Correction: An earlier version of this story incorrectly said the Beyond Van Gogh immersive experience is at MOCA. It’s at the Virginia Beach Convention Center through September 2.
VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (WAVY) — The Virginia Museum of Contemporary Art is moving from its longtime home at the Virginia Beach Oceanfront.
The museum announced on Tuesday that it’s moving to a new state-of-the-art facility on the campus of Virginia Wesleyan University, near the Virginia Beach-Norfolk line.
“This partnership will anchor us in our mission to present locally relevant, nationally resonant art that is exceptional,” said Gary Ryan, MOCA’s director and CEO. “While Virginia MOCA remains an independent museum, our collaboration with VWU will allow us to do even more of what we do best: create groundbreaking exhibitions and engage the community in thought-provoking artistic experiences. Our mission remains the same, but we are now bolstered by our partnership with VWU and its amazing educational resources.”
“In our new home on the VWU campus, Virginia MOCA will continue to create an environment where art thrives and inspires individuals of all ages. The future of the arts and education will be even brighter than ever as a result,” added Nicole Naidyhorski, Chair of the Virginia MOCA Board of Trustees.
The new facility will be larger than the museum’s current location at about 30,000 square feet, per VWU spokesperson David Brandt, and the estimated $25 million cost will be footed by local philanthropists Jane Batten, Joan Brock, and Susan and David Goode.
The new building will actually go right next to the Susan S. Goode Fine and Performing Arts Center at VWU.
“Their unwavering support for Virginia MOCA and VWU has been instrumental in securing the
necessary funding for this project,” said VWU President Dr. Scott Miller. “With their contribution, Virginia MOCA and VWU are poised to make significant strides in their respective endeavors, driven by the commitment of these exceptional philanthropists.”
Museum officials say the facility’s more central location will allow “the Museum to better connect with the cultural and educational fabric of the Hampton Roads area,” benefiting both students and the local community.
“We are grateful to have been able to support the Virginia Museum of Contemporary Art in their
current facility for the past three decades,” said Virginia Beach Mayor Bobby Dyer. “The City of Virginia Beach is a home to the arts, and we are thrilled that Virginia MOCA will continue to call our community home as it embarks on this next chapter of growth.”
Brandt says it’ll take about nine more months of planning before the facility breaks ground. You can learn more at MOCA’s website.