Visit the Portsmouth Art and Cultural Center


The Portsmouth Art & Cultural Center offers classes, camps and workshops for youth and adults throughout the year.


Classes & Camps



Our Animal Friends

Ages: 6-8
Dates: July 10-14, 1-4 pm
Location: Portsmouth Art and Cultural Center

Whether it’s a family pet, a favorite zoo creature or the backyard squirrel, campers will create artwork inspired by our furry (and not so furry) friends in this fun art camp. Draw, paint and sculpt with the Portsmouth Museums!


Art Explorers I

Ages: 6 – 8
Dates: July 31-Aug 4, 1-4 pm
Location: Portsmouth Art and Cultural Center

Cost: Members $65 half day, $135 full day / Non Members; $70 half day, $145 full day
Campers can sign up for a half day session or both morning and afternoon sessions to make a full day (9am- 4 pm, campers bring their own lunch and lunch supervision provided.)

Take a trip through Australia – dive into the artwork of Aboriginal artists and cultures using various techniques. We’ll focus of four geographical areas, taking time to learn about the art that comes from each one!


Art Explorers II

Ages: 9-12
Dates: June 26-30, 1-4 pm
Location: Portsmouth Art and Cultural Center

Emerging Artists examine recent art of the Americas. Be amazed by the variety of Contemporary American art by painting, sculpting, and drawing.


Help Your Selfie!

Ages: 9-12
Dates: July 24-28, 9 am-noon
Location: Portsmouth Art and Cultural Center

Artists have been taking “selfies” for a long time. Even before the invention of cameras and smart phones, artists found ways to create their self image. Campers will create their own selfies using a variety of techniques and mediums – no selfie stick required!






First Weekends



Come enjoy and support artists and musical favorites every first weekends of the month.


FIRST SATURDAY: Ekphrasis & Music

Portsmouth Art & Cultural Center
Saturday, May 6, 2017, 10:00 a.m.,
The Rhythm Project Rising Stars 1:30 p.m.

Picture Captions: Remica L Bingham-Risher, The Rhythm Project Rising Stars Pan Drum Ensemble

Ekphrasis Readings with Remica Bingham-Risher Mark your calendar for a music and literary event. Beginning at 10 a.m., the steel pan drum group The Rhythm Project Rising Stars will perform in the courtyard. Then at 1:30 p.m., join us as local writers gather to share new works using visual art as a stimulus for the written word. New writings are in the form of essays, short stories, and poems and are based on artwork featured in the Embracing Narrative exhibit. Featured writer, Remica Bingham-Risher will read from her books of poetry, one of which, Starlight & Error is a new release. Bingham-Risher earned an MFA from Bennington College, and is a Cave Canem fellow and member of the Affrilachian Poets. She is the Director of Writing and Faculty Development at Old Dominion University and resides in Norfolk, VA with her husband and children.

THE RHYTHM PROJECT: Steel Pan Drum Performance in the Courtyard

Portsmouth Art & Cultural Center
Free admission to exhibits and music
Saturday, June 3, 2017, 10:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.

Founded in1996, The Rhythm Project offered Portsmouth youth the opportunity to play and tour in a steel pan drum teaching accomplishments through dedication and discipline. The group has performed for the program From The Top, and toured to George Mason University and New Bern, NC.

Inside the museum, exhibits will be open free to the public from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. From 9:00 a.m.-1:00 p.m., the Olde Towne Farmer’s market is open at the corner of Court & High Streets.


Music & Art

Saturday, May 13, 2017, 10:00 a.m. – 1:30 p.m.

