Virginia Center for the Creative Arts
September 2019
Dear Friends of VCCA,

I was pleased to be able to answer the call when the VCCA board asked me to step in as Interim Executive Director in August. I have enjoyed serving as Board Treasurer since December 2018, and I welcome the chance to make an even more significant contribution to the organization that means so much to all of us. My only regret is that I won’t be working with Joy Heyrman. We are all grateful to Joy, who did a wonderful job during her three-year appointment as Executive Director, and we wish her all the best for the future.  

We've had a busy September at Mt. San Angelo. Twenty-five new Fellows arrived on September 3rd after a brief closure when we did some deep cleaning and replaced carpets in the Langhorne Residence. We welcomed our new Director of Development, Nathalie Oates, who will be based in Richmond (see the article on Nathalie below). And a number of us went to New York in mid-September for a board meeting and a very successful Fellows and Friends Gathering, featuring readings by Fellows Bridgett Davis and Will Hermes and a performance by Fellow Megan Murtha with her a cappella group.

Likewise in Auvillar, France, the four studios at VCCA's Moulin à Nef are full of creative energy. This year about 35 Fellows will be in residence in that lovely village on the Santiago pilgrimage trail. Deputy Director Sheila Pleasants will be in Auvillar in October for the annual meeting of VCCA France. I encourage all VCCA Fellows to apply for an opportunity to work in this inspiring setting. I look forward to visiting one day myself!

Not long before this newsletter "went to press," we learned that three Fellows made the longlist for the National Book Awards. I am pleased to share that Disappearing Earth, by Julia Phillips, "I": New and Selected Poems, by Toi Derricotte, and Deaf Republic, by Ilya Kaminsky, were all recognized. Congratulations, Fellows! This is exciting news.

This is also an exciting time for VCCA. It’s been a real pleasure to meet many of our Fellows and supporters over the past few months, and I look forward to meeting many more of you soon. Please don’t hesitate to contact me at any time. 

Best regards,
Kevin O’Halloran
Interim Executive Director
Studio Barn Kitchen Renovation Completed!

The renovation of VCCA’s Studio Barn Kitchen is happily completed. Centered in the freshly- painted room is a crafted-just-for-VCCA eleven-foot-long oak table, where conversation and company can be found on a daily basis, in addition to the meals prepared by VCCA’s great kitchen staff.

The project to renovate the Studio Barn Kitchen kicked off with two generous grant awards, from the Marietta McNeill Morgan and Samuel Tate Morgan, Jr. Trust, Bank of America, N.A., Trustee, and from the Al Stroobants Foundation. VCCA Fellows and friends contributed additional funds to ensure that the two small, ancillary kitchens, also in the Studio Barn, will get the same sunny paint job, updated appliances, new cabinets, and new floors. Work is currently underway on these additional projects.

A refreshed place to dine and relax with colleagues was the intent of the project, which concluded with the help of many hands and generous funders. Our thanks to Tom Gerdy, construction manager; Anthony Ulinski, table craftsman; Sarah Sargent, design advisor; Champneys Taylor, artwork donor; David Garratt, for project management; Martee Johnson, for the new pots and pans; and to the (anonymous) VCCA Board member who spearheaded the fund drive, bringing the project to a fine end.

The next time you’re at VCCA, stop by to see the renovated kitchen, and check out the glass door, which allows a view into the attached silo, or open the door to the new oven, which has a purple enamel interior! The warm and colorful new kitchen will be especially welcome during the approaching dark days of winter. 
VCCA Welcomes Nathalie C. Oates as Director of Development

Nathalie, a native of Richmond, comes to VCCA with over six years of Development experience from a range of positions at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, Richmond Ballet, and the Children's Museum of Richmond. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in English from Mount Holyoke College, where she graduated cum laude.

