Teen Stylin’ 2022: Journey

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This exhibition features designer renderings and garments created by 64 Virginia students in grades six through twelve who participated in the May 15, 2022, Teen Stylin’: Journey Runway Show. The garments on view include winners in these categories: Best in Show, Best Use of Materials, Most Creative Construction, Best Interpretation of a Work of Art, Best Interpretation of the Theme, and Most Wearable.

Held annually, the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts Teen Stylin’ program challenges students with a passion for clothing design, studio arts, installation art, and creative construction to make a unique, wearable work of art. Participants worked for twelve weeks, from February to May, with local fashion designers and studio arts instructors to construct garments inspired by objects from the VMFA collection. Participants could either participate during on-campus weekly workshops or as part of the independent study program. Teen Stylin’ culminates with a runway exhibition featuring students’ designs.

This year’s theme, Journey, was inspired by VMFA’s special exhibition, Tsherin Sherpa: Spirits. Students reflected on the historical background of their artwork, and considered how the passages that their art object has made reflects, connects to, or diverges from the personal journeys they are on as young people.

Learn more about VMFA’s teen programs at: www.vmfa.museum/teens/


Sponsored by

John Covert: Dada Photographer

As painter and photographer, and as an arts administrator, the artist John Covert made significant contributions to the development of American modernism. Covert was an active participant at the salon-like gatherings famously held at the apartment of preeminent modern art patrons Walter and Louise Arensberg (Covert and Walter were first cousins), at 33 W. 67th Street, where, in the late 1910s, New York Dada largely transpired. The recently acquired works in this exhibition descend directly from the Arensberg family. Most importantly, they shed light on the critical role of photography as a medium and an inspiration in New York Dada.

Before he created figurative works, still lifes, and abstract compositions, Covert produced over 200 known photographs. Most common are multiple studies of a single figure in the artist’s studio, often in preparation for a painting—two such oils are featured in the exhibition. Covert also photographed wooden dolls and related toys as studies.

The photographs suggest Covert’s keen interest in the expressive possibilities of the human figure. Where other artists divested the figure of her human identity, Covert suggests a liberated sense of self in his photographs of nudes. Unlike works by Alfred Stieglitz, for example, none of the prints crop out body parts, and, in each work, there is plenty of elbowroom.

Covert’s photographs are not insulated by classical allusions. He depicts women in less heroic activities such as dancing, smiling, and sleeping. The figures also relate to the New York Dada interest in puns and codes, which Covert also explored in later drawings and are on view in the Photography Gallery.


IMAGES Study #1 for “I Am That I Am,” ca. 1920, John Covert (American, 1882–1960), gelatin silver print. Adolph D. and Wilkins C. Williams Fund. Gift of Mrs. Thelma Cudlipp Whitman, by exchange; Gift of John C. and Florence S. Goddin, by exchange, 2020.89

Untitled [Nude Woman Reclining with Eyes Shut], 1916–23, John Covert (American, 1882–1960), gelatin silver print. Adolph D. and Wilkins C. Williams Fund. Gift of Mrs. Thelma Cudlipp Whitman, by exchange; Gift of John C. and Florence S. Goddin, by exchange, 2020.89

Whistler to Cassatt: American Painters in France

Rediscover late 19th- and early 20th-century painters who left the United States as expatriates and returned to shape the course of American art. In Paris, they trained under the influence of the École des Beaux-Arts and studied the “old master” works at the Louvre but then went beyond traditional practices to experiment with new ideas and techniques. Whistler to Cassatt: American Painters in France examines the rich variety and complexity of American painting in the advent of modernism, as French avant-garde philosophies and styles melded with American individualism.

Assembled from international collections, the exhibition features more than 100 paintings by James Abbott McNeill Whistler, Mary Cassatt, and John Singer Sargent, Childe Hassam, Theodore Robinson, Henry Ossawa Tanner, Elizabeth Nourse, Cecilia Beaux, and many others.

This exhibition is organized by the Denver Art Museum and curated for VMFA by Dr. Susan J. Rawles, Elizabeth Locke Associate Curator of American Decorative Arts.


National Tour Sponsor


Jane Joel Knox


Lettie Pate Whitehead Evans Exhibition Endowment
Mr. and Mrs. Thomas F. Garner, Jr.
Dr. and Mrs. William V. Garner
Julia Louise Reynolds Fund


McGue Millhiser Family Trust


Lilli and William Beyer
Dr. Donald S. and Beejay Brown Endowment
Nancy and Wayne Chasen
Dorothy Ryland Garber Claybrook Trust
The Jeanann Gray Dunlap Foundation
Elisabeth Shelton Gottwald Fund
Alexandria Rogers McGrath
Richard S. Reynolds Foundation
Virginia H. Spratley Charitable Fund II


Kelly and Tiff Armstrong
Anita Bruch, Amy Bruch, and Will and Cary Bruch
Anna Kay Chandler
Birch Douglass
E. B. Duff Charitable Lead Annuity Trust
Mr. and Mrs. R. Augustus Edwards III
Dr. William J. Frable
Richard and Jean Hofheimer
William and Pamela O’Connor
Patricia P. Pusey
Anne Marie Whittemore


VMFA is also grateful to the following sponsors:

Tenley and Wyatt Beazley | Mr. and Mrs. William E. Collin | Page and John Corey | John Crowder and Mary Bacon | Timothy and Tonya Finton | Mr. and Mrs. David R. Frediani | Jeff Gumenick | Roberta and Matt Matthews | Mr. and Mrs. Michael Parker | Mr. and Mrs. J. Sargeant Reynolds, Jr. | The Rock Foundation | Barbara Basl Stokey | Britt and Mark Van Deusen | An Anonymous Donor


