To provide a balanced and stimulating exhibition program, be a resource for local artists, foster education for students of all ages, and to serve as a social hub in order to build a stronger community through art.
The Peninsula Fine Arts Center (Pfac) was established in 1962 by a passionate group of art supporters from the Hampton Roads area looking for opportunities to create and exhibit artwork. It is accredited by the American Association of Art, one of only fifteen non-collecting art centers with that recognition.
The center began as the Peninsula Arts Association (PAA), a chapter of the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts (VMFA), and was originally located in downtown Newport News at the former John W. Daniel School Building – the first home of Christopher Newport College. In 1983, the PAA became the Peninsula Fine Arts Center and was named an affiliate of the VMFA.
Accredited by the American Association of Museums and an affiliate of the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, the Peninsula Fine Arts Center (PFAC) is the premier arts advocate in the Hampton Roads region, working to create a stronger community through art. The Center’s mission includes providing a balanced and stimulating exhibition program, acting as an important resource for local artists, and fostering art education. To that end, PFAC hosts several major exhibitions a year, presents classes for students of all ages at its Studio Art School, offers online distance-learning programs, and hosts special events including curator talks, poetry readings and art-movie screenings.
In 2013, the Center and Christopher Newport University announced a new partnership and are proceeding with the design of a new fine arts center to include stunning museum and gallery spaces as well as state-of-the-art teaching and learning spaces. Future plans for the Peninsula Fine Arts Center at Christopher Newport University include the presentation of nationally significant exhibitions, the presentation of exhibitions by emerging and regional artists, research, and cross-disciplinary and experiential learning opportunities for students of all ages.
PFAC currently owns and operates a 21,000 square feet facility in Mariners’ Museum Park. The original structure was generously donated by Newport News Shipbuilding, and includes a partially renovated hydraulics laboratory from the 1930s, which is connected to an addition constructed in 1989.
PFAC is governed by a Board of Trustees, many of whom go on to serve on its Board of Advisors.