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The Mint Museum Wants Your Vote

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Laura Coombs Hills' Peonies and Velvet hspace=2

Your choice is either conservative, or progressive. But instead of politics, the Mint Museum of Art wants your vote on two paintings. Both have flowers and were done by women. One is more modern and impressionistic. Whichever has the most votes by November 30th will become the museum's newest acquisition. Curator Jon Stuhlman says he's not aware of any other museum leaving the final choice to a public vote like this. And it's all a bit nerve wracking. "As a curator you like to have some control over your choices, so it is a little bit scary to open it up to whatever the public thinks," admits Stuhlman. "But in the end I'm thrilled to be able to build the collection at all." Patrons can see both paintings and vote for their preference at the museum through November 30th. The Mint Museum Auxiliary has committed to purchase the winner. Stuhlman won't disclose the price, but says either painting would be a major acquisition, worth thousands of dollars. The museum will hold a family event to kick-off the balloting tomorrow.