With free general admission, a visit to the Chrysler Museum of Art in Norfolk Virginia is a great way to get to see one of the tourist attractions in this city without cost, especially if it is a rainy day and you can’t get to enjoy an outdoor attraction. The galleries are open from noon to 5 p.m. on Sundays, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. from Thursday to Saturday and they are open until 9 p.m. on Wednesdays. Although you do not have to pay to visit the galleries, donations are always welcome.
The galleries of the Chrysler Museum of Art feature seven types of collections spanning the history of art over 5000 years. The collection of almost 40,000 works features art from all over the world, a collection of glass and an exceptional photography program. The building, which offers a view of the Hague Inlet of the Elizabeth River, is built in the Italianate style of architecture. It is easy to find at its location at 245 West Olney Road. The collections in the galleries are the result of efforts and donations made largely by William P. Chrysler, for whom the museum is named.
The American Painting and Sculpture Exhibit ranges from the colonial portraits of John Singleton Copley to more contemporary artists. The collections were amassed over time from the 1940’s with donations and gifts of artwork that continued until the 1970’s and 1980’s. See impressive colonial paintings and sculptures, works featuring American Impressionism and works of 19th century painters as well as the James H. Ricau Collection of American Sculpture.
The collection of European sculpture and paintings at the Chrysler Museum of Art is absolutely fantastic. Many have said that this is one of the most elegant features of the museum. It is one of the best collections in the country, featuring works by such renowned artists as Marx Reichlich and Georges Braque. This collection has continued to grow since the death of Mr. Chrysler and is an extraordinary collection indeed.
See a massive collection of contemporary art, which includes the major work of Jaune Quick-to-See’s Trade. The Decorative Arts collection includes pieces donated by the Norfolk Museum of Arts and Sciences as well as works collected by Chrysler. There is an exceptional exhibit of Southern style furniture, 18th century Worchester porcelain and Art Nouveau furniture.
The Chrysler Museum of Art is home to one of the largest collection of glass in the country due to Chrysler’s penchant for collecting Louis Comfort Tiffany. This Tiffany collection is famous the world over and features a comprehensive look at the art of blown glass. There is also a fine collection of French glass in this gallery.
The photography gallery is the only one in the museum that was not part of William Chrysler’s collection. It began in 1978 with the donation of 15 photographs by Aaron Siskand and built from there. The greatest strength of these five galleries is the core of works from the Commonwealth of Virginia. In addition to the survey of the history of photography, there is a specific gallery dedicated to special mediums of photography.
In addition to the permanent exhibits at the Chrysler Museum of Art there are also exhibits on loan that change from year to year. The museum also features a travelling exhibition in which it lends works to other museums throughout the country. There are tour programs for students and teachers that contribute to the education of students in the region.
Have a snack at the restaurant with soup of the day, cold and hot foods, salads and sandwiches and a variety of hot and cold beverages. You can also have a glass of wine or a bottle of domestic beer with your meal. This restaurant is open when the galleries are open.
The museum shop features items for sale that are unique, such as cards, art work and jewellery. Any reproductions are skilfully crafted so that it is hard for you to tell the difference.