Friday, April 20, 2012

Mint Museum announces four new exhibitions

The Mint Museum has added four new exhibitions to its lineup for 2012,
beginning with one opening this month that pays tribute to two
treasured patrons of the local arts community, Emily and Zach Smith.

Colorbind: The Emily and Zach Smith Collection will be on view at Mint
Museum Uptown from April 28 through August 12, and runs concurrently
with the previously-announced multimedia Matthew Weinstein spotlight
exhibition on view April 28-August 19. Colorbind consists of nearly
two dozen paintings, lithographs, etchings, and drawings collected by
the Smiths.

"Colorbind offers our visitors the opportunity to experience a
selection of works by some of the most important modern and
contemporary artists of the 20th and 21st centuries," said Brad
Thomas, the Mint's curator of contemporary art. "More importantly, it
offers an intimate glimpse into a private collection that informs and
enlivens the everyday lives of Emily and Zach Smith, two of our
region's most important cultural supporters. We are extremely grateful
to the Smiths for making this work available for display at the Mint
for the benefit of our community."

For over three decades, the Smiths have tirelessly dedicated
themselves to improving the cultural infrastructure of this region.
Through their patronage and extensive service on various boards
including the Charlotte Symphony Orchestra, The Mint Museum, Opera
Carolina, and Penland School of Crafts, to name a few, their community
investment has touched the lives of countless individuals.

This intimate display of works illuminates a decidedly more personal
side of the couple's relationship to art. One small landscape painting
on view by North Carolina artist Claude Howell (1915 ­- 1997) was
selected jointly even before their marriage. It was an auspicious
beginning for lives that would be bound by a devotion to family,
community, and the arts.

As for their own personal taste in visual art, the Smiths confess a
shared love of color. Works by Pop artists Jasper Johns, Robert
Rauschenberg, and Wayne Thiebaud play alongside geometric abstractions
by Peter Halley, Sol Lewitt, and Sean Scully –– vibrant color binding
each creative voice into the collectors' unified vision. This
exhibition is organized by The Mint Museum.

"Colorbind and the other three exhibitions we are announcing today
further the Mint's role of serving the increasingly global community
of Charlotte and beyond," said Dr. Kathleen V. Jameson, President &
CEO of the Mint. "From celebrating treasured local art collectors in
the Smiths to tapping the unparalleled scope of our Fashion Collection
to showcasing the unique and diverse viewpoints of renowned artists
Vik Muniz and Beverly McIver, the Mint offers depth and range that is

Both Colorbind and Matthew Weinstein will be celebrated at a special
event at 6:30 p.m. May 3 at Mint Museum Uptown at Levine Center for
the Arts, 500 South Tryon Street. Weinstein, a multimedia artist, will
appear with Robert Goolrick, acclaimed author of A Reliable Wife.
After a viewing of Weinstein's short film "The Childhood of Bertolt
Brecht," the artist and the author will discuss the importance of the
role of narrative in art. The event costs $10 for Mint members; $20
for non-members; free to students with valid ID; and includes a
reception immediately following. Pre-registration is required; visit and click "Calendar."

And the Bead Goes On

26 May 2012 – 17 February 2013

Mint Museum Randolph

May brings the opening of the next exciting exhibition from the Mint's
nationally-renowned collection of fashion. The Mint has recently
renamed its Historic Costume & Fashionable Dress collection the
Fashion Collection.

And the Bead Goes On pays tribute to a form of ornamentation that has
been used to enliven fashion designs since ancient times. Originally
restricted to the wardrobes of aristocrats and made of precious
materials, beads indicated wealth and status in numerous cultures
throughout the globe. Sometimes beadwork was employed on garments to
convey rank, spiritual significance, or protection of the wearer.
Colorful and sparkling beads appeared on articles of clothing,
ceremonial dress, ritual masks, and everyday objects.

