Colonial Williamsburg Art Museums Complete $41.7 Million Expansion Project


WILLIAMSBURG, Va. (WWBT) — The Colonial Williamsburg Art Museums has been inviting visitors to view its two art museums since it completed its $41.7 million expansion, which began in April 2017.

The expansion of the DeWitt Wallace Museum of Decorative Arts and the Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Museum of Folk Art included a 65,000 square foot extension to create additional exhibit space and an entrance on South Nassau Street.

Colonial Williamsburg’s art museums feature more than 67,000 antiques and period works of art and 7,000 pieces of folk art.

“Colonial Williamsburg’s collection reflects the breadth and diversity of our shared history, and its objects tell remarkable stories that allow us to interpret that history,” said Ronald L. Hurst, Carlisle H. Humelsine Chief Curator of Colonial Williamsburg and Vice President of Museums, Preservation. and historical resources. “Over the years, we have been successful in attracting guests through the art museums’ remarkable exhibitions and programming, but now, thanks to the generosity of our donors, we can provide an even more inviting and welcoming experience and share even more with our guests. ”

New exhibition highlights include, “The first American faces,” “The art of Edward Hicks” and “American folk pottery: art and tradition.”

“Colonial Williamsburg’s mission brings us face to face with our shared history, allowing us to reflect and engage with each other on its importance and complexity,” said Cliff Fleet, President and CEO of Colonial. Williamsburg Foundation. “At Colonial Williamsburg Art Museums, we show the relevance of our material culture, from practical objects of the past to familiar masterpieces. The expansion of the museums creates a greater showcase for the Foundation’s collections and serves as a gathering place for guests and the community to have meaningful conversations about how far we have come as a nation and how far we need to go to form a more perfect union. We invite everyone to join us and we thank the generous donors who made it all possible.

The Art Museums of Colonial Williamsburg has released the following expansion highlights:

  • A more welcoming customer experience that includes a new lobby, grand lobby, cafe with a revised menu, and a store that’s bathed in natural light through windows that overlook the city’s Bicentennial Park (the cafe and store don’t require tickets)
  • New permanent galleries devoted to specific areas of the foundation’s collection, in addition to regular rotating exhibition galleries. New dedicated galleries will showcase coins, currencies and medals; archeology; musical instruments; costumes; maps, prints and drawings; dolls’ toys and houses; tools; weapons and scientific instruments; period clothing; architectural preservation; paints; silver and metals
  • Improved guest services including general and accessible parking and improved mechanical/air conditioning systems for efficient exhibit operations and presentations

For more information on the extension, Click here.

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