Above: An underwater archaeologist inspects the stele of Thonis-Heracleion, exhibited as part of "Egypt's Sunken Cities." (Photo: Christoph Gerigk © Franck Goddio / Hilti Foundation)
Minnesotans apparently are more interested in Egypt than Martin Luther.
The Minneapolis Institute of Art set another attendance record in fiscal 2019, thanks to the exhibition “Egypt’s Sunken Cities,” which drew 154,108 people -- bumping the 2017 blockbuster "Martin Luther: Art and the Reformation" out of the museum's all-time top five shows.
“Sunken Cities” also helped the museum double its income from program activities to $4.9 million in the year ended June 30. Membership increased 30 percent to 52,102 members, and attendance grew to 779,973, up by more than 69,000.
Mia ended the year with a surplus of $19,883, on par with recent years. Cash assets decreased by 40 percent over the course of the year as Mia spent $10 million on art acquisitions, $4 million more than the year before.
Attendance hit 46,960 for the year's other big show, “Hearts of Our People: Native Women Artists,” which opened on June 2 and closed on Aug. 18, into the current fiscal year.
Fiscal 2019 also saw the departure of Executive Director Kaywin Feldman, who became the first woman director of the prestigious National Gallery in Washington, D.C. Feldman's successor, San Antonio Museum of Art director Katherine Luber, will take over in January.