Richmond museum readies to reopen, debut Arnautoff mural

Richmond museum readies to reopen, debuts Arnauoff mural
The Richmond Museum of History is located at 400 Nevin Ave.

By Kathy Chouteau

The Richmond Museum of History & Culture has announced that it will reopen for community visits Fri., March 26. The gallery will be open Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays from 1-4 p.m. and will be operating at 25 percent capacity at a maximum of 50 people.

Friday also marks the informal debut of the Victor Arnautoff mural, Richmond Industrial City, to the public, per museum Executive Director Melinda McCrary. The mural was initially displayed in the Richmond Post Office from 1941 until 1976, when it was removed due to remodeling. It went missing until it was rediscovered in 2014. This Friday will be the first time the mural is back on display in 45 years.

“All heath department guidelines will be put in place, including masks and social distancing,” said McCrary about the reopening.

The museum’s news, which comes as Contra Costa County has moved into the red tier of COVID-19 safety restrictions, first appeared in a post on social media Tuesday. “We are so excited to welcome you back into the gallery,” stated the museum on Facebook.

Throughout the pandemic, the museum has kept community members engaged with an innovative array of virtual programming, including a drop-in Friday Enrichment Program from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., when students can create art projects with materials often found at home. A Virtual Field Trip program—initially designed pre-pandemic—was reimagined to offer remote grade-specific tours for students in grades K-12 with companion lesson materials for teachers.

An educational and fascinating film series about Richmond’s history—featuring short films approximately five minutes each—was also launched by the museum during the pandemic.

For more info about the Richmond Museum of History & Culture, click here. To donate to support the museum during these challenging times, click here. Patrons wishing to conduct research are asked to make an appointment in advance; contact [email protected] to set one up.