Artists of Loudoun
Loudoun has long inspired artists. With gorgeous green hills, stone-fenced country lanes, farm fields dotted with red barns bathed in ethereal light, the county’s very landscape looks like an oil painting. Yet we attract writers too – literary giants. Pulitzer winners Larry McMurtry (Lonesome Dove), Tony Horowitz (Confederates in the Attic) and Geraldine Brooks (March) all lived in Loudoun; columnist and memoirist Russell Baker (Growing Up), grew up in a log cabin in Morrisonville, near Lovettsville.
It is with this creative combination in mind – art and literature – that Franklin Park Arts Center will host “Literature to Life”: a four-week exhibition and competition in which Loudoun artists bring the written word of local authors, poets and playwrights to life with original artwork.
“We’ve been supporting and engaging local artists across multiple genres since before and during COVID, and this exhibition is a way to connect visual artists with local authors,” said FPAC Managing Director Elizabeth Bracey.
Running until April 25, the exhibition will showcase work in any medium including 3D and digital animation, but requires the artists provide notation from the passage of the specific written work to which their piece refers. Sponsored by the Friends of Franklin Park Arts Center, winning pieces will receive cash prizes.
“Literature to Life” is not the only major art event taking place in Loudoun in April.
April 9th sees the opening of “Tucker Smith: A Celebration of Nature” at the National Sporting Library and Museum in Middleburg, an exhibition of more than 75 landscape, wildlife, camping and cowboy oil paintings from the renowned Western artist.
Over at Leesburg Town Hall meanwhile the landscape and animal paintings of local artist and lawyer Antonia Plazibat is the subject of “Near and Far: Journeys in Watercolor” running through May 31st.
Beyond special exhibits, there are countless other ways to enjoy the work of local artists in Loudoun. Celebrated landscape painters Antonia Walker and Katherine Riedel sell their exquisite work from their studios in Waterford, while the Byrne Gallery in Middleburg features a permanent collection of abstract and impressionist art as well as jewelry. To capture the full gamut and diversity of the Loudoun arts scene, the Leesburg Arts and Cultural District incorporates more than a dozen galleries, studios and public works of art all within walking distance of each other in the historic downtown.