"In the Beginning, all America was Virginia."
William Byrd II
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  • Wednesday, August 28
    Free (museum admission not included)
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Immerse yourself in Virginia's history by visiting one of our exhibitions.


The Story of Virginia
Looking for excellent educational programming? At the Virginia Historical Society, we strive to connect visitors wi… t.co/0adJ88aYd0

Fresh Paint: Murals Inspired by the Story of Virginia

Fresh Paint logo

With over 100 murals, Richmond’s vibrant street art scene is a visual reminder of the city’s history, modernity, and diversity of cultures. This unprecedented exhibition explores the power of murals to encourage reflection on Virginia’s past by inviting artists to produce works inspired by one or more historical items from the museum’s collection, and in so doing examine our present and inspire us to think about ways we can shape the future. 

Artist commissions and exhibit support generously provided by Pam and Bill Royall.

Color Our Collections

We created these pages in honor of the Color Our Collections festival with fellow museums, libraries, archives, and other cultural institutions around the world.  Download our coloring pages below and unleash your creativity, then share them with us on Facebook at @VirginiaHistory and Twitter at @VirginiaMuseum. Be sure to come visit the Fresh Paint exhibition afterwards to see the original murals that inspired these pages.

Download Virginian Paint by Nico Cathcart.

Download Gateway by Wing Chow.

Fresh Paint Exhibition Video from VA Museum of History & Culture on Vimeo.

“Richmond is a public arts city. By putting this show together at the museum with its vast historical holdings, we are documenting a unique modern movement, while building on Virginia’s storied past. The show creates a new accessibility to a collection that is meaningful and expanding. The unique mix of younger artists with some of the more established faces of the mural community lends itself to a fun cross section of RVA right now.”

- mural artist Nico Cathcart

About the Mural Project
This project has been more than a year in the making. It started with an idea for a new book that is being released this October. The Story of Virginia: Highlights from the Virginia Museum of History and Culture — co-authored by Jamie O. Bosket, VMHC President and CEO, and Dr. William M. S. Rasmussen, VMHC Senior Curator of Exhibitions and Lora M. Robins Curator of Art — illustrates 400+ objects from our collection that help tell the rich history of the Commonwealth.

Our staff was inspired by how Richmond's street art community is telling the story of the city and state today. They wondered how these artists might interpret collection pieces and themes highlighted in the book. Thus the Fresh Paint exhibition was born! Each artist has been asked to develop a mural based on object(s) or theme(s) from the new book that they found particularly impactful. Learn more about the book.


Programming schedule:

  • Live Painting in the Gallery for public view from September 10 through October 12, 2018 (Free for members or included with the museum's suggested admission.)
    Come and watch the creation of each mural beginning in mid-September and continuing into October when it will coincide with artoberVA, an annual celebration of arts and culture in Richmond and Tri-Cities area of Virginia. Live painting will happen every weekend from September 15 through October 12, with some artists also working during the week. 

  • Make Your Mark Paint Night, where you can sip wine and decorate tables for the exhibition interactive art space - Tuesday, October 2, 2018. Limited to 12 tickets. 

  • Cocktails With The Artists: Fresh Paint Exhibit Opening, with book launch, drinks, and hors d'oeuvres - Friday, October 26, 2018. SOLD OUT!

  • Public Exhibition Opening, with art-themed, family-friendly activities throughout the day - Saturday, October 27, 2018 (Free for members or included with the museum's suggested admission.)


The Artists and Their Work:

Artists Mickael Broth, Nico Cathcart, Wing Chow, Hamilton Glass, Chris Milk Hulburt, Amelia Blair Langford, Austin Miles, Toobz Muir, Noah Scalin, and Ed Trask will participate in this unique exhibition. Some of the artifacts the artists have chosen for inspiration include a painting of Natural Bridge, a WWI uniform, a hat worn at the 2017 Women’s March, a 1921 photograph of social reformer Janie Porter Barrett, James J. Audubon’s “The Viviparous Quadrupeds of North America,” a rare early automobile made in Virginia, and a sword recovered from a Civil War battlefield near Petersburg.  

