The Torpedo Factory Art Center is one of the largest visual arts centers in the U.S., consisting of three floors with 82 working studios, 7 galleries, 2 workshops, the Art League School and the Alexandria Archaeology Museum. Built during World War I as a munitions factory, the Torpedo Factory, is today the centerpiece of Old Town Alexandria, located along the docks of the Potomac River on the lively waterfront that also includes a marina, shops, public parks, restaurants and residences. In 1974, a group of local artists and the City of Alexandria, Virginia converted the building to serve as an art center showcasing a wide variety of mediums including, painting, pottery, photography, jewelry, stained glass, fibers, printmaking, and sculpture. The artists invite visitors to watch them at work and ask questions about their creative processes. This popular attraction is a great place to find unique gifts and decorative items for your home.
The Art League School is a multifaceted visual arts organization that offers a wide variety of art classes for children and adults. The Alexandria Archaeology Museum is located on the 3rd floor and serves as a public laboratory with hands-on discovery kits focusing on the archaeological history of Alexandria. The Torpedo Factory Art Center welcomes emerging artists to participate in their Post-Graduate Residency Program. Their studio is located on the first floor in Studio 12. This program is conducted in partnership with accredited MFA programs and selected artists can create and sell work, interact with the public, and network with other artists.
105 North Union Street. Alexandria, VA (703) 746-4570 See a map
Open daily from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Thursdays 6- 9 p.m. for Art Night. The hours of the individual working studios vary. The center sometimes closes at 5 p.m. for private events.
All of the artists in the Torpedo Factory Art Center are also small independent business owners. Not only do they help to shape the distinctive creative personality of Old Town Alexandria, but on average, dollars spent at local businesses return three times more money to the local economy compared to a chain store.
Official Website: www.torpedofactory.org