Reminding us that art can be fun, The Art League Gallery is exhibiting playful photographs, light-hearted remembrances of childhood, and captivating encaustic paintings — along with interactive artwork and activities for kids — through Monday, April 2.
The Art League Gallery exhibits work by local artists in monthly group exhibits and solo shows. "Play," this month's juried group show, invited artists to submit interactive art or work centering around the theme of play. A juror narrowed the submissions down to the best pieces for the show, featuring over 100 pieces from different artists in different media, all channeling playfulness in their own way. The monthly solo show, "Elemental," features a smaller group of work by just one artist. "Elemental," featuring encaustic (beeswax) paintings, is the first of nine solo exhibits scheduled for this year.
Come see unique encaustic artwork, find your sense of play, and touch some interactive artwork at the gallery!
"Play": In a first for the gallery, artists were invited to create interactive art — like the mixed-media painting with darts, the painting that asks to be rearranged, and the piece with dry-erase speech bubbles where viewers can create new conversations for the subjects. Look for the "Touch Me" signs to interact with the art! See the photo gallery for more examples of the fun that artists had.
The gallery also arranged activities for kids, including a chalkboard pedestal "graffiti wall," a scavenger hunt with the artwork, and a drawing game based on a Surrealist experiment. Visitors can also participate in a group etching by marking a zinc plate with the provided stylus, and receive a print of the finished etching after the exhibit closes!
"Elemental": Solo artist and beekeeper Georgia Nassikas uses her own beeswax and adds pigment to create these encaustic paintings, which depict abstracted, dreamlike landscapes. Encaustic is an ancient medium in which artists paint with heated wax, which allows for a great deal of flexibility in sculpting the wax and creating depth. The layered and scored surfaces of the paintings in "Elemental" are captivating when inspected up close.
The Art League Gallery is located on the first floor of the Torpedo Factory Art Center, on the waterfront at 105 N. Union St. in Alexandria. The gallery is open Monday–Saturday, 10 am–6 pm; Thursdays until 9 pm; and Sunday, noon–6 pm.
— George Miller