Final days: Landmark bamboo sculpture at Mint Museum Randolph set for demolition this month

Tetsunori Kawana’s “Passage: Waterway” is part of Mint’s Project Ten Ten Ten

When it was unveiled on the lawn in front of Mint Museum Randolph on August 14, 2011, Tetsunori Kawana’s remarkable bamboo sculpture “Passage: Waterway” was envisioned as a temporary work that would return to nature after it experienced four seasons.

And now, as the work approaches its one-year mark, it is scheduled for demolition on Thursday, August 16, 2012. Visitors are invited to Mint Museum Randolph to experience “Passage: Waterway” a final time in the coming days. (Parking is free at Mint Museum Randolph, 2730 Randolph Road, and there is no charge to enter the grounds outside the museum).

The 20- by 20- by 80-foot passageway was commissioned by the Young Affiliates of the Mint as part of Project Ten Ten Ten, an effort launched in conjunction with the opening of Mint Museum Uptown in October 2010. The museum and its affiliates have commissioned 10 works by 10 of the world’s leading craft and design artists.

Kawana’s bamboo work is an example of the strength and beauty of the ancient art of Ikebana. The artist and community volunteers worked for weeks in some of the city’s hottest and wettest weather to assemble it from Madake bamboo. It was unveiled during a free-admission Community Day with a celebration of Japanese culture.

It began its life the bright green of fresh bamboo and has gently weathered to a yellow-gray color over the past year. The artist’s hope was for visitors to leave the installation with a sense of well-being and connectedness to the natural cycle of life. “Passage: Waterway” has now come full circle. It’s gone through the four seasons, its life cycle, and is coming to an end. How lucky we have been to live with it, walk through it, and experience it over the past year,” said Annie Carlano, the Mint’s director of craft and design.

ALSO ENDING THIS MONTH

Two exhibitions at Mint Museum Uptown at Levine Center for the Arts, 500 South Tryon Street, are also coming to an end in August. The final day for Colorbind: The Emily and Zach Smith Collection is August 12. For over three decades, Charlotte and surrounding communities have benefited from Emily and Zach Smith’s tireless dedication to improving the cultural infrastructure of our region. This intimate display of works illuminates a personal side of the couple’s relationship to art––one that has enriched and informed their life together. 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.

The final day for Matthew Weinstein is August 19. Weinstein, a visual artist currently living and working in Brooklyn, New York, has achieved notoriety in the art world as the first artist to focus exclusively on 3D animation. Using precision airbrush techniques and single-hair paintbrushes, Weinstein also creates paintings, essentially abstractions of his animated worlds. These paintings accompany the digital installations and enable the artist to explore the often-tenuous boundary between the real and the virtual in contemporary culture. The Charlotte Symphony Orchestra commissioned Weinstein to create a digital accompaniment to debut with their performance of Maurice Ravel’s Bolero on May 4. The Mint Museum organized a spotlight exhibition of Weinstein’s art, including four paintings and a video.

Mint Museum announces the opening of spotlight exhibition Matthew Weinstein

Artist to visit museum with acclaimed author Robert Goolrick prior to premiere of Charlotte Symphony�s Bolero Comes Alive; museum adopts new policy of opening all lectures free to college students

 Fans of visual art, multimedia art, film, dance, and symphony will all find something to love when The Mint Museum unveils the spotlight exhibition Matthew Weinstein, featuring four paintings and a short film by Brooklyn, N.Y.-based multimedia artist Matthew Weinstein.

The exhibition opens Saturday, April 28 and remains on view through August 19. It runs concurrently with Colorbind: The Emily and Zach Smith Collection, another spotlight exhibition paying tribute to beloved local patrons of both the Mint and Charlotte Symphony, on view April 28 through August 12.

