We had a visit some time ago by N Diana Thorpe and her delightful husband, Curtis Thorpe, M.D. (they’re both delightful). Diana came to take photographs and paint a portrait of the house at Annefield. Diana was working on a series of paintings depicting Southside Virginia for a show at the MacCallum More Museum and Gardens, and thought that a view of Annefield should be included. We had a delightful visit and thoroughly enjoy their company. The show, called A Celebration of Southside Virginia, runs from 4 October 2012 to 15 November 2012. There is a reception with the artist on 21 October 2012, 4 to 6 pm at the Museum — the day after our Harvest Party. We can’t think of a better way to cap that weekend.
Here’s a bit about the artist, from her official biography:
Diana’s goal is to engage her viewers, so that they hear birdsong and distant thunder, feel the wind and the warmth of the sun, see the clouds moving, or wonder what has caught the bird’s attention; to capture a moment in time to be experienced whenever the painting is viewed. Her work helps others to see things around them that they might not otherwise notice.
Diana took numerous design, drawing, and painting classes in college, and has taken painting classes and workshops since her college days (which were admittedly a while back!). She enjoys painting a variety of subjects, and finds herself drawn to local scenes. She paints in acrylics, watercolors, and oils.
While she does not generally seek out competitions, one of her watercolor flower paintings won “Best Artwork in Show” at the 2009 Virginia Orchid Society Annual Show in Richmond, Virginia.
In addition to original art work, she produces note cards of local scenes, and prints of some of her work.
Diana and her husband, Curtis W. Thorpe, M.D. (retired), relocated from Richmond to Charlotte County in 2009.
MacCallum More Museum and Gardens
MacCallum More Museum and Gardens is a spectacular oasis in the middle of Chase City, Virginia. It was the home of Edward Wren Hudgins and his wife Lucy Morton Hudgins, who named the place MacCallum More, which is Scottish for “Home of the Clan.” Edward Wren Hudgins was the former Chief Justice of The Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals. Lucy Morton Hudgins began the gardens in 1929, and they were expanded by her son, Commander William Henry Hudgins, in the 1940s, 1960s, and 1970s. Commander Hudgins was personal aide to President Harry S Truman and traveled extensively.
The house, museum and gardens cover six acres. The prominent landscape architect Charles F. Gillette (1886-1969) was consulted on the design of the gardens, which are defined and enclosed by dry laid stone reclaimed from eighteenth and nineteenth century houses. The Hudgins collected the garden features on their travels — statues, cloisters, fountains, busts, and the like were imported from Europe and the Far East primarily by Commander Hudgins.
The gardens are organically maintained and are distinguished by meandering paths lined with boxwoods and dogwoods. Among the treasures you will find a 17th century Samurai warrior, a 1st century Roman Bust, a Spanish Cloister, eight imported Fountains and many other eclectic works of art.
An herb and wildflower gardens feature a wide variety of culinary, medicinal, tea, and dye plants with over 300 different cultivars, as well as themed beds dedicated to fragrance, cottage, butterfly, and Native American wildflowers. An Arboretum contains over 100 different species. The garden scheme includes a white garden, a pink garden and a rose garden. The Gardens contain a Certified Backyard Wildlife Habitat area, and they are an official site on the Virginia Birding and Wildlife Trail.
The museum has such an extensive collection of Native American artifacts that it is listed on the Virginia Indian Heritage Trail. The artifacts date from 9500 BC and include spears, knives, shields, pottery — and a collection of some 50,000 arrowheads. The museum also has a permanent exhibit on the Thyne Institute, an African American boarding school established in Chase City in 1876, which earns the museum a spot on the Civil Rights in Education Heritage Trail. Temporary exhibits include art exhibitions like Ms Thorpe’s show of images of Southside Virginia.
The house and gardens are listed on the National Register of Historic Places and the Virginia Landmarks Register.
MacCallum More Museum and Gardens, 603 Hudgins Street, Chase City, Virginia 23924 (434) 372.0502. Gardens open daily, 10 am to 5 pm; Museum open Monday to Friday, 10 am to 5 pm, Saturday 10 am to 1 pm – closed Sundays and major holidays.