IMAGE Sunlight (detail), 1909, Frank Weston Benson (American, 1862–1951), oil on canvas. Indianapolis Museum of Art at Newfields, John Herron Fund, 11.1. © The Frank W. Benson Trust

Storied Strings: The Guitar in American Art

Storied Strings: The Guitar in American Art is the first exhibition to explore the instrument’s symbolism in American art from the early 19th century to the present day. Featuring 125 works of art, as well as 35 musical instruments, the exhibition will demonstrate that guitars figure prominently in the visual stories Americans tell themselves about themselves—their histories, identities, and aspirations. The accompanying 300-page catalogue positions the guitar within a nexus of art, music, literature, and cultural histories. After its run at the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, Storied Strings: The Guitar in American Art will travel to the Frist Art Museum, in Nashville (May 26–August 13, 2023).

The works in Storied Strings are divided into nine sections: Aestheticizing a Motif; Cold Hard Cash; Hispanicization; Parlor Games; Personification; Picturing Performance; Political Guitars; Guitars and African American Art; Re-Gendered Instruments. The exhibition also features smaller thematically arranged niche spaces, including The Blues; Women in Country Music; the Visual Culture of Early Rock and Roll; Hawaii-ana; and Cowboy Guitars. Linking these disparate themes is the premise that the guitar, as a visual motif, has long enabled artists and their human subjects to address themes and tell stories that otherwise would go unremarked or under-told.


Storied Strings: The Guitar in American Art is organized by the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts. The exhibition is curated by Dr. Leo Mazow, VMFA’s Louise B. and J. Harwood Cochrane Curator of American Art.


Jessie with Guitar, 1957, Thomas Hart Benton (American, 1889–1975), oil on canvas. Jessie Benton Collection. Image © 2022 T.H. and R.P. Benton Trusts / Licensed by Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

Tsherin Sherpa: Spirits

Explore the captivating paintings and sculptures of Nepalese-born Tibetan American artist Tsherin Sherpa. This thought-provoking, participatory art experience is presented in the form of a narrative telling a story of loss, struggle, and re-empowerment. Last seen at VMFA in the 2019 exhibition Awaken: A Tibetan Buddhist Journey Toward Enlightenment, Sherpa’s groundbreaking artwork continues to garner international acclaim. This focused mid-career retrospective is the global artist’s first solo museum exhibition.

Tsherin Sherpa’s works are grounded in the traditional Buddhist art of his training but stretch, bend, reconfigure, and repurpose its forms to explore contemporary concerns. The exhibition’s 36 paintings and sculptures trace the evolution of his “Spirits” series whose subjects resemble Tibetan Buddhist deities transformed by the modern world. Dislocated from their home—an experience familiar to the artist and communities all over the world—these figures move from grief and confusion, to courage and self-assurance, to triumph and wisdom. In their multiple manifestations, the Spirits reveal the power and endurance of transformation.

The exhibition is curated by Dr. John Henry Rice, VMFA’s E. Rhodes and Leona B. Carpenter Curator of South Asian and Islamic Art.


Tsherin Sherpa: Spirits is organized by the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts.


Altria Group Logo
Canvas at VMFA
Fabergé Ball Endowment


The Ellen Bayard Weedon Foundation


Anne Battle and Leonard Slater
Susan L. Buck in memory of Ed Chappell
Nancy and Wayne Chasen
Heather Daniel, Barrie McDowell, and Susan Russell
Birch Douglass
Arnel Manalo
Teri Craig Miles
Mr. Hubert G. Phipps
Jacquelyn Holley Pogue
Ms. Jennifer L. Schooley and Mr. William Bradley Burch


VMFA is also grateful to the following sponsors:

Nupa Agarwal, Esq. | Michael and Maura Bisceglia | Paula and Charles Collins | Philip and Kay Davidson | Mr. James W. Klaus | Deanna M. Maneker | Amy and Sean McGlynn | John McGurl and Michelle Gluck | Jaclyn Miller, Ph.D. | Mr. and Mrs. Stanley J. Olander, Jr. | Dr. and Mrs. Carl Patow | Reynolds Gallery | Dr. Bibhakar Sunder Shakya | SouthState Bank | Mr. and Mrs. John Stark |Shantaram and Sunita Talegaonkar | Stephen C. Thompson, Jr. and Jon McCue | Ting Xu and Evergreen Enterprises | A VMFA Supporter


IMAGES Spirits (Metamorphosis) (detail), 2019–20, Tsherin Sherpa (American, born Nepal, 1968), acrylic and ink on canvas. Private Collection

Tara Gaga (detail), 2016, gold leaf, acrylic, and ink on cotton, Tsherin Sherpa (born 1968), private collection, Dubai

Landscapes and Architecture: Japanese Woodblock Prints by Kawase Hasui

Born in Tokyo, Kawase Hasui was a master of Japanese landscape prints. He began his journey as an illustrator for books and magazines but soon discovered his heart belonged to printmaking. In 1918, he began creating Shin-hanga (new prints) and designed more than 600 prints during the following 40 years.

This exhibition in the Works on Paper Gallery is curated by Li Jian, E. Rhodes and Leona B. Carpenter Curator of East Asian Art, and features 14 prints. The works are drawn from René and Carolyn Balcer’s 2017 gift to VMFA. The Balcers have been donating works from their collection to the museum for more than a decade.


