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DATE:  August 3, 2015

TO:      Support Portsmouth Public Art

FROM:  SPPA Board of Directors

SUBJ:   Annual Giving


Question: What’s short, squat, and bronze all over?

Answer: The Toad, the first piece of public art funded

by the Supporters.


Since The Toad was placed near the entrance to the Children’s

Museum of Virginia, he’s been touched by so many visitors that

he sports a shiny spot on the top his head. It’s that engagement

that we’re looking for in every piece installed, whether it entertains,

celebrates history or recalls a memory.  


In the recent past, more than 3,000 people wrote their thoughts on the popular but temporary, “Before I Die” blackboards at the old Colony Theatre on High Street. A matching grant, awarded by the Portsmouth Museum and Fine Arts Commission, resulted in six permanent murals. Bill Deal and the Rhondels, Ruth Brown and Tommy Newsom are portrayed on the front of the Colony Theatre. Commodore James Barron’s likeness is painted on the south wall of 606 Court Street, about 100 yards from his grave in the Trinity Episcopal Church cemetery. Two huge speckled trout make a whimsical appearance on the north side of 464 Dinwiddie Street. The pavilion at City Park is now honored by a portrait of Dr. James Holley, our former Mayor.


Many thanks to the Supporters for making the dream of public art in Portsmouth come true. With help, work can begin on the next installations. Our future plans include a LOVE sculpture on the waterfront, art in the downtown library, and rebirth of “The Circle” mural in Mid-City. Please send your tax-deductible donation, payable to SPPA, to the address below.



Feel free to talk with John Joyce, SPPA President, at 757-582-5330. And, check us out on Facebook!

SPPA VA – Support Portsmouth Public Art of Virginia
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