National Sporting Library & Museum

Hours: Wednesday-Saturday 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sunday 1 p.m. to 5 p.m.

Library: Free | Museum Free to NSLM Members

General Admission: Adults $10, Seniors (65 and older) $8, Youth (13–18) $8, Youth (12 & under) Free

Free Admission on Wednesdays and last Sundays of the month.

The NSLM is closed on federal holidays. 
In the case of bad weather, the NSLM follows Loudoun County school district decisions.

102 The Plains Road
Middleburg, Virginia 20118-1335
Telephone: (540) 687-6542
Fax: (540) 302-8052

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Sporting Accoutrements: Still Lifes of Henry Koehler, January 16, 2014 - May 31, 2015, Museum

Art & The Animal, 54th Annual Society of Animal Artists Traveling Exhibition, April 17 - August 30, 2015 - Museum

Highlights from the Permanent Collection, Museum


 Last Hound to Bed, archival print, 23 3/8 x 33 1/8 inches, © Colin Barker

Part of the Pack - The Hunt at Petworth: Colin Barker Photography, June 19 – January 10, 2016, Museum

Fifteen of British photographer Colin Barker’s series of archival prints, Part of the Pack – The Hunt at Petworth, will be on view at the National Sporting Library & Museum from June 17 – January 10, 2016. This series was first displayed in 2012 within the unique setting of Lord and Lady Egremont’s family stables at the historic Petworth House estate, England, as a behind-the-scenes portrayal of life with the Chiddingfold, Leconfield and Cowdray Hunt. Colin formed a collection of mostly black and white images that create a link between the undulating, picturesque landscape of the South Downs in Southern England and the gritty reality of day-to-day life for the huntsman and his hounds at the kennels.

Originally planned as a three year personal project, Colin now believes that the collection could never really be considered to be “complete.” He notes about his process, ”My ‘spontaneous’ approach [ to photography] helped create a style that has enabled me to capture, some memorable images for the project. Moreover, it has compelled me to persevere time after time during the many disparate conditions that prevailed, in order to try and capture that unstaged ‘magic moment’.”

Coming Home Series: Paul Brown from the Permanent Collection in conjunction with publication of Llangollen Sketch Book, August 26, 2015 – January 10, 2016, Museum

Beverley McConnell: Portraits in Poetry, July 9, 2015 – September 13, 2015, Library

Side-by-Side with Gun and Dog, September 25 –March 20, 2016, Museum


Edward Troye and His Biographers: The Archive of Harry Worcester Smith & Alexander Mackay-Smith, October 1, 2014 - February 22, 2015, Library
Faithfulness to Nature: Paintings by Edward Troye (1808-1874), October 26, 2014 – March 29, 2015, Museum

Library, Forrest E. Mars, Sr. Exhibit Hall
Riding Aside by the Book, March 8, 2014 – August 1, 2014  Read more  Read about the Side Saddle Symposium  Exhibit image Exhibit statement

Museum Exhibitions

A Sportsman en plein air: C.D. Clarke, September 12 – December 28, 2014, Museum

Clarice Smith: Power and Grace, April 11 – September 28, 2014
Clarice Smith: Power and Grace offers a comprehensive range of the artist’s equestrian subjects. The exhibit spans over thirty years with almost forty paintings from the early 1980s to the present. Smith’s racing scenes, the equestrian subject for which she is best known, are well represented. Foreshortened compositions with low perspective draw the viewer into thundering hooves and flying dirt, and tightly framed views of jockeys astride, clamoring for position, prove the power of Smith’s work. There is, however, a softer side too. Graceful compositions such as Mr. Smith with back turned, standing at a paddock fence with his horses lined up to greet him, completed in earthy brown tones; and equine portraits imbued with personality, show intimate moments as well. Influenced by several traditions, Smith seeks to convey an interpretation of the moment, sometimes riotous, and at other times tranquil. Equestrian subjects inspire her; “I see the horse as a dynamic beautiful form; a combination of power and grace.”

Foxcroft School: The Art of Women and the Sporting Life, March 15 – August 24, 2014
In conjunction with Foxcroft School’s Centennial Celebration, the NSLM is organizing an exhibition focusing on women as sporting enthusiasts, sporting artists and sporting art collectors The exhibition opens during Women’s History Month. Comprised of loans from alumnae of the prestigious Middleburg college-preparatory school for girls and their relatives, approximately thirty paintings and sculptures develop a picture of the collecting interests of these remarkable women and their role in 20th century sporting life and art.