Weinstein has achieved notoriety in the art world as the first artist to focus exclusively on 3D animation.  Beginning with a self-written dialogue or lyrics, Weinstein uses musical scores and written text to develop characters which he then renders by means of the animation program MAYA. Weinstein then casts actors to vocalize the dialogue, and musicians to create an auditory backdrop for the already visually-developed environments. Using precision airbrush techniques and single-hair paintbrushes, Weinstein also creates paintings, essentially abstractions of his animated worlds. These paintings accompany the digital installations and enable the artist to explore the often-tenuous boundary between the real and the virtual in contemporary culture.

The Mint-organized exhibition includes Weinstein’s short film Chariots of the Gods, which features a mechanized female koi, voiced by Tony Award-winning actress Natasha Richardson, who dangles from a golden chain in an empty restaurant.  While she seems to carelessly meander through her environment with a smiling disposition, she offers discourse on such weighty subjects as the future, devolution, technology, aliens, and the impossibility of progress.

“Matthew Weinstein’s video invites the viewer to enter a mesmerizing environment, which is entirely manufactured through computer animation. His unique ability to combine his many talents as screenwriter, director, and digital animator results in a video that is visually stunning as the narrator lulls the viewer to follow her epic tale,” said Carla Hanzal, the Mint’s curator of contemporary art. “Weinstein’s paintings, often inspired by the digital environments he creates, are seamlessly rendered. Their refined surfaces and rich detail coax one to take a closer look at the worlds he brings to fruition.”

On Thursday, May 3, 2012, Weinstein will participate in a special dialogue with Robert Goolrick, acclaimed author of the novel A Reliable Wife, at Mint Museum Uptown at Levine Center for the Arts, 500 South Tryon Street. After a viewing of Weinstein’s short film The Childhood of Bertolt Brecht (recommended for ages 13 and up), the artist and the author will discuss the importance and the role of narrative in art. This event is a cultural partnership between The Mint Museum and the Charlotte Symphony Orchestra, which also celebrates the Symphony’s production of Bolero Comes Alive, featuring digital animation by Weinstein. After the lecture at 6:30 p.m., the museum will host a reception and opportunities to view both the Weinstein and Colorbind exhibitions (other galleries will be closed during the evening). The cost is $10 for Mint members and $20 for non-members. And in a recently-adopted policy, all college students with valid ID can be admitted free to this and all other lectures hosted by the Mint.

Any non-members who attend can receive a $10 discount off a new Mint membership. In addition, ticketholders to the Symphony’s May 4 Bolero Comes Alive performance can receive free admission and $10 off a new Mint Membership from May 3 through May 6, and Mint members can receive $10 off Bolero Comes Alive tickets by contacting the Charlotte Symphony Box Office at 704-972-2000. This cultural partnership is reminiscent of similar partnerships the Mint has joined in with Opera Carolina and North Carolina Dance Theatre. In January, the Mint unveiled a spotlight exhibition by artist Jun Kaneko, which remains on view through April 29, in conjunction with a Kaneko-designed production of the opera Madama Butterfly. And in March, the museum offered free admission to Sleeping Beauty ticketholders and Mint members received a ticket purchase discount to NCDT’s Sleeping Beauty performance in conjunction with the museum’s Fairytales, Fantasy, & Fear exhibition, which remains on view through July 8.

“Exploring innovative ways to maximize opportunities for Charlotte audiences through cultural partnerships continues to be a core value of the Mint, and we’re pleased to be able to further this goal through the work of an artist as talented as Matthew Weinstein,” said Dr. Kathleen V. Jameson, president & CEO of The Mint Museum. “As we have said before, thanks to this deepening spirit of collaboration, there’s never been a more exciting time to be a follower of the arts in Charlotte.”

Symphony premieres Bolero Comes Alive

At Bolero Comes Alive, a KnightSounds performance on May 4, the Charlotte Symphony will feature the world premiere of Weinstein’s latest digitally animated work of art. Weinstein’s commissioned piece is a 16-minute original animated video to be displayed on a screen suspended above the orchestra. The audience will experience the brilliant animation in sync with the hypnotic music of Ravel’s Bolero.