She is based in Richmond and looks forward to getting to know Fellows near and far. Drop her an email here.
photo credit: Sarah Ferguson 
VCCA Welcomes Mayalin Quiñones as Board Secretary

Mayalin joined us as Board Secretary this past July after three years at the Lynchburg children's museum Amazement Square. She graduated magna cum laude from Sweet Briar College with degrees in Musical Theatre and Psychology and is a member of Phi Beta Kappa. She also holds a Master of Arts in Nonprofit Leadership from the University of Lynchburg. 
Steven Petrow LGBTQ Fellow in Residence: Daniel Handal

Daniel Handal is currently in residence at VCCA, working on a series of screen prints and preparing for an upcoming exhibition in 2020. His project uses imagery from horror and slasher movies from the 70s and 80s and creates iconic portraits of the lead female roles, known in film theory as the “final girl.” He restricts each print to only two colors, often pairing hues which are so similar in value that each portrait replicates the experience of seeing in the dark—shifting between abstraction and representation. Each print is then mounted to a museum box which is also painted, transforming each work from what normally would be considered a two-dimensional piece into a sculpture. He sees each portrait as a metaphor for overcoming great challenges— symbolic, in many ways, of a current cultural moment. 

About his time at VCCA, Handal says, “it has been an incredible opportunity for me to be able to spend a few weeks at VCCA working on my project; this provides me with the time and space to focus, as well as explore new ideas and expand on my research.”

We are grateful to VCCA Fellow and board member Steven Petrow for funding the Steven Petrow LGBTQ Fellowship at VCCA. The next application deadline for the Fellowship will be January 15, 2020. VCCA's online application portal will open early next month.
Upcoming Fellowship Recipients

We are grateful to the foundations and organizations that support Fellowships at VCCA. Four recipients of these grant-funded awards will be in residence this fall and winter.
Jacques and Natasha Gelman Fellowship

Veronica Jackson (Bedford, VA) will be our next Jacques and Natasha Gelman Fellow. Over the past two years, Jackson has developed a multidisciplinary and autobiographical visual art practice that stems from her position as a black woman marking space upon a landscape that consistently overlooks and devalues her. Of her upcoming residency, she writes: “As an emerging artist, I constantly struggle with whether my work is important or meaningful to anyone beyond myself. Receiving the Gelman Fellowship validated that my conceptual art practice is a worthy pursuit. I ardently look forward to being immersed in VCCA’s nurturing and supportive environment as I develop various visual art projects.”
Collateral Reparations: Artists Residencies for Military Veterans Fellowship

Davey Mann (Memphis, TN) will be in residence this winter as a recipient of the Collateral Reparations Fellowship. This Fellowship, funded by the National Endowment for the Arts, supports residencies at VCCA for military veteran artists. Davey is a visual artist currently maintaining a studio practice at Marshall Arts Gallery in Memphis. He uses insight gained from the loss of one-fourth of his platoon while serving during the The Last Stand in Mosul, Iraq, followed by a deployment to Kandahar, Afghanistan, to explore and process the effect of conflicted standards of masculinity and war on society through his art. In the past two years he has been featured in eight shows as well as in two print publications.
Jackie Munn (Alexandria, VA) is an upcoming recipient of the Collateral Reparations Fellowship. She is a writer, a West Point graduate, and a former Army officer who deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan. Her work has been published in The New York Times Magazine, The War Horse, National Geographic’s blog for Chain of Command, and A Common Bond II: An ASAP Anthology. She was also featured on the Today Show for International Women’s Day for speaking out against sexism in the military. During her residency, Munn will be presenting her work to the community at Riverviews Artspace in Lynchburg, VA on Friday, December 13, 2019 at 7:30 PM.
Richard S. and Julia Louise Reynolds
Poetry Fellowship

Amanda Galvan Huynh (Middletown, NY) has been selected as our first Richard S. and Julia Louise Reynolds Poetry Fellow. Galvan Huynh is the author of a chapbook, Songs of Brujería (2019) and co-editor of Of Color: Poets’ Ways of Making: An Anthology of Essays on Transformative Poetics (2019). During her upcoming fall residency at VCCA, she proposes “to deepen my research and writings on the complexities of miscegenation in America. At this moment, my poems revolve around the present-day struggles of interracial couples, and intertwines my own experiences in my interracial relationship.”
Volunteer Appreciation

We are so grateful to all our volunteers! A special thank-you to all the Fellows who assisted us with our recent New York events.

