Winning a VMFA Fellowship in 2008 was a significant achievement for painter Josephine Haden, but also being one of the first winners to have her work on view at VMFA as part of the debut of the Fellowship Exhibitions Program gave that honor even greater impact.
“The Pauley Center exhibition brought me considerable professional attention, which is an opportunity that most artists dream of—a solo show in a prestigious museum,” says Haden, who also exhibited her work at Richmond International Airport as part of this program.
At the time of her award, the recession was beginning to take hold and sales of her paintings were dropping off; therefore, these accolades and public exposure definitely came at a good time. As a result, Haden, who paints landscapes “on the edge of reality,” was asked to exhibit her paintings in a solo exhibition at the Barry Gallery at Marymount University in Arlington; the Denise Bibro Fine Art Gallery in Chelsea, New York; and the Reynolds Gallery in Richmond. She was also selected as a Showcase Winner and Juried Winner by ArtSlant, a contemporary art network.
Not only that, the award gave Haden the funds to enroll in classes and purchase Final Cut Pro software that allowed her to explore a new direction for her art. With these resources at her disposal, the artist began integrating her traditional paintings with art videos, essentially animating her work.
“The VMFA grant allowed me to put more time into breaking into a new way to create interface between the two-dimensional and three-dimensional space and to play with animated and static images,” says Haden, “It pushed my art into new frontiers.”
The third in a series of stories about the impact of the VMFA Visual Arts Fellowship program. This year, the program celebrates 75 years. Learn more about the anniversary of the Fellowship program and watch this blog for future stories.