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Richmond International Airport and VMFA Partner for "Art at the Airport" Project

March 5, 2009

RICHMOND, Virginia (March 5, 2009) - An exhibition opening today of photographs made primarily in national parks and forests will inaugurate a collaboration between the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts and the Capital Regional Airport Commission.

Eight display cases in the baggage-claim area at Richmond International Airport are showcasing exhibits of work by Virginia artists. Exhibitions will change every four months and feature artists working in a variety of media.

The program will expand with the installation of special display cases in the airport's upper level that will showcase works of art in conjunction with major exhibitions that VMFA will present in its new wing, opening next year.

"Richmond International Airport is one of the main gateways to Richmond and Virginia," says Alex Nyerges, VMFA's director. "So showcasing the incredible art and artists of the commonwealth in this setting is a marvelous opportunity to introduce visitors to the great cultural riches the state has to offer. When the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts opens its transformative expansion in the spring of 2010, it will be another compelling reason to make Richmond a destination."

Airport president and CEO Jon E. Mathiasen says, "Richmond International Airport fully embraces the enhancement of the travel experience for our customers, and I cannot imagine a better partner than the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts. About 3.5 million travelers pass through RIC per year, and they will soon have the opportunity to enjoy some of the best art the Commonwealth of Virginia has to offer."

The first display, "This Land is Our Land," is an exhibition of 12 photographs by Virginia artist Hullihen Williams Moore. It will be on view through June 15.

Moore (born 1942) makes his home in Richmond. The photographs in the exhibition were taken in and around Shenandoah National Park, George Washington National Forest and Jefferson National Forest in Virginia; Yosemite National Park and Giant Sequoia National Monument in California; and Grand Teton National Park and Yellowstone National Park in Wyoming. Moore's pigment prints range from grand vistas and waterfalls to the delicate unfurling of new ferns.

Moore will discuss his work in a lecture and gallery talk March 21 at 2 p.m. in VMFA's Pauley Center. In addition, VMFA's Paul Mellon Educator, Jeffrey Allison, will present a talk titled "A Land Unbound: The American Landscape Tradition in Photography" April 15 at 6 p.m. in the Pauley Center. Tickets to either talk are available for $8 (members, students $5) at the museum or by telephoning (804) 340-1405.

The museum will also present a free program, "How ... are traditional photographic techniques still alive and well?" with VMFA Studio School instructors Bob Greene and Peter Giebel March 20 at noon. Those who wish to attend should meet at the VMFA Studio School.

Another show of photographs by Moore is on view now at VMFA's Pauley Center. "Shenandoah: Views of Our National Park," which will be shown through May 31, presents lush yet precise photographs of a very specific place in the southern Appalachian mountains of Virginia.

"Shenandoah is indeed the refuge it was meant to be: a protected, special and beautiful place," Moore says.

The second exhibition at the Richmond airport will feature photographs of Italy by Norfolk photographer Glen McClure. It will be on view beginning in June. McClure will discuss his work in a lecture June 13 at 2 p.m. in VMFA's Pauley Center. Tickets are $8 (members, students $5) at the museum or by telephoning (804) 340-1405. Both McClure and Moore have contributed to VMFA's statewide traveling-exhibition program.

Subsequent exhibitions at the airport will showcase works by winners of VMFA's annual Fellowship awards, which benefit professional and student artists from Virginia. Founded 69 years ago, the Fellowship program has awarded grants to more than 1,069 Virginia artists.

Further opportunities for VMFA-RIC collaboration are under review, including the possibility of large-scale installation pieces in the airport's new soaring terminal.

The Virginia Museum of Fine Arts is an educational institution of the Commonwealth of Virginia. For additional information about exhibitions and programs, telephone (804) 340-1400 or visit the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts Web site, http://www.vmfa.museum/.

Richmond International Airport is the gateway for Virginia's Capital Region, and offers 200 daily non-stop flights on Air Canada, AirTran Airways, American Airlines, Continental Airlines, Delta Air Lines, JetBlue Airways, Northwest Airlines, United Airlines, US Airways and their respective regional affiliates to 20 domestic and international destinations.

[Note: high-resolution images of the "This Land is Our Land" exhibit are available on the VMFA web at www.vmfa.mediaroom.state.va.us/airport.htm.]

CONTACT:

Virginia Museum of Fine Arts
Suzanne Hall
(804) 204-2704
suzanne.hall@vmfa.museum

OR

Capital Region Airport Commission
Troy Bell
(804) 226-3022
TBell@flyrichmond.com


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