Tag Archives: Featured

My Queer Valentine

The newest group exhibition in Target Gallery, the contemporary exhibitions space of Torpedo Factory Art Center, offers a poignant look at love and relationships for LGBTQ+-identifying people.

My Queer Valentine explores love through non-heteronormative and non-binary relationships. The exhibition features 16 artists, 8 who are from Virginia or the D.C. greater metropolitan area.

Participating Artists

Nicholas Aiden, St. John’s, NL, Canada
Veronica Barker-Barzel (Studio 320), Alexandria, VA
Brandin Barón, San Francisco, CA
Adam David Bencomo, Baltimore, MD
Miki Beyer, Herndon, VA
Louis Chavez, Rochester, NY
Mandy Chesney, Baltimore, MD
Evin Dubois, Paducah, KY
Aurele Gould, Richmond, VA
Cat Gunn, Baltimore, MD
Linda Hesh, Alexandria, VA
Rachael McArthur, Brooklyn, NY
Annika Papke, Alexandria, VA
Lucas J. Rougeux, North Bethesda, MD
Todd Stonnell, Richmond, VA
Matt StormWashington, DC


Exhibition juror Andy Johnson, a D.C.-based independent curator and gallery director of Gallery 102 at the Corcoran School of the Arts & Design at The George Washington University, has dedicated much of his curatorial career to unpacking queer intimacy.

“While My Queer Valentine has everything to do with the relationship to those around us, it’s also equally invested in the relationship we have with our queer realities, and the ways in which queerness shapes and informs our lived experience,” he said. “My Queer Valentine is as much a love letter to ourselves as it is a disclosing of longing to our community.”

Queerness or identifying as LGBTQ+ encapsulates many identities that are not necessary set within a spectrum. This diversity in perspective is represented in a various styles, mediums, and tones in this exhibition.

For instance, Aurele Gould has three works on view that explore concepts of intimacy for queer women through different narrative portraits of her girlfriend. Alex captures the act of undressing, creating a flirtatious dialogue between the subject and the viewer.

Matt Storm has two works from his Act of Looking series, which articulates and recognizes inclusive ways to see his trans body. The piece Act of Looking II, 17, Crossing My Fingers, Getting Away with Something is a playful love letter to the artist’s sexuality as a transmasculine person.

Artist Miki Beyer’s mixed-media work You’re Already There. You Already Have Me. is also a love-letter, but this time between the artist and their partner. They use dialogue from past conversations between the two of them that addresses the panic of identity-erasure as a non-binary person while in cisgender/heterosexual-presenting relationship. It also speaks to the love for each other that promises for a better tomorrow.

Don’t miss the special Valentine’s themed reception on Friday, February 14, 7 – 10 pm, with juror talk at 8 pm. The evening features interactive performance art, a photo op at our kissing booth, and DIY art-making activities. Learn more about and support local LGBTQ+ organizations, too.

About the Juror

Andy Johnson is a DC-based art historian, curator, and arts writer. He is Director of Gallery 102 at the Corcoran School of the Arts & Design; contributing editor at DIRT; and serves as Assistant Curator and Artist Liaison for Art on the Vine, hosted by the Agora Culture. He was the 2018 Apprentice Curator for the DC Arts Center, and a 2019 Visiting Arts Writer and Critic for The Chart. He has curated and juried exhibitions with Gallery 102, DC Arts Center, Duke Ellington School of the Arts, Dupont Underground, the Smithsonian Institution, among others. He has presented research and spoken on panels at universities, galleries, and museums including Rutgers University, UC Santa Barbara, University of Georgia, Urban Institute for Contemporary Arts, GW Museum, Washington Project for the Arts, and others. He has published articles, exhibition reviews, and catalogue essays with DIRT, The Chart, Common Field’s Field Perspectives, The Rib, Pelican Bomb, BmoreArt and more. He holds a M.A. in Art History from The George Washington University.

 

Image: Aurele Gould, Acrylic, 2017, Photograph.

