Tag Archives: Bechtler Museum of Modern Art

The Art of Downtown Charlotte – Part II: A Regular Commentary of Art and the Art Scene in Charlotte

Bechtler Museum of Modern Art

The Firebird, or ’Oiseau de Feu Sur l’Arch  (literally, “Bird of Fire on an Arch”) by French-American artist Niki de Saint Phalle (1930-2002) is the center piece to the entrance of the Bechtler Museum of Modern Art, located on 420 South Tryon Street. The Firebird is perhaps the most photographed piece of art in Charlotte. At one time the Firebird had a Twitter account. The sculpture was created in 1991 and was purchased by Andres Bechtler specifically to be placed in front of the Bechtler Museaum of Modern Art. Bechtler wanted the sculpture to serve as a counter piece to the geometric lines of the museum that was designed by the noted Swiss architect Mario Botta.

The Firebird is over 17 feet tall and is covered in small bits of mirror and colored glass. It is dazzling when sunlight strikes the surface and glows at night reflecting the sculpture’s spot lights while also reflecting ambient light from the nearby shops, offices, and street lights. It is not uncommon at almost any time of day to see people gathered around the Firebird to have pictures taken or just to admire the artwork. Niki de Saint Phalle was a dynamic figure of the modern art world and her works challenged conventional ideals about the role of women in society. Many of her works were controversial while also being whimsical. Her sculptures are wild biomorphic shapes painted with bold primary and secondary colors or painted all white. She was friends with of many other luminaries of the Modern, Dada, and Pop Art moments such as Jean Tinguely. Tinguely and de Saint Phalle would later marry in 1971.

~Kim Allman~

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May Happenings

 Music: Crosby, Stills & Nash, Tim McGraw, Chris Botti, Carolina Rebellion, Imagine Dragons, Band of Horses, Paramore, Smashing Pumpkins, RiverJam at the US National Whitewater Center, Food Lion Speed Street with Sister Hazel and SWV, Sara Bareilles, Lyle Lovett

Food: Chow Down Uptown with area food trucks, Beer, Bourbon and BBQ Festival , Charlotte Italian Festival, 2nd Annual VegFest

Performing Arts: War Horse, Traces, Avenue Q

Festivals: The Patriot Festival Charlotte Asian Festival and Dragon Boat Festival, Buskapoolza Street Performance Festival, Spring Pottery Festival , Charlotte Shakespeare Festival , Fanta Festival , NC Brewers & Music Festival, BikeFest in Plaza Midwood

Walks/Runs: Memorial Day Trail Race, Krispy Freme Doughnut Dash, Zombie Run, Ramblin’ Rose, The Great Glow Run, AIDS Walk

Other eventsMeck Dec Day, New South for the new Southerner series at the Levine Museum of the New South, Coca-Cola 600, Metrolina Expo Marketplace, Charlie Murphy, Kevin James, Drew Carey

For the kids: Bye Bye Birdie, Family Day at the Bechtler Museum of Modern Art, Free Comic Book Day, Movies in the Park

For the “furry” kids: Charlotte Pet Expo, Second Annual Cinco de Mayo Chihuahua Races

Don’t forget that Mother’s Day is Sunday May 12th! National Mom’s Nite Out at South Park mall, Mother’s Day at the Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden, Purses with a Purpose

Outside of Charlotte: South Carolina Strawberry Festival

~Jamie Sunnycalb~

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October Happenings

Free Concerts

FreeMore Fridays with concerts from 5-8 p.m. every Friday of the month on the corner of Freedom and Morehead. 107.9 The Link’s Matt and Ramona broadcasting live.

Local Festivals

Renaissance Festival Step back in time with games, food, performances, rides, etc.

Oktoberfest offers an opportunity to sample of over 350 beers while enjoying live music.

Latin America Festival features authentic cuisine, arts and crafts, and performances.

Great Grapes Wine, Arts and Food Festival offers a sampling of over 200 wines, cooking demonstrations, arts and crafts.

State Festivals

For a weekend getaway, the NC State Fair in Raleigh, NC is always great fun. Take the train to the fair to experience the Tar Heel State by rail.

Fast Fun

Bank of America 500 NASCAR race

Philanthropic Fun

For a $10 donation, sample chili at the 8th Annual Plaza Midwood/Chantilly Chili Cook-Off.

Race for the Cure supports the Susan G. Komen foundation.

Uptown Fun

Wells Fargo Community Celebration offers free admission to the Mint Museum and the Bechtlter Museum of Modern Art, plus many more.

Seasonal Fun

Amazing Maize Maze at Rural Hill

For brave souls, there’s Scarowinds at Carowinds and the  Beyond the Grave , a ghost tour through uptown.

The Great Pumpkin Wall  enchants residents in the Elizabeth neighborhood each year.

Don’t forget to bring the little ones to the Charlotte School of Law for a fun afternoon of trick-or-treating throughout the library on October 28 !

~Jamie Sunnycalb~

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Welcome to Charlotte!

Whether you are a native of the Queen City or new to the area, we’ve compiled a list of how you can enjoy all that North Carolina’s most populous city has to offer.

Sporting Events: Panthers Football, Knights Baseball, Bobcats Basketball, Checkers Hockey, NASCAR, Charlotte Roller Derby, Charlotte Hounds, Charlotte Eagles , Charlotte Lady Eagles, Carolina Speed, Charlotte Rugby Football Club

Concerts : Time Warner Cable Arena, Ovens Auditorium (site of our Graduation 2009) Bojangles Coliseum, Verizon Wireless Amphitheater, NC Music Factory , Visulite Theatre, Neighborhood Theatre , Double Door Inn

Performances, Plays and Musicals: Blumenthal Performing Arts Center, Opera Carolina , Charlotte Symphony , Actor’s Theatre of Charlotte, Theatre Charlotte,Knight Theatre (site of our 2011 Graduation), Comedy Zone

Art, History and Culture: Mint Museum, Bechtler Museum of Modern Art, Levine Museum of the New South, Harvey B. Gantt Center, McColl Center for Visual Art , Billy Graham Library , The Light Factory , Carolinas Aviation Museumgallery crawls , NASCAR Hall of Fame , Charlotte History Museum

Get into Nature at the Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden , the Charlotte Nature Museum or the Carolinas Raptor Center . Go for a hike at  Crowders Mountain.

