Arts Alive Announces 2015-2016 Visual Arts Schedule of Exhibits and Workshops

The Visual Arts Committee of Arts Alive, Inc. proudly announces a schedule of exhibits and workshops through May, 2016. Since 2004, the Visual Arts Committee has worked hard to provide talented artists in our community with opportunities to exhibit and sell their works. Community members are invited to bring their artwork to hang in each exhibit, except the Invitational Exhibit, for viewing by the public at the Robinson/Olsson Auditorium in West Point, VA. The Visual Arts Committee plans exhibits throughout the year to highlight local artists as well as workshops to offer opportunities to learn new art techniques. Co-chaired by Sue Kurfees, Gail Nichols, and Jeannette Wagner, the Visual Arts Committee only charges $15 plus any supply cost for these workshops which are open to adults and students ages 11 to 18. These workshops fill quickly, so sign up soon!

Workshop instructors are artists from the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts or local artists. Workshops from the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts are supplemented by grants. All workshops will be held at the West Point Library from 9:00-2:00 except the "I've Got a Secret to Share" Brunch which will be held at 407 Lee St. in West Point.

The first workshop is on Wednesday, September 9. Encaustics/Mixed Media will be taught by Karen Eide, a Virginia Museum of Fine Arts artist. Classic encaustic painting techniques are combined with surface embellishment, image transfer, incising, collaging, and creating marks and images with pastels, markers and inks.

A second workshop will be held on Tuesday, October 20. VMFA artist, Mary Swezey, will present Chinese Silk Painting. Participants will examine images found in traditional Chinese art which will be drawn on silk using liquid resist and then use brilliant fabric paint to complete the design.

On Wednesday, November 18 Create a Unique Necklace will be taught by Susan O'Rourke, artist. Participants will learn to create a necklace and earrings by mixing jewelry styles, techniques, and articles (beads, chains, wire, pendants, etc).

On Wednesday, December 9, Barb Risucci, artist, will offer Embellished Wet Felted Purse. Explore new fibers and techniques and be inspired to create a small purse with wet felting.

Mary Montague-Sikes, artist, will teach Collage: Creating Energy and Excitement in Your Art on Wednesday, February 3, 2016. Using elements and principles of design, participants will discuss and develop ideas for a collage.

On Wednesday, March 9 join us for Zentangle: Meditation Drawing. Zentangle is a creative form of meditation. Think of it as doodling that produces non-objective drawings composed of patterns. Artist, Sue Kurfees, will lead this workshop

Kendra Wadsworth, VMFA artist, will teach Abstract Mixed Media on Wednesday, April 6. Participants will explore lyrical expression and measured marks as they apply to abstract art. Using a variety of traditional and non-traditional materials and techniques participants will create an abstract mixed media work of art.

Marjorie Perrin, another VMFA artist, will offer Watercolor Landscape on Wednesday, May 11. In this workshop, participants explore how to use color and form to create an expressive landscape painting

The last workshop will be "I've Got a Secret to Share-Sharing Techniques and Brunch". Bring an example of a technique you found useful to share with the group. We will enjoy brunch as we share.

Arts Alive will offer 5 art exhibits, which coincide with Arts Alive performances, that will be displayed in the exhibit area of the Robinson/Olsson Auditorium adjacent to West Point High School on Thompson Avenue. They may be viewed during regular school hours by entering through the high school office or prior to an Arts Alive performance. Exhibition in Arts Alive exhibits is open to all local artists.

The first art exhibit will be an Invitational Show featuring Mary Montague Sikes from September 15 to October 13. The art opening will be on Saturday, September 19, 2015 at 6:30 PM, prior to Arts Alive's performance of Ethan Bortnick. The next art exhibit, A Photography Show, will be held from October 13 to November 10. The art opening will be on Saturday, October 17 at 6:30 PM prior to our performance of Savannah Jack. The All Media Community Show will be held from November 10 to December 15. The art opening will be held on Saturday, November 14 prior to our Mike Farris performance and on December 12 for Toni Tupponce and A Sign of the Times Band. Participants' Art from Arts Alive Workshops will be on display from February 9 to March 15. The art opening will be held on Saturday, February 27 prior to our performance by The Rock and Roll Jubilee. And the last exhibit will be from March 15 to May 3 with an All Media Community Art show. Art opening will be on Saturday, April 30 prior to The Young Irelanders show.

For additional information or to display your art work, please contact Sue Kurfees at 804-843-3108 or, Gail Nichols at 804-843-4418 or or Jeanette Wagner at 804-994-9668 or More information about Arts Alive and a schedule of events is also available at

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