Olde Year’s Day

Celebrate the close of 2019 with the Art Center. Find hands-on activities for every member of the family. Meet working artists in their studios and get inspired for 2020. Also, get your tickets for First Night Alexandria. Free admission.

Post-Grad Residency: Homecoming

The Art Center looks back at the first five years of the Post-Grad Residency Program with a lively art event. We celebrate the opening reception for Target Gallery’s 2019 Post-Grad Residents exhibition featuring this year’s cohort: Michaela Japec, Nava Levenson, Katana Lippart, and Kim Sandara. We welcome returning Residency alumni and introduce the new 2020 cohort. In addition, the Mason Art Project Studio hosts a reception for their 2019 retrospective of their months at the Art Center.

Image Credit: Kim Sandara, Origins if Kin and Kang (detail image), 2019. Animation.

2017 Resident, Fumi Amano, hosts guests in her studio during a Late Shift event.

Inaugural residents from 2015: Justin Raphael Roykovich, Stephanie Booth, and Jenny Wu.

2019 Post-Grad Residents

2019 Post-Grad Residents Exhibition
December 13, 2019 – January 19, 2020

Homecoming Opening Reception: Friday December 13, 7 – 10 pm • Talk at 8 pm

The Gallery will be closed on Wednesday, December 25 and Wednesday, January 1 in observance of Christmas Day and New Year’s Day.*


 

Target Gallery, the contemporary exhibition space at Torpedo Factory Art Center, celebrates the work of the four artists who participated in the 2019 Post-Grad Residency Program. The group exhibition will feature the work of Michaela Japec, Nava Levenson, Katana Lippart, and Kim Sandara and will be on view Friday, December 13, 2019, through Sunday, January 19, 2020. Torpedo Factory Art Center is located at 105 N. Union St., Alexandria, VA.

This competitive juried residency provides meaningful support to emerging artists who have recently earned an accredited degree in the visual arts. Residents had three months of exclusive access to Studio 319 in the Art Center, wherein they create and sell work, interact with the public, and connect with other arts professionals. It’s an opportunity for professional development, networking, and a chance to define a practice outside of an academic context.

The jurors for this opportunity were Nicole Dowd, Program Director at Halcyon Arts Lab, and Leslie Holt, DC- based artist and co-founder of Red Dirt Studios.

The 2019 Post-Grad Residents exhibition will be on view in Target Gallery, located in Studio 2 of the Art Center, through Sunday, January 19. Target Gallery and Torpedo Factory Art Center is open daily from 10 am – 6 pm, Thursdays from 10 am – 9 pm. Hours are modified for the holidays. Visit http://torpedofactory.org/hours to confirm availability.

 

Homecoming Opening Celebration
Friday, December 13 ● 7 – 10 pm

For the exhibition opening, the Art Center looks back at the first five years of the Post-Grad Residency Program with a lively Homecoming art party. Meet the 2019 artists and hear them talk about their work. Reconnect with returning alumni and meet the new 2020 cohort. The Gallery Talk begins at 8 pm.

 

About the Artists

Michaela Japec (BFA George Mason University) Michaela is an artist currently based in Alexandria, Virginia. She recently completed her bachelor’s of fine arts in 2018 from George Mason University. Through her art, she works through conflicting thoughts she has about her sexuality, body insecurities, and feelings of oppression. During her residency, Michaela pushed her themes and visual style of photo realism vs exaggerated abstraction to reflect this inner dialogue. She has three figural works in the exhibition that show the evolution of her concepts.

Nava Levenson (BFA James Madison University) Nava is a multidisciplinary artist, instigator, and collaborator based in Richmond, Virginia. She completed her bachelor’s of fine arts in 2017 from James Madison University. Her work combines installation surrounding concepts of gender and queer identity as well as anthropological and archival documentation. During her residency, Nava was focused on her project, Practice Preserves: Studio Dirt. In the same way thrift stores reveal things about American culture, she seeks to archive artists’ practices. She invites artists to add studio scraps and discarded material in quart-sized canning jars, which she then opens, catalogs, and photographs for an anthology she hopes to publish. For this exhibition, Nava creates an installation of the jars reminiscent of an archival collection and invites viewers to investigate and engage with the materials.

