Lecture Series

WCAC co-sponsors the Centuries of Art @ Your Library lecture series!

The VMFA is providing WCAC and the WRL with the following programs which will be available on ZOOM for those who pre-register. The links under each talk are the pre-registration links. The programs will follow the same format as those previously presented in the WRL Theatre. There will be an introduction by the VMFA, the 45~ minute talk, followed by a Q&A session.

Winter 2021 Lecture Series:

Feb. 22, 2021 7:30 p.m. 
Anne Kenny-Urban, “Stranger Than Fiction: Great Art Heists in History”

Executive Director, Agecroft Hall & Gardens & Art Historian

Anne Kenny-Urban is the Executive Director of Agecroft Hall & Gardens, a house museum that showcases daily life in a Tudor manor house. The house was built in England in the 16th century and moved to Virginia in 1925. Anne earned her BA at Princeton University, her MA in art history at the University of Chicago, and her MBA at the Kellogg School of Management, Northwestern University. Prior to her move to Agecroft, she worked for VMFA for nearly a decade.

 “Stranger Than Fiction: Great Art Heists in History”

Discover what Japanese gangsters, bear spray and daring boat getaways have in common with noteworthy art thefts. In this lecture, you will travel the globe learning why museums from Amsterdam to Zimbabwe have been targets for thieves and what tools they used to elude detection. Find out who got caught…and who did not.

Pre-registration ZOOM link:


March 1, 2021 7:30 p.m.
Dr. Colleen Yarger, “Painting Like an Impressionist” 

Assistant Curator for European Art and the Mellon Collections

Dr. Colleen Yarger joined the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts in 2010. She received a PhD in art history from Virginia Commonwealth University in 2014, an MA in art history from Syracuse University in 2009, and a BS in art education and art history from Nazareth College of Rochester in 2007. Most recently, Yarger has served as co-curator of Hollar’s Encyclopedic Eye: Prints from the Frank Raysor Collection and was the site curator for VMFA banner exhibition Napoleon: Power and Splendor. Previously, she served as the Research Specialist for the Mellon Collections at VMFA.

“Painting Like an Impressionist”

One of the ways Impressionists artists completely revolutionized the art world was in their adoption of new painting materials. By using different brushes and modern pigments, the Impressionists were able to create art that was recognizably distinctive.

Pre-registration ZOOM link:


March 15, 2021 7:30 p.m.
Emily Smith, 
“Is It Art?”

Executive Director of 1708 Gallery

Emily Smith earned a BA in English with a minor in art history and an MA in art history, both from the University of Virginia. She is currently the director of 1708 Gallery in Richmond.

“Is it Art?”

Looking at modern art can often be challenging. It always raises questions, even amongst the most knowledgeable viewers: What is an abstract painting “of”? How do you determine if something is “good”? A close look at the history of modern and contemporary art, dating from the late 1800s through the present day, demonstrates that the changes that occurred, chiefly that art became more abstract, were not arbitrary but rather developed along deliberate paths. Artists were not working in a vacuum but were responding to changes in technology like the development of photography, cultural moments like the industrial revolution, WWI and WWII, and rising globalism, as well as the artists and movements that preceded them. Using works from VMFA’s collection, this chronological telling of important moments in modern art provides the context in which to answer questions like those above.

Pre-registration ZOOM link:


March 22, 2021 7:30 p.m.

Margaret Hancock,  “Face Value: Portraiture in American Art”

Educator and Writer

Margaret Hancock is a professional writer in the art and philanthropy world. She holds an M.Ed from the University of Virginia and a B.A. in Art History from Duke University.

“Face Value: Portraiture in American Art”

Portraiture in American art ranges from folk to classical and from realism to impressionism. Delve into these stylistic variances with a visual exploration of painted portraits of Americans by Americans. Explore works in significant portrait collections across America, including the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Pennsylvania Academy of Art, and the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts.

Pre-registration ZOOM link:


Visit our co-sponsors online at:

Virginia Museum of Fine Arts: vmfa.org 

 Williamsburg Regional Library: wrl.org