Arlington Arts Center Fall SOLOS 2017

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on view OCTOBER 14 - DECEMBER 16, 2017


Arlington Arts Center (AAC) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit contemporary visual arts center dedicated to presenting and supporting new work by regional artists in the MidAtlantic states. Through exhibitions, educational programs, and subsidized studio spaces, AAC serves as a bridge between artists and the public. The goal is to increase awareness, appreciation of, and involvement in, the visual arts in Arlington County, VA and the region. AAC was established in 1974 and has been housed since 1976 in the historic Maury School. Our facility includes nine exhibition galleries, working studios for twelve artists, and three classrooms. At 17,000 square feet, we are one of the largest non-federal venues for contemporary art in the Washington, DC metropolitan area.

Front & Inside Cover: Anna Kell, Pink Field

Fall SOLOS 2017 on view

OCTOBER 14 - DECEMBER 16, 2017




To Sleep in Flames and Dream of Rain

Director’s Foreword At this turbulent time in society, cultural organizations like the Arlington Arts Center are more critical than ever, providing a safe space for dialogue, creativity, reflection, and inspiration. At AAC, we believe that art, and those who create it, matter, and that direct encounters with art and artists benefit our community, collectively and individually. For that reason, we provide a diverse, year-round schedule of high-quality exhibitions, presented free to the public. Arlington Arts Center’s annual SOLOS exhibitions are a critical part of our mission to serve as a bridge between artists and the public, identifying and connecting the region’s outstanding contemporary artists with a broad audience base. Fall and spring SOLOS exhibitions at AAC alternate with thematic shows curated by AAC staff, addressing current and consequential subject matter. The work in our galleries—whether it delights, astounds, or provokes—provides opportunities for public dialogue and personal enrichment, and serves as the basis for many of AAC’s educational programs. Arlington Arts Center’s sought-after artist residency program supports the regional arts

Mary Baum, Where Two Worlds Touch

community by providing affordable working studios for select contemporary artists. In tandem with Fall SOLOS 2017, AAC resident artist Ryan McCoy presents To Sleep in Flames and Dream of Rain in the Wyatt Resident Artists Gallery. In his exhibition, McCoy explores memory and ephemerality, utilizing materials ranging from pine needles to talcum powder. The depth of AAC’s residency program is reflected in McCoy’s poetic works. Thanks are due to AAC’s small but mighty staff: Director of Exhibitions, Karyn Miller, for her skillful organization of this exhibition; our Marketing and Administrative Coordinator, Laura Devereux, for creating our promotional materials; and our Education Director, Samantha Marques-Mordkofsky, for directing the educational programming that enriches the artistic content in our galleries. We are also grateful to our SOLOS jurors, Kate Haw and Mika Yoshitake, and to AAC’s Board of Directors, donors, and supporters for making our work here possible. Holly Koons McCullough Executive Director

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About the Exhibition For over ten years, Arlington Arts Center (AAC) has provided exposure for the region’s top artists through the SOLOS exhibition series, on display in the fall and spring. Following a rigorous review process, fourteen artists are selected to respond to one of AAC’s gallery spaces to create a unique installation. This series supports Mid-Atlantic artists and increases local awareness of and appreciation for the visual arts. Each artist’s work and artistic practice encourages interpretation, engagement, and investigation into both contemporary art and the world at-large. For the first time ever, Fall SOLOS 2017 will feature an entirely female line-up of artists, many of whom explore themes related to feminism, gender, and identity. Each year, applicants are evaluated by outside jurors and AAC’s staff using a variety of criteria such as medium, experience, and compatibility with AAC’s mission. The jurors who review these applications represent some of DC’s most esteemed art professionals. This year’s jurors were Kate Haw, the Director of the Smithsonian Institution’s Archives of American Art, and Mika Yoshitake, Assistant Curator at the Hirshorn Museum and Sculpture Garden. Many of the artists use everyday household objects to explore complex themes. Julie Wills uses gas cans, sandpaper, and light bulbs in her Arte-Povera inspired work to consider emotions such as desire, fear, and trust. Anna Kell reworks familiar and cozy furniture into new objects and spaces that are often alarming and uncomfortable, questioning notions of both beauty and femininity. Similarly, Jen Noone uses beauty products as a means of addressing the powerful influence consumerism has on our own value systems. Other artists delve into the world of the metaphysical. Mary Baum combines installation and video projection in her work to suggest a portal from our world to another, blurring our sense of reality and transporting us to another realm. Meanwhile, Atsuko Chirikjian uses yarn dipped in vials of dye to contemplate time and space in her unique and unpredictable staining process. Catherine Day analyzes life, loss, and grief in her macabre photographs printed onto found antique linens and translucent silks, which are infused with the memories of their previous owners. Finally, Mojdeh Rezaeipour’s collages depict her experience as an Iranian immigrant through the use of uncanny and dreamlike imagery. Although each artist’s installation is developed from a unique point of view, the Fall 2017 SOLOS exhibitions present relevant and meaningful interpretations of contemporary life. While the processes and themes are vastly different, these artists each express an interest in sparking a dialog that resonates beyond the gallery walls. Abby Simmons Exhibitions Intern, 2017 Facing Page: Atsuko Chirikjian, Stain Project

