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4 March 2010

Exhibition at the Virginia Center for Architecture Features Work from the International Archive of Women in Architecture

Glass Ceilings: Highlights from the International Archive of Women in Architecture explores the contributions of women to the fields of architecture and design. The exhibition is on display at the Virginia Center for Architecture in Richmond, Virginia from March 4th through June 6th, 2010, in recognition of Minds Wide Open, the statewide initiative celebrating women in the arts.

The exhibition, part of the Virginia Center for Architecture’s Dominion Exhibition Series, features the work of pioneering women in architecture and design from the International Archive of Women in Architecture (IAWA) collection at Virginia Tech, including Lilia Skala, who fled the Nazis in 1939 carrying her student architectural portfolio and who later became a well-known actress in the U.S., Nobuko Nakahara, one of the first women to be licensed as an architect in Japan, Lois Gottlieb, a California architect who was one of Frank Lloyd Wright’s apprentices in the 1940’s, Beverly Willis, who, in the 70’s, developed CARLA, among the first software used for architecture and planning, Mary Brown Channel, the first woman to be registered as an architect in the state of Virginia, and Han Schroeder, who grew up in the famed Rietveld-Schroeder House, was educated in Switzerland, practiced as an architect and interior designer in the Netherlands, and later moved to the U.S. and taught interior design at Virginia Commonwealth University.

Central to the exhibit is a series of 100 postcards (100 POSTCARDS: A Glimpse into the IAWA Center) highlighting the range of materials in the IAWA collection, developed by students in Virginia Tech’s Researching Women in Architecture seminar. Student contributors are Marissa Brown, Antonia Ciaverella, Candice Davis, Alexandra Phelan, Heather Riley, and Rehanna Rojiani.

Developed in partnership between Virginia Tech’s International Archive of Women in Architecture (IAWA) Center and the Virginia Center for Architecture (VCA), the exhibition was assembled by Guest Curator Donna Dunay, FAIA, G.T. Ward Professor of Architecture and Director of the IAWA Center, in collaboration with Margaret Hancock, the VCA’s Director of Programs, and Architecture + Design faculty members Kay Edge, Helene Renard, Lisa Tucker, Wendy Jacobson, and Bill Galloway and with the support of the Special Collections department of the University Libraries.

Admission to the exhibition is $2 and free for members, students, seniors, and active military. There is no admission charge on Tuesdays. Glass Ceilings is sponsored by Dominion and Barboursville Winery. The Opening Reception, held on Thursday, March 4th, was sponsored by Dominion, Barboursville Winery and BB&T.

The Virginia Center for Architecture is located at 2501 Monument Avenue in Richmond, Virginia’s historic Fan District. It is housed in a 1919 27,000-square-foot landmark Tudor Revival mansion designed by John Russell Pope. The Center is open to the public Tuesday through Friday from 10 am to 5 pm; Saturday and Sunday from 1 to 5 pm. Learn more at www.virginiaarchitecture.org.

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