Who We Are Not TrioLive Performance by the Who We Are Not Trio
Glass Lamp-work Demonstrations by Artist Emily Williams
Portsmouth Art & Cultural Center

Local Band Who We Are Not will perform live in the courtyard. Who We Are Not is headed by husband-and-wife singer-songwriters Pamela Jo Sward Emily Williams Flameworking Glassand Joe Talley who mix a surprising combination of folk, jazz, and pop into their music style. This band has played on local radio and television such as The Hampton Roads Show for WAVY TV, and NPR’s Out Of The Box hosted by Paul Shugrue. They recently took Veer Magazine’s 2015 Best Emerging Artist Award. Along with music, glass artist Emily Williams, featured in the Embracing Narrative exhibit will demonstrate her lamp-work techniques working in glass. The music and demonstration are free and open to the public.

Farm-to-Table Tastings

Every Third Saturday of the Month
Starting May 20, 10:00 a.m. – 12:00 noon

Portsmouth Art & Cultural Center Courtyard

Beginning in May, the Farmer’s Market is open each weekend and continues throughout the growing season. This year, in addition to purchasing fresh veggies, fruit, eggs and more, visitors may join us in the courtyard to sample new tastes and explore ways of preparing familiar and unfamiliar veggies and fruits prepared by special guest chefs. This is sure to please and answer questions on what to do with some of the market’s great offerings. May features special guest Nicolas Hagen, chef and owner of HomeGrown Pizza, 455 Court St., Portsmouth.

Easy Like Sunday Morning

Sunday, June 4, 11:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.
Art, Music, & Brunch in Olde Towne Portsmouth

Portsmouth Art & Cultural Center & T.C.C. Visual Art Center
at the corners of Court & High Streets Sunday

For the final day of the Glass Art Society’s (GAS) annual conference entitled Reflections from the Edge: Glass Art & Performance at the Chrysler Museum of Art, the Portsmouth Art & Cultural Center (PACC) and TCC’s Visual Art Center collaborate to host a Sunday brunch open house. Both venues will be open offering refreshments. Live music will be played in the courtyard, and moved indoors if weather is inclement. Exhibits will remain open until 5:00 p.m. GAS Artists are invited to attend.




Workshops and Gallery Talks may require advance registration and fees. Be sure to review each event for details. Contact us at 757-393-8543 for additional information.


Art on a String: Kite Making Activities

Saturdays, April 8 - May 6 10:30 a.m., 11:30 a.m., 1:30 p.m., 2:30 p.m. & 3:30 p.m.

It's that time of year again, when the air is warmer and the breeze is just right for kite flying. Join us in April for Kite Month when the museum will host kite-making activities each Saturday where all ages can build and have a kite to fly at the Atlantic Coast Kite Festival at Portsmouth City Park on May 7th. (See Atlantic Coast Kite Festival for more information.) During times when kite making activities are offered, visitors may purchase kite-kits for $3-$5 each and museum staff will assist in its creation, which is both fast and fun. Markers will be available for decorating the kites so each will have their individual creation to fly. There is nothing like launching your artwork into the sky for all to see. Admission is free on First Saturdays. For information call 757-393-8543.


Yoga in the Courtyard

Saturday, April 8, 2017, and continuing every Saturday, 9:00 – 10:00 a.m.

Instructor: Neve

Starting April 8th yoga will be offered in the courtyard. Join us in nature for a yoga class for all levels and ages. No experience is required. Neve teaches alignment based hatha yoga style which focuses on safety and relaxation. Her humor and grace will have you smiling during and after class. Come stretch, build strength, practice balance and enjoy being outside! Please bring your own yoga mat to the courtyard and any other props you like to use. We practice on the bricks so if you want to double up your mat for more protection or bring a blanket feel free to do so. Updates about the class will be posted on Facebook. If it is raining we will not have class. This class is a suggested donation of $5+ dollars. No registration is required just come, stretch, strengthen and have fun!

Copyright 2012 City of Portsmouth, VA
website by Arengee

400 High Street, Portsmouth, VA 23704 · 757-393-8543
Mailing Address: 521 Middle Street, Portsmouth, VA 23704
The Portsmouth Art & Cultural Center, housed in the 1846 Courthouse, is devoted to offering quality educational, cultural and aesthetic experiences in the arts through rotating visual art exhibits, lectures, classes and performances.