a space that evokes another dimension or a threshold between two worlds About the Artist MARY BAUM is a multidisciplinary artist from Oregon. Her work deals with themes of belief

and mysticism, the connection between the natural and spiritual worlds, and the relationship between magic and miracle. She received her BFA from Brigham Young University (UT) and her MFA from Maryland Institute College of Art (MD). She has exhibited internationally at Gallery 303 (UT), the MIA show (CA), Alice Gallery (UT), the Wye (Berlin, Germany), School 33 Art Center (MD), Towson University (MD), and CONNERSMITH (DC).


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Waiting for Echo

About the Work Mary Baum’s work combines water, video projection, and sound to create a space that evokes another dimension or a threshold between two worlds. The exhibition title, 52-Hertz Moon and its sound component reference the call of the 52-hertz whale, an individual whale of unidentified species, which calls at the unusually high frequency


of 52 hertz. It is a work that touches on the relationship between land, sky, and water, each being represented by a correlating element of sculpture, video, or sound. In this piece, land is a place of grounding as we consider our relationship to the moon in the sky and the connection between the moon and this unknown whale.

About the Artist

a metaphor for the passage of time, the role of chance, and the experience of memory

ATSUKO CHIRIKJIAN is a Baltimore-based

mixed media and fiber artist who was born in Japan. Her work has been shown nationally and internationally including Brooklyn, NY, Philadelphia, PA, St. Louis, MO, and Belgium. She received an honorable mention in Fiber Options at Circle Gallery (MD) in 2014 and was semi-finalist for The Trawick Prize (MD) in 2016. She received a BFA and an MFA from Tama Art University in Tokyo and later earned her MFA in Fiber from Cranbrook Academy of Art (MI). Chirikjian is currently teaching at Maryland Institute College of Art (MD).

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Tune Pigmentation Chronolog y

About the Work Atsuko Chirikjian examines time and space through fiber, dyes, and mixed media. In this exhibition, she shows installation pieces from her Stain Project alongside wall pieces from the series Canvas Project. The Stain Project uses a chromatographic staining technique created by placing dyes in a test tube with twisted paper yarn. The paper yarn functions as a capillary for the dyes to seep from the test tube and onto the artist’s rice paper through a series of experiments.

This natural phenomenon functions as a metaphor for the passage of time, the role of chance, and the experience of memory. In Canvas Project, Chirikjian deconstructs canvases to call the viewer’s attention to the woven material which holds time sequences within the structure of the warp and weft. Through these projects, the artist seeks to embed content and meaning into the materials and processes of her work.


About the Artist CATHERINE DAY lives and works in McLean, VA with roots in the South. She received a BFA in

Photography and Graphic Arts from Stephens College (MO).

She has had solo shows at the BlackRock Center for the Arts (MD), The Schlessinger Art Center (VA), The McLean Project for the Arts (VA), Waddell Art Gallery NVCC (VA), Julio Fine Arts Gallery (MD), Loyola College (MD), and has been included in numerous group shows. Day was awarded a 2012 Strauss Fellowship from the Arts Council of Fairfax County (VA). She was a 2015 Trawick Prize Finalist (MD). Day’s work is in public and private collections, including the Center for Photography at Woodstock (NY) and the University of Northern Iowa Permanent Collections (IA).

translucent silks and antique linens evoke grief and the emotions associated with loss


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Our Father

About the Work In Evanesce, Catherine Day’s black and white photographs on translucent silks and antique linens evoke grief and the emotions associated with loss. A headstone with flowers, mourners in a cemetery, and a lifeless hand all come in and out of focus in Day’s works examining the rituals around funerals, cemeteries, and death. Air currents within the

gallery space create movement in the layered fabrics and reflect the ephemeral nature of life. The works are printed on antique linens for their beautiful edges, embroidered textures, and translucency. These visual qualities combine with the memory of the women who made and used these linens.


About the Artist ANNA KELL received her BFA from Miami

University (FL) and her MFA from the University of Florida (FL). Her paintings and installations, typically made from cast-off domestic objects she finds and collects, have been featured in exhibitions nationally and internationally. She has attended numerous artist-in-residency programs and in 2014 was awarded a six-month fellowship at Triangle Arts in Brooklyn, NY. In 2011, Kell was awarded the Individual Artist Fellowship from the State of Tennessee. She is currently Assistant Professor of Studio Art at Bucknell University (PA), where she teaches painting, drawing, and interdisciplinary courses.