This is the first commissioned work under the leadership of Music Director Christopher Warren-Green. It will be performed during the Symphony’s new multi-sensory KnightSounds series, which is funded by the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation and is becoming part of a new national model for the modern concert-going experience.

Warren-Green will lead the Charlotte Symphony in this exciting venture that represents a marriage of classical music, digital art, and modern dance. In order to make his non-human characters live on screen and appeal to a human audience, Weinstein works with actors, dancers and choreographers to capture human movement which he then applies to his animations. For this piece, he worked closely with a choreographer to translate his ideas into a modern dance.

“The application of digital animation to the frequently performed and well known Bolero exposes aspects of the work in a way that an aural performance alone cannot,” said Charlotte Symphony President and Executive Director Jonathan Martin.

Commissioning a piece of multimedia artwork is representative of the forward-thinking vision of the orchestra. As the commissioning agency, the Charlotte Symphony aims to give the work a continued existence in the orchestra world beyond the premiere. The Charlotte Symphony will license the work to other orchestras to help offset the cost of the commission. A post-concert street festival will follow the May 4 performance, featuring local food vendors, artisans and continued entertainment from the high-octane PROJECT Trio.

Since its inception in 2010, the KnightSounds series has been met with full houses and critical success. A tenet of the KnightSounds mission, multimedia is used to enhance and intensify the musical experience. The concerts are one hour in length and include a beverage and hors d’oeuvres in the ticket price, along with engaging pre- and post-concert activities.

Event list:

Saturday, April 28: Spotlight exhibitions Matthew Weinstein and Colorbind: The Emily and Zach Smith Collection go on public view at Mint Museum Uptown at Levine Center for the Arts, 500 South Tryon Street.

Thursday, May 3:  6:30 p.m. Matthew Weinstein and author Robert Goolrick community discussion and reception at Mint Museum Uptown. Visit www.mintmuseum.org for more information and to RSVP (required; hit “calendar”). $10 Mint members and Bolero Comes Alive ticket holders; $20 non-members; free to college students.

Friday, May 4: 5 p.m. Free admission to Mint Museum Uptown begins for all concert ticket holders, continuing through Sunday, May 6.

6:30 p.m. Pre-concert reception with Dean & Deluca hors d’oeuvres at the Knight Theater at Levine Center for the Arts, 430 South Tryon Street.

7:30 p.m. Charlotte Symphony KnightSounds Bolero Comes Alive concert premieres Weinstein work. Tickets to the KnightSounds performance and premiere are $39, available at 704.972.2000 or www.charlottesymphony.org.

8:30 p.m. Post-concert street festival outside the Knight Theater featuring vendors, artists and musical entertainment.

 

New college student ticket policy

 

While The Mint Museum frequently has offered free or discounted admission to college students to lectures and other special events, museum officials recently decided to officially open all lectures to college students with a valid student ID. This includes the May 3 Weinstein/Goolrick event and the Mint’s Contemporary Architecture + Design (CAD) series, bringing a lecture from influential graphic designer Stefan Sagmeister at 7 p.m. on May 24 (cost is $5 to Mint members and $10 to non-members).

This admission policy reflects the museum’s recently adopted mission statement which includes “engaging and inspiring all members of our global community.”

“A major initiative of The Mint Museum is to create innovative and engaging public programs relevant to our various communities — and one of our large communities is college and university students,” said Laura Everett, adult programs coordinator for the Mint. “The Mint Museum’s programming consistently features nationally and internationally renowned experts — offering students perspectives on the world which will only enrich their education.”

For more information on these and other upcoming events, visit mintmuseum.org and click “Calendar.”

 

Charlotte Symphony

Founded in 1932, the Charlotte Symphony aspires to serve the whole community through classical music that educates, entertains and enriches. The orchestra’s recently launched New American Orchestra Campaign will provide the financial stability for the Symphony to build a renewed and sustainable funding model. A non-traditional venture, the New American Orchestra Campaign seeks to address the immediate nature of the need through community-wide operating support. Through education, innovation and relentless passion, the Charlotte Symphony has served the community for 80 years and is a vital organization that fervently believes in the artistic enrichment of the human spirit.

