Monday, February 20, 2012

Last chance to see The Mint Museum's Chanel and Aesthetic Ambitions exhibitions is Sunday

If you've been meaning to head over to Mint Museum Randolph to see two
of the acclaimed exhibitions on display, "Chanel: Designs for the
Modern Woman" and "Aesthetic Ambitions: Edward Lycett and Brooklyn's
Faience Manufacturing Company," you'd better hurry. After this Sunday,
February 26, they'll both be gone.

The museum's Chanel exhibition, drawn from its own Historic Costume &
Fashionable Dress collection, has earned praise in national and
international publications, including Marie Claire (
, which declared it one of "10 fashion-focused museum exhibitions you
can't miss"; MTV's fashion blog (
); and EcoSalon (
). The exhibition presents the iconic haute couture designs of
Gabrielle "Coco" Chanel (1883-1971), who remains a pivotal figure
among the major designers who shaped the landscape of women's fashion
in the 20th century. She pioneered a new look for women in the early
1900s, creating clothes that were primarily comfortable, yet lasting
in both their construction and style. Replacing the restrictive corset
with casual elegance, her fashion repertoire included simple suits and
dresses, women's trousers, costume jewelry, and perfume.

Chanel: Designs for the Modern Woman includes works dating from the
1920s to the present, augmented by a selection of accessories,
sketches, and other fashion-related materials. Sponsored by U.S.
Trust, Bank of America Private Wealth Management, the exhibition
opened May 21.
Aesthetic Ambitions: Edward Lycett and Brooklyn's Faience
Manufacturing Company presents unique examples of American art pottery
from the late 1800s. During the 1880s, the Faience Manufacturing
Company (1881-1892) of Greenpoint, Brooklyn, earned critical acclaim
for producing ornamental wares that introduced a new standard of
excellence in American ceramics. These bold and eclectic wares
displayed a synthesis of Japanese, Chinese, and Islamic influences
characteristic of the Aesthetic Movement style. The firm owed its
artistic and commercial success to Edward Lycett (1833-1910), an
English china painter who became its artistic director in 1884.

Lycett and his team of decorators produced pieces that were sold in
the foremost jewelry and china shops throughout the United States,
such as Tiffany & Co. in New York and Bailey Banks and Biddle in
Philadelphia. Nearly 40 objects drawn from public and private
collections are on display, including vases, ewers, plates, and other
decorative wares. The exhibition, which opened September 17, is
organized and circulated by the University of Richmond Museums,

The Chanel exhibition is slated to be replaced by a cutting-edge show
originating from the museum's Historic Costume & Fashionable Dress
collection, opening May 12, 2012. Details will be announced closer to
opening. Aesthetic Ambitions will be replaced by a very special
exhibition of pottery by a Charlotte artist with deep ties to The Mint
Museum. As previously announced, Sophisticated Surfaces: The Pottery
of Herb Cohen will bring together approximately 60 works, including
selections from the Mint's permanent collection and loans from
numerous private collections. Many of Cohen's works feature intricate,
abstract patterns carved into the clay surface, along with innovative
experimentations in glazing. The Manhattan-born Cohen settled in
Charlotte in the late 1950s, where he joined the staff of The Mint
Museum and served as its acting director from 1968 to 1969. In the
1970s he moved to Blowing Rock, N.C. to establish his own studio, but
returned to Charlotte in 2010, where he remains active in the local
arts community. This exhibition is organized as part of the Mint's
celebration of its 75th anniversary and will be on view from April 7,
2012 through January 6, 2013.

For more information on these and other exhibitions, visit Select images from Chanel: Designs for the Modern
Woman;Aesthetic Ambitions: Edward Lycett and Brooklyn's Faience
Manufacturing Company; and Sophisticated Surfaces: The Pottery of Herb
Cohen are available upon request. (Media members please note: All
exhibitions discussed in this news release are at Mint Museum
Randolph, 2730 Randolph Road, NOT the uptown Charlotte location of the
Mint. Please be sure to make this clear to your readers, viewers and


As the oldest art museum in North Carolina, and the art museum with
the largest collection between New Orleans and Washington D.C., The
Mint Museum offers its visitors inspiring and transformative
experiences through art from around the world via innovative
collections, ground-breaking exhibitions, riveting educational
programs, and profound scholarship. The Mint Museum is a non-profit,
visual arts institution comprised of two dynamic facilities: Mint
Museum Uptown and Mint Museum Randolph.
Located in what was the original branch of the United States Mint,
Mint Museum Randolph opened in 1936 in Charlotte's Eastover
neighborhood as the first art museum in North Carolina. Today, in a
beautiful park setting, intimate galleries invite visitors to engage
with the art of the ancient Americas, ceramics and decorative arts,
historic costume and fashionable dress, European and African art,
among other collections. Resources include a reference library with
over 18,000 volumes, a theater featuring lectures and performances,
and a museum shop offering merchandise that complements both the
permanent collection and special exhibitions.

Mint Museum Uptown houses the internationally renowned Craft + Design
collection, as well as outstanding collections of American,
contemporary, and European art. Designed by Machado and Silvetti
Associates of Boston, the five-story, 145,000-square-foot facility
combines inspiring architecture with cutting-edge exhibitions to
provide visitors with unparalleled educational and cultural
experiences. Located in the heart of Charlotte's burgeoning center
city, Mint Museum Uptown is an integral part of the Levine Center for
the Arts, a cultural campus that includes the Bechtler Museum of
Modern Art, the Harvey B. Gantt Center for African-American Arts and
Culture, the Knight Theater, and the Duke Energy Center. Mint Museum
Uptown also features a wide range of visitor amenities, including the
240-seat James B. Duke Auditorium, the Lewis Family Gallery, art
studios, a restaurant, and a museum shop. For more information, check