Elevating the visual arts at the Muscarelle Museum of Art

Williamsburg, VA, USA

The expansion and renovation of the Muscarelle Museum of Art will transform the original 1980s building into a dynamic venue for art exploration. Blending historic traditions with a contemporary design, the building’s design and placement supports William & Mary’s vision to re-invigorate Jamestown Road with a cohesive, consistent building style, while reflecting the College’s heritage and the values.  

42,000 sq. ft.

Weaving the old and new  

Expected for completion in 2024, the courtyard will welcome visitors to the new building with lush landscaping and room for outdoor public gatherings or a pre-function space. An expansive two-story public entry with a grand staircase leads to educational spaces, an event hall, seminar rooms, administrative offices, and most gallery spaces. The existing, renovated building will provide support spaces for the galleries, as well as much needed art storage and office space. Complementary to the campus context, the expansion utilizes the hillside to rise three stories high, while augmenting the existing one and a half story structure. 

New, inspiring opportunities for students  

The expansion will open as The Martha Wren Briggs Center for the Visual Arts. The new museum will carry over the current prestigious collections at the school, breathing new life into works by famed artists such as Rembrandt, Leonardo da Vinci, and Georgia O’Keefe, as well as rotating exhibits of Asian, African, and ancient art, among others. This new building will reinforce William & Mary as a cornerstone location for art, uniting the community and the campus through its love of arts and culture. 

More About the Project

Project Team

Principal Collaborators

  • Architect of Record: Odell
  • Structural Engineer: Stewart
  • MEP Engineer: Vanderweil
  • Museum Planning: Lord Cultural Resources

Project Information

  • Location: Williamsburg, Virginia, USA
  • Client: The College of William & Mary, Edgewood Investors
  • Size: 60,500 sq. ft. / 5,620 sq. m.
  • Completion: 2024
  • Firm Role: Design Architect
  • Renderings: VMI Studio