Posts Tagged ‘Wells Fargo Cultural Campus’

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.

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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.

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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.

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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 (www.mintmuseum.org).

Bechtler Museum of Modern Art Unveils Charlotte, NC’s Newest Public Art Piece

Sunday, November 22nd, 2009

Over the next two years, Center City Charlotte will be transformed by the development of the Wells Fargo Cultural Campus (formerly the Wachovia Cultural Campus), which will include an expanded Mint Museum of Art, the new Harvey B. Gantt Center for African American Arts + Culture (formerly the Afro-American Cultural Center) and the new Bechtler Museum of Modern Art. What a boon this is for the visual arts in the Charlotte area and the Carolinas.

The new Harvey B. Gantt Center for African American Arts + Culture opened in Oct. 2009 and now we have another announcement about the Cultural Campus. Stay tuned to Carolina Arts Unleashed for all the latest updates on the Cultural Campus.

The new Bechtler Museum of Modern Art has unveiled The Firebird, a playful, monumental outdoor sculpture that will greet visitors on their way to the museum when it opens on Jan. 2, 2010.

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The Firebird is Charlotte’s newest work of privately-owned public art and is a permanent fixture in the Bechtler Museum of Modern Art collection. Standing 17-feet 5-inches tall, the sculpture is a whimsical, bird-like creature covered from top to bottom in pieces of mirrored and colored glass. The Firebird was installed on the plaza of the Bechtler Museum of Modern Art facing South Tryon Street and overlooking the new Wells Fargo Cultural Campus where the museum is located.

Created in 1991 by French-American artist Niki de Saint Phalle (1930-2002), the sculpture was purchased by museum patron Andreas Bechtler specifically for placement in front of the Bechtler Museum of Modern Art. Bechtler, a Charlotte resident and native of Switzerland, was looking for a sculpture to serve as a counterpoint to the geometric lines of the museum’s architecture, designed by renowned Swiss architect Mario Botta.

“When I saw The Firebird, I knew it was outstanding. I knew it would be great for the museum,” Andreas Bechtler said. “The Firebird is joyful, uplifting and engaging. It makes you feel that life is good.”

The unveiling ceremony included remarks from Cyndee Patterson, Board Chair of the Bechtler Museum of Modern Art; Heinz Roth, Honorary Consul of Switzerland; Urs Ziswiler, Swiss Ambassador to the United States; Andreas Bechtler and John Boyer, President and CEO of the Bechtler Museum of Modern Art. Also in attendance was Laura Gabriela Duke, the daughter of The Firebird artist Niki de Saint Phalle.

“The Bechtler is excited to celebrate the great legacy of Niki de Saint Phalle with the placement of The Firebird – a piece that we trust will serve as an exciting and welcoming gesture to Charlotte visitors and everyone who comes to the Wells Fargo Cultural Campus,” said museum President and CEO John Boyer.

The Bechtler Museum of Modern Art is named after the family of Andreas Bechtler. Bechtler assembled and inherited a collection of more than 1,400 artworks created by major figures of 20th-century modernism and committed it to the city of Charlotte.

The Bechtler collection comprises artworks by seminal figures such as Alberto Giacometti, Joan Miro, Max Ernst, Andy Warhol, Le Corbusier, Sol LeWitt, Edgar Degas, Nicolas de Stael, Barbara Hepworth and Picasso. Books, photographs and letters illustrating personal connections to the Bechtler family accompany some of the works in the collection. Only a handful of the artworks have been on public view in the United States.

The Bechtler Museum of Modern Art is located at 420 South Tryon Street in uptown Charlotte. The museum opens to the public on Jan. 2, 2010. For museum details visit (www.bechtler.org).

To read an entry we posted about the Bechtler Museum of Modern Art, just click this link.

To read an entry we posted about the Harvey B. Gantt Center for African American Arts + Culture, just click this link.

New Bechtler Museum of Modern Art in Charlotte, NC, Launches Website

Sunday, June 28th, 2009

Over the next two years, Center City Charlotte will be transformed by the development of the Wells Fargo Cultural Campus (formerly the Wachovia Cultural Campus), which will include an expanded Mint Museum of Art, an expanded Harvey B. Gantt Center for African American Arts & Culture (formerly the Afro-American Cultural Center) and the new Bechtler Museum of Modern Art. What a boon for the visual arts in the Charlotte area and the Carolinas.

The Gantt Center will open later this year, the Bechtler Museum will open in Jan. 2010, and the Mint in the fall of 2010. I can hardly wait. But I guess I’ll have to.

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To introduce the Bechtler Museum of Modern Art and its collection to the public, an interim website has been launched at (www.bechtler.org). Created by MODE, a Charlotte-based branding and interactive agency, the site highlights artists in the collection, provides architectural information, describes museum offerings and gives visitors the opportunity to sign up for e-mail updates regarding programs, exhibitions, membership, facilities rental, volunteering and educational opportunities. The website will continue to expand in the months ahead.

While on the website look for the “Firebird” – a while back I came across a story about its restoration – this is really something.

But here’s some other info to get you interested.

The Bechtler Museum of Modern Art, the only museum dedicated to the exhibition of mid 20th-century European modern art in the southeast, will open to the public on Jan. 2, 2010.

Construction of the museum’s distinct four-story, 36,500 square foot building in downtown Charlotte is nearing completion. Museum staff is slated to move into the facility this summer and the collection is scheduled to arrive in the fall. The building, designed by world renowned Swiss architect Mario Botta, is destined to become an iconic structure with its boldly cantilevered fourth floor exhibition gallery, soaring glass and steel atrium and terra cotta exterior.

The museum is named after the family of Andreas Bechtler, a Charlotte resident and native of Switzerland who assembled and inherited a collection of more than 1,400 artworks created by major figures of 20th-century modernism and donated it to the public trust. The Bechtler collection reflects most of the important art movements and schools from the 20th century with a deep holding of the School of Paris after World War II.

The collection is comprised of artworks by seminal figures such as Alberto Giacometti, Joan Miro, Jean Tinguely, Max Ernst, Andy Warhol, Le Corbusier, Sol Lewitt, Edgar Degas, Nicolas de Stael, Barbara Hepworth and Picasso. In many instances the holdings by a particular artist are across various media (painting, sculpture, drawing, prints and decorative arts). Some works in the collection are also accompanied by books, photographs and letters illustrating personal connections to the Bechtler family.

Only a handful of the artworks in the Bechtler collection have been on public view in the United States. Until now, the collection was privately held by the Bechtler family and has since been committed to the city of Charlotte.

From time to time as we get news we’ll keep you posted about this exciting project.