Nic Fiddian-Green (British, b. 1963), Still Water, 2011
Hammered lead sculpture with copper rivets on an oak base, 9 feet, 10 feet 2 inches including base. Limited edition no. 1 of 5. This dramatic work is on exhibit in the Museum entrance. Read more See Country File video clip

Angling in the Western World, September 28, 2013 – March 23, 2014
Angling in the Western World, a loan exhibition of mid-seventeenth to twenty-first century American and British works organized by the National Sporting Library & Museum, focuses on the on the history of the pursuit of fishing as a sporting activity with a range of angling scenes, still lifes, illustration art, paintings and sculpture of salt and fresh water fish, and a selection of early rare books. Among the American artists represented are: Frank Weston Benson, Ernest L. Blumenschein, Walter M. Brackett, Ogden Minton Pleissner, William Tylee Ranney, and Mike Stidham. British artists include: John Frederick Lewis, John Pettie, Henry Leonidas Rolfe, and John Bucknell Russell. Loans are drawn from the American Museum of Fly Fishing in Manchester, Vermont; the Genesee Country Village & Museum in Mumford, New York; and private collections. Read more

Contemporary Artist-Naturalists Robin Hill and Meg Page, October 12 – February 23, 2014
Contemporary artist-naturalists Robin Hill and Meg Page, both deeply connected to the natural world, continue in the spirit of Audubon, Catesby, Wilson and Dürer rendering flora and fauna from near and afar. Unlike their predecessors, however, who oftentimes found themselves cataloguing new species in a lush, abundant, and untouched environment, Hill and Page as naturalists face the modern issue of documenting and preserving wildlife in a diminishing habitat. As artists, their exhibit of approximately twenty-five masterful and distinct interpretations distinguishes them from their peers and presents work that rises to the level of their forerunners. Read more: Robin Hill and
Meg Page  Read more: Baltimore Sun  Related symposium

Munnings: Out in the Open, April 24 – September 15, 2013
The Open-Air Works of Alfred Munnings (English, 1878 – 1959) Over fifty masterworks by the renowned English artist, Sir Alfred James Munnings, (1878 – 1959), offer a cross-section of the artist’s open-air works painted throughout his career. While he is best known for his equine compositions, a more complete representation of his varied subjects will be presented, including: vibrant scenes of gypsy life, rolling landscapes of the English countryside and bucolic images of livestock. Several works created between 1912 and 1914 are highlighted as they relate to Summer in February, a novel about Munnings’ time in an artist colony written by Jonathan Smith in 1996. The exhibition includes works from important private collectors and public institutions such as: the Sir Alfred Munnings Art Museum in Dedham, England; The Yale Center for British Arts in New Haven, Connecticut; the National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame, in Saratoga, New York; and Pebble Hill Plantation in Thomasville, Georgia. There is a fully illustrated catalog. Read more. The Jockey Club Web site, Equestrian Stylist, Artnosh, Elite Equestrian, The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, The Chronicle Connection , The Georgetowner, Elan

American Sporting Heritage: A Portrait Survey of Contemporary Hunters and their Gun Dogs by Jesse Freidin
June 5 – September 29, 2013
Jesse Freidin's intimate, vibrant, and fresh compositions have a modern appeal, yet in essence preserve two traditions. In the series of fifteen portraits and candid images entitled American Sporting Heritage: A Portrait Survey of Contemporary Hunters and their Gun, the California and New York-based photographer focuses on the relationship between the hunter, the gun dog, and the landscape. Working with medium-format cameras, Freidin develops his own film. An exacting and precise artistic process, he creates his rich and tonally balanced pieces using traditional techniques in an age when digital photography and computer post-processing have overtaken the photographic medium. Garden & Gun blog

An Artist's Story: Civil War Drawings by Edwin Forbes, March 15 – June 24, 2013
Like thousands of young men, twenty-three year- old John Edwin Forbes went to war in 1862—but he did not shoulder a rifle or carry a saber. The classically trained Forbes joined a group of artists and reporters, known collectively as the Bohemian Brigade, sent south by northern newspapers to feed a home front population hungry for information about the war and the men engaged in it. For two and a half years Forbes documented the Union and Confederate armies—in camp, on the march and in battle. Accompanied by Forbes’s own descriptions, this exhibition features original pen-and-ink drawings based on his wartime sketches and used to illustrate his memoir, Thirty Years After: An Artist’s Story of the Great War (1890). All of these images are part of a collection of 156 drawings donated to the Virginia Historical Society in 2008 by the William R. Berkley family. This traveling exhibition was organized by the Virginia Historical Society.

Abbott Handerson Thayer: A Beautiful Law of Nature, February 1 - May 26, 2013
Works by the early American naturalist painter Abbott Handerson Thayer (1849-1921) highlight the artist’s observations of nature and his correlating discovery of early camouflage concepts, which were implemented by the Allied countries during World War I. Included are landscapes, animal studies, and early camouflage designs for military uniforms and navy vessels. Selected from the artist's family archives, most of these paintings and drawings have never been exhibited. A catalog accompanies the show, edited by Ari Post with essays by renowned scholars William Kloss, Martin Stevens and Roy Behrens. This exhibit was organized by Gold Leaf Studios in Washington, D.C., and is sponsored by Blair Inc. and the Family and Estate of Abbott Handerson Thayer. Read moreFollow Roy Behrens' bog.

Bob Kuhn: Drawing on Instinct, October 1, 2012 – March 31, 2013
A life-long student of drawing, the late great wildlife artist Bob Kuhn left behind more than 5,000 studies in his studio after his death in 2007. The National Museum of Wildlife Art in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, has organized a traveling retrospective of his drawings and paintings. Read more. 

NSLM Loan Exhibit
Washington Winter Show, Sporting Pastimes: Art & Objects of Leisure, January 11-13, 2013.Click here for more information. See Fox News video. See catalog.


Previous Exhibitions