Coronation Theme: Organon, 2008, Nadine Robinson (American, born England, 1968), speakers, sound system, mixed media. High Museum of Art, Atlanta, given by John F. Wieland Jr. in memory of Marion Hill, 2008.175. Image: © Nadine Robinson

Dirty South: Its Meaning and Influence

“Dirty South” is an expression that endearingly refers to the southern part of the United States—from Virginia to Florida, Texas, and the states in between—whose Black traditions and artistic expressions have shaped the culture of the region and the nation. The term describes an identity born out of the southern landscape and its agriculture as…

Hamilton Glass: The Artist and Architect behind RVA Community Makers

Artist Hamilton Glass, also known as “Ham,” is a Philadelphia-born, Hampton University graduate, who has proudly called Richmond home since 2007. And it’s here in RVA where he has also made his name as a painter and muralist with a genuine concern for building community and bridging divides. His relationship with VMFA has always involved…

The Quilting Tradition of Gee’s Bend

This article is an excerpt from the museum magazine, VMFA, an exclusive benefit for museum members. See works from the Gee’s Bend quilters on display in the Cosmologies from the Tree of Life: Art from the African American South exhibition. Valerie Cassel Oliver, VMFA’s Sydney and Frances Lewis Family Curator of Modern and Contemporary Art,…

It’s a Family Affair: 7 Activities Inspired by Cosmologies at VMFA

The works of art in the exhibition Cosmologies from the Tree of Life: Art from the African American South at the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts embody stories that may remind you of your own family’s artistry, perseverance, and traditions passed down through generations. The art on view includes sculptures, quilts, paintings, and works on…

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…

“Three Musicians” by Romare Bearden

“Three Folk Musicians” is one of the most renowned works by American artist Romare Bearden (1911–1988). Incorporating hand-painted papers and photographs torn from magazines, Bearden’s collages of this period present complex images of African American life from multiple perspectives. Music: “Music Box Rag”, performed by the Heftone Banjo Orchestra

Tar Beach

Memories of “Tar Beach”

I experienced a déjà vu moment recently while viewing Faith Ringgold’s Tar Beach quilt, which is part of the Identity Shifts exhibition at VMFA. Many years ago, I lived in New York City and served on the board for Children’s Museum of Manhattan, a great organization. I vividly recall a wonderful exhibit at that museum…

Processional Cross

Adding to YOUR art collection @ VMFA

VMFA is fortunate to have endowed private funds which can only be used for art acquisition. Here are some recent acquisitions currently on view in the galleries. The curators have provided insights about the objects. Elaborate processional crosses made for Ethiopian churches are often inscribed with images and lettering that deepen their message. On this…

Marian Anderson

VMFA’s newest acquisition

Ladies and gentlemen, meet our newest acquisition. This painting by Beauford Delaney was approved by the VMFA Board and Art Acquisitions committee yesterday. It has been on loan to VMFA for the past five months, but is now a part of the permanent American collection. Beauford Delaney painted this iconic portrait of the acclaimed American…