ArtNews Vol. 2 #1

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THE GIFT OF ART In Prince William County MEET PWC’S NEWEST POET LAURETTE Michelle Garcia ARTS NEWS WHAT IS AN EMERGING ARTIST WHAT IS THE LA EXPERINCE PRINCE WILLIAM COUNTY VOL. 2 Number 1 DECEMBER/ JANUARY 2022-23 A Word with VICTOR ANGRY Neabsco District BOCS

CELEBRATING THE FROM THE BLACK NATIVITY

VICTORIA BARTLETT
HOLIDAYS THROUGH ART. TO THE NUTCRACKER.
4 CONTENTS 7 The Art Of India 8 Scary Fun Fest 12 Interview with NAACP Award Winner 12 Where to Be in PWC This Winter 14 Art Society Social Calendar 18 New Haven Arts 20 Cultural Cuisine 22 Highlight of the Week 25 Calling all Graphic Designers 26 L.A. Cover Story 30 A word with Victor Angry 32 Hip Hop is Back
5 SENIOR MAGAZINE EDITOR WETKINS CREATIVE DIRECTOR VICTOR HARPER EXECUTIVE EDITOR DONNELL TAYLOR DIGITAL EDITOR KOFI KARIKARI MANAGING EDITOR JOHN WOOTEN DIGITAL DIRECTOR AARON KIMMEL PHOTOGRAPHER: DONNELL TAYLOR, PHOTOGRAPHER: KWADWO ADJEI GRAPHIC DESIGNER: ADONIS DORSEY, KC CLAURE ARTS NEWS Tema Choir USA Food Drive
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Gold sponsor PWC Arts council’s OSA

THE ART OF INDIA

THE OPENING OF A SOUTH ASAIN CULTURAL EXPERIENCE

Impact and Influences of India on the World and the world on India was key in this exhibit. The exhibit paid homage to the culture and history in a holistic way. There’s much culture and art to learn from. The Artist Anu Narasimhan showed pea cocks and elephants in her works, as well as the most recognizable Hindu deity, Gane sha. There was no shortage of bright colors usually associated with India, or beautiful textiles that served as both accents behind some of the works that hung in the gallery.

SCARY FUN FEST

A day of music, a night of gouls

Scary fun! That’s how we describe the new annual autumn festival which debuted at the Tackett’s Mill Center on Saturday, October 29th. Scary Fun fest is a family-friendly Hal loween-themed event developed by Clearbrook Center of the Arts and the Prince William County Arts Council which featured an array of fun, inter active activities for the entire fami ly. Guests were greeted with festive halloween decorum covering the in side of the center. Sweet and savory treats were handed out to eager trick or treaters as they entered Clearbrook. Local rock band ( and crowd favor ite) the DARTS kicked off the event. The audience rocked out in costume as they waited for the evening’s activ ities to get underway. Attendees who were seeking to unwind were able to view the films ‘Coraline’ an animat

ed film based on the book by author Neil Gaiman, and Spirited Away, a classic animated Japanese film. The Silent Dance Party was a new expe rience for many festival goers. Silent Dance Party involves a DJ ( or two DJs in the case of Scary Fun Fest), that uses bluetooth and radio tech nology to stream music to listeners headphones, essentially serving as a personal radio station to listeners. The lower half Tackett’s mill be came the site for of a murder mystery game, which attendees could partake in at any time during the festival. QR Codes were placed in discreet loca tions throughout the center. When a player scanned the QR Code, they were given clues to help them solve the mystery. This festival was cre ated with the intention of creating a wholesome environment where fam-

ilies can celebrate Halloween while experiencing the arts in Woodbridge. Mark your calendars, Scary Fun Fest is scheduled to return to Tackett’s in October of 2023. If you would like to partake in the Murder Mystery we have provided a QR Code here.

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OCCOQUAN ARTS FESTIVAL

THE ARTS BY THE WATER

its age, location and original owner. The property has been through many owners over the course of its lifespan. Under the ownership of Lance Houghton it has been utilized by many groups and organizations as event space, keeping the space a functional part of the Occoquan community. Surely there will be more opportunities for the future of the arts at Rockledge Mansion.)

The Arts and Crafts Show in Occoquan boast ed over 150 vendors, thousands of guests and a great deal of beauty in this small town. Over the weekend this festival did not disappoint! …But in a beautiful town such as this how could it. Even as we tried to contain ourselves with covering the event, the smell of food and interesting vendors lured us in more and more.

One of the highlights seemed to be the Frozen Wine cocktails. With both red and white wine choices lines were long and guests seemed to walk away with a smile.

