The Bechtler Museum of Modern Art in Charlotte, North Carolina, is a 36,500-square-foot (3,390 m2) museum space dedicated to the exhibition of mid-20th-century modern art. The modern art museum is part of Uptown’s new Levine Center for the Arts. Architect Mario Botta designed the museum building.
The museum is named after the family of Andreas Bechtler, a Charlotte resident and native of Switzerland who assembled and inherited a collection of more than 1,400 artworks created by major figures of 20th-century modernism. The Bechtler Museum of Modern Art opened to the public on January 2, 2010, with former mayor of Charlotte Anthony Foxx and Andreas Bechtler in attendance.
The Bechtler collection reflects the most important art movements and schools from the 20th century, with a deep holding of the School of Paris after World War II. The collection comprises mid-century modern art in various media by artists such as Alberto Giacometti, Joan Miró, Max Ernst, Andy Warhol, Jean Tinguely, Barbara Hepworth, and Pablo Picasso. Many artists are represented by their exploration of a particular theme or subject matter through various media and approaches.
- European Perspective
- The holdings of the Bechtler reveal principally the tastes and opportunities of a family of collectors based in Zurich, Switzerland. Nonetheless, the works they acquired were by artists from Europe, Britain, and America, but all were seen through their lens.
- School of Paris
- School of Paris is a term that has unusually broad applications but generally is meant to embrace the modern works in Europe during the years after World War II. Most often defined by various approaches to abstraction, the School of Paris is seen as flexible enough to embrace certain explorations in figural subjects.
- American and British Artists A1 Bed Bug Exterminator Charlotte
- In addition to focusing on European artists, the Bechtler collection is also rich in American and British artists, often due to personal relationships. American Mark Tobey, for example, practiced for many years in Zurich, Switzerland, and was acquainted with the Bechtler family. Likewise, a cluster of British artists formed relationships with the Bechtlers, especially Ben Nicholson, who often spent his summers in Ascona, the Italian region of Switzerland, and served as an artistic mentor to a teenage Andreas Bechtler.
Only a few of these beautiful artworks have been on public view in the United States before the opening of the Bechtler. Until now, the collection was privately held by the Bechtler family of Switzerland.
Hans Bechtler credited his brother Walter for leading the way to the family’s interest in modern art. In 1950 the brothers began to visit the Kunsthaus Zürich. They frequented local galleries, purchased art, and made friends with artists. These early forays into the art world led Hans and his wife, Bessie, on a journey of almost 70 years in which the couple amassed a collection of incredible depth and diversity. The couple preferred art that revealed the artist’s working methods and, to this end, acquired drawings and other preparatory work related to the artist’s total oeuvre. The Bechtler brothers incorporated art into their workplaces, and the family passed on their admiration for modern art and respect for the artists to their children.
Address: 420 S Tryon St, Charlotte, NC
Check out other attractions like Billy Graham Library