Mint Museum of Craft + Design Offers Special Hours to View Fiber Artist at Work

Icelandic artist Hildur Bjarnadǿttir to create a commissioned work for Mint Museum Uptown

The Mint Museum is offering special viewing hours this month to allow the public to observe the artistic process behind a commissioned work that will be installed in the new Mint Museum Uptown this fall. On March 26-27 and March 29-30 (from 2:00 to 6:00 p.m. each day), the public is invited to observe Icelandic fiber artist Hildur Bjarnadǿttir working in the lobby of the former Mint Museum of Craft + Design location (220 North Tryon Street), which will be transformed into a temporary studio during the artist’s visit.

During her visit to Charlotte, Bjarnadǿttir will be creating a fiber art work for Project Ten Ten Ten, a series of commissions created especially for the new Mint Museum Uptown galleries by 10 of the world’s most innovative craft and design artists. Visitors to the craft museum will be able to observe Bjarnadǿttir making natural dye from local plants and ask questions about the artistic process. The dye will be incorporated into the commissioned work, which will be unveiled at the new facility’s grand opening.

“Project Ten Ten Ten will catapult the Mint Museum of Craft + Design to the highest level of artistic excellence by commissioning 10 of the most important craft and design artists from around the world for site-specific work,” said Annie Carlano, Director of Craft + Design. When the doors open on October 1, 2010, visitors will see spectacular works by glass artist/designer Danny Lane (United Kingdom), conceptual jewelry artist Ted Noten (The Netherlands), and furniture maker/designer Joseph Walsh (Ireland), in addition to the fiber work by Hildur Bjarnadǿttir. 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.

Bjarnadǿttir learned crocheting, knitting and embroidery as a child from her mother, and came of age during the flowering of fiber art in Europe. In her native Iceland she saw museum exhibitions of contemporary textiles and assumed the medium was exalted in the art world. She later learned that this is not the predominant view, and creates work that is a reaction to the commonplace negative comparison of textiles to “fine art.” Whether affixed to a wall or placed upon a pedestal, her needlework creations tell stories of traditional women’s work with a cutting-edge, even macabre, twist.