At the foot of the street high upon a rock sat my focus. While the streets were busy with people with just enough elbow room, I found my way to sit comfortably at Rockledge Mansion where artist Michelle Baker was showing her works, and own er Lance Houghton greeted, and gave a bit of his tory to guests who toured the mansion.

(A brief history of Rockledge Mansion. Opened in 1758, now known as a historic marker due to

Use your phone and scan the QR code to open the link to our interview with Artist Michelle Baker on her experience being asked to show her works in this rustic space, and Learn more about the history and future plans for Rockledge Mansion from owner and caretaker Lance Houghton. — By Herb Willaims

For more information be sure to follow the Rock ledge Mansion facebook page for future updates of occurring events.

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The City of Occoquan holds their annual arts festival and plays host to hundreds of local artisans

YOUTH VOICES

NAACP WINNER SPEAKS ON...

Over the span of the summer Indigo Green has had the chance to participate in a legendary award winning competition of the arts. After receiving a bronze medal from the Naacp ACT-SO award, Indigo took the time to sit down with us and talk about his poem. Based on the song “Strange Fruit” by Billie Holiday, Indigo expands on the old style lynching of black americans into the modern day era of po lice brutality. The poem is a scary and far reaching remind er of the ever prevalent history and status of black people in America. I feel chills as he recites his award winning poem. We dive deep into the art of poet ry during this interview as Indigo expands on the function of explor ing the character and experience when writing for pathos and building a poem. This poem was built off the grief Indigo felt after being pulled over and relating to the many Black Americans who have not survived a traffic stop due to death by cop. Using that sen sation and the BLM protest of 2020, Indigo shaped this poem into his own version of what Billie Holiday etched into song almost 80 years prior. “That dual ity of old and new”. A graduate of Colgan High School, Indigo took a chance and leap of faith to try doing poetry and join the competition of ACT-SO in Prince Wil liam County.

Throughout the competition, Indigo went through alot of self discovery and moments of anxiety while being judged through the process and finding his artistic purpose. Indi go even credits the advice of former Poet Laureate Kim B Miller as a key feature to forming this artistic purpose or perhaps understanding it. Upon winning the local com petition for gold in PWC, Indigo would go on to Atlantic city to continue to win the bronze medal in the ACT-SO Competition.

The interview covers the importance of confidence and ne cessity of identity tremendously well. Indigo Green is such a strong minded poet in the sense of self awareness and awareness of space. We asked him what he would be in the metaverse if he could build himself into anything. His re sponse was he would always have a fedora, a notebook and a 0.9 mechanical pencil. A true poet in nature. We also covered some other poems written by him in the interview which is sure to enrich any aspiring poets out there. You can watch our full interview with Indigo Green through the QR code. We are live on twitch every tuesday around 4pm est on the Akimmelfilms twitch channel.

December 15th Indi go will be teaching a masterclass in narrative poetry at Colgan High School and now has become a student at George Mason University.

You can purchase a Chapbook by Indigo Green called Stare of Pigmentation here.

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“When you hear Indigo Green, I want you to think about your position in Life”

THE CLEARBROOK CENTER FOR THE ARTS

WOODBRIDGE’S BEST KEPT SECRET A center designed for all art forms under one roof. Conviently tucked away in Tackett’s Mill

Clearbrook is gearing up for some exciting changes over the next couple of months. Limelight Live, a talent showcase hosted by W (host of Jirani’s Open Mic) premieres on Wednesday, November 23rd at 7 pm. All performers are welcome!

The Producer Showcase returns to Clearbrook on November 19th at 6 pm. Producers from across the DC Metropolitan area will get a limited time to play their original music in front of a live audience. This event is intended to create a platform for local producers who want to grow their audience as well as net work with other producers. The lineup for the November show case is currently finalized, but producers who are interested in being featured in future showcases should send an email to clearbrookcenterofthearts@gmail.com.

Are you a new poet seeking to try out new material? Or perhaps you’re a more seasoned poet that simply does not feel like making the trek to DC to share their work. Speaking into Existence Open Mic is the place for you! Stop by Clearbrook on November 21st at 7:00 pm and perform in front of a community of supportive poets of all skill levels from the greater Prince William Area. If you are performing, please be sure your content is family-friendly. For tickets please visit https://www.eventbrite.com/e/speak-into-exis tence-open-mic-tickets-444169662417.

Performers may sign up on a first come first serve basis on the day of the event.

Celebrate the holiday season with the annual Winter Wonderland festival at Clearbrook on Saturday, December 10 from 12 pm –2 pm. Enjoy games, get a caricature of the family that you can cherish for years to come, hang out with Santa Claus, listen to live music, there’s something for everyone at this FREE festival!

