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McLean Project for the Arts to launch regional painting exhibition next week

The “(Not) Strictly Painting” exhibition will feature painting-related work, such as Julie Wills’s “Midheaven” (courtesy McLean Project for the Arts)

Work by dozens of artists from across the mid-Atlantic region will soon be on display at the McLean Community Center, courtesy of McLean Project for the Arts.

The local visual arts-focused nonprofit announced on Wednesday (Sept. 8) that it will introduce its latest exhibition “(Not) Strictly Painting” to the community center’s Emerson Gallery (1234 Ingleside Avenue) next Saturday (Sept. 18).

This will be the 13th iteration of the juried, biennial exhibition, which will include paintings and other kinds of art that’s somehow related to painting from 37 different artists. MPA says it is “one of the region’s most important painting exhibitions.”

“(Not) Strictly Painting will exhibit works by some of the most interesting and innovative artists currently active in the Mid-Atlantic region,” MPA Director of Exhibitions and Curator Nancy Sausser said in a statement. “The exhibit was expertly juried by Virginia Treanor and Foon Sham, a curator and an artist, respectively. Their choices will be displayed separately online and blended together in the gallery.”

A Virginia-based artist, Foon Sham also teaches art at the University of Maryland at College Park, while Virginia Treanor serves as an associate curator at the National Museum of Women in the Arts in D.C.

Once the exhibition launches, the MPA Emerson Gallery will be open for viewing from 1-4 p.m. on Tuesdays and Wednesdays and from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturdays, though it will be limited to six visitors at a time to allow for social distancing.

MCC currently requires all visitors to wear masks that fully cover their mouth and nose while attending programs at its facilities in accordance with federal and local COVID-19 health guidelines. Fairfax County has been requiring masks for visitors and employees in county government facilities since Aug. 9.

“In addition, patrons are requested to do their best to observe six feet of social distance from other patrons as often as possible and to wash their hands often,” MPA said in its news release.

MPA will host a virtual opening reception for “(Not) Strictly Painting” from 7-8 p.m. on Sept. 23. A full list of the artists featured in the exhibition, which will run through Nov. 13, can be found on the nonprofit’s website.

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