Past Exhibits 2012-15 at Atkinson Museum


The Untold Story at H-SC

The Untold StoryOctober 21-December 15
Elizabeth Baker, The Untold Story Curator and Project Researcher at H-SC, seeks to better interpret the history of African Americans and slavery at Hampden-Sydney College through historical pictures, family information, and stories. Visit the Atkinson Museum or find out more on The Untold Story Blog.


The Juxtaposed: Magritte, Cornell, Rousseau

The JuxtaposedOctober 11, 3-5:00 p.m.
Virginia Museum of Fine Arts speaker, Trent Nicholas, compares the surrealism of the work of artists Rene Magritte, Joseph Cornell and Henri Rousseau. Presented by the Central Virginia Arts and Atkinson Museum. Free and open to all.


Realism: The Compelling Illusion

Realism, David LewisAugust 11-October 12
Paintings and Drawings by Hampden-Sydney professor David Dodge Lewis and Sandy Willcox


Student Art Exhibition

Student Artist, Thomas CrenshawApril 30-May 10
The 2015 Fine Arts Student Exhibition features thesis projects by Thomas Crenshaw: Painting with Ketchup and Justin Jones: A World Like No Other


Alert Today, Alive Tomorrow: Civil Defense in the Old Dominion

Alert Today, Alive Tomorrow: Civil DefenseMarch 26-April 23
Exhibit by Logan McDonald '16 and the Student Museum Board
In the 20th century cold war, Virginia lay in the crosshairs of any potential nuclear attack. "Duck and cover" and fallout shelters were government's answers.


Mise en Scène

Mise en Scene exhibit at Hampden-Sydney CollegeFebruary 17-March 20
"Mise en scène" will feature paintings, drawings, and sculptures by Jonathan D. Metzger, Visiting Assistant Professor of Fine Arts, and Allison Wegren-Metzger. Opening reception is February 17, 4 - 5:30 p.m. It is free and open to the community and is co-sponsored by the Fine Arts Department and the Atkinson Museum. Read more...



The Universe in Color: The Astrophotography of Robert Gendler

The Universe in Color ExhibitOctober 23-December 12
Robert Gendler, a physician, was inspired by photos he saw at New York's Hayden Planetarium as a boy and took up astrophotography as an adult, shooting first from his home in Connecticut and later, via the internet, with a robotic telescope in New Mexico. Rob's mosaic image of the Andromeda galaxy was selected by Astronomy magazine as one of the greatest astronomical photographs of the last thirty years, and his image of IC405, the "Flaming Star" nebula, was issued on a stamp by the Royal Postal Service in 2006. A collection of his work appears in his book A Year in the Life of the Universe, published in 2006.


An American Silence: Walker Evans & Edward Hopper

Jeffrey Allison, art historianNovember 9
Hampden-Sydney College and Central Virginia Arts will co-sponsor, "An American Silence: Walker Evans & Edward Hopper", a lecture by art historian Jeffrey Allison.

This talk will explore the works of photographer Walker Evans and painter Edward Hopper. Allison will expand on the ways in which these American artists tore themselves away from European ideals at the start of the 20th century.    

Jeffrey Allison is the Paul Mellon Collection Educator at Virginia Museum of Fine Arts and a professional photographer. He holds a B.A. in photography and film from Virginia Intermont College and an M.F.A. in photography from VCU. Among others, he is currently involved in programs at the VMFA on Henri Rousseau, Visual Art, Berthe Morisot, and William Blake.   

The program begins at 3:00 PM in the Esther T. Atkinson Museum's Back Gallery, and it has been organized by the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts and is supported, in part, by the Paul Mellon Endowment and the Jean Stafford Camp Memorial Fund. Admission is free and open to the public.


Fine Arts Student Exhibition

Student Art ExhibitionMay 1-11
The 2014 Fine Arts Student Exhibition is open May 1-11. Featuring thesis projects by Justin Tisdale: The Bear Essentials and William Henry: Figure/Ground, the exhibit will also display the work of the Photography II and Drawing II classes.


The Play's the Thing

The Play's the ThingApril 24
Hampden-Sydney Professor Shirley Kagan hosted a talk on the past and future of Hampden-Sydney theatre on April 24. The talk, followed by a one-act play, The Interview, by Anthony Rowe '14, was presented in conjunction with the exhibit Hampden-Sydney Stage, the history of theatre at Hampden-Sydney College, curated by the Student Museum Board. 


