VMFA Blog

A blog by staff and others about the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts

Connect to Conservation: IMLS Summer Internship Experiences

This summer, three interns were selected to complete an internship at VMFA’s Center for Advanced Study in Art Conservation. Generously funded by the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) as part of the “Connect to Conservation” program, the internship was designed to provide training and professional development to individuals considering a career in art…

Neptune Virginia Beach Maquette, 2004. Paul Dipasquale (American, born 1951), bronze, Gift of Aubrey and Peggy Layne

King Neptune Installed in the E. Claiborne and Lora Robins Sculpture Garden

In 2003 the Virginia Beach Neptune Festival requested submission designs for a monumental, 16-foot tall statue of Neptune, the ancient Roman god of the sea, that would be permanently sited on the Virginia Beach Boardwalk. Fifty entries were received from sculptors from around the country, but none from artists based in Virginia, which led Cameron…

Q&A with Jeffrey Allison, Lead Developer of VMFA on the Road

Jeffrey Allison is VMFA’s manager of Statewide Programs and Exhibitions and the museum’s Paul Mellon Collection educator. He is a professional photographer who holds a BA in photography and film from Virginia Intermont College and an MFA in photography from VCU. His illustrious career in fine arts includes educational and leadership roles at various Richmond-area…

Zulu Beaded Ensembles: Materials Analysis

After the departure of beading expert Hlengi Dube, work continues on the survey of the Zulu ensemble components in order to pair the cultural and structural examination with a scientific materials study. With the insights into the importance of materials choice afforded by this consultation, I sought to characterize as many materials as possible using…

Neer and Far: Experiencing Congo Masks at VMFA

William Neer, VMFA’s curatorial assistant for exhibitions, discusses Congo Masks: Masterpieces from Central Africa, which is curated by Marc Leo Felix, director of the Congo Basin Art History Research Center in Brussels, Belgium. In its only North American venue, the exhibition at VMFA is an innovative and visually compelling display of artistry and cultures, showcasing more…

The Thickness of our lives – Q&A about Howardena Pindell with Tressie McMillan Cottom, PhD

We recently had the opportunity to speak with Tressie McMillan Cottom, PhD, about VMFA’s current exhibition Howardena Pindell: What Remains To Be Seen. Cottom is an assistant professor of sociology at Virginia Commonwealth University. She has spoken across the nation and the world on technology, higher education, race, gender, class, and social inequality. Her latest…

VMFA’s Artmobile: Past and Present

2018 exterior view of VMFA on the Road outside the VMFA before its inaugural tour. David Stover ©Virginia Museum of Fine Arts When VMFA’s first Artmobile opened at Maury Elementary School in Fredericksburg on October 13, 1953, it was an astounding success, attracting 5,000 visitors in its first three weeks. The entire aluminum tractor trailer,…

Chelsea HIggs Wise and Howardena Pindell

Experiencing Howardena Pindell and VMFA through the Lens of Intersectionality

Pindell’s journey presented at the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts is unique to the artist but not unusual. We’ve heard the tale: the impressive work ethic of a brilliant black mind, occupying double roles, only to still fall short on respect from her white colleagues as well as the white-dominant art world. Pindell worked as…