The Museum of the Shenandoah Valley exists to save the objects and artifacts that tell the region’s story. By visiting, you’ll glimpse a portrait of the valley’s artists, craftspeople and communities through collections of decorative arts. The collections and exhibits at The Museum of the Shenandoah Valley are wide ranging, including ceramics, furniture, textiles, metals, baskets, folk art, and paintings.
Here’s a sampling of current and ongoing exhibits that make this museum a stop worth making…
The Permanent Collection
The Museum of the Shenandoah Valley houses a permanent collection of over 11,000 pieces ranging from the fine and decorative arts collected by Julian Wood Glass Jr., to the miniature houses and furniture amassed by MSV curator of gardens R. Lee Taylor, to the objects and artifacts of the Shenandoah Valley accumulated by the MSV starting in 1999.
The Museum’s late Curator of Gardens R. Lee Taylor began collecting miniatures as a hobby in 1979 to occupy time over the winter months. The hobby turned into a passion and by the time of his death, Lee had a collection of more than 4,000 objects created by more than 70 individual artisans.
Face to Face: Portraits from the Julian Wood Glass Jr. Collection
Through October 2
The museum’s benefactor, the late Julian Wood Glass Jr., gathered an exentsive artistic collection throughout his life. This exhibition features portraits from the collection.
Collect, Preserve, Interpret: Ten Years at the MSV
Through May 1
Painting the Valley: Works by Andrei Kushnir
Through September 11
Plein air painter Andrei Kushnir is the artsist behind the more than 50 works in the Painting the Valley exhibition. By studying this collection, you’ll experience the artist’s interpretation of hte people, farmlands, forests, and waterways of the Shenandoah Valley. Some of his paintings depict well-known locations and landmarks in the Shenandoah Valley, but many offer scenes and show places treasured by locals but little known to the rest of the world.
Suzanne Stryk: Notes on the State of Virginia
Notes on the State of Virginia features more than 20 mixed-media assemblages created by Virginia artist Suzanne Stryk and inspired by Thomas Jefferson’s book Notes on the State of Virginia (1781). It truly exemplifies what the Museum of the Shenandoah Valley exists to display.
Stryk traveled for this project from the western Appalachians to the Eastern Shore, visiting ecologically or culturally distinct places throughout Virginia. At each site she recorded observations in sketchbooks and collected natural materials. Back at her studio in Bristol, she created assemblages about each place, layering her paintings, sketches, and found objects with topographic maps.
Gardens at Night
A popular MSV tradition will be coming back this summer: Gardens at Night features live music, check out the Museum galleries at night, and explore the Museum’s six-acre Glen Burnie Gardens under dramatic nighttime lighting. Held from 6 to 9 p.m. on the second Friday of the months June through September, GAN also includes free activities for children and food, wine, and beer available for purchase.
When you stay in the area, there’s no better experience of the region’s history and beauty than what you’ll find at Prospect Hill. Don’t forget to download our free area vacation guide to help you plan your trip.