The work of more than 100 artists will line the streets of downtown Leesburg Sept. 15-16 with the debut of the Leesburg Fine Art Festival.
The festival, unlike the popular Fall Into The Arts Festival that for years showcased artists’ work along the fence surrounding the county courthouse complex, will feature more mediums, according to Leesburg Mayor Kristen Umstattd.
“We’re very glad to see a revived festival of the arts in downtown Leesburg,” Umstattd said.
Hosted by the Friends of Public Arts, the Leesburg Fine Art Festival will feature top national and international artisans and their hand-made original work, according to Kimberlee Norris, president of the organization.
For sale during the festival will be various art forms, including sculpture, painting, jewelry, photography, digital art, mixed-media, graphics and printing, wood, ceramics, glass and metal.
“Among our objectives in creating this art festival is to contribute to the commerce in the Leesburg business community,” Norris said in a prepared statement. “We anticipate a substantial influx of visitors to Leesburg on that weekend as art aficionados and patrons journey to Leesburg to see and purchase this original artwork …”
The event is being aggressively promoted throughout Virginia, Maryland and the Washington, D.C. marketplaces.
Umstattd believes it can help to change the perception of Leesburg as an arts destination.
“We’re hoping this will be even more successful and bring more newcomers to downtown and give them a sense of who we are as a historic destination and artist destination,” the mayor said.
Works from local art galleries, like Chimole, the newly-opened Honduran business on South King Street, and The Cooley Gallery, will not be featured during the event, but will be open for business.
“The idea was to make sure all the galleries had equal access,” Umstattd said.
Still the local gallery owners believe the festival will give them exposure as well.
“I’m hoping that I will have a lot of foot traffic and people will see what I have in the store,” said Yovanna Reiser, owner of Chimole.
If you go:
The festival will take place from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sept. 15 and 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sept. 16 in downtown Leesburg. Admission is free. Road closures will begin Sept. 14 at 5:30 p.m. through Sept. 16 at 9:30 a.m. Four blocks of the historic district will be closed to vehicular traffic, including King Street from Loudoun Street (south) to Cornwall Street (north) and Market Street from Church Street (east) to Wirt Street (west). For more information visit http://www.paragonartevents.com/lee
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