Posts Tagged ‘Mint Museum Uptown’

Families are Focus of Mint Museum’s New Educational Programming in Charlotte, NC

Thursday, December 16th, 2010


Here’s some news for families looking for more artistic activities for their children next year. If you want to find this news later – just remember you can now search this blog. Just type in the word Families.

New programs and amenities geared towards younger visitors are making the Mint Museums in Charlotte, NC, a welcoming destination for children and families this winter.

The Lewis Family Gallery at the Mint Museum Uptown provides a creative outlet for children to play, explore, and learn about the Museum’s collections. Featuring actual works of art, the Family Gallery offers five activity zones and a soft-play Tot Spot area for crawlers and new walkers. Visitors can pose for pictures behind a wall of ornate gold frames in the Hall of Portraits or step into a Romare Bearden-inspired collage in the interactive Memories of Mecklenburg play house. Two art-making stations, Draw the Line and Imagination Station, allow children to experiment with mark-making and create artwork to take home, while the Inspired By station offers puzzle challenges for young minds. Geared towards children up to age 12, the Lewis Family Gallery is open during regular museum hours and is free with admission.

Beginning in January, families will be able to borrow an Art Pack at the “Mint for Families” station just outside the Lewis Family Gallery for an in-depth investigation of artwork in the permanent collection galleries. Art Packs are backpacks stocked with sketching, writing, and touchable activities and games geared toward school-aged children. Also available at the family station are ARTventure scavenger hunt postcards, which encourage children and their parents to explore a new theme in the Mint Museum Uptown each month. Both of these projects are supported, in part, by an award from the National Endowment for the Arts.

The Mint will also launch two new education series for families in 2011: Art Studio Saturdays and Sunday Fun Days. In Art Studio Saturdays, children and adults can create art projects as a family using materials and themes provided by the Museum. This drop-in series will be held monthly on second Saturdays from 10am to 3pm, at the Mint Museum Randolph and is free with museum admission. The Art Studio Saturdays winter/spring schedule is:

Jan. 8, 2011 – Painting Party!: Experiment with a variety of paints and materials to create a work of art, and see a masterpiece by Impressionist Mary Cassatt in the galleries.

Feb. 12 – Dragon Puppets: Use crayon resist, markers, and embellishments to construct a dramatic dragon puppet to celebrate Chinese New Year.

Mar. 12 – Native American Pottery: Explore ancient and contemporary pottery of the Americas and use hand-building techniques to construct a clay animal or vessel to take home.

Apr. 9 – Springtime Collage Cards: Celebrate the season by cutting, tearing, and layering hand-made papers to create lovely collaged notecards, and visit the galleries to see how artists have depicted seasons throughout the ages.

May 14 – Mexican Tin Art: Draw inspiration from the bold, contemporary Maya textiles on display, and design and emboss a colorful, metal folk art plate.

Debuting in January at the Mint Museum Uptown are Sunday Fun Days. This monthly, drop-in series features family-friendly activities, including performances, artist demonstrations, craft projects, family tours, and more. Sunday Fun Days will be held monthly on third Sundays from 1 to 4pm, at the Mint Museum Uptown and are free with museum admission. The Sunday Fun Days winter/spring schedule is:

Jan. 16 – Glass Magic: Go on a family tour to view glass sculptures, make a sparkling sun catcher, and explore color and light at the Colorama Booth with Discovery Place ScienceReach specialists.

Feb. 20 – Art, Supersized: Add your touch to a supersized mural, search the galleries for large paintings, and play “giant games” with your family members.

Mar. 20 – Crafting Critters: Watch artist David Edgar morph recycled plastic into incredible sea creatures, take a guided “safari” in the galleries, and craft a critter to take home.

Apr. 17 – Earth Day Art: See a special “green” performance by the North Carolina Dance Theatre, watch a pottery demonstration by artist Greg Scott, craft a recycled creation, and go on an Earth Day family tour.

May 15 – Wonders of Wood: Watch the wood shavings fly as artist Charles Farrar demonstrates the art of woodturning on a lathe, then go on a wood-themed scavenger hunt in the galleries and do a simple wood project.

All 2010-2011 education programs for children, youth, and teachers are supported in part by a generous grant from The Hearst Foundation, Inc.

For further information call the Museum at 704/337-2000 or visit (

Let’s Hope the Musical Chairs Name Game is Over in Charlotte, NC

Monday, April 26th, 2010

We’ve been reporting on the new complex of art facilities in Uptown Charlotte, NC, ever since we started this blog – almost two years ago. The complex which includes the new Harvey B. Gantt Center for African American Arts + Culture (formerly the Afro-American Cultural Center); the new Bechtler Museum of Modern Art; and the new Mint Museum Uptown(scheduled to open this October) was first called the Wachovia Cultural Campus. But then Wachovia was purchased by Wells Fargo, the name changed to the Wells Fargo Cultural Campus. From now on, the complex will be known as the Levine Center for the Arts – and for good reason.