Jefferson's Architecture and Dabney Cosby in Southside Virginia

Art Historian Richard G. Wilson at Hampden-Sydney CollegeOn April 17, Hampden-Sydney College hosted nationally-known architectural historian, Dr. Richard Guy Wilson as he presented his lecture: "Jefferson's Architecture and Dabney Cosby in Southside Virginia."

The lecture highlighted Cosby's participation in shaping some of the buildings at Hampden-Sydney College and provided a look at the man who brought a touch of Thomas Jefferson to campus.

Dr. Wilson currently holds the Commonwealth Professor's Chair in Architectural History at the University of Virginia where he specializes in architectural design and art of the 18th to the 21st century. Dr. Wilson has received a number of academic honors including a Guggenheim fellow, prizes for distinguished writing, and in 1986 he was made an honorary member of the American Institute of Architects (AIA). 

This event was co-sponsored by the Lectures and Programs Committee, the Fine Arts Department, the Architectural Society, and the Esther T. Atkinson Museum.


First Ladies: Hampden-Sydney's Mothers, Matrons, and Favorites

First Ladies of Hampden-SydneyThe Esther Thomas Atkinson Museum's exhibit, First Ladies of Hampden-Sydney, was on display through March 14.

Although the mission of Hampden-Sydney College is to form good men, some of her good citizens have been women who have played an important role in the lives of students. They have been first ladies, faculty, trustees, and even graduates. Mention the names Erlene Bowman, Dottie Fahrner, or Gerry Pettus to any graduate of the last twenty years and you will likely hear stories of the smiles, care, and support these women have provided to their Hampden-Sydney "sons." This support goes back to the 1890s and Ms. Minnie Lacy, daughter of the College physician, who ran a boarding house for students. Read more...


Life and Limb: The Toll of the American Civil War

Civil War Medicine exhibit photo, Civil War heroesNovember 2-December 14
The Esther Thomas Atkinson Museum hosted the traveling exhibit, Life and Limb: The Toll of the American Civil War November 2 through December 14.

The perspectives of surgeons, physicians, and nurses are richly documented in the history of Civil War medicine, which highlights the heroism and brutality of battlefield operations and the challenges of caring for the wounded during wartime. Yet the experiences of injured soldiers during the conflict and in the years afterwards are less well-known.

More than three million soldiers fought in the war from 1861-1865. More than half a million died, and almost as many were wounded but survived.  Hundreds of thousands were permanently disabled by battlefield injuries or surgery, which saved lives by sacrificing limbs.  Life and Limb: The Toll of the Civil War explores the experiences of disabled Civil War veterans who served as a symbol of the fractured nation and a stark reminder of the costs of the conflict.

This exhibition was developed and produced by the National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health. Regular museum hours are Tuesday through Friday, 10 AM to 12 PM and 1 to 5:00 PM.  


Unclassified: the Military Kid Art Show

Unclassified Poster, Atkinson Museum at Hampden-Sydney CollegeSeptember 26-October 26
The exhibit featured works from the transitory life of military children. According to an article on the exhibit: "Military life influences the child, whether it is living in other countries, moving often, or having deployed parents, most military children live different lives than their civilian counterparts. These programs show how different and how to bridge the gap between the two."

Exhibit Reception and Talk
Reception at 4:30 pm followed by curators talk 


Historic Home Promotion Weekend

Middlecourt at Hampden-Sydney CollegeOn September 14, 15, the Atkinson Museum of Hampden Sydney College provided walking tours of the old seminary campus, which includes exterior tours of two historic homes featured on the Governor of Virginia's Year of the Virginia Historic Homes website. The two Federal style homes, Middlecourt (1829) and Penshurst (1830), were part of the original Union Theological Seminary and retain a large portion of their original features. 

Special Museum hours during Virginia's Historic Homes Promotional Weekend are 10:00 to 3:00, Saturday, September 14, and 11:00 to 3:00, Sunday, September 15. All tours begin at the Atkinson Museum on the Campus of Hampden-Sydney College, four miles south of Farmville.  The Museum is located on College Road at the intersection of College Road and Via Sacra.


Fuqua Class at Atkinson Museum

On October 4, 2012, Ms. Penny Pairet's class from Fuqua School visited the Bortz Library as well as Atkinson Museum on the campus of Hampden-Sydney College.  The class is currently reading Sounder by William H. Armstrong who graduated from Hampden-Sydney in 1936.  The students were able to view awards received by Armstrong and several foreign language copies of Sounder. 