Christopher Warren-Green

Music Director of the Charlotte Symphony and London Chamber orchestras, Christopher Warren-Green has formed an international career that has included appearances with the London Philharmonic, Philadelphia Orchestra and Principal Conductor of the Camerata Resident Orchestra of the Megaron Athens.Warren-Green has been personally invited to conduct on many occasions for the Royal Family in the last thirty years. In April 2011, Warren-Green conducted the London Chamber Orchestra during the marriage ceremony of HRH Prince William Duke of Cambridge and HRH Duchess of Cambridge at Westminster Abbey, which was televised to millions worldwide. Warren-Green is a regular on television and radio, and in summer 2008, he featured on the BBC’s high-profile television series ‘Maestro’. He has recorded extensively for Sony, Philips, Virgin EMI, Chandos and Deutsche Grammophon.

John S. and James L. Knight Foundation

Knight Foundation supports transformational ideas that promote quality journalism, advance media innovation, engage communities and foster the arts. The foundation believes that democracy thrives when people and communities are informed and engaged. For more, visit KnightFoundation.org.

Levine Center for the Arts and Knight Theatre

The Levine Center for the Arts is one of Charlotte’s key cultural destinations, comprised of Bechtler Museum of Modern Arts, Harvey B. Gantt Center for African-American Arts+Culture, John S. and James L. Knight Theater and Mint Museum Uptown. The center was made possible through the Campaign for Cultural Facilities, the support of the City of Charlotte and Mecklenburg County, and the generosity of the Leon Levine Foundation, one of the country’s largest and most impactful philanthropic organizations. Opened in 2010, the Knight Theater’s contemporary, flexible design of 1,150 seats provides for artistic grandeur in an intimate setting. The theater is the primary venue for the North Carolina Dance Theatre, and features performances by Opera Carolina and the Charlotte Symphony, as well as musical theater, popular music, touring productions, lectures and film.

Ten innovative exhibitions for 2012

Museum announces upcoming slate, including ‘Fairytales, Fantasy, & Fear’ and ‘Read My Pins: The Madeleine Albright Collection’

CHARLOTTE, NC (February 9, 2012) – The Mint Museum announced a slate of 10 upcoming exhibitions for 2012, beginning with Surrealism and Beyond, which opens to the public on February 11. With former U.S. Secretary of State Madeleine Albright in attendance, the museum also announced that an exhibition of her jewelry entitled Read My Pins: The Madeleine Albright Collection will open June 30 and be on view during the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte. And complementing trends that are reverberating throughout popular culture, museum officials detailed plans for the exhibition Fairytales, Fantasy, & Fear, which is scheduled to open March 3.

More will be added to this list in coming months, so keep checking back at mintmuseum.org for updates!

Surrealism and Beyond

Mint Museum UPTOWN

11 February – 13 May 2012

This project brings together three groundbreaking exhibitions and comprises the largest and most significant examination Surrealism and Surrealist-inspired art ever presented in the Southeast.

Double Solitaire: The Surreal Worlds of Kay Sage and Yves Tanguy explores the exchange of ideas that informed the work of the important Surrealist artists Kay Sage (American, 1898-1963) and Yves Tanguy (French/American, 1900-1955) during their 15-year relationship. It is the first exhibition to examine Sage and Tanguy’s work from this perspective, the first significant exhibition of Tanguy’s art organized by an American museum since 1955, and the first major gathering of Sage’s paintings since 1977. Double Solitaire: The Surreal Worlds of Kay Sage and Yves Tanguy is made possible through support from The Mint Museum Auxiliary and awards from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Pierre and Tana Matisse Foundation. Exhibition organized by The Mint Museum and Katonah Museum of Art.

Seeing the World Within: Charles Seliger in the 1940s focuses on the remarkable paintings and drawings created by the American artist Charles Seliger (1926-2009) during the first decade of his career. It is made possible through support from The Mint Museum Auxiliary and awards from the Terra Foundation for American Art and The Dedalus Foundation, Inc. Exhibition organized by The Mint Museum.

