About the Fairfax Art League
The organization was founded by local artists Kathryn Higgins, Donya Bauer, Art Cole, Jackie Cawley, Deron Decesare, and Deborah Smith in 1986 and named the Fairfax Art League (FAL) the following year. It was incorporated as a 501(c) (3) non-profit corporation in 1988.
The league is indebted to founder Kathryn Higgins who provided guidance and financial support to the fledgling organization over the years. With continued support from the City of Fairfax Commission on the Arts and local sponsors, the Fairfax Art League has grown significantly and expanded to two locations in the heart of downtown Fairfax City near the new Old Town Square park.
The FAL is a cooperative organization that operates through the efforts of its members who plan, manage, staff and support its galleries, activities, and community outreach programs. The FAL provides opportunities to learn various mediums from creative individuals, exhibit and sell artwork and gain recognition within a friendly, supportive environment. The organization holds monthly member meetings and educational demonstrations, workshops, juried shows and receptions throughout the year. Educational programs are available to members, the public, and elementary students. Most of our activities are free and open to the public.
Programs & Activities
A Child’s Introduction to Art
Our youth outreach program exposes elementary children to famous artists and artistic exercises to help inspire and promote creativity. The program is held at the Main Street Child Development Center in Fairfax. If you would like to assist in the classroom, please Contact Us.
Visual arts demonstrations are presented by accomplished professionals sharing their expertise in various artistic approaches, techniques, materials, and mediums. All demonstrations last approximately one hour and are free and open to members and the public. Demonstrations are held on the first Saturday of the month (except for the months of January and July) at 11 a.m. at the Village Gallery.
Similar to the Artist Demonstrations, workshops showcase specific artistic approaches, techniques, materials, or mediums by professional artists but are more in depth and hands on. A fee may be charged to cover the instructor and/or materials. If you are interested in teaching a workshop, please Contact Us.
Art&Lunch is an informal twice-monthly gathering of members that lend ideas, critique, and support to each other’s endeavors. Artists are encouraged to bring their materials and artwork and perhaps a lunch. A variety of local restaurants provide take-out lunch options. ART&Lunch is scheduled on the second Thursday of each month from 10:30 a.m. – 2:30 p.m. at the Old Town Hall and on the last Saturday of the month from 12 p.m. – 3 p.m. at the Village Gallery. Art & Lunch is free. However, on the occasion a live model is engaged, those who choose to participate may wish to contribute a small cover fee.
Gallery Exhibitions and Receptions
Members are invited to display and sell their artwork at FAL galleries and receptions. Individual members or a small group may participate as “Featured Artists” or hold a solo show as space permits at no charge. Non-members are allowed to display their artwork for a fee or an individual may participate for free as a guest artist of an FAL member. Receptions are free and open to the public and usually consist of entertainment and refreshments. Show rotations and receptions dates vary throughout the year.
People’s Choice Award
Members and visitors are encouraged to vote for their favorite piece of artwork during the course of a show. The winning artist is awarded a ribbon and monetary award. To see some of previous People’s Choice Award winners click here.
The Spotlight on the Arts Student Scholarship
The Art Department at Fairfax High School selects one student each year for excellence in artistic pursuit. The FAL awards the student a monetary prize and features their winning artwork at the Old Town Hall Gallery on the second floor during the Spotlight on the Arts Festival. All participating students are invited to hang their artwork in the first floor of the Old Town Hall.
The FAL schedules an array of special receptions for members and the public throughout the year to promote the arts. Two regular annual shows:
City of Fairfax Spotlight on the Arts (Old Town Hall)
Held in the spring during Fairfax City’s Spotlight on the Arts festival, members submit their best works for a competitive, professionally judged exhibition with cash prize awards. A highlight of the year, members and the public are invited to view the art and enjoy live entertainment, refreshments, and wine. Fairfax High School students also hang their artworks on the first floor of the Old Town Hall for the duration of the festival.
Holiday Show (Old Town Hall)
Held in December, members display their artwork for a popular and special holiday event featuring live entertainment, refreshments, and wine. FAL members and the community are invited to enjoy the exhibition along with friends and family.