Internationally acclaimed artist Nacho Carbonell at work inside Mint Museum Uptown

Internationally-acclaimed artist Nacho Carbonell is working in the atrium assembling his work Wood Branches, Diversity n. 17 (prototype), 2010 (shown in photo). Carbonell will be assisted by Paloma Castaño Sanchez, an emerging fashion and textile artist. They are scheduled to complete the work by Monday July 30.

Carbonell’s work is one of six to be featured in the Mint’s “Vote for Art” project, a one-of-a-kind election taking place within the walls of Mint Museum Uptown.

“Vote for Art” is aimed at educating the public on both the electoral process and the process of building a world-class collection for Charlotte and the region. Six specially-chosen works of art will be on view in the museum, and the public can cast votes on their three favorites. The museum will acquire the three winners and add them to its permanent collection. The other five works will be installed within the museum in coming weeks.

Voting opens on September 1 to coincide with the beginning of the Democratic National Convention – and to allow the DNC delegates the first opportunities to cast votes, as they do during the nation’s real-life electoral process. Mint Museum Uptown, which is normally closed to the public on Mondays, will be open FREE all day on September 3, Labor Day, to coincide with CarolinaFest, a day-long party for the Democratic National Convention visitors to be held along Tryon Street. All visitors to the museum through September 7 will be offered ballots and the opportunity to cast votes. Voting then closes after the DNC and reopens October 1, running through November 9.

Election Day, November 6, will be a free admission day from 10 a.m.-9 p.m. so any interested voters can come to the museum to vote for art after they travel to the polls to vote for their candidates (the museum is always open for free from 5-9 p.m. each Tuesday). And unlike the Board of Elections, the Mint does not require voters to be 18 – children will be offered their own opportunities to cast ballots.

A committee consisting of curators and representatives of three of the museum’s affiliate groups nominated the six works of art. The Founders’ Circle, Mint Museum Auxiliary, and Young Affiliates of the Mint will collaborate on the project’s culminating event, the Ballot Ball, on November 9. At that gala, to be held at Mint Museum Uptown, the winners will be unveiled. Ticket registration for the Ballot Ball will begin September 1.

The Mint is in the process of discussing sponsorship of the project with local and national corporations. Each sponsor will contribute a sum toward the purchase of the works, and will be recognized on a large banner in front of Mint Museum Uptown, which will appear prior to the DNC and remain on view through the Ballot Ball, allowing the corporations to receive a lucrative marketing opportunity in addition to contributing toward this philanthropic project. Sponsors will also be permanently recognized within the museum as the donors of the works of art. Those interested in becoming a sponsor can contact May Nixon at

During the project, voters must be inside the museum to cast a vote; no online voting will be allowed, although an overview of the project is available on and visitors may use the website’s +INSPIRING button to show support for their favorites.

Only one ballot will be permitted per visit, but patrons can make multiple visits throughout the run of the project if they wish to cast multiple votes for their favorite candidates. For non-members of the museum, admission must be paid for each visit unless it is during the museum’s scheduled free hours. (See a complete news release about “Vote for Art” and descriptions of all six works of art here:
Extreme experimentation with materials and ideas is central to the work of Nacho Carbonell (known internationally as simply Nacho). The distinct gravel-, thorn-, or branch-covered surfaces of the combined desk forms in the Diversity series suggest a demographically diverse neighborhood and made Nacho the star of the 2010 Salone di Mobile in Milan. The chairs are handmade by a small team of assistants using laborious processes in Nacho’s studio in Eindhoven, The Netherlands; he is assembling Diversity n.17 inside Mint Museum Uptown himself. Nacho graduated from the Spanish University of Cardenal Herrera-CEU and the prestigious Design Academy, Eindhoven. He was nominated Designer of the Year in 2009 by the Design Museum, London, and designated as Designer of the Future by the Design Miami / Basel committee later that same year.

“With a reputation as an innovator in his use of various media, techniques, and as a provocateur par excellence, Nacho is one of the hottest young designers of the moment,” said Annie Carlano, the Mint’s director of craft and design.


As the oldest art museum in North Carolina, and the art museum with one of the largest collections in the Southeast, The Mint Museum offers its visitors inspiring and transformative experiences through art from around the world via innovative collections, ground-breaking exhibitions, riveting educational programs, and profound scholarship. The Mint Museum is a non-profit, visual arts institution comprised of two dynamic facilities: Mint Museum Uptown and Mint Museum Randolph.

Located in what was the original branch of the United States Mint, Mint Museum Randolph opened in 1936 in Charlotte’s Eastover neighborhood as the state’s first art museum. Today, in a beautiful park setting, intimate galleries invite visitors to engage with the art of the ancient Americas, ceramics and decorative arts, fashion, European and African art, among other collections. Resources include a reference library with over 18,000 volumes, a theater featuring lectures and performances, and a museum shop offering merchandise that complements both the permanent collection and special exhibitions.

Mint Museum Uptown houses the internationally renowned Craft + Design collection, as well as outstanding collections of American, contemporary, and European art. Designed by Machado and Silvetti Associates of Boston, the five-story, 145,000-square-foot facility combines inspiring architecture with cutting-edge exhibitions to provide visitors with unparalleled educational and cultural experiences. Located in the heart of Charlotte’s burgeoning center city, Mint Museum Uptown is an integral part of the Levine Center for the Arts, a cultural campus that includes the Bechtler Museum of Modern Art, the Harvey B. Gantt Center for African-American Arts and Culture, the Knight Theater, and the Duke Energy Center. Mint Museum Uptown also features a wide range of visitor amenities, including the 240-seat James B. Duke Auditorium, the Lewis Family Gallery, art studios, a restaurant, and a museum shop. For more information, visit the NEW