Mickael Broth is an artist, muralist, and writer who founded Welcoming Walls, a project dedicated to bringing large-scale public art to the highways and gateways of Richmond, Virginia, in an effort to boost civic pride, tourism, and the city’s reputation as a capital. Broth was awarded a Virginia Museum of Fine Arts professional fellowship in 2008 and has painted numerous murals throughout Virginia and the United States over the past decade. He has been an active member of the community, working with youth art groups through Art 180 and Petersburg Area Art League, and leads groups of volunteers in conjunction with HandsOn Greater Richmond. In 2016, Broth received international acclaim for his “dancing” Bernie Sanders mural in Richmond. It was seen by over 1.5 million viewers on Imgur in less than a week and was shared widely through social media.

Nico Cathcart is a painter and muralist hailing from Toronto, Ontario, currently creating and adventuring in the southern wilds of Richmond, Virginia. She holds a dual BFA in Painting and Ceramics, completing coursework at SUNY Oswego and graduating Magna Cum Laude from SUNY Cortland. A passionate muralist, curator, sign-maker, and studio painter, she has taken part in the past three Richmond Street Art Festivals, The Richmond Tattoo Arts Festival, and Wall Therapy in Rochester, NY. Her work has been shown in galleries around both the United States and Canada, most notably at Glave Kocen, Gallery 5, and The Mass Moca. You can find her work in the permanent public collections of Capital One and Kutak Rock, as well as in private collections across the country. When not painting, Nico enjoys working with local nonprofits such as Art on Wheels, Connor’s Heroes, The Better Housing Coalition, The YWCA, and HandsOn Greater Richmond.

Hamilton Glass’s career as an artist stems from his architecture and design background. Despite working in the architecture field for seven years, his passion for public art pushed him to start a career as an artist. Public art has always been a big influence and inspiration to him because of its power to influence and inspire the surrounding community. With every project, a dialog is built in that connects the work to the community in which it lives. Hamilton’s work is usually distinguished by the use of architectural elements with bright vivid colors and sharp lines.

Chris Milk Hulburt taught himself to paint in his twenties when he was painting houses and his own house was filled with leftover paint and cast-off wood. He sold his first paintings on the street in Manhattan and then returned to Virginia in 2001. His paintings are autobiographical or, as he says, “Perhaps they are wishes. They are usually about serenity, hope, and the fear of loneliness. They are about hats I wish I had.” In addition to his painting, he also performs with his sister, puppets, and musicians.


Amelia Blair Langford is a professional and leading illustrator, designer, educator, muralist, and the creator of “The Treasure Hunt” project. Langford holds a BFA from Virginia Commonwealth University's School of the Arts and her work has been recognized throughout the world from California to Germany. Langford has been recognized for her design work as she has received several recognitions, awards, and acknowledgement from publications such as RVA Mag, Richmond Times-Dispatch, Quail Bell Magazine, and the Anderson Independent. She was recognized as one of the top young artists in Richmond by the Visual Arts Center of Richmond in 2015 and was recently named one of the top 22 people you should know in Richmond by the Richmond Times-Dispatch’s 2017 Discover Magazine.

Austin “Auz” Milesoriginally from Durham, North Carolina, began attending Durham School of the Arts at the age of eleven. Austin relocated to Richmond in 2012 to attend Virginia Commonwealth University’s School of the Arts. During her time at VCU, Austin discovered her passion for painting and held her first solo exhibition in 2016. She was first introduced to murals in 2017, while collaborating on Richmond’s first mural created by and specifically for black girls. Miles graduated from VCUarts in December 2017. Austin uses color, texture, and distorted human and animal figures in her work to embody her own stories—all in an effort to contribute to the conversation about black female experiences.

