23rd Aug, 2010

The Bechtler Museum of Modern Art Adds Art and Culture to Uptown Charlotte

The Bechtler Museum of Modern Art in Uptown Charlotte real estate opened in January of 2010. It is a work of art inside and out. The addition of the museum shows that Charlotte is a city with a passion for the fine and cultural arts.

Terra cotta tiles cover this building in its entirety. Mario Botta, master architect from Switzerland, brought this unique building design to fruition. Botta is well-versed in art museum design having been the architect on dozens of other museums and cultural buildings worldwide. It is quite the honor to have had Botta build the Bechtler Museum as he has only accepted one other commission in the United States.

Andreas, Hans and Bessie Bechtel’s son, chose to create the museum in order to share these collections with the world. The Bechtel family is closely tied to textile mills in the region. The younger Bechtler came to the area in the 1970s to help with the family business.

The museum makes the Bechtler family’s privately collected works available to the public. The collection includes art work by formidable and well-known mid-20th century artists like Miró, Warhol, Giacometti, and Picasso. Prior to the creation of the Bechtler Museum, these pieces and collections were primarily held in Switzerland. These pieces of artwork were gathered over more than 70 years. On occasion, exhibits will include other artwork in the Bechtler collection or pieces on loan from other institutions.

Admission to the museum will be age and employment dependent. Adults will be charged $8 each, and educators, seniors, and students will be charged $4 each. Children and teens aged 11-18 will have an admission fee of $4 and there is no charge for children under the age of 11. Yearly memberships will also be available. These memberships come with perks and are $50 for individuals and $90 for families. The perks are free admission, previews of program updates and announcements, and a 10 percent discount at the café and museum gift shop.

The 36,000 square foot museum is part of the greater Wells Fargo Campus on S. Tryon Street. True to its billing as a cultural center for Charlotte, the campus houses the Harvey B. Gannt Center, a center for African-American art. Continuing the legacy of unique architecture, the Cultural Campus is home to a 48-story building – The Duke Energy Center. The campus also features the Mint Museum and the Knight Theater.

Bechtler Museum of Modern Art
420 South Tryon Street

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