This Guy….



Did you know that Bill Paxton is one of two actors who has fought an Alien, Predator and a Terminator? He was also great in Twister.

Did you know that Edmund Kean is regarded by most to have been a better actor than Bill Paxton? I know, doubtful…

Just because you have a Derby figure made of you portraying Richard III in the early 19th century doesn’t mean you are better than this….


Apparently Mrs. Sloane disagrees with me and decided to purchase a set of these objects from Christie Manson & Woods in London, England. Then again she did not have Bill in 1929, so I guess we can’t fault her.

Kean, by the way, is one of the greatest Shakespearean actors of the 19th century. How do  I know this? I don’t…but I do trust books and old reviews of his plays.




She isn’t dead, but she did go to a farm

Intense, right? I like to draw you in with serious headlines and then proceed to disappoint you with sub-par blog entries.

Back to the title…

In January this museum lost its director of eight years to another institution. I won’t lie, I was shocked. Not a bad, “why are you leaving us” cry for help, but rather a heavy, “Huh?”  There was (and still is) a level of camaraderie that will be difficult to replace and I think that is what bothered me the most; that and she left me to deal with the insurance company *shakes fists*

But seriously, she was a great director, friend and mentor. Since she has been gone we (the staff) have resorted to a tribal like atmosphere similar to Lord of the Flies and can be found sacrificing Canadian Geese in the rose garden to appease the museum gods.

I kid, again.

Actually we have been very productive and look forward to what a new director can offer this institution. Hopefully they do not bring a filter to this most uncouth of social outlets otherwise I will be moderately devastated.

In conclusion…. if you are ever in Middleburg, VA stop in the National Sporting Library and Museum, ask for Melanie Mathewes and see if you can’t get a free tour.

The Board of Trustees donated to have a painting restored in her honor. This will be the plaque beside it once it is back on the wall. Also note reigning Super Bowl MVP Joe Flacco who inspires me to curate at a less than elite, but better than average level.


Poynter cont.

I meant to slap some images on the last post, so here are two of our art wizard…I mean conservator…Mark Lewis ***Merlin of the Chrysler*** helping pack the Poynter for shipping.




What makes art better? sweater vests (drops the mic and walks away)

Poynter, Yale, Opulence

Nothing is cooler than getting actual hard mail. None of this digital jazz with attachments and links to male enhancement pills. Letters from people who actually exist and free exhibition catalogs are all I need, thank you very much.

After blacking out to word documents sometime around 1 pm I arose to the sound of, “Colin, you got real mail.” Ummm…what? Pretty sure I usually get junk mail and the occasional cool auction house letter (wish I still got Highlights Magazine) . What is this “real” mail you speak of? Turns out it was a fresh smelling copy of the show catalog for Edwardian Opulence, which our Poynter painting is in:

….And according to the New York Times the show is not a waste of time:

I would show you pictures of my copy, but I’ve got a feeling there are legal boundaries which would restrict me from sharing the pages I want. My suggestion to you is to buy the book, support the arts and learn something in the process. Win, win, win.



Warm Up

It is really gray and cold outside, so here are some shots from the roof of the museum when the weather isn’t a bummer.

Also, enjoy the Karl von Rydingsvard carvings.




Original Recipe

Have you ever wanted to see the 1930 plans for the Norfolk Museum of Arts and Science (now the Chrysler)? You know, the building that was erected in 1933 that would later evolve into the center of the Norfolk arts galaxy…

Well my friends you are in luck because it just so happens that I have some early plans for the museum sitting right here in front of me. Keep in mind things were changed when it came to the final layout, but nonetheless this is some pretty cool stuff. 

This dates to December 1930.