“A Decade Afield” Celebrating 10 Years of the NSLM’s Museum

The National Sporting Library & Museum (NSLM) is celebrating a milestone anniversary with a retrospective exhibition opening June 3, 2022. A Decade Afield: Celebrating 10 Years of the NSLM’s Museum, will feature highlights from the Museum’s collection of fine art through a journey of thematic sections, including “The Start” showcasing the early collection, “Setting the Course” highlighting painting donations by Felicia Warburg Rogan in 2008, “Casting the Line” bringing together flyfishing painting and sculpture, and “A Record Pace,” a striking gallery of equine art holdings.

The dream of an NSL Museum took its first steps to becoming a reality when a Vine Hill Building Committee was formed in 2006. The group was charged with overseeing the renovation and expansion of the historic 1804 house, “Vine Hill,” bequeathed to the NSL by George L. Ohrstrom, Jr. The Museum’s groundbreaking was in 2009, the organization rebranded as the NSLM the following year, and the structure was completed in 2011. In 2012 the NSLM received the Loudoun County Joint Architectural Review Board’s Historic District Design Excellence Award for the building’s design. Rogan’s donation of 15 important British sporting paintings in 2011 brought John Emms; Lionel Edwards; John Frederick Herring, Jr.; Michael Lyne; Sir Alfred Munnings; and George Wright paintings to the fore of the Museum. The vision for display and growth of the collection was to keep these standards and better represent a tenet of the NSLM’s mission to preserve, promote, and share the art of traditional turf and field sports.

Over the next ten years, the collection would expand to almost 1,400 objects including examples from such renowned sporting artists as Franklin Brooke Voss, Herbert Haseltine, Henri DeLattre, Richard Stone Reeves, and Reuben Ward Binks, as well as contemporary works by Walter Matia, Diana Reuter-Twining, Nic Fiddian-Green, and Clarice Smith. While those who first proposed the concept of a joint Museum and Library may have questioned the institution’s ability to fill an entire building with quality sporting art, A Decade Afield will show such a goal clearly accomplished with ten historic galleries, two passthrough spaces, and two large exhibition halls filled with paintings, prints, and sculptures showcasing a thriving sporting and art community.

In anticipation of our anniversary celebrations, the Museum will be closed as we prepare for the building-wide installation of its 47th exhibition, A Decade Afield: Celebrating 10 Years of the NSLM’s Museum and will reopen to the public on June 3.

The National Sporting Library & Museum is located in Middleburg, VA, the heart of beautiful horse country. Founded in 1954, the renowned research Library and fine art Museum highlight the rich heritage and tradition of country pursuits. Angling, horsemanship, shooting, steeplechasing, foxhunting, flat racing, polo, coaching, and wildlife are among the subjects one can explore in the organization’s general stacks, rare book holdings, archives, and art collection. The NSLM offers a wide variety of educational programs, exhibitions, and family activities throughout the year, and is open to researchers and the public. There is no admission fee to the Library. The Museum charges $10 for adults, $8 for youths (age 13-18), and $8 for seniors. NSLM members and children age 12 and under are admitted free of charge. Library & Museum hours are Thursday–Sunday 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

High-resolution images and social media ready graphics available upon request.

All inquiries: Cynthia Kurtz, CKurtz@NationalSporting.org, 540-687-6542 x13