2024 Fellowship Exhibitions

The Virginia Museum of Fine Arts Fellowship Program is a vital source of funding for the visual arts and art history in Virginia. VMFA is committed to supporting professional artists as well as art students who demonstrate exceptional creative ability in their chosen discipline. Since its establishment in 1940 by the late John Lee Pratt of Fredericksburg, the Fellowship Program has awarded nearly $6 million in fellowships to Virginians. 2015 marked the 75th anniversary of VMFA’s Fellowship Program.

As part of our commitment to Virginians, the Pauley Center Galleries, Amuse Restaurant, the Claiborne Robertson Room, and select spaces at the Richmond International Airport are dedicated to showcasing the work of VMFA Visual Arts Fellowship recipients. In addition, VMFA collaborates with Statewide Partners around the commonwealth to host exhibitions featuring recent recipients of a VMFA Visual Arts Fellowship.


The Improbability of It All
There is No Center of the Universe
Top O' the World
We Are All Stardust

Wonderful World

By Judy McLeod
Feb 7, 2024 – Aug 5, 2024 | VMFA Amuse Restaurant & Claiborne Robertson Room

It’s a Wonderful World.

Let us look with hope and promise at the wonder of planet Earth. Despite the Coronavirus daze pandemic, despite inequities and global conflicts, despite the “bad actors” among us, let us look with love and awe at the fantastic reality—we are here in our particular sliver of space-time. As we contemplate our place in space, we employ an ever-expanding scientific knowledge and spiritual awareness of this planet in our solar system in our galaxy in the universe…and beyond.

These collages/ideas reflect on and celebrate this Wonderful World.

Judy McLeod lives and works in Charlottesville, Virginia. She is a recipient of a 1979-80 and 1980-81 VMFA Graduate Visual Arts Fellowship and was awarded a 2001-02 Professional Honorable Mention.

IMAGES The Improbability of It All, Judy McLeod | There is No Center of the Universe, Judy McLeod | Top O’ the World, Judy McLeod | We Are All Stardust, Judy McLeod


Narcissus (Daffodil)- 4-8-2022-01
Tulipa (Tulip)- 4-7-2022-06
Tulipa (Tulip)- 4-18-2022-02
Vinca (Periwinkle)- 5-10-2021-00

Coronam Florem

By Roberto Bocci
Feb 16, 2024 – Aug 11, 2024 | Pauley Education Center Galleries

In March 2020, during the coronavirus pandemic lockdown, I started shooting a series of light painting time exposures of flowers entitled Coronam Florem (Latin for Corona Flower). These images are inspired by the ravaging effects the coronavirus has had on people around the word.

In Coronam Florem, flowers, buds, and fruits are shot underwater and left to decay. The camera is used to document the biological process of transformation the flowers undergo over time. The title of each work is the name of the flower in Latin, followed by the name in English and the date when the image was shot.

To create one of these works, I take 15 to 80 shots of the subject as I refocus the camera from foreground to background. Next, I process the images with a photo stacking application which compiles them as a single picture with infinite or a specific depth of field and focus.

As in other works of mine, Florem explores sexuality, cycles of birth, growth, decay, and the effects of the elements on biological life. Through the artifice of photography, I can generate impossible images that our vision can’t perceive with the naked eye.

Roberto Bocci was born in 1962 in Siena, Italy. He lives in Arlington, Virginia, and is a professor of digital art and photography at Georgetown University. He is a recipient of a 2023-24 VMFA Professional Visual Arts Fellowship.

IMAGES Narcissus (Daffodil), 4-8-2022-01, Roberto Bocci | Tulipa (Tulip), 4-7-2022-06, Roberto Bocci | Tulipa (Tulip), 4-18-2022-02, Roberto Bocci | Vinca (Periwinkle), 5-10-2021-00, Roberto Bocci


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Lands Without

By James Scheuren
Feb 6, 2024 – Aug 4, 2024 | Richmond International Airport

I can enable you to always hear the voices of your loved ones, even though they are far away.
—The Edison Phonograph

I make photographs to explore material culture and the way it abstracts and reveals economic systems. Made primarily at night and depicting workers’ commutes, spaces, and holding patterns/liftoffs/landings, these pictures flatten and collapse time and distance. Light–eerily perceived as natural–is an often-overlooked measure of exchange and social construction. As I travel each subject’s commute, I make one long exposure or hundreds of exposures. The light that touches their body and mine is inscribed onto the film. A central theme of travel reveals the specific labor and alienation of the sitters and suggests how habit, repetition, and rituals blur our perception of time. My pictures also function as data collection. The motion of the light and people, though seemingly non-representational, charts a haunting system of economic productivity. The light trails of airplanes across the sky indicate international commerce. The exhibition contains two pictures of DHL’s main hub in Germany, with hours of planes circling in. Each work’s title echoes the almost utopian promise of improving technologies.

James Scheuren is a recipient of a 2022–23 VMFA Professional Visual Arts Fellowship.