Patrick Henry: A Historical Interpretation
"The Voice of Liberty"

Patrick Henry: A Historical Interpretation On Tuesday, October 16, Bill Young will present a historical interpretation of Patrick Henry at Hampden-Sydney College. Henry is portrayed in the last year of his life as he reflects on his childhood, two marriages, religious convictions, love of children, various careers, and key contributions to the formation of the United States. After retiring as a trial lawyer, Young decided to make his lifelong love of history, writing, and public speaking into a second career. He presents a dramatic and historically accurate first person impression of Henry.

Free and open to the public, the event is sponsored by the Farmville/Prince Edward Historical Society and Hampden-Sydney's Atkinson Museum.  It will begin at 7 PM in the Parents & Friends Lounge in Venable Hall.
H-SC Full Story...


Virginia Architecture: From Colonial to the Old Dominion

Virginia Architecture: From Colonial to the Old Dominion

A Virginia Museum of Fine Arts Educational Exhibition celebrating the Commonwealth's building heritage is open in the Atkinson Museum March 1 through April 30.  The exhibition will present photographs and descriptions of 23 significant examples of our state's architecture built primarily between 1636 and 1775. The exhibition is based on "Architecture in Virginia," a popular guide written by University of Virginia architectural historian, William B. O'Neal.   The book demonstrates that Virginia has often led the way in American architecture... H-SC Full Story...

Dr. John Coombs,
Associate Professor of History

On Wednesday March 28, Dr. John Coombs, Associate Professor of History will present Architecture and the Making of the Virginia Gentry in the Seventeenth Century in conjunction with the museum exhibit,

Virginia Architecture: From Colonial to the Old Dominion.

Myths, Saints, and Symbols: The Use of Attributes in Art

Myths, Saints and Symbols

Barbara Rothermel,
Director of the Daura Gallery at Lynchburg College

On Sunday, February 5, Barbara Rothermel presented a gallery talk at Hampden-Sydney College on the exhibit, Myths, Saints, and Symbols: The Use of Attributes in Art.

This lecture traces the transition of symbols and attributes from Classical Antiquity through the Early Christian era when it was the task of the church to redeem the world and all humankind. The church did not hesitate to borrow from every available source in its effort to convert and redeem; the sign and symbol, particularly those most common in the realm of human experience, were given a Christian and spiritual meaning. The lecture continues with the full flowering of symbolism in the northern Renaissance and Baroque eras.

This program has been organized by the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts and is funded, in part, by the Jean Stafford Camp Memorial Fund. 

Liberties With Liberty

Liberties With Liberty

Virginia Museum of Fine Arts

Liberties with Liberty was on exhibit at the Atkinson Museum on the campus of Hampden-Sydney College through February 22. The exhibition contains twenty 24"x 36" color posters. Liberties with Liberty depicts the changing icons of liberty in America.  The images range from an Indian queen to the Statue of Liberty itself and represent three centuries of American folk art. H-SC full story...

A Venable Ghost Story

Dr. Ray A. Gaskins
Professor Emeritus of Mathematics & Computer Science, H-SC

On Friday morning, November 10, 1775, young Samuel Woodson Venable was up at the crack of dawn. This was the day of the official opening of Hampden-Sydney College and he wanted to be the first student there. He was already the first student to register for classes and he wanted to keep the string going. He grabbed something to eat, dashed out to the barn, saddled his horse, and was off at a gallop. He took the shortest route from Slate Hill to the College, which took him right past the future site of Mercy Seat Church (1870). Read this and more stories from the current Newsletter...

Slate Hill Unearthed

A staple of May Term at Hampden-Sydney is the Beneath This Hill Historical Archaeology Class, in which Doctor Charles Pearson leads his Hampden-Sydney students to the place of the founding of Hampden-Sydney College, the site of Slate Hill Plantation. Students in the May Term class have been working to reconstruct the 18th- and 19th-century landscapes at Slate Hill Plantation. This work has included identifying the locations and types of buildings that once existed on the property. Students rely on primary documents such as original deeds, wills, probate inventories, and photographs, as well as oral histories and archaeology. The full story in the current Newsletter....

The information in the above referenced article comes from the labels and panel text of an exhibit that recently closed at the Atkinson Museum, Beneath This Hill: Historical Archaeology at Slate Hill Plantation, Birthplace of Hampden-Sydney College