In an article offered by the Charlotte Observer on April 21, 2010, we learned that a contribution of $15 million from the Leon Levine Foundation and a second $5 million contribution from Duke Energy, topped off an $83 million arts-endowment drive launched by the Arts & Science Council in November 2006.

Of course in the future – down the road – once the $85 million endowment isn’t producing enough money to keep the complex going – if someone wanted to contribute $200 million in our name, I’m sure they would change it to the Carolina Arts Unleashed Cultural Outlet Mall.

Like I’ve always said – money is the Mother’s milk of the arts and money talks.

You go girl – Charlotte! $85 million for an endowment for the arts. Who else can do that in the Carolinas? Who?

Some Update News on the Mint Museums in Charlotte, NC

Friday, January 22nd, 2010

We have received some updated info on what’s going to be happening this year with the Mint Museums – Mint Museum of Craft + Design and Mint Museum Randolph. We have been talking about the newly opened Harvey B. Gantt Center for African-American Arts + Culture and the Bechtler Museum of Modern Art – mentioning that the new Mint Museum Uptown will be coming later this year.

Pay close attention to the part about the Mint Museum of Craft + Design Shop staying open a few more months. That’s where you can pick up a copy of Carolina Arts in the heart of Uptown Charlotte – as well as some pretty nifty artworks, art objects and art books.

So here’s some news about the Mint Museums.

The Mint Museum of Craft + Design in Charlotte, NC, will close to the public on Feb. 7, 2010, to prepare to move its collections to the new Mint Museum Uptown. Opening in October 2010, the Mint Museum Uptown will house the Mint Museum of Craft + Design collections, as well as significant collections of American Art, Contemporary Art and a selection of European Art in a new five-story, 145,000-square-foot facility located in the heart of Charlotte’s business district.


The Mint Museum of Craft + Design Shop will remain open for several more months, with a firm closing date to be announced later this spring.

To celebrate the grand opening of the Mint Museum Uptown, the Mint Museum of Craft + Design has launched Project Ten Ten Ten, a series of commissions created especially for the new Mint Uptown galleries by 10 of the world’s most innovative craft and design artists. When the doors open in October, visitors will see spectacular works by glass artist/designer Danny Lane (United Kingdom), conceptual jewelry artist Ted Noten (The Netherlands), furniture maker/designer Joseph Walsh (Ireland) and fiber artist Hildur Bjarnadttir (Iceland). Equally striking commissions by Kawana Tetsunori, Kate Malone, Tom Joyce, Cristina Córdova, Susan Point and Ayala Serfaty are also being planned for the new facility.

The Mint Museum expansion includes the construction of a new building in uptown Charlotte and the reinstallation of the historic US Mint facility on Randolph Road in Charlotte. When the expansion is complete, The Mint Museum’s total combined square footage will grow by more than 60 percent, allowing opportunities to showcase more works from the permanent collection and better accommodate significant traveling exhibitions.

A postcard of the original Mint Museum – former US Mint facility.

You can see photos of the building progress of the new Mint facility at this link.

The Mint Museum Uptown will be part of the new Wells Fargo Cultural Campus. In addition to the Mint, the completed campus will include the Bechtler Museum of Modern Art, the Harvey B. Gantt Center for African-American Arts + Culture, the Knight Theater (housing the North Carolina Dance Theatre) and the Duke Energy Center. Following the grand opening of the Mint Museum Uptown, collections at the Mint Museum Randolph will be reinstalled with a fresh new vision. Galleries there will feature the Mint’s superb Ceramics, Art of the Ancient Americas, and Historic Costume and Fashionable Dress collections.

The Mint Museum Uptown is scheduled to open just one year prior to the Mint’s 75th anniversary. Designed by Machado and Silvetti Associates of Boston (design architect), Clark Patterson Lee Design Professionals of Charlotte (architect of record), and George Sexton Associates of Washington, D.C. (museum consultant), the new facility will combine inspiring architecture with groundbreaking exhibitions to provide unparalleled art experiences for its visitors. The Museum expansion will provide larger and more flexible space to showcase the permanent collections and Mint-organized special exhibitions, as well as major touring exhibitions organized by other venues. The new facility will also house a Family Gallery to reinforce the Museum’s dual priorities of art and education.

For more information, visit (