We are hosting our first annual Holiday Pop Up on Sunday In De cember 11th from 1 - 5. If you’re interested in becoming a vendor, please send an email to clearbrookcenterofthearts@gmail.com to receive the proper forms. Dawne Horizons is also hosting a Pop Up event at Clearbrook on Saturday December 3rd. Enjoy an af ternoon of performances from poets, artists, singers and comedi ans to help get you into the spirit of the holiday season!

Follow our social media pages to stay current with news about Clearbrook!

Instagram:@clearbrookdmv

Facebook: @contacttackett’smill

Facebook: @contacttackett’smill

INSPIRED BY ANDREW GARFIELD
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PET-OBERFEST

Discover the community of PWC PETS

Pet-Oberfest returned to Stonebridge, Sat urday, October 15th. Anticipation for this festival was high, since the PetOberfest was canceled last year. I was initially in disbelief when I saw the advertisement for this festival, just a few days before the event. I had admittedly never heard of Pe tOberfest and was pleasantly surprised that such a prominent festival geared towards pets was hosted in Prince William County. Being an owner of an 11-year-old Sichon with the energy of a puppy, I thought this festival would be a great way to spend time with my pet while engaging in a new activity. The shopping center was vibrant, which is not unusual for Stonebridge on a Saturday afternoon, but I noticed a very distinct aura that day that I haven’t seen here previously. The streets were filled with laughter, joy and bonding over the mutual love that pet owners had with their pets. My dog’s eyes were darting back and forth like ping pong balls as he began to take in all of the activities that were occur ring at this festival. I was impressed with the how many activities packed the streets that day.

PetOberfest offered a variety of activities which included a costume contest, live performances, moon bounce, a pet pa rade, lure course and a petting zoo. Ad ditionally, nearly two dozen local orga nizations which provide pet care, rescue, and adoption services took part in this festival, offering their expertise to curious pet owners. The Mid-Atlantic Disc Dogs, a prominent regional club for canine disc enthusiasts provided a special training ses sion for families that were interested in en rolling their dogs in disc dog. Canine disc (also known as Disc dog), is a “dog sport” that could be likened to a combination of ultimate frisbee and fetch. Disc dog has gained significant popularity over the past few decades.

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JUNE

Deck Your Halls - 11/23 - 01/02

Deck Your Halls - 11/23 - 01/02

JANUARY

Youth Art Classes coming mid Jan. for more information contact Herb Williams: HWILLIAMS@PWCGOV.ORG

FEBRUARY

In Celebration of Black History Exhibit 02/01 - 02/26

Magazine 02/13

Opening of After the Master’s Style 01/04 - 01/29

Music Out Loud in the Park (Juneteenth weekend) 06/17 2-8pm Exhibit to be decided

JULY

The Fourth in Old Town Manassas

AUGUST

Conjutsu (TBD on date) SEPT.

Courageous Women In History Book Signing Exhibit 03/01 - 03/13

Elizabeth Vrato (Opening speaker.) 3 week presentation (TBD) 03/15 - 04/02

Student Show 04/05- 04/30

April showers bring May Flowers 05/03- 05/28

Seefeldt Awards for Arts Excellence 05/26

Arts Alive 09/10 OCT.

International artist Day (Artist Reception) 10/25

Scary Fun Fest II (Halloween Event) 10/27

16 ART SOCIETY Social calendar 2023
Nov. DEC. JAN.
MARCH
MAY
APRIL
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The Manassas Symphony Orchestra’s 30th Anniversary Season
Cont.

HAVEN ARTS

Haven Arts VA Located at 9108 Church St #200, Manassas, VA 20110, Is the epitome of what the new generation of the arts looks like in Northern Virginia. The space is neat ly tucked away in Old Town Manas sas at the top floor of what seems to be a post office building. The center is covered in a variety of arts cross ing many mediums and styles. Ha ven Arts houses a functional music studio and computer rooms for video editing, sound engineering and more. The center is focused not only on the arts but the aspects of technology and the arts as well. Walking around the space felt very exciting and youth

ful. Something that would stand out to artists who are into hype scenes or pop culture. Very hip, vibrant and embraced with subtle hues of light ing that gave the physical art a niche vibe. The owner Dallas has a vision of making the center a desired pitstop on the east coast. Surely achievable as young creatives already gravitate toward the space.