Gordon Onslow Ford: Voyager and Visionary is the first retrospective of the British-American Surrealist painter’s work organized by an American museum in more than 30 years. Featuring approximately 30 paintings by the artist, it is drawn entirely from his family’s collection. It is made possible through support from The Mint Museum Auxiliary and organized by The Mint Museum. For a complete news release about these exhibitions, visit mintmuseum.org and click on “News/Press Releases.”

Fairytales, Fantasy, & Fear

Mint Museum UPTOWN 3 March – 8 July 2012

Fairytales, Fantasy, & Fear brings together the work of several internationally acclaimed artists, including Mattia Biagi, Mark Newport, Kako Ueda, Tom Price, and Kate Malone. Known for his work in tar, Italian artist Biagi reinterprets icons of lost innocence, such as Little Red Riding Hood and Cinderella’s carriage. Newport, an American fiber artist, creates hand-knit acrylic re-creations of heroes’ costumes, which combine their heroic, protective, and ultra-masculine yet vulnerable personas. Ueda, a Japanese paper artist, uses unsettling imagery, such as insects and skeletons, in her detailed cutouts to represent the fine line between beauty and decay. Price, a British furniture designer, is known for his use of polypropylene tubing to create spiky shapes that evoke forms from the natural world. And Malone, a British ceramic artist, is known for her sensual Neo-Baroque forms and mastery of crystalline glazes.

This thematic exhibition, generously supported by the Mint Museum Auxiliary, also includes selections from the Mint’s permanent collection and loans from private collections, and utilizes flat-screen televisions for a one-of-a-kind experience. For a complete news release about this exhibition, visit mintmuseum.org and click on “News/Press Releases.”

Sophisticated Surfaces: The Pottery of Herb Cohen

Mint Museum RANDOLPH

7 April 2012 – 6 January 2013

Organized as part of the Mint’s celebration of its 75th anniversary, this exhibition focuses on the ceramic creations of Herb Cohen, a master potter and seminal figure in the museum’s own history. Sophisticated Surfaces: The Pottery of Herb Cohen brings 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, which harmoniously blend purity of form with sophisticated surface decoration. Following the evolution of his seven-decade-long career as an award-winning potter, this exhibition demonstrates in a variety of forms that range from the functional to the sculptural the inimitable skill and style for which Cohen has become known.

Born in Manhattan, Cohen first learned to throw on the potter’s wheel at the remarkably young age of 6, a craft he has continued to practice throughout his life. After earning his MFA from the prestigious New York State College of Ceramics at Alfred University, Cohen worked as a designer for Hyalyn Porcelain Company in Hickory, N.C. He eventually 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.

The American Art Tile, 1880-1940

Mint Museum RANDOLPH

7 April 2012 – 6 January 2013

The popularity of art tiles for embellishing American architectural settings dates to the 1876 Centennial Exhibition in Philadelphia. For the remainder of the nineteenth century, many middle-class and wealthy consumers incorporated the latest fashions of art tiles in their homes. Mass-produced tiles with refined details often featured famous portraits or vignettes. By the turn of the century, trends shifted to favor the handmade aesthetic of the Arts & Crafts Movement. American art tile companies enjoyed success for about 50 years, until the Great Depression and World War II forced many out of business. The Mint Museum will present approximately 40 tiles from its permanent collection in the American Decorative Arts Gallery, including the permanently installed fireplace surround, Arkansas Traveler, modeled and designed circa 1916 by Henry Chapman Mercer of Moravian Pottery & Tile Works, Doylestown, Pennsylvania.

Heritage Gallery

Mint Museum

RANDOLPH Opens 31 May 2012

From its inception as the first art museum in North Carolina in 1936, The Mint Museum has been an innovator and leader, a theme illustrated in the inaugural installation of the Heritage Gallery at Mint Museum Randolph. It will feature works of art, archival documents, and photographs documenting the growth and evolution of the museum, from its beginnings as the original branch of the U.S. Mint to its founding as an art museum to the present and beyond.

