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The 1812 Wickham House

 A dialogue-based guided tour of the 1812 Wickham House, a National Historic Landmark, challenges guests to explore aspects of life in the early 19th century. The Wickham House was purchased by Mann Valentine Jr. and in 1898 became the first home of the Valentine Museum. This historic home allows us to tell the complicated story of the Wickham family, the home’s enslaved occupants, sharing spaces and the realities of urban slavery. The Wickham House cellars opened in April 2017 with new hands-on history interactive chests exploring everyday life above and below stairs as well as a short film, Shared Spaces: Separate Stories.

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#BallotBattle: Richmond’s Social Struggle for Suffrage

To highlight the 100th anniversary of the ratification of the 19th Amendment, #BallotBattle: Richmond’s Social Struggle for Suffrage uses modern social media platforms to profile five Richmond viewpoints and the racial and generational tensions that each exposed. Between 1909 and 1920, both pro-suffrage and anti-suffrage advocates battled tenaciously, using all the platforms available to persuade both the legislature and the general public. While they could not use Twitter or Facebook, they did rely on newspapers, broadsides, pamphlets, postcards, banners, and personal accessories to proclaim their viewpoints.  Just like our complicated social media battles today, the final political and legal outcome was never a foregone conclusion.

Voices from Richmond’s Hidden Epidemic

Despite years of medical and social progress, misconceptions about HIV/AIDS persist today. The disease is viewed by many as a scourge of the past that is now easily treatable and primarily impacting gay white men. However, the numbers reveal a more complicated story—one in which gay African-American men have a 1 in 2 chance of acquiring HIV/AIDS.

Richmond’s rate of HIV infection, currently ranked 19th nationally, is exacerbated by high concentrations of poverty, lack of sex education in public schools and the continuing opioid epidemic. Featuring oral histories collected by Laura Browder and Patricia Herrera with accompanying photographic portraits by Michael Simon, Voices from Richmond’s Hidden Epidemic offers a nuanced look at the HIV/AIDS crisis through the stories of survivors, caregivers, activists and health care workers on the front lines.

 

This program is funded in part by a grant from Virginia Humanities

 

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Dressing Identity: Caring for Collections and Understanding Ourselves

Dressing Identity is a one-of-a-kind exhibition that presents a working Costume and Textiles Collections Lab as well as a gallery of objects which present powerful symbols of identity. Taken together, these galleries provide a glimpse into how both the Valentine and the larger community claim, interpret and share identity through dress.

Dressing Identity: Caring for Collections features a Collections Lab on view where visitors can watch as members of the museum’s Costume and Textile team catalog, mount, photograph, label and prepare artifacts for storage in the museum’s collection. The lab will provide museum attendees with an inside-look at how the Valentine’s historic objects are protected for generations to come.

In the second adjacent gallery and a companion to Dressing Identity: Caring For Collections,  Dressing Identity: Understanding Ourselves presents visible manifestations of grief, pride, honor, ambition, fear and joy. These objects from our collection speak in a broad array of symbolic languages that reflect the rich diversity of Richmond but also communicate a message that is shared by us all.

 

 

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Developing Richmond: Photographs from the Cook Studio

When photographer George S. Cook relocated with his family to Richmond in 1880, he arrived in a city caught between the old and the new: Richmond bustled with post-Civil War construction and economic enterprise even while it held onto the antebellum social and political order.

Acquired by the Valentine Museum in 1954, the Cook Studio’s more than 10,000 negatives and prints visually document Richmond at the turn of the 20th century.  Experience imagery taken by George and his son Huestis Cook of this conflicted and changing city.

 

Monument Avenue: General Demotion/General Devotion

Following Monumental: Richmond’s Monuments (1607-2018), the Valentine is hosting Monument Avenue: General Demotion/General Devotion. The Storefront for Community Design and the mObstudiO at Virginia Commonwealth University School of the Arts invited teams of planners, architects, designers, artists and individuals to participate in a national design competition to conceptually re-imagine Monument Avenue and contribute to the ongoing dialogue about race, memory, the urban landscape and public art. The finalists are featured in this one-of-a-kind exhibition at the Valentine.

Visit www.monumentavenuegdgd.com for details.

Competition Partners

Monumental: Richmond’s Monuments (1607-2018)

Since Christopher Newport’s expedition planted a cross on the banks of the James River in 1607, Richmonders have marked the landscape to reflect their collective values. Monumental will look at the historical context of public monuments in Richmond, and the Valentine is excited to build on its role as a space to engage in meaningful, sometimes uncomfortable discussions about what we have chosen to commemorate and what we have chosen to forget.

Photo courtesy Jay Paul/Richmond Magazine

Pretty Powerful: Fashion and Virginia Women

The fashion industry in all its forms was one of the first industries to offer Richmond women of diverse backgrounds and colors an accepted professional path with prospects for personal agency. Communal participation is central to the success of the fashion industry. Through word of mouth, one woman’s social network can become another’s client base. At the same time, many of the Richmond women working in fashion have used their professional connections and successes to bring attention to the city and its industries.

In a superb display of high fashion and low from the 19th century to the present day, Pretty Powerful: Fashion and Virginia Women will examine the role of fashion in the professional, creative and social advancement of women in Richmond, Virginia.

 

made possible by our generous sponsors

            

                        

Ms. Susan L. Klaus*
Mr. James W. Klaus*
Mr. and Mrs. Philip W. Klaus, Jr.
Mr. and Mrs. Bruce A. Kay
Mr. and Mrs. Thomas B. Valentine
Rejena Carreras and Tom Jones
CCH Collection
Lori and Chris Evangel
Mr. and Mrs. Charles S. Luck III
Caroline Rennolds Milbank
Quirk Gallery and Verdalina
Jane L. Schwarzschild and V.R. Shackelford III*
Ms. Helayne Spivak

*Charter Member of the Valentine Costume and Textile Collective

Pandemic: Richmond

Pandemic: Richmond explores the repeated storms of disease that have swept through the city. From influenza to cholera to polio to AIDS/HIV, this exhibition investigates how Richmonders have fought silent, invisible enemies and tells their stories of both loss and survival.

 

Lead Sponsor

Additional support provided by

 

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This Is Richmond, Virginia

What defines a city? Physical boundaries? People? Economy? Government? Shared beliefs? Richmond is defined by all of these concepts. No one aspect is greater than the other. Together, they create this unique place we call Richmond, Virginia. Richmond is also defined by artifacts, which convey meaning and tell stories. They are collected as silent witnesses of the past and present. The objects in this exhibition have passed through many hands to create personal stories. Collectively, these artifacts help to tell the community’s larger history.