My first impressions of the center tell me everything I need to know about it. There’s a target audience from the hip hop scene, to skater to street fashion. The area pops with a ca dence that almost invites that genre

of pop/punk culture into it. The fea tured pieces within the space scream for attention. Anime paintings, and fashion adorn the walls, a gaming ar cade is pieced for antiquity and inter action. It invites the mind to wonder. Lights dance on the wall displaying a figure who dances with them. Aug mented reality silently hides in a cor ner waiting to be discovered. Haven Arts screams “discover me”, as if it’s waiting to find whoever might enter the location. Im left thinking to my self in amazement, what might Hav en become in the future as it cements itself as a new bold addition to Old Town Manassas.

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BOB ROSS PAINTING

One of the exciting workshops that took place at the Open Space Arts Facility at Potomac Town Center was presented by Scott McDonald a certified Bob Ross Instructor who is also a member of the local Prince William Art Society.

If you are interested in taking classes or participating in the many workshops that will be held regularly, please don’t hesitate to stop by and sign up for any of the coming classes.

List of Workshops and Classes Coming to OSA:

November 23

Opening for Deck the Halls, November 23-January 3. 2023.

November 27 – December 9

Call for entries for the January After the Master’s Style, Jan 4 - 29, 2023. (OSA artists will submit work inspired by famous artist. Work submitted should indicate what famous artist was used as a reference. Some work not inspired by masters will be accepted.

December 10

Choral Music presentation at 3:00pm in the main gallery of OSA.

Coming in 2023: January 4

Opening of After the Master’s Style January 4 - January 29.

February: “Black History Art Celebration” Art Exhibit for all artists in PWC over 18 years of age. Each piece of art celebrating contributions of Black artists to a variety of the arts.

March: “Women’s History Month” Exhibit of visual art about women and women artists, both visual and literary. Each literary piece of art should include a small sign with the quote that inspired it. (Mary Shelly - Frankenstein; J.K. Rowl-ing-Harry Potter; Maya Angelou - I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings, etc.)

April: “Young at Art” Art Exhibit for all PWC High School Students

May: “Military in the Arts” An exhibit by active duty, re tired, and former military artists and their spouses. Art does not have to be military themed.

June: “Save the Environment”Art depicting the environ ment at its best and worst.

“Talent is a pursued interest”

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CULTURAL Cuisine

Did you know that Prince William Coun ty is home to a pleth ora of diverse restau rants? In this inaugural column, ArtNews ex plores these bistros in our neighbor hoods that offer delicious choices of foods. We will learn of the history, pop ular foods, and the ambiance of these eateries.

This opening feature is of two lo cal restaurants, Armetta’s and The Skrimp Shack. Their unique and pop ular foods have long been patronized not just by locals, but nationally as customers traveling through Prince William County stop and savor the cooking.

At Armetta’s, located at 4584 Daisy Reid Avenue, Suite 109 in the Lake Ridge community of Woodbridge, Virginia, the general manager of this Italian restaurant, Ms. Chistinia Armetta, offers a great history of her family- owned business and invite all to come and experience authentic Italian food. In a recent interview, Christina, who has been with her fam ily’s namesake restaurant for over 20 years, shared her story.

ArtNews: Give a bit of history on Armetta’s.

Christina: Our story begins back in 1976 when an Italian gentleman and my father, Vito Armetta was brought to the Northern Virginia area by a good friend of his who worked in Washington DC. He told my Father that this area of Northern Virginia was growing and would be the perfect place to build family and business. And so planting roots in Woodbridge, Virginia was then to become our des tiny. My father went on to open a total of six restaurants from U.S. Route 1 to Dale Boulevard and then to Route 234. After his three daughters became

adults, he decided to move on and sell all but one of the restaurants.

Tonys Pizza on route 234 is our old est location dating back to 1987 and is still super popular with local resi dents.

ArtNews: You mentioned that your dad is still involved in the business at 78 years old.

Christina: After a few years of retire ment, my dad decided to return to the business and he opened another loca tion on Minnieville Road in Wood bridge and then in February, 2015, he moved us to our current location here on Daisy Reid Avenue.

ArtNews: What is the clientele like and what are people saying about the traditional foods you offer?

Christina: We have been in the Laker idge community now for 7 years and our clientele is very diverse, from children to the elderly, we can satis

fy many different palates. We extend a traditional Italian menu that the whole family can enjoy and for some, our menu even brings back happy memories of their childhood. Some of our popular dishes are: Caprese Salad, Penne al Pomodoro, Gnocchi Capri, Rigatoni Vodka, Ravioli, and many others to choose from.

ArtNews: Christina, thank you for time. With convenient locations, peo ple can visit and and experience all that Armetta’s has to offer.