IMAGES Morning in Beppu (detail), from the series Japanese Sceneries, 1922, Kawase Hasui (Japanese, 1883-1957), woodblock print; ink and color on paper. René and Carolyn Balcer Collection, 2017.535

Cormorant Fishing, Nagara River (detail), 1954, Kawase Hasui (Japanese, 1883–1957), carved by Namikawa Siezo, printed by Horikawa Shōzaburō, published by Watanabe Shōzaburō (Japanese, 1885–1962), ink and color on paper. Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, René and Carolyn Balcer Collection

The Architecture of History: Photographs by Frances Benjamin Johnston and Keris Salmon

Explore facets of American history through the photographs of Frances Benjamin Johnston and Keris Salmon, two artists working nearly a century apart, who captured enduring images of Southern architecture.

One of America’s first female photojournalists, Johnston documented early American architecture in the South in the 1930s. Although she captured elegiac views of stately manors and crumbling interiors, Johnston was equally intent on recording vernacular structures, including cabins, barns, taverns, mills, and dwellings built by and for enslaved people.

In 1936, VMFA purchased and exhibited more than 150 photographs by Johnston and they remain a treasured part of the collection. Last year, the museum acquired Keris Salmon’s series To Have and To Hold, photographs of former plantations and homes of slave-owning individuals in the United States and Caribbean islands. Salmon explores and imagines the lives of both the enslaved and enslavers by juxtaposing quiet, luminous views of interior and exterior scenes with texts she culled from a variety of archival sources, including ledgers, diaries, legal documents, accounting logs, interviews, and slave auction records.

This exhibition is curated by Dr. Sarah Kennel, VMFA’s Aaron Siskind Curator of Photography and Director of the Raysor Center.


Upshur Old Hall (detail), ca. 1930-36, Frances Benjamin Johnston (American, 1864-1952), gelatin silver print. Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, Gift of the Carnegie Corporation, 36.10.21.1

To Have and to Hold, 2020, Keris Salmon (American, born 1959), inkjet print with letterpress. Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Holt Massey by exchange, Aldine S Harman Endowment Fund, and Eric and Jeanette Lipman Fund, 2021.602.1

2022 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.


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All My Love

By Susan Jamison
Mar 2, 2022 to Oct 11, 2022 | VMFA Amuse Restaurant & Claiborne Robertson Room

“I create visionary allegorical images of a woman re-wilded. Using egg yolks and dry pigments in a process which almost appears alchemical, life itself and the embodiment of the feminine is infused in each painting.”

“Depict the divine feminine. It’s time for her return.” An inner voice compelled me with these words in 2018 to start a new body of work. Not fully knowing who or what the divine feminine was, I looked for answers in the symbolism of my own early Catholic upbringing and heritage, and my present metaphysical practice of connecting to source through meditation, and rituals that align with natural cycles. I found incarnations of her that are loving, compassionate, and healing.

Quantum physics tells us nothing is actually solid, everything is energy vibrating at a certain frequency. The typical human body vibrates around 62-72 megahertz. Roses have a vibrational frequency of 320 MHz which is why they are considered by many to be sacred. These paintings combine roses as a symbol of The Mother, with visions of galaxies and outer space, rose wreathed horses galloping under the night sky, animals bearing messages, and women emerging as healers.”

Susan Jamison is a 2020 Emergency Relief Fellow.

IMAGES 320 Megahertz, Susan Jamison | Light Working It, Susan Jamison | Sub-Rosa, Susan Jamison


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Kendra Dawn Wadsworth – Paintings and Ceramics

By Kendra Dawn Wadsworth
Mar 24, 2022 to Oct 17, 2022 | Pauley Education Center Galleries

“In Wadsworth’s paintings and ceramics, coarse, jagged surfaces expose her kinetic process. Competing dualities—confinement / exposure, entrapment / liberation, crumpling / unfolding, surface / depth—move across and through her works. These juxtapositions disclose a sensibility towards chaos that Wadsworth cultivates through intuition and material responsiveness. Yet, while Wadsworth engages objects and forms that suggest conflict and struggle, her decomposition implies regeneration. The decay and deterioration on view offer their own forms of energy.”

— Emily Smith (Executive Director of 1708 Gallery)

“Spontaneous, unpredictable, intuitive, layered, chaotic yet measured – Creating for me is an ever changing process that is often filled with agony, wonder, surprise, disappointment, and bliss.

When I am in the studio it is the physicality of engagement with material that stimulates my process. Throwing, pouring, scraping, slapping, deconstructing, and re-constructing all excites and energizes me; propelling experimentation and finding meaning in mark and form.”

Kendra Dawn Wadsworth is a 2020 Emergency Relief Fellow.

IMAGES Amore, Kendra Dawn Wadsworth | Compulsion, Kendra Dawn Wadsworth | Resistance, Kendra Dawn Wadsworth


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Hopewell and Astoria: Streetside Religion

By Eliza Lamb
Jan 18, 2022 to Aug 15, 2022 | Richmond International Airport

“Hopewell.
As it was.

For the better part of a decade, I would travel south to photograph my hometown of Hopewell, Virginia.
I would wake up early and walk through the streets – revisiting the places I had known and the person that I was when I knew them.
The city seemed to stand still. It held its breath and I held mine.
No longer declining and not quite moving forward.
The heartbeat of the community could be found – faintly – ever so faintly – plugging along in the summer heat.

