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About NSA

Since our beginning in January 1917, the Norfolk Society of Arts has supported arts and culture in the Hampton Roads community. Our primary emphasis is now placed on our world class lecture series, which is free and open to the public, and on continued financial support for the Chrysler Museum of Art.


Our Society has a rich and storied history. The committed efforts of the Norfolk Society of Arts, “NSA,” led to the 1933 opening of the Norfolk Museum of Arts and Sciences. This became the Chrysler Museum of Art in 1971 when Walter P. Chrysler, Jr. gave his outstanding art collection to the City of Norfolk for the museum’s permanent collection.

Community Support

The Norfolk Society of Arts, in its capacity as a community supporter, was also instrumental in founding the Norfolk Symphony Orchestra, the Norfolk Little Theatre and the Tidewater Artists Association.

The NSA has supported the Chrysler Museum of Art by:

  • gifting the museum 45 works of art to-date 

  • donating funds for sound systems for Huber Court and the Kaufman Theater

  • donating funds for the renovation of the museum’s conservation library           

  • providing funds for Norfolk public school visits

  • providing funds for a digital asset management system

  • contributing to the publication of a major glass catalog and another catalog to accompany the groundbreaking exhibit on Thomas Jefferson

  • in celebration of the fiftieth anniversary of Walter Chrysler, Jr’s gift of his outstanding art collection to the city of Norfolk, the NSA established a conservation Endowment Fund that will go towards conservation of works donated by Mr. Chrysler.

*For more information about the fund, please click here.

Letter from the President

I want to thank you most sincerely for your continued support of the Norfolk Society of Arts. Your membership dues have allowed us to sustain the NSA’s history of bringing world class speakers to our community that now dates back over a century. During 2020 and 2021, NSA was able to continue to reach hundreds of viewers with our virtual lectures. We are now particularly grateful for the sustained interest of our members as we navigate the transition from online to in person lectures.


Last year, gifts from many generous supporters helped us further build the Conservation Endowment Fund that we established in 2021 to provide a permanent endowment to help preserve the works of art that Walter Chrysler gave our community. Support of our Annual Member Luncheon last May raised additional funds for this important endeavor.


Again, thank you for your support of the Norfolk Society of Arts. I look forward to seeing you at the many wonderful lectures we have this season.


Jan Bradley, President

The Norfolk Society of Arts

Mark Lewis
Conservator Mark Lewis restores one of Mr. Chrysler’s donated artworks, Tintoretto’s “Allegorical Figure of Spring” ca. 1546-48, photo courtesy Chrysler Museum of Art.
Alex Mann and Lloyd DeWitt
Lloyd DeWitt, Chief Curator of the Chrysler Museum with Crawford Alexander  Mann III, Chief Curator of Telfair Museums with 'View of the Natural Bridge, Virginia' by Jacob Caleb Ward ca. 1835 oil on wood, Chrysler Museum of Art
Jeff Harrison
Jeff Harrison, former  Chief Curator of the Chrysler Museum January 2018  delivers a lecture on the life and career of Walter P. Chrysler, Jr.
Clay Jenkinson and Jan Bradley
Clay Jenkinson, Humanities Scholar and Cultural Commentator after his lecture “Thomas Jefferson- Architect and Palladian Scholar” with NSA President Jan Bradley, November 2019
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