 

Matthew Weinstein

Mint Museum UPTOWN

28 April-19 August 2012

Matthew Weinstein, a visual artist currently living and working in Brooklyn, N.Y., has achieved notoriety in the art world as the first artist to focus exclusively on 3D animation. Beginning with a self-written dialogue or lyrics, Weinstein uses musical scores and written text to develop characters which he then renders by means of the animation program MAYA. Weinstein then casts actors to vocalize the dialogue, and musicians to create an auditory backdrop for the already visually-developed environments. Using precision airbrush techniques and single-hair paintbrushes, Weinstein also creates paintings, essentially abstractions of his animated worlds. These paintings accompany the digital installations and enable the artist to explore the often-tenuous boundary between the real and the virtual in contemporary culture.

The Charlotte Symphony Orchestra commissioned Weinstein to create a digital accompaniment to debut with their performance of Maurice Ravel’s Bolero on May 4. The Mint Museum has organized a spotlight exhibition of Weinstein’s art, including four paintings and two videos. Weinstein’s Chariots of the Gods features a mechanized female koi, voiced by Tony-award winning actress Natasha Richardson, who dangles from a golden chain in an empty restaurant. While she seems to carelessly meander through her environment with a smiling disposition, she offers discourse on such weighty subjects as the future, devolution, technology, aliens, and the impossibility of progress. A second video, Cruising 1980, is an homage to writer-director William Friedkin’s iconic film “Cruising” (1980). This exhibition is organized by The Mint Museum.

Read My Pins: The Madeleine Albright Collection

Mint Museum UPTOWN

30 June – 23 September 2012

During her career in public service, Madeleine Albright famously used her jewelry to communicate diplomatic messages. Read My Pins: The Madeleine Albright Collection reveals an intriguing story of American history and foreign policy as told through Secretary Albright’s jeweled pins. The exhibition will be on display during the Democratic National Convention, which will be in Charlotte September 3-6, 2012.

Organized by the Museum of Arts and Design in New York, the exhibition features more than 200 pieces of jewelry. The collection that Secretary Albright cultivated is distinctive and democratic — sometimes demure and understated, sometimes outlandish and outspoken — and spans more than a century of jewelry design and fascinating pieces from across the globe. The works on view are chosen for their symbolic value, and while some are fine antiques, many are costume jewelry. Together the pieces in this expressive collection explore the power of jewelry to communicate through a style and language of its own.

Through this traveling exhibition and the accompanying book “Read My Pins: Stories from a Diplomat’s Jewel Box” (2009), Secretary Albright has given the world an opportunity to explore American history and foreign policy through the lens of jewelry. For a complete news release about this exhibition, visit mintmuseum.org and click on “News/Press Releases.”

Hard Truths: The Art of Thornton Dial

Mint Museum UPTOWN

30 June – 30 September 2012

Thornton Dial is a keen observer of the human spectacle and its narratives of corruption and moral strength, folly and triumph. As an artist, he has spent the last two decades exploring the truth of American history and culture in all its complexities and contradictions. This exhibition presents a major survey of Dial’s work, an epic gathering of over fifty large-scale paintings, sculptures and wall assemblages that address the most compelling issues of our time. Born and raised in the rural South, Dial spent his childhood toiling in the farm fields of western Alabama, followed by decades spent as a laborer in the region’s factories and heavy industry. A working-class man whose art was weaned in the unheralded expressive practices of the black vernacular South, Dial speaks in a voice long overlooked in the canons of modern art and culture.

Since his discovery in the late 1980s, critics have likened Dial’s complex and tumultuous creations to the renowned works of such artists as Jackson Pollock and Anselm Kiefer. To create his art, Dial employs a vast universe of symbolically charged materials — from plastic grave flowers, child’s toys, bed springs and carpet scraps to cow skulls and goat carcasses. Salvaged from garbage cans and trash heaps, these items reappear in dense accumulations amidst the artist’s fields of dripped paint and expressionistic brushworks. Over the years, Dial has tackled a wide range of social and political subjects in his art, from gripping commentaries on the homeless, the abuse of the environment, and the failings of global capitalism to haunting meditations on the War in Iraq, Hurricane Katrina, and the tragedy of 9/11.