Often times in life, my creative intuition is the first to hear and respond. After nearly a decade of photographing this community – I would uproot my life and move home.
Testing the theory that art really can transform.

And so it has.
And so it does.

Hope well”


“Astoria: Streetside Religion

Sometimes your heart feels the call
before your ears can hear.
Sometimes your feet find the way
before the map is sought.

When I created this work I was alone in a new city.
Searching for comfort and familiarity –
Cynical, rational, and doubting.
These figures would accompany me on my long walks home –
bringing a relief that I couldn’t quite explain.
A balm for my lonely heart, soothing out prickles of fear,
and offering companions to look for on each block.
Reminders of family lost, and a time passed.
Of something bigger than myself.
The things that bind us together – and the things we let tear us apart.

I wasn’t looking to make this work.
These images found me and I am forever grateful that they did.

This body of work was created in the neighborhood of Astoria, Queens. A new resident of the
community I would often walk exploring my neighborhood, unexplainably comforted by the statues
that would meet me on each block.
As someone that struggled with their relationship to religion at the time – each of these figures kept
me company on my journey home.”

Dr. Eliza Lamb relocated back from NYC to the Tri-Cities of Virginia in 2016. There she has established her creative practice and founded a 501(c)3 organization, the Lamb Center for Arts and Healing, geared at breathing a new life of creativity and optimism to the community she loves. You can find out more about Dr. Lamb’s creative and non-profit work at www.elizalamb.com.

IMAGES: Yankees, Eliza Lamb | Main Street, Eliza Lamb | Marble Reflection, Eliza Lamb | Flower Border, Eliza Lamb | Trophy Car, Eliza Lamb | Hopewell Furniture, Eliza Lamb

VMFA on the Road: An Artmobile for the 21st Century

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VMFA on the Road: An Artmobile for the 21st Century is coming to a location near you with a new exhibition, Revealing and Obscuring Identity: Portraits from the Permanent Collection. This exciting exhibition of paintings, photographs, and prints explores portraiture through a variety of periods, cultures, and styles.

Throughout history, traditional portraits have typically been reserved for the elite of society, signifying the sitter’s wealth, power, attractiveness, and intelligence. Over time, the genre has become more expressive. Many of the works in this exhibition explore themes about the nature of art, the perception of beauty, and the cultural influences on identity. Visitors to Revealing and Obscuring Identity: Portraits from the Permanent Collection will experience the shift that occurred in portraiture over the decades.

Diverse works by more than 10 artists, including Kitagawa Utamaro (Japan), Gordon Stettinius (American), André L’Hote (French) and S. Ross Browne (American), are featured in the exhibition.

About VMFA on the Road

In 1953, VMFA became one of the first museums in the world to have an Artmobile. For four decades, as many as four Artmobiles toured 59 exhibitions and served more than 2.5 million Virginians. Due to conservation concerns and the fragility of traveling works of art, VMFA replaced the program in the early 1990s with a strategy to develop stronger partnerships with schools, community centers, and museums around the state.

VMFA relaunched its state-of-the-art traveling museum and art studio called VMFA on the Road in October 2018. The climate-controlled 53-foot Volvo trailer includes Wi-Fi to connect visitors with VMFA educators and interactive components to meet their 21st-century expectations. The main attraction of VMFA on the Road, however, is the opportunity for residents of the Commonwealth to see and experience authentic works of art from VMFA’s collection up close. VMFA on the Road is traveling to remote corners of Virginia by way of the museum’s Statewide Partners program, which includes 1,000 locations — from community centers and small museums to colleges and universities.


Revealing and Obscuring Identity:
Portraits from the Permanent Collection

Tour Sponsors

Presented by

Chase Logo

The William and Mary Greve Foundation, Inc.

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The Peachtree House Foundation


We are also grateful to the following donors whose generous gifts made the launch of VMFA on the Road possible:

The Commonwealth of Virginia | The Council of the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts
The William and Mary Greve Foundation, Inc. | The Francena T. Harrison Foundation
Mr. and Mrs. William T. Miller | Dr. and Mrs. Harry A. Wellons, Jr.

Mr. and Mrs. Haywood Blakemore | James Hixon | Mr. and Mrs. Peter I. C. Knowles II
The Wall Foundation | Mr. and Mrs. John W. West III | WestRock Foundation

Capital Bank | The Reverend Doctor Vienna Cobb Anderson | Louise B. Cochrane Foundation
The Cook Foundation | Ralph R. Crosby, Jr. | The Jeanann Gray Dunlap Foundation
Anne and Gus Edwards | Mr. and Mrs. David R. Frediani | Margaret R. Freeman
Mary Mills Freeman | Norfolk Southern Corporation | Joanne B. Robinson | The Bob and Anna Lou Schaberg Foundation

A Closer Look

VMFA’s latest Interactive Gallery exhibition goes beyond the surface of six works of art from VMFA’s collection to investigate how art can be an expression of place or personal and cultural identity; how different cultures throughout time represent history and identity through art; and what histories are publicly told and which are hidden.

A magnifying glass is available so visitors can look closely at reproductions of the artworks to uncover hidden icons. These magnified details can then be opened to reveal more information about the work or artist. Discussion prompts are included to start conversations around personal stories that may relate to the art.

Uncovering the untold is also a task for VMFA as a museum. Two touch screens in the exhibition feature digital interactives that provide a virtual look at the VMFA grounds over the past 200 years through the lens of the Black experience. This immersive experience, available on any internet-enabled device, was developed by the storytelling team at Hidden In Plain Site

Visit A Closer Look and you might discover more than meets the eye.