Toobz Muir is known best for his murals, surreal paintings, and detailed graphite drawings. His colorful work references his early fascination with graffiti and street art as well as his challenges from being color blind. Primarily using spray paint, Muir freehand renders his work directly onto surfaces creating fantastical imagery that, in his words, is “both edgy and playful while also emerging from a personal place.” His subject matter ranges from allegorical to darkly satirical themes while distorting his figures’ features to evoke extreme emotional states. Muir is currently located in Roanoke, Virginia. His work has been in several exhibitions including at Fleda A. Ring Artworks in Roanoke, Art Whino in Washington, D.C., and Glitch Gallery in Richmond.

Noah Scalin is creator of the Webby Award-winning project “Skull-A-Day” and the collaborative science fiction universe & performance art project, League of Space Pirates. Noah was the inaugural artist-in-residence at the Virginia Commonwealth University School of Business and his fine art has been exhibited in museums and galleries internationally, including the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, Mütter Museum, and Krause Gallery in New York City. His work has been featured in dozens of publications including Fast Company, Hi-Fructose, Juxtapoz, USA Today, The Telegraph, and The New York Times. Noah is the author of six books and is a sought-after public speaker on creativity. He is also the founder of Another Limited Rebellion, an art & innovation consulting firm which he co-runs with his sister and business partner, Mica Scalin.

Ed Trask grew up in Virginia’s Loudoun County and later moved to Richmond, enrolling in Virginia Commonwealth University’s painting program. While in school in the mid-1980s, he divided time between playing music in Richmond’s punk scene and painting. By his third year in school, after many attempts to receive gallery attention, he decided to make the many dilapidated buildings surrounding his school his gallery. In 1992, he graduated with a painting degree and moved to Washington D.C., where he started touring with the Dischord records band, the Holy Rollers, and continued to paint illegal murals all over the world. In 1995, he returned to Richmond to join the band, Kepone. As demand for his paintings grew, he started a gallery and engaged in mural and sign work. Since then, Trask’s paintings and murals have been added to many permanent collections including Gap, G.E., Capital One, Fortune Magazine, N.B.C, Philip Morris, Media General, and Mars and Play, Inc.

Wing Chow (Christina Wing Chow) is a Richmond-based artist whose works inhabit a strange world of floating blobs, swirling colors, and shape-shifting creatures. Influenced by nature, energy, magic, and dreams (among infinite other things), her work ranges from playful illustrations to abstract paintings, and most recently, to large-scale murals. Expanding into the world of public art in 2017, Wing Chow has since painted works in RVA, Helsinki, and Washington, D.C. Her work was also exhibited this past year in the annual New Waves show at the Virginia Museum of Contemporary Art.


The VMHC would like to thank all of the artists who submitted designs for Fresh Paint. Although the subjects of the murals may be provocative, all imagery and text in this exhibition is appropriate for a general audience that includes children and does not include profanity, nudity, or excessive violence. 

Exhibition Information

Mon Sep 10 2018, 10:00amSun Apr 21 2019, 5:00pm
10:00 am - 5:00 pm daily
In Virginia Sargeant Reynolds Gallery