Armetta’s has become so popular over the years that management has seen the need to offer catering services and extend their operating hours. The restaurant is open seven days a week. For more information on Armetta’s you can visit the website at https:// armettasrestaurant.com

Another prominent and popular eat ery is Skrimp Shack in Dumfries, Vir

20 Culinary LOCAL TREATS

ginia. An array of customers swarms the restaurant daily to enjoy good tra ditional southern soul food. Frequent customers advise to call in your order early and pick up.

The owners of Skrimp Shack are An drew and Michelle Baxter. The first location of Skrimp Shack was opened in October, 2018 and is still operating in its original location, 17237 Way side Drive in Dumfries, Virginia. A second location opened in Manassas, Virginia at Sudley Manor Square, 7855 Sudley Road, Manassas, VA September, 2020.

ArtNews reporter, Inger McPhail in terviewed co-owner Michelle Baxter got a glimpse inside this popular bis tro.

ArtNews: Michelle, thank you for taking time out of your busy day to talk about the Skrimp Shack. What’s the history behind the restaurant?

Michelle: The Skrimp Shack story began in 2011, when Mitch and Sta cey Hartman founded the American fast-casual seafood brand. The brand soon became known and loved for having the “Fattest Fish Samwich” in town, and for its vibrant, loyal cus tomer base.

ArtNews: How did the restaurant get its name? It sounds like a play off the southern drawl?

Michelle: I wasn’t privileged with the thought process for the name from

the founders, but I can tell you people tend to love saying “Skrimp” when they hear about us!

ArtNews: Do you offer catering ser vices?

Michelle: We absolutely cater! ArtNews: What are your operating hours should someone want to do a quick run to your restaurant?

Michelle: Our operating hours are 11 am to 9 pm Monday through Satur day.

ArtNews: What are some of your most popular dishes particularly at the two locations in Prince William County?

Michelle: At our two locations, the classic whiting sandwich is very pop ular; but the catfish has developed a cult following! The shrimp and blue crab poboy with either our mild or spicy house poboy sauces is also a fan favorite.

ArtNews: Ok. For those who are mild fans of seafood, are there other op tions?

Michelle: Yes, if you’re looking for something on the turf side of the surf and turf equation then I can tell you our chicken is excellent! People rave about our chicken, especially the new “Signature Chicken Sandwich” and the “Nashville Hot Chicken Sand wich”. Our two best sellers on the dessert side of the menu are the ba

nana pudding and the beignets.

ArtNews: You offer a variety of southern cuisine. How diverse is the menu when it comes to a range within the southern food culture?

Michelle: We have a diverse offering on our menu. Our menu includes items Cajun food, and we are always looking to expand our menu to ac commodate as many customers as we can.

ArtNews: Do you offer delivery op tions for those who work late and are busy with families?

Michelle: We currently have a deliv ery option available when ordered on our website, Skrimpshackdumfries. com and SkrimpshackManassas.com.

Artnews: What closing comments would you like for customers and vis itors to know about Skrimp Shack?

Michelle: I like to call our fare “beach vacation food! It doesn’t matter if you’re from up north, down south, out west, or here in Prince William Coun ty or the DMV, we strive to provide good food and the southern soul food experience that help our guests to feel a little slice of homestyle cooking in the midst of busy schedules!

Become a business partner of the Arts Council to receive benefits and special opportunities and advertis ment. Donations start at $100

Culinary LOCAL TREATS

H I G H L I G H T O F T H E W E E K

INTRODUCING PRINCE WILLIAM COUNTY’S NEW POET LAURETTE: MICHELLE GARCIA

My poetry stems directly from my sense of place. My roots. And they lie right here in Lake Ridge, Vir ginia, where I’ve spent my 22 years growing into the poet I am today. My identity, both in person and on paper, is shaped by a childhood and adoles cence perfumed by these familiar suburbs. Without these residential streets, this tight-knit community of primarily good people, I would have never chosen to pursue a career in writ ing. Therefore, as some one who finds sustenance in giving back what was given to me, I believe that serving as the 2022-2024 poet laureate would be an homage—an expression of gratitude—to my up bringing.

I have always dreamt of in tertwining my passions for leadership, education, and poetry-writing to bridge massive accessibility gaps in our community. Not everyone is privileged enough to pursue educational op portunities in the creative arts, and I want nothing more than to assist in cre ating a culture that can change that for good. The power of poetry is that, if it is given a stable environ ment to blossom, it will. I want children, adolescents, young adults, and seniors in our community to be able

to write together without cost. No strings attached. We have the resources to be able to do that; we just need a commitment to the vision of making it a reality. Prince William County boasts of natural beauty: lakes, ma rinas, state parks, and out door amenities….I’d like to take poetry outside and lead community poetry-writing and art-making with others

using methods of observa tion and mindfulness, in a Mary Oliver-esque fashion of being grounded in the world. I’d like to lead open discussions and workshops in our public libraries, schools, and even online— on the social platforms that pervade our lives….

