John Dennis Murray Arts Building

The stunning Arts Building at Annmarie was designed by Richard Kleponis of Wheeler Goodman Masek Architecture + Interiors, Annapolis.  The 15,000 sq. ft. facility houses two floors of museum-grade exhibition space perfect for gallery shows, special events, programs, and private parties.    The building also includes a spacious patio, Gift Shop, Cafe, and catering kitchen. 

Building Design Awards:
2009 Honor Award, Chesapeake Bay Chapter, American Institute of Architecture
2009 Building of the Year Finalist, Construction Magazine

Architects Design Narrative - Richard Kleponis
The simple, yet elegant design of the building was inspired by the nautical, agricultural, and ecological features of Calvert County.  The goal was to provide functional and flexible space for exhibitions and entertaining.  An abstract boat hull forming the Mezzanine Gallery is the dominating feature of the building.  The bow and stern of the "boat" extend out the east and west ends of the building.  Once inside, a visitor will experience the exhibitions, filtering through the two levels and continuing their journey outside to the sculpture garden. The sweeping curved glazed clerestory of the Mezzanine Gallery showers both levels with diffused natural light, conducive to viewing and creating art.  The open mezzanine also enables the visitor to view exhibits from above and below.  The south facing side of the building provides plenty of views to the sculpture garden outside while the large overhang protects the galleries from direct sunlight.

On the outside, the piercing metal and glass curved walls offer a contemporary juxtaposition to the traditional clapboard and board and batten siding covering the rest of the building.  The exterior colors give the building a contemporary feel, but the use of the red, gray, and silver pay homage to local agricultural and maritime buildings.  The interior is also a clean, modern environment, not competing with the exhibitions.

Capital Campaign - Major Donors
The State of Maryland
The Calvert County Board of County Commissioners
The Koenig Private Foundation, Inc.
Friends of Annmarie Garden, Inc.
Ann's Circle, Inc.
Col. Caroline Van Mason In Honor of Col. Dan & Dr. Christine Boesz
Evelyn S. & Vincent C. Hungerford In Memory of Tony Hungerford & Julia Hungerford
Matthew J. Gambrill

Capital Campaign - Inner Circle Initiative
Duane W. Beckhorn
Barbara J. & Richard H. Beers
|John & Judy Burroughs
John & Kim Dove
Mark R. Frazer, D.D.S.
Celeste & Pat Furey
Evelyn S. Hungerford
Beverly & Brooks Jackson
Joan & Elliot Kocen
Edward A. & Catherine Masek
Meng & Alpert, LLC
Don & Jean McDougall
Carolyn & Gene McHugh
PNC Bank
Gerry Van de Velde & Maureen Cunningham
Laurie & David Uherek
Karen & Leonard Zuza

Additional Capital Campaign Donors:
Louanne A. & Samuel M. Bailey
Dianna L. Brooks
Mr. & Mrs. Paul L. Berry
Joseph H. Bozick
John A & Mary Ada Candela
Abigail Francisco School of Classical Ballet
Rosemary DeRosa In Memory of Dee Hahn-Rollins
Lt. Col. Vernon W. & Doris Anne Garner
Abbey & Patrick Griffin
Paul & Katherine Kachurak
Frank B. & Pamela C. Meador In Memory of Dee Hahn-Rollins
Caren J. Pituck
Roanld J. Ross, Jr. & Faith A. Rickett-Ross
Tim Scheirer
William Sturgis
Susan Rork & John Zalusky
Laurie & David Uherek In Memory of Dee Hahn-Rollins


About John Dennis Murray 
 There is no one, other than Francis and Ann Marie Koenig, who did more than Denny Murray to establish and build the infrastructure of Annmarie Garden.  Denny gave generously of his time and resources to bring the Garden into existence. 



John D. “Denny” Murray, 1940-2012 

After Francis Koenig died, Denny became President of the Friends of Annmarie Garden, Inc., and continued in that capacity for the next eight years.  During his tenure as President, he oversaw the construction of the entry gate, The Gateway, and the installation of three other outdoor sculptures commissioned by the Friends, including the central fountain in the Garden, A Tribute to the Oyster Tonger, A Chesapeake Waterman.   

When a small building was donated to Annmarie Garden by Asbury Solomons, Denny arranged for it to be moved to the property, constructed a foundation, and connected it to water, sewer and electricity, all at his personal expense.  Again at his own expense, he constructed the curvilinear paths throughout the Garden, which still exist and serve as the principal avenues for pedestrian access through the property.  Denny also installed the necessary storm water drainage system in the Garden.  

Without Denny’s leadership and financial support during the formative years, it would not have been possible for the Garden to establish itself as a viable venue for large scale events, nor would it have been possible to gain Affiliate status with the Smithsonian Institution, a designation that has enabled the Garden to borrow more than thirty pieces of outdoor sculpture from the Smithsonian Institution and the National Gallery of Art, cementing its reputation as a quality artistic destination and a credit to Calvert County. 

Denny’s many contributions to the Garden are all the more remarkable because none of them were showy, attention gathering projects; rather they were all very practical infrastructure improvements that were desperately needed to develop the Garden.  For those who knew Denny, this behind-the-scenes, unglamorous and anonymous work, was his trademark.

Building Dedication, June 4, 2013






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