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pieces, organized around the popular decorative motifs of flowers and trees, will challenge viewers’ ideals of gender, beauty, and nature

Pink Field

About the Work Anna Kell’s artwork is motivated by a desire to examine cultural attitudes toward the natural environment. Her process often begins with the collection and creative appropriation of decorative cast-offs like sofas, mattresses, and footstools. She is particularly interested in the surface decorations present on such massproduced objects and what their qualities can


tell us about those who bought or used them. At AAC, Kell will transform the Chairmen’s Gallery with multi-dimensional, large-scale murals and an installation made from found materials. The pieces, organized around the popular decorative motifs of flowers and trees, will challenge viewers’ ideals of gender, beauty, and nature.

About the Artist

ideas about what is seen, what something is called, and what is known are called in to question


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JEN NOONE is an artist and educator based

in Arlington, VA. She earned a BA in Art Education from Saint Joseph’s University (PA) and an MFA in Studio Art from American University (DC). Noone was a 2017 Trawick Prize semifinalist and is currently an artistin-residence at Arlington Arts Center. Her exhibition at WAS Gallery (MD) was recently featured in The Washington Post. Noone’s work has been shown at the American University Museum at the Katzen Arts Center (DC), WAS Gallery (MD), and CONNERSMITH (DC). Currently, Noone teaches fine arts classes at Northern Virginia Community College (VA), American University (DC), and Montgomery County Public Schools (MD).

Strobed & Contoured

About the Work The work in this exhibition is a continuation of Jen Noone’s material investigations of everyday consumer products often marketed to women, like hair dye, makeup, house paint, and body wash. Through ritualistic acts such as washing and braiding, Noone uses these superficial products to explore themes of time, permanence, preservation, and loss while also questioning Western fascinations with image, beauty, and youthfulness. Hair dyes seep through fabrics, rocks are covered


with bronzers using Kim Kardashian’s contouring techniques, and iridescent purple eye shadows are paired with geodes. There is a sense of reclamation in Noone’s exploitation of the products’ physical beauty to investigate these deeper themes. Ideas about what is seen, what something is called, and what is known are called into question, creating a tension and critique of popular products and their social implications.

About the Artist MOJDEH REZAEIPOUR is an Iranian-American mixed media artist and storyteller. She has a

BA in Architecture from UC Berkeley and is currently pursuing a self-directed Masters as a part of Alt*Div with an emphasis on art as spiritual practice. While her studio is based deep in the forests of Southern Maryland, she has shown her work at many galleries including Hillyer Art Space (DC), Katzen Art Center (DC), Olly Olly (VA), and Strathmore Mansion (MD), where she had her debut solo exhibition last fall. Mojdeh’s stories have been featured on The Moth Mainstage, Podcast, and Radio Hour. She currently serves as The Moth’s Washington, DC StorySlam Producer and leads independent workshops on visual storytelling.

an act of prayer, through a constant deconstruction and reconstruction of memory and understanding


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Prayer Card series: Nine of Roots (L), Four of Roots (R)

About the Work Mojdeh Rezaeipour’s semi-autobiographical work explores the duality of her childhood in Iran and the disembodied nature of the immigrant experience. In Belonging she plays with space, dimensionality, and architectural elements to invite the viewer into the walls of her learning, as she tugs deeper at the chilling parallels between her past and our collective present. She works in pyrography, a method of burning the surface of wood to create a mark. Images of the body

and photographs from the past are often combined with natural elements like roots, petals, branches, and pigmented beeswax. Much of her work is an act of prayer through a constant deconstruction and reconstruction of memory and understanding. This ephemeral visual language is simultaneously rooted in nature and personal narratives, while unfolding in fragments through a dialogue with spirit.


the interior force of individual yet universal desires About the Artist JULIE WILLS is an interdisciplinary artist working in the expanded field of sculpture, which

includes installation, collage, works on paper, performance, video, and site-specific practices. She holds an MFA from the University of Colorado, and an MA in art criticism from the University of Montana. Wills has been an artist-in-residence at Pyramid Atlantic Art Center (MD), Jentel (WY), PLAYA (OR), and the Hambidge Center (GA), among others. Recent solo exhibitions of Wills’ works have been presented at Hillyer Art Space (DC) and Kohl Gallery at Washington College (MD). Wills is an Assistant Professor of Studio Art at Washington College (MD).