It was through these prac tices that I, myself, as a

21-year-old college senior, was able to publish my de but collection of poetry, Cul-de-sac Angels.... It’s a book about home, common wealth, and belonging. As poet laureate, my contribu tions would center around one theme: this is home, and no matter who you are, you are welcome here.

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Tickets $25 • FREE for Children through College with ID • Groups of 10+ Discount at Box Office • ManassasSymphony.org 10960 George Mason Circle • Manassas, VA 20110 | TICKETS: HyltonCenter.org • 703-993-7759 • Office Hours – Tue-Sat, 10am-6pm Explorations (Family Concert) John Ross • Viola Senior, Patriot High School Weber - Andante and Rondo Ungarese Puccini - Favorite Arias B. Bernstein - The Path (World Premiere)* *Based on book by Bob Staake ©2022. Reprinted with permission. James Villani Music Director Celebrating our 30th Year 2022 Seefeldt Award - Outstanding Artist 2015 American Prize - Orchestral Performance 2019 Seefeldt Award - Arts Organization FEATURING MSO’S EXCLUSIVE INDOOR LIGHT AND MUSIC SHOW! Saturday, December 10 • 3:30pm Hylton Performing Arts Center Special guests: Christina Maxted, soprano Rick Davis, narrator Pre-concert performance by members of The Capitol Symphonic Youth Orchestras
Open Arts Sundays Paint and Draw at the Open Space Arts Every Sunday 5pm – 9pm (Beginning Dec. 4) • All ages welcome • Come out and relax • Vibe creatively to music • Bring your own supplies or purchase on site We supply: easels/stands, paint, sketch paper, pencils 1500 Potomac Town Place, #104 Woodbridge, VA 22191

Calling All Graphic Desginers

PWC Open Space Arts in Stonebridge is looking for graphic designers and il lustrators. We have many projects and ideas we would like to grow and are in need of talent. Kc Claure: “RUN IT”

L.A. (ZERO)

What is an emerging artist?

Emerging artists are usually defined as artists at the early stages of their career. L.A., as an “emerging” artist, is honing his style and while he has not landed recognition from a critic and don’t have commercial representation yet, two New York galleries have shown interest in his work. One that would like to see his work on their gallery walls, and another that would like to further discover his creativity through offering him a 3-month residency.

“Emerging” is a label that resists quantification for some, but where L.A. is concerned, having already found somewhat of a following online and sold works, maybe not so much. While the ambiguity of the term emerging can feel like a blessing and a curse for an artist trying to secure recognition, or commercial success there is great promise for our young energized creative talent. Discovering him is no easy feat, but we tried as much as we could here.

ART THROUGH OUR EYES

L.A. (ZERO) ARTICLE

LA Mejias, a product of Prince William County Public Schools and a participant in the April 2022 Emerging Artists Exhibit at Open Space Arts, presented by Prince William Arts Council has displayed the passion that Michel angelo spoke to when he said, “A man paints with his brains and not with his hands.”

Watching Mejias’ work is nothing short of inspiring and viewing the finished product before us we are reminded of essential truths at a time of crisis, that artmaking cannot be stifled, and that it offers opportunities through an examination of shared experiences. To hear this young now 20-year-old artist talk of his work and give his purpose be hind each piece draws you in even more taking you on a journey through his creative mind. It’s no wonder he was the top seller in the show back in April at Open Space Arts located in Potomac Town Center. Amid adversities artists strive to create masterpiec es that mirror our society’s stories and sensibilities, while others create works that plead for change, examine circumstances, encourage con versations, and challenge actions for national transformation. This is who LA Mejias is and what he loves about life…promise, hope, passion of living.

comes a passion and story that each piece he creates have unlike the one before.

I recall the day he met in Early June of 2022, then Poet Laureate Kim B. Miller and shared a just finished piece with her. It was as if time stood still as she asked him not to move holding his completed work in hand, as poetic words flowed from her lips of his art work, as if she herself had painted it. There were only four of us in the room and we were all so entranced that not a single person thought to take out our phone to record that moment. This is when art captures the very fiber of your being and all you can do is be present in the moment.

