Perhaps more than other any art form, decorative arts have the remarkable power to connect with us almost instantaneously. We may not own a seventeenth-century Chinese teapot or a sideboard once belonging to a North Carolina plantation owner, but we can view artifacts like those in the museum, and quickly associate them with objects of similar type or function in our own households. Perhaps the museum objects will even remind us of special occasions or daily routines in which our own possessions were utilized and enjoyed.
The Decorative Arts Collection at the Mint numbers over 12,500 objects and includes fine furniture, silver, and glass. Its greatest strength, however, is in the field of ceramics. The museum has significant holdings in wares from England and continental Europe, as well as notable examples of American art pottery and Asian porcelain. The Mint also boasts the largest public collection of North Carolina ceramics in the country.