has announced a gift of $35 million from Richard and Carolyn Barry for a new art museum on its campus in Norfolk, Virginia.
The largest gift in the school's history includes the Barrys' art collection, which includes more than a hundred glass objects by the likes of Dale Chihuly, Lino Tagliapietra, Harvey Littleton, and Jaroslava Brychtova, as well as works by American modernist painters such as Arthur B. Carles, Marsden Hartley, Milton Avery, George Luks, Preston Dickinson, and Wolf Kahn. In addition to the Barrys' collection, the museum will display approximately fifty paintings, drawings, and prints already in its collection. The Barrys also have agreed to provide operating support for the museum, which will be designed by , through pledged annual gifts and an endowment gift from their estate.
Construction on the two-story, 11,000-square-foot building is expected to begin next year, with a grand opening scheduled for 2018.
Richard Barry had a forty-year career at Landmark Media Enterprises and its predecessor, , where he served in various positions, most recently as vice chair. He also served as rector of ODU's board of visitors during the 1980s. Carolyn Barry, a longtime art collector, is a master docent at the and serves on the museum's board of trustees.
"The Barrys' gift allows ODU to become one of Hampton Roads' major cultural destinations," said ODU president John R. Broderick. "Their collection tells a story about the rise of American glass artists to the forefront of the international scene. The new museum will frame this story beautifully, while providing a starting point for other stories yet to be told."