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Museum masterpieces

Corwyn Garman checks the placement
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Exhibitions manager of the Museum of the Shenandoah Valley, Corwyn Garman, checks the placement of “Marilyn Monroe,” by Andy Warhol. The upcoming exhibit, “Goya, Dali, Warhol: Masterpieces of World Art From the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts” will highlight a broad range of works. Dennis Grundman/Daily

The Exhibit

"Goya, Dali, Warhol: Masterpieces of World Art From the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts" will be at Museum of the Shenandoah Valley today through Sept. 25. It also will travel to Newport News, Abingdon and Lynchburg. For more information, visit www.shenandoahmuseum.org or call 888-556-5799.

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“The God of the Bay of the Roses,” by Salvador Dali, is on display at the museum. Dennis Grundman/Daily

Two art pieces
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“Untitled,” from 1992, by Jim Dine, left, and “Madonna of the Rappahannock,” from 1923, add variety to the art exhibit. Dennis Grundman/Daily

Traveling exhibit to highlight world-famous works

By Laetitia Clayton -- lclayton@nvdaily.com

WINCHESTER -- Museum of the Shenandoah Valley visitors will have a chance to see artwork that spans the globe -- as well as centuries, mediums and styles -- in a new traveling exhibit that opens today in the museum's changing exhibition gallery.

"Goya, Dali, Warhol: Masterpieces of World Art From the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts" celebrates not only a broad range of works and the artists who created them, but also highlights the permanent collection of the VMFA, said Corey Piper, the Richmond museum's curatorial associate for the Mellon Collection.

Piper made the final selection of the 31 pieces in the exhibit, which will travel to three other locations in the state in recognition of the VMFA's 75th anniversary.

"We wanted to celebrate the history of our collection and as a museum," Piper said. "We wanted to create an exhibit that highlighted the diversity of our collection."

While Piper referred to Francisco de Goya, Salvador Dali and Andy Warhol as the exhibit's "heavy hitters," he said the other works also are "great examples of artists at the top of their game."

Warhol's "Marilyn Monroe" is likely the most well-known piece in the exhibit, and the three silkscreens on paper -- which the American artist created in 1967, five years after Monroe's death -- will be a focal point of the exhibit in Winchester, said Cory Garman, exhibitions manager for Museum of the Shenandoah Valley.

Dali's oil on canvas also is a big draw, he said, referring to "The God of the Bay of the Roses," which the Spanish artist painted in 1944. The exhibit also has three etchings by Goya -- also Spanish -- two from 1799 and one from 1816.

The variety of other works includes paintings, prints, sculptures, decorative arts and a 1,500-year-old Chinese limestone carving. The art spans about 2,500 years, Garman said, from the sixth century, B.C., all the way up to 1992. The largest piece is a 79-inch by 79-inch painting called "Pool," which American artist Robert Cottingham painted in 1973. Among the smallest pieces is a gold "Pendant of Twin Frogs," from Panama or Costa Rica, created sometime between A.D. 800-1500. Garman said the exhibit's variety "speaks to the strength of [the VMFA's] collection."

He said it was a challenge to design such an eclectic exhibit -- not only because of the range in sizes of the artwork, but also the different mediums and time periods. Garman said it was a challenge he thoroughly enjoyed, however.

"I was very thrilled to get the opportunity to work with these pieces and to get to design a show that represents such a great diversity of art, and sort of make them relate, make them complement each other," he said. "This is a very different show than any we've had at the museum. Of the 16 shows we've done, we've never had one that sort of is playful. It's playful, but it also has such great variety and depth."

Dana Hand Evans, who became the MSV's executive director in February, described the exhibit as a mix of fine arts and pop culture that "highlights just about every area of world art."

While the MSV's mission is "to talk about the valley," Evans said, the changing exhibition gallery allows for other art as well. There are usually three changing exhibits each year, she said, with one focused solely on the Shenandoah Valley and created by working with small, local venues.

"Goya, Dali, Warhol" will be the fifth exhibit the MSV has done in partnership with the VMFA.

"With the changing exhibitions, we want to have a variety of things that appeal to a wide audience," Evans said, adding that the VMFA traveling exhibits allow people to see art they might not otherwise have the opportunity to see.

"You don't have to travel to Richmond," she said. "You can come here."

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