A Closer Look is generously supported by the Community Foundation for a greater Richmond, the Jeanette S. Lipman Endowment for Children’s Education, and Maggie Georgiadis.


The Former and the Ladder or Ascension and a Cinchin’, 2012, Trenton Doyle Hancock (American, born 1974), acrylic and mixed media on canvas. Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, Sydney and Frances Lewis Endowment Fund and Pamela K. and William A. Royall Jr. Fund for 21st-Century Art with funds contributed by Mary and Don Shockey Jr. and Marion Boulton Stroud, 2013.3 © Trenton Doyle Hancock

Man Ray: los años en París

Man Ray: los años en París se centra en las innovadoras fotografías de retratos que el artista estadounidense Man Ray realizó en la capital francesa entre 1921 y 1940. En las primeras décadas del siglo XX, París se hizo famosa en todo el mundo como un poderoso centro de libertad artística y la experimentación atrevida, que explica la extraordinaria migración allí de un gran número de artistas, arquitectos, compositores, bailarines, diseñadores de moda, cineastas, músicos y escritores. Poco después de su llegada en julio de 1921, Man Ray se embarcó en una campaña sostenida para documentar la vanguardia internacional en París entre las dos guerras mundiales en una serie de retratos notables que establecieron su reputación como uno de los fotógrafos líderes de su época.

Organizado por el Virginia Museum of Fine Arts y comisariado por Dr. Michael R. Taylor, curador en jefe y subdirector de arte y educación de VMFA, Man Ray: los años en París está programado para celebrar el centenario de la llegada de Man Ray a la capital francesa. La exposición incluye más de 100 retratos de luminarias culturales como Kay Boyle, André Breton, Jean Cocteau, Marcel Duchamp, Ernest Hemingway, Miriam Hopkins, Aldous Huxley, James Joyce, Meret Oppenheim, Pablo Picasso, Alice Prin (Kiki de Montparnasse), Elsa Schiaparelli, Erik Satie y Gertrude Stein. Los retratos de Man Ray fueron más allá de la mera grabación de apariencias externas y, en cambio, capturaron la esencia de sus modelos como individuos creativos y documentaron la naturaleza colectiva y el carácter de Les Années folles (los años locos) de París entre las dos guerras mundiales.

Man Ray, quien fue criado en Brooklyn por padres inmigrantes judíos y llamado Emmanuel Radnitzky al nacer, usó la fotografía para desafiar las tradiciones artísticas y romper los límites, incluidos los roles de género fijos. Los retratos pioneros que el artista hizo en París reflejan el individualismo desenfrenado de la era posterior a la Primera Guerra Mundial, en la que Man Ray y sus modelos utilizaron la autoinvención como un escape del conformismo restrictivo de la época.

Los retratos de la artista capturan un componente importante de la vanguardia en este momento, a saber, la femme moderne (mujer moderna). Mujeres modernas aventureras, ambiciosas, asertivas, atrevidas, emprendedoras, autosuficientes y seguras de sí mismas como Berenice Abbott, Nancy Cunard, Valentine Hugo, Lee Miller y Janet Scudder aprovecharon al máximo su libertad sin precedentes y su acceso a oportunidades educativas y profesionales. participar como iguales a sus homólogos masculinos en la vanguardia parisina. Aunque estas mujeres provenían de clases y entornos económicos muy diferentes, compartían el objetivo colectivo de ser creativamente, financiera e intelectualmente independientes. Al rechazar los roles y expectativas tradicionales de género, las mujeres modernas también estaban interesadas en borrar la diferencia sexual y, a menudo, abrazaron las trampas simbólicas y la autonomía de sus contrapartes masculinas, incluido el uso de ropa de hombre, conducir autos veloces, fumar y lucir cortes de pelo muy cortos.

Además, esta exposición cuenta las historias importantes de sujetos negros como Henry Crowder, Adrienne Fidelin, Elsie Houston y Ruby Richards, quienes han sido injustamente relegados a los márgenes del modernismo debido al legado del colonialismo y el racismo. La serie de retratos de la artista de la bailarina y cantante Ruby Richards, quien nació en St. Kitts en las Indias Occidentales Británicas y creció en Harlem, Nueva York, saca a la luz a una importante intérprete de color cuyo trabajo con Man Ray nunca antes había sido ha sido reconocido en relatos anteriores de la obra del artista. Richards se mudó a París en 1938 para reemplazar a la legendaria artista afroamericana Josephine Baker como la atracción estrella en el Folies Bergère, y el famoso salón de música de cabaret encargó a Man Ray que la ayudara a presentarla al público francés a través de sus retratos. La exposición ilumina las historias de Richards y otros cuyas vidas y retratos rompieron las barreras del color.

Los retratos de Man Ray a menudo reflejan un diálogo o negociación entre la visión del artista y la autoconstrucción de sus sujetos. Ya sea que se les tomara un retrato para promover su trabajo, afirmar su propia imagen, proyectar sus deseos, cumplir sus sueños o crear una nueva identidad, los modelos de Man Ray no eran objetos inanimados, como bloques de mármol, para moldearlos y coaccionarlos. sino líderes culturales y de pensamiento altamente creativos que participaron activamente en el acto creativo. Man Ray: los años en París empodera a los sujetos retratados en estas fotografías contando sus historias y dándoles una agencia y una voz que no se suele escuchar en los relatos monográficos de artistas modernos. Informado por una extensa investigación de archivos, este proyecto de exposición y el catálogo que lo acompaña ofrece un relato más completo de los años de Man Ray en París al enfocarse no solo en su logro como fotógrafo y sus excelentes dotes como retratista, sino también en las amistades y el intercambio de ideas que tuvo lugar entre el artista y sus sujetos en París entre 1921 y 1940.

