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Previous Exhibitions

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Lightbulb moments

March 17 - August 19, 2018
MOCA celebrates creativity within the visual arts and beyond with our animation exhibition entitled, Lightbulb Moments. In our society, everything moves forward with innovation: culture, communication, technology, and travel. But we cannot innovate without creativity and imagination. Making new connections and ideas moves us forward both in our communities and as a species. In the past few years, there have been growing concerns regarding the American Educational system and its ability to foster creativity in children. While there are no easy answers, we can explore the questions together with the artists of this animated exhibition. Animation provides a broad space for these artists to expl…

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Lightbulb moments
Rhiannon Evans. Fulfilament (film still). Courtesy of the artist.

Community Gallery: Melissa Schappell: Environmental Factors

March 17 - August 19, 2018
Opening Reception: Friday, March 16. 6:30-8:30pm Artist Melissa Schappell recognizes the power of art to spark conversation about a challenging subject, our mental health. She channels her personal struggles with an anxiety disorder into her art. Schappell breaks down societal stigmas surrounding mental health by encouraging dialogue around issues of common concern. EnvironMENTAL Factors focuses on the external influences that can affect our mental health. Schappell draws from firsthand experiences, extensive medical research, and the personal stories of others to explore the impact of PTSD, childhood trauma, and prenatal stress to name a few. She combines drawing, painting, and collage into…

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Community Gallery: Melissa Schappell: Environmental Factors
Melissa Schappell. Urban Pollution, 2017. Mixed media. 22 x 30 inches. Courtesy of the artist.

When the Water Rises: Recent Paintings by Julie Heffernan

September 22 - December 30, 2018
Julie Heffernan’s recent paintings create alternative habitats in response to environmental disaster and planetary excess. With rising waters, she imagines worlds in trees or on rafts in which undulating mattresses, tree boughs, and road signs guide the journey. Construction cones interrupt the landscape signaling places to stop, enter tiny interior worlds, and reflect on the human condition—its feckless activity, violence, failure, and redemption. Heffernan tends these alternative environments to safeguard bounties we cannot live without. In other moments, she names names and points fingers to those people and activities implicated in recent calamities of both the physical and socio-pol…

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When the Water Rises: Recent Paintings by Julie Heffernan
Julie Heffernan. Camp Bedlam, 2016. Oil on canvas. 68x104 inches. Courtesy of Catharine Clark Gallery

satellite gallery: jason stick: night shift

October 19, 2017 - March 17, 2018
Night time has the power to change our perspective. What might seem ordinary under the harsh glare of daylight, can become eerie and unknown under a night sky. Photographer Jason Stick recognizes the allure held by the cover of night. In the evening, he prowls his own neighborhood, discovering the magical in the mundane. A pile of rocks, a clump of flowers, or a forgotten decoy reveal a luminous beauty under the light shone by Stick’s steady hand. Just as a painter chooses specific elements to create a landscape or still-life, Stick manipulates dark and light to cut away visual noise. He guides a light to give shape to his composition and to direct our eye. A shift in viewpoint, with a dis…

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satellite gallery: jason stick: night shift
Jason Stick. Courtesy of the Artist

New Waves 2018

March 17 - August 19, 2018
Virginia MOCA proudly celebrates its 23rd juried exhibition, New Waves 2018. This annual tradition presents a small portion of the vast array of artistic talent found in our Commonwealth. MOCA would like to thank juror, Cay Sophie Rabinowitz, and all the artists who submitted entries. 378 artists submitted work, our juror selected the following artists to exhibit: Jean Benvenuto Benjamin Boshart Caryl Burtner Wingchow Alana Edwards Marlowe Emerson Marie Fornaro Peter Geiger M. Alexander Gray Matthew Grimes Meredith & James Hill Everett Hoffman Aimee Joyaux Jihee Kang Annie Layne (Third Place) Rachel Lemanski Nikki Leone Carl Medley III (Honorable Mention)  Mary Menzer Angela Ram…

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New Waves 2018
Echard Wheeler. Oceanfront Series 5, 2017. Ilford fiber base photo paper. 9 x 6 inches. Courtesy of the artist.