Concerned with representing those otherwise rendered invisible within the contours of history, he has also created many works on the plight of women, labor, the rural poor, and the impoverished underclass. Still other paintings and sculptures examine the long history of racial oppression in America. Recounting the atrocities of slavery and Southern sharecropping, the aspirations of the Great Migration, the flight for Civil Rights, and other episodes in black memory, these pieces form a powerful anthology on the human struggle for freedom and equality. Hard Truths: The Art of Thornton Dial is organized by the Indianapolis Museum of Art.

Against the Grain: Wood in Contemporary Art, Craft, and Design

Mint Museum UPTOWN

1 September 2012 – 27 January 2013

This exhibition will examine woodworking in contemporary art across a broad spectrum of practices and concepts. It will engage aspects of art, craft, and design that have been characterized as “performative” and critique the traditional art/craft/design divide. There will be approximately 80 works in the exhibition including vessels, furniture, sculptures, paintings, installations, and works by an international roster of artists, crafts persons, and designers such as Alexandre Arrechea, Martin Baas, Sandford Biggers, David Ellsworth, Hugo França, Maria Elena Gonzalez, Robyn Horn, Donald Judd, Mel Kendrick, Silas Kopf, Sherrie Levine, Mark Lindquist, George Nakashima, Sarah Oppenheimer, Martin Puryear, Jean Shin, Bob Stocksdale, Alison Elizabeth Taylor, and Richard Woods. Objects from the Mint’s wood art collection will be included.

This timely exhibition addresses a heavily debated topic in the field: As the boundaries between art, craft, and design increasingly overlap, should these categories be redefined, and if so, how? Against the Grain uses the versatile medium of wood to address this issue, highlighting several artists represented in The Mint Museum’s collection, such as Mark Lindquist and Robyn Horn, as well as several that have been identified as artists to collect in the future, including Hugo França and Matthias Pliessnig.

Against the Grain will debut at The Mint Museum during the Democratic National Convention, followed by a presentation at Museum of Arts and Design, New York, New York (March-May 2013). The exhibition is organized by the Museum of Arts and Design.

The Weir Family, 1820-1920: Expanding the Traditions of American Art

Mint Museum UPTOWN

20 October 2012 – 20 January 2013

This is the first major exhibition to examine collectively the paintings of the American artists Robert Walter Weir (1803-1889) and his two sons, John Ferguson Weir (1841-1926) and Julian Alden Weir (1851-1919). It traces the trajectory of American art across the nineteenth century and into the twentieth, exploring the wide range of styles in which Robert and his sons worked, as well as the way in which their transatlantic encounters helped to shape their art.

Robert Weir was one of the first American artists to study in Italy, working there from 1824-27. Upon his return to America, he became an associate at the recently-founded National Academy in New York in 1829 and, a few years later, an instructor at the United States Military Academy at West Point. He was renowned for his talent as a portraitist and a history painter.

Robert’s first son John trained with his father as well as in Europe. He then taught at Yale University for forty-four years, establishing the first academic art program at a university in this country. Early in his career, he painted history and genre scenes, but was also an adept society portraitist.

John’s younger brother, Julian, was educated at the École des Beaux Arts in Paris from 1873-77. Although he initially expressed disdain for Impressionism and worked in an academic style, he later embraced the new movement and became one of the country’s leading Impressionist artists.

This exhibition was organized by the Brigham Young University Museum of Art and supported in part by the Henry Luce Foundation and by an award from the National Endowment for the Arts. It will bring together between 60 and 70 paintings drawn from public and private collections, and will be accompanied by a fully illustrated catalogue. It opened at the Brigham Young University Museum of Art and will travel to the New Britain Museum of American Art before making its final stop in Charlotte.