Arriba: Self-Portrait with Camera, 1930, Man Ray (Estadounidense, 1890–1976), Impresión en plata gelatina con solarización, The Jewish Museum, Nueva York, Photography Acquisitions Committee Fund, Horace W. Goldsmith Fund, y obsequio de Judith y Jack Stern, 2004-16. © Man Ray 2015 Trust / Artists Rights Society (ARS), NY / ADAGP, Paris 2021.

VMFA agradece a los siguientes patrocinadores:

Lettie Pate Whitehead Evans Exhibition Endowment
Julia Louise Reynolds Fund


Mr. and Mrs. R. Augustus Edwards III
Mr. and Mrs. Thomas F. Garner, Jr.
Dr. and Mrs. William V. Garner
Elisabeth Shelton Gottwald Fund
The Francena T. Harrison Foundation
Nancy and Peter Huber
Don and Mary Shockey
YouDecide


Birch Douglass
Christopher English and Meda Lane
Hamilton Beach Brands, Inc.
Dr. John B. Herrington III and Mr. Keith Toth
Locks Foundation
Margaret and Thomas Mackell
The Anne Carter and Walter R. Robins, Jr. Foundation
Michael Schewel and Priscilla Burbank
Tom Williamson and Janet Brown


Ann and Jim Belk | Page and Sandy Bond | Ms. Virginia R. Edmunds | Dr. William J. Frable | Hugh and Nancy Harrison | Mr. Phillip and Dr. Kandace McGuire | John and Maria Shugars | Mark and Deborah Wlaz | Dr. and Mrs. Harry A. Wellons, Jr. | Ting Xu and Evergreen Enterprises

Man Ray: The Paris Years

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Man Ray: The Paris Years focuses on the innovative portrait photographs that the American artist Man Ray made in the French capital between 1921 and 1940. In the early decades of the 20th century, Paris became famous the world over as a powerful center of artistic freedom and daring experimentation, which accounts for the extraordinary migration there of a large number of artists, architects, composers, dancers, fashion designers, filmmakers, musicians, and writers. Shortly after his arrival in July 1921, Man Ray embarked on a sustained campaign to document the international avant-garde in Paris between the two world wars in a series of remarkable portraits that established his reputation as one of the leading photographers of his era.

Organized by the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts and curated by Michael Taylor, VMFA’s Chief Curator and Deputy Director for Art and Education, Man Ray: The Paris Years is timed to celebrate the 100th anniversary of Man Ray’s arrival in the French capital. The exhibition includes more than 100 portraits of such cultural luminaries as Kay Boyle, André Breton, Jean Cocteau, Marcel Duchamp, Ernest Hemingway, Miriam Hopkins, Aldous Huxley, James Joyce, Méret Oppenheim, Pablo Picasso, Alice Prin (Kiki de Montparnasse), Elsa Schiaparelli, Erik Satie, and Gertrude Stein. Man Ray’s portraits went beyond merely recording outward appearances and instead captured the essence of his sitters as creative individuals and documented the collective nature and character of Les Années folles (the crazy years) of Paris between the two world wars.

Man Ray, who was raised in Brooklyn by Jewish immigrant parents and named Emmanuel Radnitzky at birth, used photography to challenge artistic traditions and break boundaries, including fixed gender roles. The groundbreaking portraits that the artist made in Paris reflect the rampant individualism of the post–World War I era, in which Man Ray and his sitters used self-invention as an escape from the restrictive conformity of the age.

The artist’s portraits capture an important constituency of the avant-garde at this time, namely the femme moderne (modern woman). Adventurous, ambitious, assertive, daring, enterprising, self-reliant, and self-assured modern women like Berenice Abbott, Nancy Cunard, Valentine Hugo, Lee Miller, and Janet Scudder took full advantage of their unprecedented freedom and access to educational and professional opportunities to participate as equals to their male counterparts in the Parisian avant-garde. Although these women came from vastly different classes and economic backgrounds, they shared a collective goal to be creatively, financially, and intellectually independent. Rejecting traditional gender roles and expectations, modern women were also interested in erasing sexual difference and often embraced the symbolic trappings and autonomy of their male counterparts, including wearing men’s clothes, driving fast cars, smoking, and sporting tightly cropped “bobbed” haircuts.

In addition, this exhibition tells the important stories of Black subjects such as Henry Crowder, Adrienne Fidelin, Elsie Houston, and Ruby Richards, who have been unfairly relegated to the margins of modernism due to the legacy of colonialism and racism. The artist’s series of portraits of the dancer and singer Ruby Richards, who was born in St. Kitts in the British West Indies and grew up in Harlem, New York, brings to light an important performer of color whose work with Man Ray has never before been acknowledged in previous accounts of the artist’s work. Richards moved to Paris in 1938 to replace the legendary African American performer Josephine Baker as the star attraction at the Folies Bergère, and the famous cabaret music hall commissioned Man Ray to help introduce her to French audiences through his portrait photographs. The exhibition illuminates the stories of Richards and others whose lives and portraits broke color barriers.

