Waynesboro Heritage Museum | 420 W. Main St., Waynesboro, Virginia 22980 | Hours: Tuesday–Saturday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. | Phone: (540) 943-3943

When Picasso’s art came to Waynesboro

artmobileWaynesboro locals are well acquainted with the Fall Foliage art show that happens every year, covering the streets of Main and Wayne in October. What you may not know is that in October 1966 the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts’ Artmobile III traveled to Waynesboro for the “Treasures from the Guggenheim Museum” art exhibition. Onboard the Artmobile III were 28 artworks by well-known contemporary artists such as Picasso, Kandinsky, Klee, Miro, Leger, Severini, Ernst, Kirchner, Archipenko, and Chagall, to name a few. The exhibition included drawings, paintings, prints, and sculptures.

In New York City, the Guggenheim Museum opened in October 1959.  It is well known for its striking architectural design and spiral walkways designed by the famed architect Frank Lloyd Wright. It took Wright over 16 years and approximately 700 sketches to create the new contemporary art museum (“Guggenheim Architecture Timeline,” 2019).

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inviteThe Artmobile III came to Waynesboro and parked, first, at Kate Collins Junior High School for two days, and then moved to The Centre for Shopping until Friday. The local coordinators of the event were the Waynesboro Chapter of the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, and member Mrs. B.L. Copeland was the Chairman of the event. In a letter to members of the chapter, President Carmen Sherbeck wrote that the goal of the chapter was “enrichment of the cultural life of the community…” and that throughout the year the chapter had fulfilled its purpose. The chapter held many events in Waynesboro throughout the year including: art classes, Arts and Crafts Festival, a juried exhibit and Fifth Sunday Tea, The Children’s Carnival, several exhibits, a second visit by the Artmobile, art sale, a safari to the VMFA in Richmond, lectures, and several other events.

The Artmobile started in October of 1953 at the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts in Richmond, Virginia. It was a way to bring art and art education to the people in their communities. The program closed in 1994, but in 2015, the VMFA decided to bring back the popular Artmobile. A list of dates for 2019-2020 is available online at https://www.vmfa.museum/exhibitions/exhibitions/vmfa-on-the-road/.

Would you be interested in having the Artmobile return to Waynesboro?

Guggenheim Architecture Timeline. (2019). Retrieved from https://www.guggenheim.org/history/architecture

Article by Kelly Sheely

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