Seal of the Governor
For Immediate Release: June 12, 2018
Contacts: Office of the Governor: Ofirah Yheskel, | Virginia Museum of Fine Arts: Jessica Ronky Haddad,

Governor Northam Announces Free Admission to Virginia Museum of Fine Arts’ “Napoleon: Power and Splendor” for State Employees

RICHMOND—Governor Ralph Northam today announced that Commonwealth of Virginia employees can receive free admission to Napoleon: Power and Splendor, an international loan exhibition on display at the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts (VMFA) through September 3, 2018. Admission to VMFA’s permanent collection is free 365 days of the year but some special exhibitions, such as Napoleon, are ticketed.

This immersive exhibition showcases more than 200 works of art, most of which have never before been shown in the United States. The exhibition’s innovative design takes visitors on a tour through an imagined palace inhabited by Napoleon and his family. Through the decorative objects and artworks on display, Napoleon: Power and Splendor reveals how members of the Imperial Household—a network of 3,500 employees—helped to create Napoleon Bonaparte’s identity as a self-titled Emperor, fueling the propaganda machine that modernized and legitimized his reign in the wake of the French Revolution.

“We are lucky to have the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts in the Commonwealth,” said Governor Northam. “In addition to its world-class permanent collection, VMFA has a long history of bringing important international traveling exhibitions to Virginia. This summer, state employees can view some of the greatest treasures of France right here in Richmond.”

Conceived, produced and circulated by the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts, with the participation of the Musée National du Château de Fontainebleau and the exceptional support of Mobilier national de France, Napoleon: Power and Splendor includes works from the Château de Fontainebleau, the Louvre, the Musée de l’Armée in Paris and other world-class collections. Napoleon: Power and Splendor includes major masterpieces of painting and sculpture, along with an array of decorative arts, furnishings, engravings and more, commissioned by and for Napoleon to legitimize and bolster support for his reign.

“We welcome our colleagues from across the Commonwealth to the Virginia Museum to visit this innovative exhibition that offers a new perspective on the historical figure of Napoleon Bonaparte,” said VMFA Director Alex Nyerges. “We hope state employees will take advantage of this special cultural benefit.”

To claim their free tickets (one per employee), state employees must present their employee identification cards at VMFA’s Visitor Services desk. Family memberships are also available to state employees at a discounted price of $50.

Regular ticket prices for Napoleon are $16 for adults, $12 for seniors, and $10 for college students and children ages 7–17. Tickets are free for VMFA members and children ages 6 and younger. Visitors can reserve tickets by phone at (804) 340-1405.

About Napoleon: Power and Splendor
Napoleon: Power and Splendor is organized, produced and circulated by the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts with the participation of the Château de Fontainebleau and the exceptional support of Mobilier national de France.

The exhibition is organized in eight sections that examine the art of portraiture, explore the roles of the six Grand Offices of the Imperial Household, and reveal how Napoleon lived during his final days in exile. Each gallery corresponds to the roles of the leading figures employed to attend to the needs of Napoleon and his family. The Imperial Household was tasked with not only overseeing nearly every detail of Napoleon’s daily life, but also with organizing sacred and secular ceremonies.

Sponsorship for Napoleon: Power and Splendor
Sponsors include The Lettie Pate Whitehead Evans Exhibition Endowment, The Julia Louise Reynolds Fund, Mrs. Frances Massey Dulaney, Mr. and Mrs. Fred T. Tattersall, Mr. and Mrs. Achille Murat Guest, Mr. and Mrs. Joseph T. Knox, Peachtree House Foundation, Mr. and Mrs. James H. Price III. The exhibition program at VMFA is supported by the Julia Louise Reynolds Fund.

About the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts
The Virginia Museum of Fine Arts in Richmond, Virginia, is one of the largest comprehensive art museums in the United States. VMFA, which opened in 1936, is a state agency and privately endowed educational institution. Its purpose is to collect, preserve, exhibit, and interpret art, and to encourage the study of the arts. Through the Office of Statewide Partnerships program, the museum offers curated exhibitions, arts-related audiovisual programs, symposia, lectures, conferences, and workshops by visual and performing artists. In addition to presenting a wide array of special exhibitions, the museum provides visitors with the opportunity to experience a global collection of art that spans more than 6,000 years. VMFA’s permanent holdings encompass nearly 40,000 artworks, including the largest public collection of Fabergé outside of Russia, the finest collection of Art Nouveau outside of Paris, and one of the nation’s finest collections of American art. VMFA is also home to important collections of Chinese art, English silver and French Impressionist, Post-Impressionist, British sporting, and modern and contemporary art, as well as renowned South Asian, Himalayan, and African art. In May 2010, VMFA opened its doors to the public after a transformative expansion, the largest in its 80-year history. The Virginia Museum of Fine Arts is the only art museum in the United States open 365 days a year with free general admission. For additional information, telephone (804) 340-1400 or visit

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