Talks + Lectures

Get tickets on-site, online, or by phone at 804.340.1405.

Behind the Scenes: Kehinde Wiley: A New Republic

Fri, Aug 26, 6:307:30 pm | Leslie Cheek Theater

Eugenie Tsai, Curator of Contemporary Art,
Brooklyn Museum of Art

Join Dr. Eugenie Tsai for an in-depth look at the special exhibition Kehinde Wiley: A New Republic, a retrospective of the contemporary artist at the height of his career. Dr. Tsai, the curator of the exhibition, will discuss the selection and presentation of nearly 60 works, including sculpture, stained-glass panels and oil paintings which together, as a whole, alter the narrative of art history.

$8 (VMFA members $5)

Get to Know Fellowships: Free Funding for Virginia’s Artists and Art Historians

Fri, Sep 16, 1–2 pm | Pauley Center Parlor
Wed, Oct 5, 6 pm | Rawls Museum Arts, Courtland, VA

Learn more about the VMFA Fellowship Program with this free discussion open to practicing and aspiring artists and art historians. VMFA Fellowship Program Coordinator, Jenny Harding, will provide a history of the Fellowship program and review the requirements as well as helpful hints for navigating the application process.  Visit our Fellowship Program page for more info!

Free, no registration required

Conversation: Gordon Parks, From Kansas to New York

Tue, Sep 27, 6–7 pm | Jepson Theatre, Modlin Center for the Arts, University of Richmond

Join Karen E. Haas, curator of Gordon Parks: Back to Fort Scott, and Peter W. Kunhardt, Jr., Executive Director of the Gordon Parks Foundation, in conversation with Dr. Sarah Eckhardt, Associate Curator of Modern and Contemporary Art.

This program is presented as a collaboration between the University of Richmond and the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts.

Free, no tickets required

Parks at Life: Works from VMFA's Collection

Wed, Sep 28, 11 am–noon |Reynolds Lecture Hall

Explore Gordon Parks’s larger career at Life magazine by examining VMFA’s collection of works by the photographer. The conversation will be followed by a gallery visit to the special exhibition, Gordon Parks: Back to Fort Scott.

Program presented as a collaboration between the University of Richmond and the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts.

Free, tickets required

VMFA Book Club: The Learning Tree

Thu, Oct 13, 5:30–7:00 pm | Conference Suite

Gordon Parks–noted African American photographer, film director, writer, and musician–is best known for his civil rights–era photojournalism. The Learning Tree is a semi-autobiographical novel set in a small, rural Kansas town in the 1920s. 

Note: Book Club will adjourn early to allow attendees the opportunity to attend the screening of  The Learning Tree film, which Parks adapted from the novel, and a gallery discussion. 

 $8 (VMFA members $5)

Gordon Parks' American Stories

Thu, Oct 6, 67 pm | Leslie Cheek Theater
with Dr. John Edwin Mason, Associate Professor of History, University of Virginia

Few photographers have shaped the American public's understanding of pressing social issues as much as Gordon Parks. From the 1940s until the 1970s, photo-essays that he published in Life magazine introduced millions of readers to people and ideas that challenged and sometimes changed the way that they saw their nation and themselves. Gordon Parks' American Stories traces the impact of three of his most influential photo-essays.

$8 (VMFA members $5) 

Paul Mellon Lecture: Van Gogh and Japan

Thu, Nov 10, 6:30 7:30 pm | Leslie Cheek Theater
with Dr. Cornelia Homburg, independent art historian and guest curator of Van Gogh Up Close

This lecture focuses on Van Gogh's work from Paris and the South of France. It investigates how the painter constructed a specific image of Japan, based in part on facts and largely on his imagination, and how this image enabled him to define his own position as a modern artist. It will highlights several of his major sources of inspiration: visual examples such as Japanese prints, literature and his ongoing discussions with other artists such as Paul Signac, Émile Bernard, and Paul Gaugin.

Free, tickets required.

Jasper Johns and Edvard Munch: Inspiration and Transformation

Fri, Nov 11, 6:30–7:30 pm | Leslie Cheek Theater
with John Ravenal, Executive Director of the deCordova Sculpture Park and Museum; former Lewis Family Curator of Modern and Contemporary Art at VMFA

Jasper Johns and Edvard Munch: Love, Loss, and the Cycle of Life, is the first exhibition to explore the unexpected connections between Norwegian Expressionist painter Edvard Munch (1863–1944) and one of America's greatest artists, Jasper Johns (born 1930). This talk explores how Munch's art helped redirect Johns's work at a critical juncture in his career, returning him to figurative imagery and a deeper engagement with themes of human experience.

$8 (VMFA members $5) 

Fabergé: The Path of a Brilliant Jeweler

Sun, Nov 13, 2–3 pm | Leslie Cheek Theater
with Dr. Wilfried Zeisler, Curator of Russian and 19th Century Art at Hillwood Estate, Museum & Gardens, Washington, D.C.

The Virginia Museum of Fine Arts holds hundreds of Russian decorative arts masterpieces, many made by the Fabergé firm, including five imperial eggs. This lecture will explore the collections of VMFA and other institutions to discover the history of the House of Fabergé as well as some of its Russian and European competitors.

$8 (VMFA members $5) 


Artist Talks

We have over 25 videos of artists discussing their work in their own words and explore works in the VMFA permanent collection.