Volume II| July 10 2020
Feeling Comfortable With Nuance and Complexity

I believe very strongly that museums have a social justice role to play, that museums have an opportunity to not become community centers, but to be at the center of their community, to help the community grapple with the challenges they face, to use history, to use science, to use education, to give the public tools to grapple with this. Museums always take a point of view by what they choose to exhibit and what they decide not to exhibit.

History often teaches us to embrace ambiguity, to understand there aren’t simple answers to complex questions, and Americans tend to like simple answers to complex questions. So the challenge is to use history to help the public feel comfortable with nuance and complexity.
I’m not expecting museums to engage in partisan politics. What I’m expecting museums to be, is, driven by scholarship and the community. I want museums to be a place that gives the public not just what it wants, but what it needs. “

(Lonnie G. Bunch III, Secretary of the Smithsonian Institution, quote from David Gelles’ July 2,2020 article in the New York Times)

The first full DMFAH board meeting took place on July 9,2020 and welcomes new board members Garett Lynn Dillard and Kelly Cunningham
VMFA on the Road
A View from Home: Landscapes of Virginia
VMFA’s state-of-the-art 53-foot trailer will be in Danville July 15–16 at the Danville Museum of Fine Arts and History. The current exhibition,  A View from Home: Landscapes of Virginia , presents photography, paintings, prints, and engravings. Featured artists include Adele Clark, George H. Benjamin Johnson, and Brian Palmer. Learn more about the exhibition, its touring schedule, and artists’ stories on our website. There you can watch Palmer, filmed at Richmond’s Evergreen Cemetery, discuss his photography and passion for restoring once-neglected African American burial grounds.
The national belief that museums are highly credible sources of information has dramatically increased since the start of the pandemic.

Thank you to Dr. Richard Smith Dixon for reminiscing on his college summer days and rolling up his sleeves to paint the front door of House 126. We will be ready for the VMFA Artmobile curators visiting campus on July 14-17, 2020.
Annie is BACK!!!
Annie Chappell is excited to be working with DMFAH this summer as the Museum Administrative Assistant Intern and will be focusing on expanding the internship program. Currently, Annie is a senior at Emory University and is finishing her major in Art History and minor in Religion. Her degree includes a concentration in Museum Studies, and her interests involve curatorial practices in small museums. Annie lived in St. Louis, Missouri for 12 years and attended high school there before her family moved to Chatham, Virginia a few years ago. Annie began as a DMFAH volunteer for visitor services in June of 2019, but quickly revealed her enthusiasm to gain experience in museum operations and work behind the scenes. Annie was active in preparing and installing “String Theory Project: Rare and Unique Stringed Instruments,” a temporary exhibit in Fall 2019, and “The Movement: Danville’s Civil Rights,” the newest permanent exhibit here at DMFAH. She joined us again this summer to develop the internship and volunteer programs, and will be continuing her work with the museum through the upcoming fall semester. Annie is eager to work toward her goal of creating a curriculum that will allow more local students to get involved with DMFAH.
Head Start Transitioning to VDEO
As of July 1, the Office of Early Childhood at the VDOE has expanded to include an important change! The Head Start Collaboration Office has transitioned to the VDOE. This will allow for closer alignment and coordination for critical quality and professional development supports. While we are losing Wenn Harold as Head Start Teacher for DMFAH Artsmart programs we are currently reaching out for additional support for our museum programs in the fall.
Queen Bees
On July 10, 2020 a crowd gathered to celebrate the contributions made by so many to the wellbeing of our museum. Thank you to Crema and Vine for packing individual nibbles for our small gathering to thank Wenn Harold and Othella Robinson for their service to the museum. We also thanked Ann Sylves for managing the Attic Sale and bringing in $5 000 with this community fundraiser. We also thanked Niki Fallis for her service on the Board and for being a hands-on board member.

Here you see the two Queen Bees: Niki Fallis and Ann Sylves.
Do-at-home ART
The Art for the Journey "Creative Corner" directed and produced by Lauren Paullin and Alex Paullin, presented by Virginia's home for Public Broadcasting to educate, inspire, provide SOL learning opportunities, do-at-home art projects, and introduction to international arts and culture as a part of the - VPM Classroom 6 week series -  premieres today ! The series has been developed to reach children who are the most impacted by the social isolation and school shutdown that has impacted children without access to wifi or the internet substantially. The first episode airs today, Friday July 10, 2020 at 1:30 pm on VPM Plus.