Katana Lippart (BFA George Mason University) Katana is a collage artist and printmaker based in Brunswick, MD. She graduated from George Mason University with her bachelor’s in fine arts in 2018. During her residency, she has concentrated on a collage series that will help resolve the broken ties between self and home. This has held a significant amount of weight in her life and has manifested into her work. Through her residency and this culminating exhibition, Katana’s goal has been to share printmaking, book arts, and collage with the surrounding community. platform to reflect on both personal and collective narratives relating to home.

Kim Sandara (BFA Maryland Institute College of Art) Kim is a queer, Lao/Viet, artist based in Falls Church, Virginia. In 2016, she graduated from the Maryland Institute College of Art with a bachelor’s of fine arts. Accessibility to art is a key part of her creative process. Her overall focus is to encourage empathy, wonder, self-reflection, and connection. During the residency, she continued her animation series documenting her coming out story. She created a stop-motion animation, The Origins of Kin and Kang, which is aimed at helping parents of color, particularly first-generation immigrants, to understand and accept their queer children. The animation will be on view during the exhibition as well as installation featuring the sketches and puppets featured in the stop-motion film.

 

 

Image credit: Michaela Japec, Like, 2019. Acrylic.

Santa Claus sitting with a young boy

Holiday Festival 2019

The Art Center joins in the fun on Alexandria’s most festive holiday weekend of the year! Santa and Mrs. Claus arrive at 3:30 pm. Music and singing fill the halls all evening. After sundown, the Holiday Boat Parade of Lights passes by our riverfront doors. Visit artists are all three floors to find the perfect gift of art.

 

Schedule of Activities:

10 am Open Studios and Galleries
2 pm Face painting Artist Station begins
3 pm Silver 5 Brass Quintet begins on the Waterfront
3:30 pm Arrival of Santa Claus on the Waterfront
3:45 pm Santa Claus at the Art Center
4:30 pm Pro Choral Alexandria pop-up performance
5:30 pm Holiday Boat Parade of Lights begins
5:30 pm 2nd Annual Torpedo Factory Holiday Light Show (curated by Monica Stroik) begins on the Waterfront
6 pm Studios and Galleries stay open late (until 8 pm)

Factory Flow Morning Yoga

Find inner peace and creativity in this morning series focused on art, health, and imagination. Led by certified instructor Alejandra O’Connor, sessions are judgement-free for all skill levels.

Please arrive 15 minutes early. Bring a mat, towel, and water bottle.

Pay what you can / suggested donation: $10 at the door.

About the Instructor

Alejandra O’Connor began regularly practicing yoga in 2014 as a way to exercise while joining her Indonesian host family in Ramadan fasting. After Ramadan was over, she was hooked on how the movement and breath combined to allow space for stillness. She earned her 200 hour adult teaching certification from Latitude Yoga Co. in Stafford, VA in May 2017; and her Kidding Around Yoga certification in March 2018. Currently she primarily teaches children. As such, her adult classes are combination of play, dance, and quiet meditation.

Small Business Saturday

After Black Friday and before Cyber Monday, there’s Small Business Saturday. All artists in the Art Center are also small, independent business owners and they help shape the distinctive and creative personality of Old Town Alexandria.

Give creatively this year and give art. Torpedo Factory Art Center is the region’s best place to find unique gifts, from handmade jewelry and ceramics to paintings and custom ornaments. Shop small and buy local from nearly 200 artists on all three floors. Hours are extended until 8 pm.

 

Free Gift-Wrapping Station with Safe Space NOVA
After purchasing holiday gifts from artists studios and galleries, visitors are encouraged to have their items gift-wrapped for free by volunteers from Safe Space NOVA, an organization dedicated to providing a safe, accepting, and supportive environment to combat social stigmas, bullying, and other challenges faced by LGBT+ youth. 12 – 4pm.

 

Live Music with Stan Hamrick
Enjoy holiday music selections in the Grand Hall from 4 – 7 pm to liven up your Art Center adventures.