For kids of all ages: Discovery Place, Children’s Theatre of CharlotteImaginon:the Joe and Joan Martin Center, Carowinds , Lazy 5 Ranch

Shopping in and around Charlotte: South Park Mall, Northlake Mall , Carolina Place Mall, Concord Mills Mall, Birkdale Village , Westfield Eastridge Shopping Mall

Parks&Recreation: Freedom Park, Frazier Park, Park Road Park , area Greenways. YMCA, Whitewater Center


Morehead Street: Pinky’s Westside Grill, Burger Company, Picante Mexican GrillSavor, Open Kitchen, Dilworth Neighborhood Grill, Art’s BBQ

Wilkinson Blvd: Dairy Queen, Bar-B-Q King, Subway (located inside the Super Wal-Mart), Little Caesars, Burger King

Freedom Drive: COOK-OUT, Showmars, McDonald’s, KFC, Captain D’s, Taco Bell, Pizza Hut, Wendy’s

Charlottetowne Avenue/Kings Drive: Wendy’s, Zoe’s Kitchen, Chipotle, La Paz, Hickory Tavern, Arby’s, Subway, Pizza Hut, Original Pancake HouseMama Ricotta’s, Wok Express, Dunkin’Donuts, Maharani, Great Harvest Bread Co., Pizza Fusion, Which Wich, Trader Joe’s, Zoe’s Kitchen, Cherry Berry, Dressler’s, Pisces Sushi Bar/Lounge, Vivace, Bojangles

South Blvd: Chipotle, Luna’s Living Kitchen, Five Guys, Noodle&Company, Chick fil-A, Owen’s Bagels, Einstein Bagels,  Nova’s Bakery, Beijing Chinese, Fuel Pizza, Sub Station II, Ice House, Big Ben’s, The Liberty, Pewter Rose, Mac’s Speed Shop, McDonald’s, Burger King

South End: Phat Burrito, Price’s Chicken Coop, Pike’s Old-Fashioned Soda Shop, Common Market

7th Street: Hawthorne’s Pizza, CrispSunflour Bakery, Lupie’s Cafe , Showmars, Starbucks, Cajun Queen, Jackalope Jack’s, Philosopher’s Stone, Kennedy’s, Ho Ho Cherry House, Sub Station II, Jersey Mike’s

Elizabeth Ave: Nothing but Noodles, 1900 Mexican GrillCuisine Malaya, Carpe Diem, Customshop, 88 China Bistro, Elizabeth Creamery

Plaza Midwood: Whiskey Warehouse, The Penguin, The Diamond, Dish, Zada Jane’s, Soul Gastrolounge, Bistro La Bon, Midwood Smokehouse, Loco Lime, Kickstand Burgers, Intermezzo Pizzeria, Krazy Fish, Lulu, Akahana Asian BistroSomething Classic Cafe, Central Coffee Company , Fern, Thomas Street Tavern, Nova’s Bakery, The Peculiar Rabbit

Park Rd/Woodlawn Ave: RuSan’s, Fran’s Filling Station, Toast Cafe , Starbucks , The Flying Biscuit Cafe, Jason’s Deli, Chick fil-A, Which Wich, Sushi 101, Qdoba, Carolina Soda Shop, Subway, Bruegger’s Bagels, Fuel Pizza, Wendy’s, McDonald’s

Selwyn Avenue: Mellow Mushroom, Yoforia, Reid’s Fine Foods,

South Park: BRIO, Del Frisco’s, Ruth’s Chris, Georges Brasserie, The Cheesecake Factory, Maggiano’s, Cowfish Sushi and Burgers, PF Chang’s, Terrace Cafe, Dean and Deluca, Firebirds, California Pizza Kitchen, McCormick and Schmick’s, Whole Foods, Earth Fare, Bojangles, Donato’s Pizza

Costwold: Jack in the Box, Chick fil-A, Bojangles, Table 274, Bruegger’s, Wolfman Pizza, The Pizza Peel and Taproom, Krispy Kreme, IHOP, Starbucks, Mama Fu’s Asian House, Salsarita’s, Dairy Queen, Eddie’s Place,

East Blvd:  Moe’s Southwest Grill, Bruegger’s Bagels, Big Daddy’s Burger Bar, Something Classic Café, Starbucks, Brixx, Cantina 1511, Caribou Coffee, Outback Steakhouse, Showmars, Lebowski’s, Dilworth Coffee , Smoothie King, Carolina Smoothie, JJ’s Red Hots, Crisp, Jersey Mike’s, Menchie’s, Berrybrook Farms, Copper, Thai Taste

NoDa: Amelie’s 24 hour French bakery, Cabo Fish Taco, Crepe Cellar, Growler’s Pourhouse , Salvador Deli,Revolution Pizza, The Dog Bar, Solstice Tavern, Boudreaux’s, Jack Beagles, Smelly Cat Coffeehouse

The EpiCentre: Vida Mexican Kitchen y cantina, Moe’s, Wild Wing Cafe, Enso, Jason’s Deli, Bruegger’s Bagels, Five Guys, Firehouse Subs, Libretto’s Pizzeria

Other sites to check out:






~Jamie Sunnycalb~


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