Artomatic surprises with range of media, artists

Dick Uliano, wtop.com

CRYSTAL CITY, Va. – A shuttered office building, once a bustling high-rise filled with Defense Department workers has been turned into a ten floor art exhibit featuring the talents of more than 13-hundred local artists.

Organizers of the event called Artomatic say it is biggest arts festival in the D.C. area.

“It’s absolutely incredible the range of art you see from sculpture, painting, photography and everything in between,” said John Kagia of Reston, Va., a photographer whose work is on display at Artomatic.

Kagia, whose art includes an exhibit of Virginia vanity license plates, believes everybody has a desire to create. “This is a great venue, he said, “to see what other people are doing and to share and exchange ideas.”

The once bland offices, hallways and cubby holes of the nondescript building at 1851 S. Bell Street in Crystal City, Va., are bedecked with colorful imaginative and thought-provoking works of arts. There are also sound stages featuring a variety of music in addition to food, drink and a gift shop.

Artomatic is free to see this weekend and Thursdays through Sundays until June 23rd.

The website Artomatic.org features a guidebook, artist directory and floor plan.

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