Highlighted objects from Fresh Paint: Murals Inspired by the Story of Virginia

Ed Trask works on a mural. Enter Fullscreen More information
Ed Trask works on a mural.
A mural by Amelia Blair Langford at Richmond's Triple Crossing Brewery. Enter Fullscreen More information
A mural by Amelia Blair Langford at Richmond's Triple Crossing Brewery.
Excerpt of a mural in Richmond's Carytown district by Chris Milk Hulburt. Enter Fullscreen More information
Excerpt of a mural in Richmond's Carytown district by Chris Milk Hulburt.
The mural "Ponder" by Austin Miles. Enter Fullscreen More information
The mural "Ponder" by Austin Miles.
The mural "Emrick Flats" by Hamilton Glass in Richmond's Jackson Ward neighborhood. Enter Fullscreen More information
The mural "Emrick Flats" by Hamilton Glass in Richmond's Jackson Ward neighborhood.
Toobz Muir works on a mural. Enter Fullscreen More information
Toobz Muir works on a mural.
Mickael Broth sketches out plans for a mural project. Enter Fullscreen More information
Mickael Broth sketches out plans for a mural project.
"Portrait of Innovation: Sister Rosetta Tharpe" created by Noah Scalin for the 2018 Greengate Festival in Short Pump Enter Fullscreen More information
"Portrait of Innovation: Sister Rosetta Tharpe" created by Noah Scalin for the 2018 Greengate Festival in Short Pump
A mural by Nico Cathcart on the side of Richmond's Vitality Float Spa. Enter Fullscreen More information
A mural by Nico Cathcart on the side of Richmond's Vitality Float Spa.
Ed Trask works on a mural.
Ed Trask works on a mural.
A mural by Amelia Blair Langford at Richmond's Triple Crossing Brewery.
A mural by Amelia Blair Langford at Richmo
Excerpt of a mural in Richmond's Carytown district by Chris Milk Hulburt.
Excerpt of a mural in Richmond's Cary
The mural "Ponder" by Austin Miles.
The mural "Ponder" by Austin Mil
The mural "Emrick Flats" by Hamilton Glass in Richmond's Jackson Ward neighborhood.
The mural "Emrick Flats" by Hami
Toobz Muir works on a mural.
Toobz Muir works on a mural.
Mickael Broth sketches out plans for a mural project.
Mickael Broth sketches out plans for a mur
"Portrait of Innovation: Sister Rosetta Tharpe" created by Noah Scalin for the 2018 Greengate Festival in Short Pump
"Portrait of Innovation: Sister Roset
A mural by Nico Cathcart on the side of Richmond's Vitality Float Spa.
A mural by Nico Cathcart on the side of Ri

In the museum shop

by Jamie O. Bosket and William M. S. Rasmussen The story of Virginia is central to the American experience. Much of the early history of the U.S. was shaped by Virginians and the ideas most cherished by Americans were often inspired and contested in this state, with lasting consequences. This books tells a fascinating story, sharing more than four hundred evocative objects from the Virginia Museum of History & Culture. There are moving contrasts — from the bell of St. John's Church where the patriot Patrick Henry proclaimed “give me liberty or give me death” to wrist shackles worn by people held in bondage, from decorative buttons that the Native American woman Pocahontas wore when presented to the English royals, to the buttons proudly worn by strong Virginia women campaigning for voting rights, and from a guide to farming annotated in George Washington's own hand to beer taps representing one of today's burgeoning agricultural industries. Rare letters, remarkable documents, fine paintings, furniture, silver, maps, prints, guns, uniforms, period photographs, everyday and unexpected objects are arranged chronologically with brief explanations to provide their contexts. This beautifully illustrated narrative of Virginia is a great resource for anyone interested in American history. Hardcover, ISBN 970-1-911282-27-3, Virginia Museum of History & Culture, 2018.
The Story of Virginia: Highlights from the Virginia Museum of History & Culture
by Mickael Broth Murals of Richmond, edited by Richmond-based artist, muralist, and writer Mickael Broth, is a 222-page hardcover coffee-table book documenting the explosion of public art in Richmond over the past decade. Featuring nearly 300 full-color photographs and nearly 70 interviews with artists from around the world who have painted in Richmond, this book is a testament to the transformative power of publicly accessible art. 222 pages, Chop Suey Books Books (2018) ,Hardcover.
Murals of Richmond
by Noah Scalin In 2007, Noah Scalin had a vision. Lacking inspiration and a creative outlet, the Richmond artist decided to take on a new challenge. His idea was to create a different skull in different mediums everyday for an entire year. Scalin ran with this idea and created Skull-A-Day, a blog deticated to his project. His collection has now taken the form of this beautifully bound 260 page coffee table book. 260 pages, ISBN: 978-0-9960912-0-6, Chop Suey Books Books(2014), Hardcover.
Die cut stickers by Hamilton Glass measure 3.5 x 7 inches.
RVA Sticker