And the Bead Goes On features 20th- and 21st-century women's fashions,
which display inventive beadwork embroidery. This seemingly modern
surface decoration, the variety of bead materials and shapes, and the
basic sewing techniques used to embellish the works on view were
developed in Paris workshops in the 18th century. Talented designers
and skillful artisans collaborate to achieve dazzling fashions that
are comfortable and durable. Glass beads, metallic sequins, metal
filigree beads, faux pearls, and faceted crystal rhinestones hand-sewn
onto the cloth impart beauty, opulence, and artful originality.

Fashion was democratized in the 1960s, and previously exclusive beaded
style became available to all. The fashion industry today, while still
centered in Paris, includes major designers from India, Lebanon, and
Nigeria, and elsewhere. And the Bead Goes On presents evening gowns,
cocktail dresses, and ensembles from the museum's Fashion Collection,
complemented with exciting new works on loan from contemporary
designers. Designer names featured in the exhibition include Halston,
Bob Mackie, Giorgio Armani, Oscar de la Renta, and Alber Elbaz for

This exhibition, organized by The Mint Museum, will open at Mint
Museum Randolph concurrently with the previously-announced Heritage
Gallery, a look through the Mint's 75-year history as the oldest art
museum in North Carolina.

VantagePoint X: Vik Muniz

25 August – 4 November 2012

Mint Museum Uptown

Although Vik Muniz was born into poverty in Rio de Janeiro in 1961, he
has arguably become the most famous contemporary Brazilian artist. His
conceptual photographs are exhibited internationally, and he is
represented in significant museum collections throughout the world.
Beginning his art career in the mid-1980s after relocating to the
U.S., Muniz established a studio in Brooklyn, where he creates large
photographs that mimic recognizable images borrowed from the media or
historical paintings.

Muniz's recreations of famous paintings are notable for their uncanny
attention to detail and the non-traditional nature of the media he
chooses. Muniz painstakingly gathers such discarded objects as tires,
bolts, coils of wire, broken appliances, and soda cans, arranging them
on a warehouse floor in piles and layers to create representations of
iconic paintings by historical artists. After this labor-intensive
process is complete, Muniz photographs the massive creation from a
balcony above, thereby preserving the final appearance before the
image is disassembled.

Collectively, Muniz's photographs bring to mind ideas of ecology,
impermanence, and mortality. Muniz's photographs, which intentionally
incorporate discarded materials, implicate the viewer in a
consumerist, transitory culture. His photographs fuse two important
strands of postmodern photography—staging and appropriation. Staging,
which is the creation of an image through choreographing all visual
components of the photograph; and appropriation, which is borrowing
imagery from a source of reference, in this case historically
significant paintings from the Western tradition. The resulting
photographs are both fascinating and disarming, and probe the function
and traditions of visual representation. This exhibition is organized
by The Mint Museum.

Reflections: Portraits by Beverly McIver

20 October 2012 – 6 January 2013

Mint Museum Uptown

McIver, a native of North Carolina, is renowned for her expression-
filled, emotive canvases that commemorate her life and the lives of
those closest to her — in particular, her mother, Ethel, who passed
away in 2004, and her sister, Renee, who is mentally disabled. The
exhibition celebrates the last decade of her work and highlights these
two subjects, focusing solely on her self-portraits and on portraits
of Renee and other family members.

McIver is widely acknowledged as a significant presence in
contemporary American art, examining racial, gender, and social
identities through the lens of her own experiences as an African
American female artist. The history of her family allows McIver to
contemplate and illustrate the complicated emotions that arise from
these situations, including depression, frustration, tender
compassion, and innocent joy.

Accompanied by an exhibition catalogue, Reflections includes numerous
loans from the artist, private collections, and select museums.
Organized by the North Carolina Museum of Art, this exhibition is made
possible, in part, by the North Carolina Department of Cultural
Resources; the North Carolina Museum of Art Foundation, Inc.; and the
William R. Kenan Jr. Endowment for Educational Exhibitions.


As the oldest art museum in North Carolina, and the art museum with
one of the largest collections in the Southeast, 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 state's first art museum. Today, in a beautiful
park setting, intimate galleries invite visitors to engage with the
art of the ancient Americas, ceramics and decorative arts, fashion,
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