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Untitled (Arrangement)

About the Work Though recent years have seen an emphasis on socially-engaged artworks that often interact with communities in physical ways, Julie Wills considers the interior force of individual yet universal desires: love that is deep and lasting, comfort, and the need to feel seen and heard -- especially by one’s beloved. These themes are familiar to even the most disparate of populations and circumstances. A pair of entwined fuel cans attempt a


closed system of mutual support, despite the volatility of their presumed contents. The distant reaches of an infinite cosmos strain to reach their other halves. The works in the exhibition are inherently relational: each conjures the proximity of two bodies. Like the individual works, the exhibition title, The moon my heart, presents binary entities that could be one and the same.

Untitled (August 2017)

Wyatt Resident Artists Gallery | To Sleep in Flames and Dream of Rain

About the Work Ryan McCoy’s haunting and lyrical works are rooted in the languages of abstraction and minimalism. Baby powder, sea water, pine needles, straw, rust, and other materials are combined to create new iconographies about time, place, and memory. Disparate pieces of the past are transformed into artifacts of an ever-fleeting present. Isolation, longing, alienation, and impermanence are

key underlying themes in this body of work created over the past twelve years. McCoy’s exhibition, To Sleep in Flames and Dream of Rain, places these concepts against the backdrop of today’s political, social, and economic turbulence. Through his collision of materials, McCoy structures time, place, and memory to offer a meditation on alienation in a tempestuous world.


About the Artist RYAN MCCOY is an artist based in the Washington, DC area. He works in various media but his

practice is centered around the creation of large, iconic paintings. His work has been exhibited nationally and internationally, and is included in numerous private collections throughout the US, Europe, South America, and Australia. In March 2016, he began a long-term residency at Arlington Arts Center, which will continue through 2022. He earned his MFA and BFA from George Mason University and is an Adjunct Professor of Art and Design at various schools in the Washington, DC metro area. He is represented by Long View Gallery in Washington, DC.

structures time, place, and memory to offer a meditation on alienation in a tempestuous world



About the Artist LUIS FITCH was born in 1965 and raised in the most visited border in the world, Tijuana,

Mexico. A highly industrialized, cross-cultural, and international city, Tijuana is a place of constant change, international commerce, and pseudo-American post-modern living. Fitch’s early artistic development was markedly influenced by the socio-political conditions affecting Tijuana and the San Diego area, where he lived after graduating from high school in Mexico. After moving to California in the mid-eighties, Fitch studied graphic design and visual arts. His work explores the dichotomy of a life caught between two worlds — the “south” (Mexico) and the “north” (United States). Fitch currently lives and works in Minneapolis, MN, where he directs his own cross-cultural branding agency and art studio.


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El Presidente

Jenkins Community Gallery | Drawing Blood

About the Work Luis Fitch’s Drawing Blood series is not a simple retelling of his childhood in Mexico; the works remix complex narratives and retrofit Mexican mythologies with a crisp and vibrant street art sensibility. The work is recognizable for its graphic simplicity: a bright, playful, vectorized update to traditional Mexican iconography that speaks to the problems of modern-day Mexico such as government corruption and drug war violence. Combining contemporary digital technology with “Papel Picado,” the Mexican technique of colorful hand-cut paper dating back to the 18th century, the work moves seamlessly across cultures and through time.


Exhibitions Fall SOLOS 2017 | Main & Lower Level Galleries October 14 - December 16, 2017 Ryan McCoy: To Sleep in Flames and Dream of Rain | Wyatt Resident Artists Gallery

October 14 - December 16, 2017

Luis Fitch: Drawing Blood | Jenkins Community Gallery

November 4 - December 16, 2017

Events Fall SOLOS 2017 Opening Reception & Resident Open Studios

October 14, 6 - 9 pm

Día de los Muertos / Day of the Dead Celebration

November 4, 5 - 8 pm

Fall SOLOS 2017 Gallery Talk & Closing Reception

December 16, 1 - 3 pm

Classes & Workshops Weekly Classes for Toddlers, Kids, Teens, & Adults

October 17 – December 20

Art’s Cool! Art School! Election Day Workshops for Kids & Teens

November 7 Before and aftercare options available

Handmade Holidays Workshop for Adults

December 5

Gift Mania Holiday Workshop for Kids

December 9

Advance registration is required For more information about our classes and to register online visit us at

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aac Hours & Location Arlington Arts Center is open Wednesday - Sunday, 12 - 5 pm and by appointment. Metro: Silver & Orange Lines: Virginia Square 3550 Wilson Boulevard Arlington, VA 22201 703.248.6800 For more info about AAC visit:


Sponsors & Partners Our programs are made possible through the generous support of the Virginia Commission for the Arts/ NEA; Arlington County through the Arlington Cultural Affairs division of Arlington Economic Development, the Arlington Commission for the Arts and Arlington Public Art; The Morris & Gwendolyn Cafritz Foundation; The Washington Forrest Foundation; The Arlington Community Foundation; Founders of the Fund Your Artist Vision; and AAC members.