Portsmouth Art & Cultural Center

Portsmouth Art & Cultural Center

400 High Street • (757) 393-8543


Housed in the 1846 Courthouse, the Portsmouth Art & Cultural Center is home to rotating visual art and cultural exhibits, lectures, workshops, and performances.

Current Exhibits:



This 4-person exhibition features paintings and drawings influenced by contemporary Black Culture that traces its roots to Northern Africa, the Caribbean, and beyond.  Featured artists are Anthony Burks, Sr., Florida; Portsmouth native and now Florida resident, Ramel Jasir; Arthur Rogers, Jr., Charlotte, North Carolina; and Clayton Singleton, Norfolk, Virginia.  Each artist brings their own unique style or “fingerprint” that differs yet compliments the work made by other artists featured in the exhibition.

Begins May 1


Hanging Tree Guitars introduces the work of Freeman Vines, a luthier and material artist born in Greene County, North Carolina where his family sharecropped on plantations that once enslaved them.  Freeman’s sisters are the Glorifying Vines Sisters, a touring gospel group with whom Freeman played guitar.  During a stop on a gospel circuit, Vines heard a sound that would haunt and consume him.  He began building guitars in a quest to recreate that sound.  Each piece is composed from cast-off materials gathered from across the county.  The history of the materials informs the unique identity and sound.  With each guitar, Vines continues his search to recreate that sound.

The exhibit was organized by the Music Maker Relief Foundation, a non-profit organization whose work is to preserve the legacy of musicians who are the creative roots of American Music.

Target audienceAll ages.

Wednesday – Saturday: 10 am – 4 pm
Sunday: noon – 4 pm