Man Ray’s portraits often reflect a dialogue or negotiation between the artist’s vision and the self-fashioning of his subjects. Whether they had their portrait taken to promote their work, affirm their self-image, project their desires, fulfill their dreams, or create a new identity, Man Ray’s sitters were not inanimate objects, like blocks of marble, to be shaped and coerced, but were instead highly creative cultural and thought leaders who were active participants in the creative act. Man Ray: The Paris Years empowers the subjects portrayed in these photographs by telling their stories and giving them an agency and voice that is not typically heard in monographic accounts of modern artists. Informed by extensive archival research, this exhibition project and accompanying catalogue thus offers a more complete account of Man Ray’s Paris years by focusing not just on his achievement as a photographer and his superb gifts as a portraitist but also on the friendships and exchange of ideas that took place between the artist and his subjects in Paris between 1921 and 1940.

Man Ray: The Paris Years will be presented in English and Spanish. VMFA is committed to representing the cultural and linguistic diversity of our community and to creating a more accessible, inclusive, and welcoming experience for all.

ABOVE IMAGE Self-Portrait with Camera, 1930, Man Ray (American, 1890–1976), solarized gelatin silver print. The Jewish Museum, New York, Purchase: Photography Acquisitions Committee Fund, Horace W. Goldsmith Fund, and Judith and Jack Stern Gift, 2004-16. © Man Ray 2015 Trust / Artists Rights Society (ARS), NY / ADAGP, Paris 2021.

Exhibition Sponsors

Lettie Pate Whitehead Evans Exhibition Endowment
Julia Louise Reynolds Fund


Mr. and Mrs. R. Augustus Edwards III
Mr. and Mrs. Thomas F. Garner, Jr.
Dr. and Mrs. William V. Garner
Elisabeth Shelton Gottwald Fund
The Francena T. Harrison Foundation
Nancy and Peter Huber
Don and Mary Shockey
YouDecide


Birch Douglass
Christopher English and Meda Lane
Hamilton Beach Brands, Inc.
Dr. John B. Herrington III and Mr. Keith Toth
Locks Foundation
Margaret and Thomas Mackell
The Anne Carter and Walter R. Robins, Jr. Foundation
Michael Schewel and Priscilla Burbank
Tom Williamson and Janet Brown


VMFA is also grateful to the following Sponsors:

Ann and Jim Belk | Page and Sandy Bond | Ms. Virginia R. Edmunds | Dr. William J. Frable | Hugh and Nancy Harrison | Mr. Phillip and Dr. Kandace McGuire | John and Maria Shugars | Mark and Deborah Wlaz | Dr. and Mrs. Harry A. Wellons, Jr. | Ting Xu and Evergreen Enterprises

This list represents sponsors as of September 16, 2021.

It’s Egypt! Interactive Gallery Exhibition

Ancient Egyptians believed that everything they knew and experienced was part of a cycle, from the annual flood of the Nile River that nourished their land to the daily rising and setting of the sun. Even their own lives were a cycle, which moved from birth to death to rebirth. Explore more about Egyptian life in this hands-on exhibition for all ages!


VMFA is grateful to the following Sponsors:

Jeanann Gray Dunlap Foundation


Maggie Georgiadis


Mr. and Mrs. J. Gray Ferguson

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.


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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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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

Sir Frank Short: Out of the Shadows

This installation shines a spotlight on a printmaker whose lifetime achievements have been underappreciated in the years since his death. Born in the industrial heart of England, Short initially trained as a civil engineer. While working on a government inquiry into the pollution of the Thames River, he encountered a print by J. M. W. Turner, which proved transformative. Soon after, Short gave into “temptation,” as he called it, deciding to pursue a career in printmaking.

Absorbed into the burgeoning Etching Revival movement led in England by James Abbott McNeill Whistler and Sir Francis Seymour Haden, Short used his engineering mindset to experiment until he mastered every secret of etching. A reverence and desire to absorb the artistic lessons from the great artists of the past compelled Short to learn the historic traditions of mezzotint and aquatint. These techniques were made synonymous in the late 18th and early 19th centuries with the printed reproductions of oil paintings and watercolors.

Eager to provide quality alternatives to the anemic mass produced reproductions of the times, Short employed his formidable talents into creating magnificent and sympathetic interpretations of works by other artists—especially Turner. Compositional and iconographic lessons absorbed from these reproductions manifest in his original prints. However, unlike artists who were comfortable constructing compositions in the studio, Short went out into nature, seeking out vistas that inspired him.

Sir Frank Short: Out of the Shadows assembles over two dozen printmaking experiments, original compositions, and reproductive works that are drawn from the Frank Raysor collection, a generous ongoing gift to VMFA. This exhibition is curated by Dr. Colleen Yarger, Assistant Curator for European Art and the Mellon Collections, and supported by Ms. Anna Kay Chandler, Larry J. Kohmescher, and an anonymous donor.

A Wintry Blast on the Stourbridge Canal, 1890, Sir Frank Short (English, 1857–1945), drypoint printed in blank ink on laid paper. Promised gift of Frank Raysor, FR.1233
Dawn, Sir Frank Short (English, 1857–1945), Dawn, 1912, Aquatint printed in black ink on wove paper. Promised gift of Frank Raysor, FR.1169

Carl Chiarenza

On display at Piedmont Arts from Oct 22, 2021–Jan 28, 2022

Born to Italian immigrant parents and raised in Rochester, New York, Chiarenza’s interest in photography developed early in his childhood. From 1953 to 1957, Chiarenza studied at the Rochester Institute of Technology under the direction of Minor White and Ralph Hattersley. Since the late 1960s, Chiarenza has been a leading figure in a movement that seeks to expand the conceptual boundaries of photography. Chiarenza’s photographs have been included in more than 80 solo and 250 group exhibitions since 1957. His black-and-white photographs, which often contain elements of collage, have continued to challenge notions of landscape, abstraction, visitor perspective, and the very medium of photography itself.

