And several charming surprises awaited, such as an 18th-century lead bust from Franz Xaver Messerschmidt of a man looking like he's about to cry, and a breathtakingly ornate French silver pitcher. Minnesotans will still have to go to Paris to see the Mona Lisa and Venus de Milo, but the MIA's show was a rare chance to see some of history's most celebrated art and artists on our own turf.

Best Place to Do Something for Free (2013) Minneapolis Institute of Arts

Best Make-Out Spot (2013) Minneapolis Institute of Arts

Best Museum (2013) Minneapolis Institute of Arts

Best Museum Exhibition (2013) "Rembrandt in America" at Minneapolis Institute of Arts

Best View (2012) Minneapolis skyline from the Minneapolis Institute of Arts

BEST MUSEUM (2007) Minneapolis Institute of Arts

BEST MUSEUM (2010) Minneapolis Institute of Arts

BEST SIGN OF SPRING (2010) Art in Bloom at Minneapolis Institute of Arts

BEST MUSEUM (2008) Minneapolis Institute of Arts

Best Way to Spend $5 (2017) Minneapolis Institute of Art

BEST ACOUSTIC PERFORMER Spirits of the Red City

BEST ACTOR Patrick Bailey

BEST ACTRESS Mo Perry

BEST ALL-AGES VENUE Eclipse Records

BEST AM RADIO PERSONALITY John Gordon

BEST ART GALLERY First Amendment Arts

BEST BAND NAME Chickadee Mountain Martyrs

BEST BLUES ARTIST Willie Murphy

BEST BOOK BY A LOCAL AUTHOR Never Trust a Thin Cook, by Eric Dregni

BEST CHOREOGRAPHER Morgan Thorson

BEST CLUB DJ Mike 2600

BEST COLUMNIST Garrison Keillor

BEST COMEDY Funny Money at Old Log Theater

BEST COMEDY CLUB Acme Comedy Co.

BEST CONCERT OF THE PAST 12 MONTHS (LOCAL) Gay Witch Abortion and Knife World on the Mississippi River

BEST CONCERT OF THE PAST 12 MONTHS (TOURING) Beyoncé

BEST CONCERT VENUE 7th St. Entry

BEST COUNTRY MUSIC VENUE Lee's Liquor Lounge

BEST DANCE CLUB First Avenue

BEST DANCE NIGHT Get Cryphy at First Avenue's Record Room

BEST DANCE PERFORMANCE IN THE PAST 12 MONTHS Kenna Sarge and the Battlecats

BEST DANCER The mass in En Masse

BEST DIRECTOR Michelle Hensley

BEST DRAMA The Whipping Man at Penumbra Theatre

BEST FM RADIO PERSONALITY David Campbell

BEST HIP-HOP ARTIST P.O.S.

BEST IMPROV COMEDY THEATER ComedySportz

BEST JAZZ ARTIST David King

BEST JAZZ CLUB The Turf Club's Clown Lounge on Mondays

BEST JUKEBOX Sauce Spirits and Sound Bar

BEST LARGE THEATER Children's Theatre Company

BEST LIVE ARTIST Mark Mallman

BEST LOCAL ALBUM OF THE PAST 12 MONTHS A Badly Broken Code by Dessa

BEST LOCAL BAND MADE GOOD Solid Gold

BEST LOCAL MUSIC COMPILATION Minnesota Beatle Project, Vol. 1

BEST LOCAL RECORD LABEL Rhymesayers Entertainment

BEST MIDNIGHT MOVIE The Room at Uptown Theatre

BEST MOVIE THEATER Riverview Theater

BEST MUSEUM Minneapolis Institute of Arts

BEST MUSICAL Caroline, or Change at Guthrie Theater

BEST NEW BAND Rogue Valley

BEST OLD BAND The Twilight Hours

BEST OPEN MIC Acme's Caught in the Act

BEST PLACE TO LEARN TO DANCE Zenon Dance Company and School

BEST PLACE TO MAKE LIKE REMBRANDT The Art Academy

BEST R&B ARTIST Mayda

BEST RADIO STATION Radio K (104.5 FM, 100.7 FM, 106.5 FM, 770 AM)

BEST ROCK BAND Gay Witch Abortion

BEST ROCK CLUB Triple Rock Social Club

BEST SLAM POETRY EVENT SlamMN Erotic Slam

BEST SMALL THEATER Ten Thousand Things

BEST SONGWRITER Dessa

BEST SPORTS TALK RADIO HOST Paul Allen, KFAN-AM 1130

BEST STAGE DESIGN Joel Sass, the Jungle Theater

BEST STORYTELLING EVENT Two Chairs Telling

BEST STRIP CLUB Sinners

BEST TV NEWSCASTER Don Shelby

BEST TV SPORTS ANCHOR Randy Shaver

BEST TV WEATHERPERSON Paul Douglas

BEST VOCALIST (FEMALE) Maggie Morrison

BEST VOCALIST (MALE) Peter Miller