With the goal of being accessible to all visitors, the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts (VMFA) was open both Christmas Day and New Years Day and will continue to be open 365 days a year. “Since beginning this policy in July 2010, VMFA remains the most accessible art museum in the nation,” VMFA Director Alex Nyerges said. “We are the only art museum in the United States that is open 365 days a year with free general admission.” Daily hours are 10 a.m. until 5 p.m. with evening hours until 9 p.m. on Thursdays and Fridays.
“We have been wildly successful with these increased hours, and the museum has been enthusiastically received by the community and national visitors,” Nyerges said. “Being open on Mondays, holidays and offering evening hours has been increasingly popular as word gets out. This past Christmas day, we had nearly 1500 visitors, demonstrating that the community is eager to embrace the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts as a holiday destination. The Chihuly exhibition has been a major draw as well.”
Attendance in 2012 on Christmas day was 1,451, and Thanksgiving Day was more than 1,100. The attendance for these holidays was double the number of people for the same holidays in 2011.
The VMFA Shop, Best Café and Amuse Restaurant also are open 365 days a year. Amuse offers special holiday-specific menus on Thanksgiving and Christmas. This past Thanksgiving and Christmas were sold to capacity.
Historically, the museum had been closed Mondays and in recent years, it was also closed on Tuesdays. Holiday closings were on New Year’s Day, Fourth of July, Thanksgiving and Christmas.
Exhibitions for 2013 include: Gesture: Judith Godwin and Abstract Expressionism (through January 27, 2013); Chihuly at the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts (through February 10, 2013); Indian Silver for the Raj (through April 3, 2013); Aaron Siskind and Abstract Photography in the 1950s and ‘60s (through June 2013); Domestic, Wild, Divine: Artists Look at Animals (through August 4, 2013 ); Pop Art and Beyond: Tom Wesselmann (April 6 – July 28, 2013); European Modernism (May 2013); The Dorothy and Herbert Vogel Collection: 50 Works for 50 States (July 27 – December 8, 2013); Ryan McGinness: Studio Visit ( opening September 21); Hollywood Costume (November 2, 2013 – February 17, 2014); Forbidden City: Imperial Treasures from the Palace Museum, Beijing; (October 18, 2014 – January 11, 2015) with ongoing exhibitions: Visions from the Congo and Town & Country Scenes in Japan: Woodblock Prints by Kawase Hasui .
About the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts
VMFA’s permanent collection encompasses more than 33,000 works of art spanning 5,000 years of world history. Its collections of Art Nouveau and Art Deco, English silver, Fabergé, and the art of South Asia are among the finest in the nation. With acclaimed holdings in American, British Sporting, Impressionist and Post-Impressionist, and Modern and Contemporary art – and additional strengths in African, Ancient, East Asian, and European – VMFA ranks as one of the top comprehensive art museums in the United States. Programs include educational activities and studio classes for all ages, plus fun after-hours events. VMFA’s Statewide Partnership program includes traveling exhibitions, artist and teacher workshops, and lectures across the Commonwealth. VMFA is open 365 days a year and general admission is always free. For additional information, telephone 804-340-1400 or visit www.vmfa.museum.
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