IMAGES Almost Hear Them, James Scheuren | Beautiful Wrapping, James Scheuren | If You Can See a Thing Whole It Seems That It’s Always Beautiful, James Scheuren | Late Style, James Scheuren

2021 Fellowship Exhibitions

The Virginia Museum of Fine Arts Fellowship Program is a vital source of funding for the visual arts and art history in Virginia. VMFA is committed to supporting professional artists as well as art students who demonstrate exceptional creative ability in their chosen discipline. Since its establishment in 1940 by the late John Lee Pratt of Fredericksburg, the Fellowship Program has awarded nearly $5.5 million in fellowships to Virginians. 2015 marked the 75th anniversary of VMFA’s Fellowship Program.

As part of our commitment to Virginians, the Pauley Center Galleries, Amuse Restaurant, the Claiborne Robertson Room, and select spaces at the Richmond International Airport are dedicated to showcasing the work of VMFA Visual Arts Fellowship recipients.


Sterling_TheGoodSteward
Print
Sterling_anothersunday

Aggregate

By Sterling Clinton Hundley
Jul 1, 2021 to Jan 31, 2022 | Pauley Center Galleries

Aggregate is a survey of work from American painter and graphic artist, Sterling Clinton Hundley ranging from 2009- 2021. Throughout Hundley’s work, time is an indelible theme explored through drawing, collage, painting and sculpture that collects life in motion into a series of compressed images that blur the line between traditional cell animation and painting

Hundley is a VMFA 2020-21 Professional Fellow and his work is held in private collections internationally, from Russia, Norway, England, Germany and throughout the United States and can be found in the permanent collections of Amazon, the Museum of American Illustration, Capital One Bank, Rolling Stone Magazine, as well as on display in the US Senate Building.

His book can be found in the Museum Store.

IMAGES: The Good Steward, Sterling Clinton Hundley | Big Cartel, Fruitless Endeavor, Sterling Clinton Hundley | Another Sunday, Sterling Clinton Hundley


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ClaireStankus_NightJade-1
ClaireStankus_LightStream-1
ClaireStankus_FruitFade-1

Something Similar

By Claire Stankus
Jul 9, 2021 to Jan 23, 2022 | VMFA Amuse Restaurant & Claiborne Robertson Room

I make paintings to simplify immediate visual surroundings. They are inspired by familiar indoor scenes of cast shadows from house plants, patterns coincidentally matching, the grid of window frames, to shapes of flowers, oranges, or birthday sprinkles. I believe many people are attracted to these overlooked moments and my paintings provide an opportunity to revisit them. Beginning with a photo reference or memory, I create casual marks, flattened fields of color, and invented light and shadow to break down the recognizable into something ambiguous yet familiar. When these paintings are not recognized by their initial inspiration they can be admired purely by their patterns, subtle color shifts, and illusions of light and flatness. The remaining abstraction is where we may find unexpected curiosity or joy.

My newest paintings are heavily inspired by my experiences from two recent artist residencies: The Sam & Adele Golden Foundation in New Berlin, NY, and the Studios at MASS MoCA in North Adams, MA. In both settings, one during winter, and one during summer, I was struck by each location’s architecture and sunlight. I used these simple themes to play with striking color combinations, balance speed and personality of brush marks, and create the possibility of space within a fairly shallow depth of field. Displayed as a large grouping or in pairs, my paintings are made to reference and complement each other’s visual components while honoring the location they were created in.

I want to share the value of contemporary abstract painting; that a particular balance of line and form can create compelling compositions, or how a minimal shape of paint can feel sweet, stubborn, playful, or funny.

Claire Stankus is a 2020 Emergency Relief Fellowship Recipient.

IMAGES: Sunrise Silhouette, Claire Stankus | Paint Stickers, Claire Stankus | Night Jade, Claire Stankus | Light Stream, Claire Stankus | Fruit Fade, Claire Stankus


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Minyatür: A Journey from the Classical to the Contemporary

By Sermin Ciddi
Jun 21, 2021 to Jan 10, 2022 | Richmond International Airport

Sermin Ciddi is a renowned Turkish artist skilled in modern miniature (minyatür) painting, one of the highly specialized visual arts of Ottoman and Turkish culture along with calligraphy (hat) and marbling paper (ebru). Born in Istanbul, Ms. Ciddi takes inspiration from a variety of sources: places she has lived and traveled to, the architectural salience of each location, and finally, their interaction with surrounding nature. Depictions of environmental themes and imagery through symbolism are recent additions to her existing portfolio. Scenes including Alexandria, Virginia, Ottoman and Turkish architecture, and the enduring relationship between dragons and phoenixes come to life on her canvases.

Sermin Ciddi is a 2020 Emergency Relief Fellowship Recipient.

IMAGES: Kızkulesi, Sermin Ciddi | Great Falls, Sermin Ciddi | Anatolian Fortress, Sermin Ciddi