His work has earned him an opportunity to show in NYC at a Soho Gallery next year and we are excited to have been the first gallery he has ever shown in right here at home. As his future in the art world brightens and takes a turn to a market that some only dream of we are certain of what’s to come for him.

Watching Mejias’ work is nothing short of inspiring

His artistic Name LA ZERO, which is how he signs his work is derived from his actual name Lee Anthony, the remainder came from the movie Holes which the character reminded him a lot of himself and in the number Zero he found that he didn’t want to be last but it wasn’t important that he was first and for him the number Zero is creation, because every thing starts from Zero.

His work falls under Neo-expressionism as it sometimes explores social commentary and individuality using bold colors strong words and evoking deep emotion from view ers. In his thinking as in his name he believes that we can be rewired through our own thoughts. His words, lines, and images are an extension of this belief, and are a visual at tempt to guide rewire the viewer. The skeletal like faces of LA’s characters, texturized brush strokes along with straight from tube to canvas absent of brush use of paints appear to be influenced by Basquiat’s hurried, improvisational style. Combine that with his love for walking on the completed work barefoot to feel the essence of his paintings, there

LA was born July 14th, 2002 in Alexandria, VA but went to school from second grade to graduation in Prince Wil liam County

If you like Basquiat, the leader of the Neo-expressionist and similar artists such as Bel Linquist o N.Y, Nathan Pen dlebury of U.K., and Maria Lankina of Miami, Fl I am certain that you would want to go after his works before they get too big for their own easels.

LA’s talents have found their own freedom to create on whatever they deem to be a canvas, be it stretched linen, plywood, carpet, or an old door. Grab ‘em while they’re fresh - and affordable. LA ZERO, is truly an emerging visu al artist to put on your radar for 2023.

VOICES OF OUR GENERATION

A Word with VICTOR ANGRY

Recently we had a rare chance this episode to sit down and paint with the Honorable Victor Angry, the supervisor of the Neabsco district. Who gained his title from his many accolades in his time spent in the armed forces. Supervi sor Angry is a humble and down to earth personality who stands out in many facets, but the wildest part of this inter view wasnt that he wasn’t an angry man all the time. It was that he is color blind. I think this was the first person we have ever had on the show that was color blind. He gave us a quick history of him discovering this in his early child hood with much laughter. Victor had won an art award as a kid due to an amazing elephant he painted in class. The teacher celebrated his piece for it being an imaginable mul ticolored creature, to his surprise he thought he had just painted a really gray elephant of multiple shades of gray. We started off our conversation with Supervisor Angry on the arts. Asking his opinion on the state of the arts current ly in PWC. His choice of words “We can do better”. Supervisor Angry went further by expanding on this subject as to what the arts included in its many facets outside of the normal preconception and the vital need it plays in the community. With 30 minutes to talk to us in an hour, Super visor Angry credits himself for his public speaking ability. We came up with a new task for our guest for this interview and tasked Supervisor Angry with painting a picture in 30 minutes to sum up the totality of our interview. Something not to take lightly when trying to answer questions on your policies while painting a lemon. He first took an interest in the arts in the 80’s through the hip hop community. The age of breakdancing and graffiti, Supervisor Angry was a huge fan of the Beastie Boys. Later in his years he found joy in

the arts through Theater. Attending programs at the Hylton performing arts center. “What the world needs is love, man. And love comes through the arts”. Supervisor Angry lives this motto as it represents his core values that he has carried with him through the military. People and being a people person has pushed him down the path he has led. His love for what he does and who he does it for.

Outside of the arts we also got to question Supervisor An gry on transportation and various other topics. His solution to the traffic problem faced in Woodbridge is dedicated bus lanes, with the purpose of reducing the stress on the roads and reducing greenhouse gas emissions. We really all dis like driving the crowded streets of woodbridge at time, so we couldnt help but pick his brain on the issue. The whole interview is an exciting dive into such a monumental figure, you can watch the full interview of the Honorable Victor Angry on Painting With Friends.

Supervisor Angry is running for reelection next year.

Trivia Questions:

If Supervisor Angry was standard on an island he would probably take a playlist of music to satisfy his self diag nosed add/adhd, he needs a multitude of genres from XXX tenticion to Trace Adkins.

