The Historic American Buildings Survey: Documenting Virginia's Architectural Heritage

February 18 - June 3

Guest Curator Brian Grogan.

From American Indian settlements to the twenty-first century built environment, no other state has contributed to America’s architectural heritage quite like Virginia. It comes as no surprise then that Virginia played a crucial role in the development of the Historic American Buildings Survey (HABS), the nation’s first preservation program, in 1933.

Virginia buildings were among the first to be recorded by HABS, including Mount Vernon, Monticello, and Colonial Williamsburg. Virginia’s comprehensive range of building types, engineering technologies, and landscapes have continued to provide HABS unparalleled opportunities to add to their public collections, now housed in the Library of Congress.

Through this exhibit, visitors will learn about the story of HABS, the significant role Virginia has played in HABS programs, the HABS collections (free and fully accessible to the public), the methods involved in studying and recording historic sites, and recent and ongoing HABS projects located in Virginia.

Exhibition programming includes a curator’s talk, community roundtable discussion with HABS director and staff, HABS walking tour of Monument Ave. and Fan District, and a family day photography program.

Exhibition and programming presented in partnership with HABS and the National Park Service.

Drawing on History: Infill Design Competition

June 9 - September 4

What does it mean to build new within an existing urban neighborhood that has both historic significance and a distance identity?  Join The Branch and Historic Richmond for this exhibition to learn more!  This engaging exhibition brings together 14 different design approaches, each addressing the challenges of creating a new building on a vacant lot within a historic district.  Each design was reviewed by a panel of judges from the Richmond design, architecture, and housing community.  With consideration given to issues like historic context, sustainability, affordability, and the neighborhood’s own unique sense of place, this exhibition is the beginning of a dialogue about the modern design process and its relevance to the fabric of historic neighborhoods.

The Jury
The jury was comprised of a group of architects and design professionals who have a variety of experiences with the City of Richmond’s Standards for New Construction, historic preservation, infill construction, academia, and broad artistic design considerations.

▪ Sukenya I. Best, Professor of Fine Arts, Virginia Union University
▪ Sandy Bond, Principal Architect, 3north
▪ Helene Combs Dreiling, FAIA, Executive Director and CEO, AIA Virginia
▪ Greta J. Harris, President and CEO, Better Housing Coalition
▪ Julie W. Weissend, LEED AP ID+C, Dovetail Construction


The Branch Museum of Architecture and Design and Historic Richmond thank 3North, Sadler & Whitehead Architects PLC, and Keithfabry for their generous support of this exhibition.

ballet pas de deux: an exhibition of dance and architecture

September 8 - December 23

ballet pas de deux: an exhibition of dance and architecture presents a striking exploration of two primal expressions of human creativity, dance, and architecture. Building off the traditional ballet term pas de deux, meaning a duet by two dancers, this exhibition started with a simple theme—motion. What resulted is a unique juxtaposition between the artistry of ballet and the aesthetics of architecture. Composed of a series of 30 stunning photographs and an installation of video and sound, ballet pas de deux showcases two of Richmond Ballet’s prominent stars, Valerie Tellmann-Henning and Kirk Henning, dancing through the historic halls of the Branch House.


The Branch Museum of Architecture and Design would like to thank Richmond Ballet for their support of this exhibition along with these sponsors:

East Made Event Company | Love by Serena Photography | Josh Gooden Cinema | Adorn Company | Alexandra Grecco Bridal | Amanda Burnette Floral Design | BRIDEface Richmond | Elizabeth Dye Bridal | Event Hair by Lauren | MOSAIC Catering + Events | Paisley & Jade | Poppy & Scooter | Sweet Fix RVA | Trumpet & Horn

2016 Awards for Excellence in Architecture: An Exhibition of Winning Work

November 10 - January 1, 2017

“We love to share the best of the best,” says The Branch Museum Director Dr. Craig Reynolds. “Virginia-based architects and designers never cease to produce exceptional and creative work designed to improve our lives and better our communities.”

The Awards for Excellence in Architecture are given each year by the American Institute of Architects Virginia to recognize projects no older than seven years that contribute to the built environment as clear examples of thoughtful, engaging design. This year juries reviewed nearly 150 entries in categories of Architecture, Residential Design, Contextual Design, Historic Preservation and Interior Design. The 19 projects receiving top awards are featured in the exhibition.

View the award winning projects.

The Branch would like to thank Keith Fabry and Pace Collaborative for support of this exhibition.