 

An Evening with the Artists
Several of the artists of the Art Center will host a special evening celebrating Small Business Saturday between 10 am and 8 pm. There will be specials and surprises for all. Check out each of the following independent studios for a variety of offerings on this day only.
  • Studio 201Estelle Vernon – Jewelry – Drawing for a $100 gift certificate for her work
  • Studio 204Marcos Teixeira – Jewelry
  • Studio 206Susan Sanders – Fiber, Jewelry – Donating 10% of sales to Capital Area Food Bank
  • Studio 209 Meg Talley – Jewelry – Specials on handcrafted jewelry
  • Studio 212Tony Man – Jewelry
  • Studio 214Gerda Atzl – Engraving, Glass
  • Studio 223 – Natalie Abrams – Jewelry, Mixed Media
  • Studio 224Rosemary Feit Covey – Mixed Media, Painting, Printmaking – Drawing for select small prints
  • Studio 225 – Gale Wallar, Marietje Chamberlain, Yoshiko Ratliff – Ceramics, Painting
  • Studio 328Sermin Ciddi – Painting
  • Studio 329Nancy Ramsey – Painting – Specials of 10-40% on select artworks

Anniversary Ball

Dress to impress and celebrate like it’s 1919 or 1974, as the building turns 100 and the Art Center turns 45.

Mikaela Lefrak, WAMU arts and culture reporter, leads a lively evening of art, music, dancing, film, performance, and memories.

  • Early-bird through October 31: $60
  • Starting November 1: $75

Ticket sales have closed.

Highlights

Featuring

Preview the Band

Good Shot Judy // LOVE from Altamira Film Co. on Vimeo.

Thanks to generous support from

Dominion Energy Logo

 

 

 

 

Factory Society

Port City Brewing

Lost Boys Cider

William Christopher, The Federal Savings Bank

Virginia Kinneman, LUTCF, Kinneman Insurance

Friends of Torpedo Factory Art Center


Sponsorship Opportunities Available

Learn how to become a sponsor for this event.

Sponsor Levels
Image: Mardi Gras Ball, circa 1984.

45: An Anniversary Exhibition

Anniversary Ball: Saturday, November 16, 7 – 10pm, with gallery talk at 8pm | Get your tickets here!
Honorary Curator: Marian Van Landingham, artist and founder of Torpedo Factory Art Center

Target Gallery honors the legacy of the founding artists of the Torpedo Factory Art Center in this special 45th Anniversary exhibition. See work from many of the original artists, featuring both current and past work to capture their expansive artistic careers over the past 45 years.

Participating Artists* include:

Mirella Belshe, currently in studio #27
Ann DiPlacido
Susan Finsen, currently in studio #334
Joyce Inderbitzin
Cindy Lowther, currently in studio #301
Sue Lynch
Angelina Musto
Christine Parson, currently in studio #340
Niki Pickett, currently in studio #338
Gretchen Raber, currently in studio #201
Holly Rosenfeld
Susan Sanders, currently in studio #206
Connie Slack
Diane Tesler
Lea Topping 
Marian Van Landingham, currently in studio #321
Joyce Zipperer

* check back for updates

 

Image of Mirella Belshe at work in her studio, courtesy of Torpedo Factory Art Center.

Factory Flow Morning Yoga

Find inner peace and creativity in this morning series focused on art, health, and imagination. Led by certified instructor Alejandra O’Connor, sessions are judgement-free for all skill levels.

Please arrive 15 minutes early. Bring a mat, towel, and water bottle.

Pay what you can / suggested donation: $10 at the door.

Reserve Your Slot

 

About the Instructor

Alejandra O’Connor began regularly practicing yoga in 2014 as a way to exercise while joining her Indonesian host family in Ramadan fasting. After Ramadan was over, she was hooked on how the movement and breath combined to allow space for stillness. She earned her 200 hour adult teaching certification from Latitude Yoga Co. in Stafford, VA in May 2017; and her Kidding Around Yoga certification in March 2018. Currently she primarily teaches children. As such, her adult classes are combination of play, dance, and quiet meditation.