Supervisor Angry is also a published author, his book: Angry Leadership: My Seven Guiding Principles of Leadership is obtainable here:

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You can watch our full Interview here:

After a long and successful run of Hip Hop shows throughout the DMV area, Lovelace Magazine has brought its live event streak to a graceful end. With a decade-long history of pro viding platforms for aspiring artists throughout Northern Virginia, it was

HEATWAVE

PWC’S NEW HIP-HOP STARS

only right that the team collaborated with the Prince William County Arts Council to go out with a bang. And so, the PWC Arts Council gallery served as the home of Lovelace Mag azine’s final event, Heat Wave, which featured performances from Virgin ia’s own Wombo Combo, Scream Geronimo, Pvvli, Flowz, Blake G, and Trankquility. The night, full of love and comradery, served as a mi crocosm for the talent and diversity found in Northern Virginia’s talent pool as well as a proper send off to a brand that made an undeniable impact on the area’s Hip Hop scene.

As the barrier of entry is lowered for aspiring musicians and new freedoms are granted to artists of all walks of life, it becomes increasingly import ant that we build spaces and platforms for their works to thrive in. As gifted as we know our creatives to be, their impact can only grow to the levels of our belief in them. As the tech nologies change and the hunger for meaningful music grows more insa tiable, we look forward to seeing new structures emerge with the intention of championing and supporting our area’s creatives.

Inspired by Tom Holland: Adonis Dorsey

APPOINTEES

THE FOLLOWING WERE ELECTED AND APPOINTED AS DIRECTORS FOR FY22/23-FY23/24: CHAIR: OPEN TREASURER: PETER ALTEN SECRETARY: KELLY HANEKLAU VICE CHAIR FOR PROGRAMMING: SUSAN BARDENHAGEN VICE CHAIR FOR MARKETING: ALICE MERGLER VICE CHAIR FOR NOMINATIONS: DEBORA MADSEN
BOARD OF DIRECTORS
RONNIE RIGGER COLES DISTRICT WANDA SMITH NEABSCO DISTRICT CATRINA STROMAN POTOMAC DISTRICT JAY TORRES WOODBRIDGE DISTRICT KELLY HANEKLAU BRENTSVILLE DAWN FRANKLIN GAINESVILLE DISTRICT ANGEL LOPEZ OCCOQUAN DISTRICT BRENDA JOHNSON AT LARGE “The Arts COUNCIL is more than art it’s an opportunity!” “How are you inspired?”

The Manassas Symphony Orchestra’s 30th Anniversary Season

Piano virtuoso Thomas Pandolfi headlined MSO’s October concert “Celebrations” with a masterful performance of Liszt’s Piano Concerto No. 2 in A major. Mr. Pandolfi, born in Washington, DC, is a graduate of the Julliard School and was mentored by Vladimir Horowitz and composer Morton Gould. He is considered one of the leading pianists of our time.

Thomas Pandolfi shared his knowledge in an hour- long master class with piano students Paul Pascoe and Roy Wulf. Both young men are advanced piano students of Rev. C. Milton Rodgers, Music Minister at Grace United Methodist Church in Manassas. Rev. Rodgers commented on the class: “My students were inspired by the artistry of Thomas Pandolfi. He helped them find the music in the music. He was very positive and led already great musicians to even higher heights.”

The Manassas Symphony celebrates the 20th anniversary family concert on December 10th with “Explorations.” Traditionally, the concert features an outstanding high school musician. This year’s soloist is Patriot High School Senior John

Ross. John is a violist with MSO and will play Weber’s Andante and Rondo Ungarese.

The audience will be treated to a world premiere of a new composition by Colgan High School’s Orchestra Director, Ben Bernstein. The composition is based on awardwinning children’s author Bob Staake’s book “The Path”* and narrated by Rick Davis, Dean of George Mason University’s College of Visual and Performing Arts.

Christine Maxted, soprano, will perform favorite arias by Puccini. Christine was recognized for her outstanding role as Mother Abbes in MSO’s and Prince William Little Theatre’s summer production of The Sound of Music.

The concert concludes with MSO’s synchronized light and music show. Adults and children will be enchanted by the beautiful display of lights timed to the music of the season.

Come early and enjoy a performance in the lobby by The Capitol Symphonic Youth Orchestra. TCSYO is a non-profit founded in 2011

to foster a creative environment for young musicians to perform symphonic music.

The Manassas Symphony, as part of its community outreach project, will be accepting donations for the residents of Birmingham Green Nursing Home. Items can be dropped off at the concert.

Children and student tickets are FREE! Adult tickets are $25 and are available at the Hylton Center Box Office Tuesday through Saturday from 10am to 6 pm or online at HyltonCenter.org. Performance is at the Hylton Performing Arts Center’s Merchant Hall, 10960 George Mason Circle, Manassas, Virginia.

*Based on the book by Bob Staake©2022. Reprinted with permission.

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How are you inspired? TUESDAYS @6PM Join the Arts Collective meet-up