Chiarenza is inspired by both the beauty of and human connections to landscapes, but has been continuously dissatisfied with his outdoor nature photographs. In acknowledging that traditional depictions of landscapes in paintings are constructed, he began to approach his photographs as abstract and emotional constructions that allow us to examine nature in relation to the self.

The key characteristic that came to dominate Chiarenza’s style was nyctophilia, or a preference for and comfort in darkness. His photographs do not offer familiar faces or landscapes; there is no evident cultural or psychological framework for the viewer to build their response. Rather, the lack of specificity and sense of timelessness reminds us that all photographs are constructions of reality that produce various interpretations relative to each viewer. Chiarenza’s work invites individual reflection by forcing us to examine the subliminal workings of the mind. In these photographs, nothing is absolute, leaving all realities subject to each observer.

This exhibition is curated by VMFA Director and CEO Alex Nyerges. These works were all a generous gift of the artist.

Ansel Adams: Compositions in Nature

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The Virginia Museum of Fine Arts invites you to behold the drama and splendor of the American landscape as seen through the lens of photographer Ansel Adams. In Ansel Adams: Compositions in Nature, more than 70 photographs spanning over five decades showcase the breathtaking vistas, beguiling details, and inimitable style that define this most beloved and influential photographer. Considering Adams as artist, environmentalist, and musician, the exhibition includes iconic images, rarely seen early photographs, and musical recordings that also take you behind the camera.

Ansel Adams: Compositions in Nature presents photographs from every period of the artist’s celebrated career. Included are many of Adams’s most-famous and best-loved photographs as well as lesser-known works. Visitors will delight in elegant details of nature, architectural studies, portraits, and the breathtaking landscapes for which Adams is most revered. In addition to a selection of his most highly regarded works that Adams printed at the end of his career—“the Museum set”—the exhibition features donated photographs recently added to VMFA’s permanent collection.

The Conservationist

The Musician

The Photographer

The overview of the artist’s career explores changes in his aesthetics and technique, as well as his constant keen eye for composition. Visitors will experience Ansel Adams’s photographs that are some of the best-known images produced by any artist of the era, including Moonrise, Hernandez, New Mexico, The Tetons and the Snake River, and Monolith, Face of Half Dome. In a study of Adams’s changing technique, the exhibition displays prints of the same photograph produced decades apart for visitors to compare and contrast.

Curated by Dr. Christopher Oliver, the Bev Perdue Jennings Assistant Curator of American Art, the exhibition explores the multifaceted artist who, in addition to photography, had a lifelong interest in both landscape conservation and classical music. Presentations within the gallery pay special attention to Adams’s tireless efforts to have wilderness and parks set aside for the public good. In a section of the exhibition that focuses on the artist’s affinity for certain pieces of music, visitors will hear selections from a 1945 recording of Adams playing several different classical compositions for piano.

The exhibition features some recent gifts to VMFA’s permanent collection, many of which have been rarely exhibited or published. Andrea Gray Stillman, a museum patron and former assistant to Ansel Adams, donated these works to VMFA beginning in 2018.

Adams profoundly influenced the course of 20th century photography not only through the example of his sumptuous and technically precise images, but also by means of his personal energy and devotion to advancing the cause of photography as an art form. As an artist, educator, innovator, and writer, he helped establish many of the institutions that have come to represent the highest aspirations of the medium of photography.

Ansel Adams: Compositions in Nature is organized by the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts in collaboration with the Turtle Bay Exploration Park, Redding, CA, and managed by Landau Traveling Exhibitions, Los Angeles, CA.

VMFA is grateful to the following Sponsors:

Elisabeth Shelton Gottwald Fund


Birch Douglass
Mr. and Mrs. R. Augustus Edwards III
Mr. and Mrs. Thomas F. Garner, Jr.
Dr. and Mrs. William V. Garner
The Francena T. Harrison Foundation
Brian and Mary Ann Peppiatt
Patricia R. St. Clair
Tina and Lewis Stoneburner


Kelly and Tiff Armstrong
Mr. and Mrs. Wayne A. Chasen
Mrs. Page Edgerton
Margaret R. Freeman
Mrs. Carter D. McDowell
Mrs. Patsy K. Pettus
VMFA Council Exhibition Fund


Marketing support for this exhibition is provided by the Charles G. Thalhimer Fund


This list reflects sponsors as of July 1, 2021


IMAGE Mount Williamson, The Sierra Nevada, from Manzanar, California, 1944, printed 1973–75, Ansel Adams (American, 1902–1984), gelatin silver print. Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, Adolph D. and Wilkins C. Williams Fund. Photograph by Ansel Adams © The Ansel Adams Publishing Rights Trust.

Early Childhood Annual Student Exhibition

VMFA is pleased to present works of art selected from our Early Childhood Education programs. Each work on display was created in one of our many programs designed to reach children ages three months to five years. These works demonstrate the diverse experiences our youngest audiences gain through these exciting and popular programs.

VMFA’s Early Childhood Education programs connect early learning to the museum’s world-renowned collection. Students enjoy play, music, and movement activities, gallery walks, and multisensory art projects. While building self-awareness and social skills, diverse subjects are explored, including world cultures, science, literature, and mathematics.