Students at Radford University were welcomed with the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts (VMFA) traveling art exhibit on Jan. 19 in honor of their 75th anniversary. The exhibit, “Goya, Dali, Warhol: Masterpieces of World Art from the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts” is the second that the school has hosted in the past two years.
Opening night was filled with excited spectators. Students and members of the community alike stood in the Covington Center waiting for the doors of the gallery to open. Refreshments were provided to all who attended.
Freshman Meghan Shumate explained how she had never been to the Covington Center for an art show until tonight’s show.
“Since these are such well know pieces I decided I would take a look,” said Shumate. “It looks like a real museum, and the pieces where such a variety. I’m from Roanoke and have never been to The Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, but next time I’m in Richmond I will check it out if I have any free time.”
Once viewers walked in, they were greeted with the colorful face of Andy Warhol’s “Marilyn” rested on the back wall. Arguably his most famous piece, Warhol experimented with silkscreen printing, common among mass productions, in these pieces.
Warhol was quoted saying, “In August ‘62 I started doing silk-screens. I wanted something stronger that gave more of an assembly line effect. With silk-screening you pick a photograph, blow it up, transfer it in glue onto silk, and then roll ink across it so the ink goes through the silk but not through the glue. That way you get the same image, slightly different each time. It was all so simple quick and chancy. I was thrilled with it. When Marilyn Monroe happened to die that month, Igot the idea to make screens of her beautiful face the first Marilyns.”
Next to the “Marilyns,” you have Salvador Dali’s masterpiece, “The God of the Bay of Roses.” Dali was a surrealist who painted more than 1,500 works in his life, some of his painting are the most famous to come out of the 1900’s. This piece was created in 1944 on oil and canvas. The work is in honor of his wife, Gala. Her portrait is placed at the foot of the sculpture.
Francisco de Goya had three showed cases pieces at the event including, “There is Plenty to Suck” and “Nothing Could Be Done About It.”
Freshman Allanah Rocha was hoping that Goya’s famous piece “The Sleep of Reason” would also be included in the show.
“Even though it wasn’t here it was still worth coming though, I got to see all of the other artists that I hadn’t even heard of before,” said Rocha. “Fernando Botero is one of the ones I really liked. His piece “La Estufa” was amazing. It is huge and there is so much talent in it.”
This is not the first year Radford has hosted such a prestigious event for the community. Last year the school hosted the “Van Gogh, Lichtenstein, Whistler: Masterpieces of World Art from the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts.” More people attended this show than all of the previous years combined.
The Museum tried to bring an assortment of different collection to show cases the diversity they have collected in the past 75 years. This year’s exhibit will run through March 2. Admission is free and doors are open from Monday through Friday 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday noon – 4 p.m.