Cover photo: Maggie Lane
The tiny hamlet of Town of Colonial Beach, Virginia (CBVA), is home to a big, thriving art scene, thanks in part to the efforts of the Colonial Beach Artists Guild, a non-profit organization that works tirelessly to provide exhibition opportunities for local and regional artists, education, and community appreciation for and participation in visual arts and artistic processes.
In the small town of Colonial Beach, art lovers can visit multiple locations around Town to view artwork by award-winning artists. Seasonally (during non-COVID times), the Guild sponsors and Second Friday Art Walks monthly. The evening is a fun event that includes refreshments, wine, live music and more, in addition to featuring works of art in a variety of mediums.
Additionally, the Artists’ Alliance at Jarrett Thor Fine Arts Gallery hosts a Bird Themed Art Show every year in support of and in conjunction with the annual Downtown Colonial Beach Osprey Festival, typically held in April.
16th Annual Potomac River Regional Art Show 2020
This weekend, art lovers should consider a #WanderLOVE visit to CBVA for the final days of the 16th Annual Potomac River Regional Art Show 2020, presented by the Colonial Beach Artists’ Guild. Held Saturday and Sunday, 11 am to 4 pm, at Colonial Beach Town Center, Washington Ave and Hawthorn St., the show features an exhibit of works from regional painters, photographers, and 3D artists. The event is open to the public with free admission. Masks are required and social distancing is enforced in the vast, high-ceiling open space.
Typically held in June, the Potomac River Regional Art Show is a judged show including 51 works of art from 27 different artists this year. Featured are many different mediums of paintings, including graphite pet portraits; photography, including digitally-manipulated photographs printed on watercolor paper with a cold wax finish; and 3D art, such as sculpture art, fiber art, mosaic art, and recycled art from various household items.
Kathleen Moran, president of Colonial Beach Artists Guild, is excited about the variety of works featured in this year’s show, such as horse portraits and art made from teacups and other common goods. She also draws attention to the digital works, which conjures up inferences to iconic photographer Ansel Adams, who sometimes made hundreds of different versions of his photos to get just the right effect he wanted.
COVID-19 gave artists lots of time to work on their craft, but also created pent-up demand because of their inability to show it.
“We had a call for entries several months before the show,” explains Moran. “Almost immediately we were hearing from artists far beyond our region–all around Virginia–who were eager to show their work because they’d be unable to for so long due to the pandemic.”
First Place went to artist Vicki Marckel for her oil painting Paris in the Rain, which captured the “‘feel’ of a rainy day in a small city street with people going about their daily business,” according to judge Rita Dominguez Kovach. Other award-winning works featured architectural subjects, as well as a Civil War soldier, pets/animals and common items.
Where to View Art in Town of Colonial Beach, Virginia
In addition to the 16th Annual Potomac River Regional Art Show 2020, art is presently on display at:
Colonial Beach Chamber of Commerce, 106 Hawthorn St., Monday, Wednesday and Friday 9:30 am to 1:30 pm.
Artists’ Alliance at Jarrett Thor Fine Arts Gallery, 100 Taylor St., Friday & Saturday, 11 am to 4 pm.
Dockside Realty, 104 Taylor St., and Coldwell Banker Elite, 233 N Irving Ave, during regular business hours.
Street Art in Colonial Beach
Town of Colonial Beach is also home to over a dozen street art wall murals, sculptures and kitschy roadside attractions (with more added all the time!) Download our Wall Murals & Street Art Tour and see how many you can find!