A group of children sit in front of a large wooden chair sculpture and listen to a woman who is standing up and teaching them about it
6 common misconceptions about visiting The Mint Museum — and what to know instead

By Rubie Britt-Height and Michele Huggins

An art museum is a building that houses artworks, but moreover it’s a place for anyone in the community who enjoys viewing art to visit. Following are a few misconceptions debunked about visiting The Mint Museum.

Misconception: I have to dress up to visit The Mint Museum

Truth: Come as you are! Just like art is not one size fits all, neither is individual style. From casual T-shirts, jeans and sneakers to suits and ties, skirts or sweatshirts, it’s all good at the Mint.

Misconception: I have to know about art to visit the museum

Truth: You don’t have to know anything about art to visit the Mint. While learning about abstract paintings, fashion, ceramic art, furniture or hand-blown glass, we simply want guests to enjoy exploring the collections and galleries. Thanks to AVO Insights and the Arts & Science Council, we recently unrolled augmented reality into the museum galleries. By hovering your phone over select works of art, a video about the artwork appears. Until you can experience it in person, check out the videos by following @themintmuseum on Instagram.

Misconception: The Mint Museum is only uptown

Truth: The Mint Museum Uptown celebrates 10 years in October 2020 at Levine Center for the Arts on South Tryon Street, but Mint Museum Randolph is the original Mint Museum location, opening its doors 1936. Located at 2730 Randolph Road, Mint Museum Randolph houses Native American, Fashion, Decorative Arts, and Art of the Ancient Americas collections, in addition to the most recent exhibition Classic Black: The Basalt Sculptures of Josiah Wedgwood and His Contemporaries on view through Jan. 3, 2021. Modern and Contemporary Art, American Art, European Art, and Craft+Design collections fill the galleries at Mint Museum Uptown.

Misconception: All the art at The Mint Museum is old and stuffy

Truth: Collections at the Mint are diverse and recognize the talent of artists of all ages and backgrounds. Constellation CLT showcases artists throughout the city and region with installations rotating three times per year in four places at Mint Museum Uptown: in the entrance; at the foot of the atrium escalator; and on the landings of the Mezzanine and Level 4. 

Misconception: There’s nothing for my young children to do at the Mint

Truth: Through self-guided ARTventures scavenger hunts, and interactive play opportunities at the Lewis Family Gallery*, there’s something for the young ones at the Mint. Stroller tours are available for parents that want to enjoy art with little ones in tow. Plus there is a specially designated room for nursing mothers. At Mint Museum Randolph, children can run and play in the outdoor park, or plan a picnic under a giant shade tree near the rose garden before touring the galleries.

*Due to many touch points, the Lewis Family Gallery will remain closed after the museum re-opens while we implement safety precautions during COVID-19.

Misconception: You have to be a member to visit

Truth: Single-day admission tickets are available, and museum admission is free Wednesday from 5-9 p.m. at each museum location. Live at the Mint events are free to the public and feature local musicians and performing artists, as well as artist discussions. Check the calendar for the event schedule. Membership does, however, have benefits. From special events to discounts on programming, see if a membership is right for you.