Here at Mt. San Angelo, two of our current volunteers are Bob Cranston and Hilary Jenkins. Bob is new to VCCA, retired from Areva in Lynchburg, and is helping Resident Director David Garratt and Buildings & Grounds Assistant Derrick Lewis with a number of outdoor projects. Hilary Jenkins, a former VCCA employee and longtime volunteer, has been helping front office staff with filing, answering the phone, and database work. Thank you both for keeping our grounds beautiful and our office running efficiently.

If you are interested in helping out, please let us know. There are many ways to volunteer. If you live nearby, consider joining us for our next Volunteer Day on
November 2, 2019 for some fall gardening and groundskeeping.
Another Successful VCCA in NYC Event

On September 12th, VCCA welcomed over 100 Fellows, Board members, friends, and performers at the Nuyorican Poets Cafe in New York City for the 2019 Fellows and Friends Gathering. At the event, guests were treated to a program featuring the works of Fellows while enjoying wine, light hors d'oeuvres, and stimulating company.

The evening was a great start to several days of board and staff events, including the September board meeting, visits to galleries, and a special studio tour.

Thank you to all of those who participated in the VCCA in NYC events. We hope to see you again next year!
Left photo, VCCA staff and Board; right photo, VCCA Fellow Bridgett Davis at Nuyorican Poets Cafe, reading from her new book The World According to Fannie Davis: My Mother's Life in the Detroit Numbers .
At VCCA's Moulin à Nef Studio Center this month, VCCA Fellow Rebecca Darlington, a visual artist from New York, NY, opened her studio to villagers and supporters of VCCA France, and VCCA Fellow BettyJoyce Nash, a writer from Charlottesville, VA, gave a reading of her work both in English and in French after the open studio. These gatherings of villagers, VCCA Fellows, and friends take place once a month at the Moulin à Nef and are a wonderful opportunity for the public (including pilgrims on the nearby Santiago Trail) to get a glimpse of the creative work that takes place at VCCA's residency program in Southwest France.
BettyJoyce Nash and Rebecca Darlington in Rebecca's studio at the Moulin à Nef last week.
Join the Boxwood Collective!
Since 1971 VCCA has been dedicated to advancing the arts here in Central Virginia and beyond. Every year, VCCA must raise over $650,000 to enable residencies for more than 400 visiting artists. 

We are pleased to offer the opportunity to give a monthly amount of your choice through the Boxwood Collective, a giving initiative that allows you to make an automated monthly gift in an amount of your choosing. Your contribution to the Annual Fund is critical in sustaining Mt. San Angelo and Moulin à Nef and the work that emerges from our spaces. 

We invite you to join the Boxwood Collective today!


Events are free and open to the community. Please join us!

Thursday, October 3, 2019
7:30 p.m.
Reahard Learning Gallery in the
Mary Helen Cochran Library
Sweet Briar College

Thursday, December 5, 2019
7:30 p.m.
Reahard Learning Gallery in the
Mary Helen Cochran Library
Sweet Briar College

Open Studios at VCCA

Sunday, October 13, 2019
4 - 6 p.m.
Virginia Center for the Creative Arts
154 San Angelo Drive, Amherst, VA

Volunteer Day at VCCA

Saturday, November 2, 2019
9:30 a.m. - 2:30 p.m.
Virginia Center for the Creative Arts
154 San Angelo Drive, Amherst, VA

A Reading at Riverviews

Part of VCCA’s Collateral Reparations Fellowships for Military Veteran Artists, funded by the National Endowment for the Arts

Friday, December 13, 2019
7:30 p.m
Riverviews Artspace
901 Jefferson Street, Lynchburg, VA
VCCA | 434-946-7236 | |
VCCA is grateful to the following organizations for their financial support.
The Joseph and Robert Cornell Memorial Foundation • The Bama Works Fund of Dave Matthews Band in the Charlottesville Area Community Foundation • Marietta McNeill Morgan and Samuel Tate Morgan, Jr. Trust, Bank of America, N.A., Trustee • The J&E Berkley Foundation • The Al Stroobants Foundation • Charles Jacob Foundation • The Schewel Charitable Foundation • Mid Atlantic Arts Foundation • Greater Lynchburg Community Foundation • Jacques and Natasha Gelman Foundation • Richard S. Reynolds Foundation • Sam and Marion Golden Helping Hand Foundation • Virginia Department of Forestry