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From the Archives: The Art League Goes to Hollywood!

We’re organizing old newspaper clippings at The Art League, and reliving exhibits, workshops, and art camps past in the process. Recently we rediscovered the story from the time Hollywood made The Art League a star!

From the August 21, 1997 Alexandria Gazette Packet:

“While Washington, DC is coping with road closures and snarled traffic due to the filming of [the] movie “Deep Impact,” Alexandria’s Art League is abuzz with excitement. Seventeen of its artists have had their work selected to appear on the film set by set directors Peg Cummings and Carl Catanese.”

Catanese, the article explains, was a former Art League School student and wanted to promote unknown artists.

Marsha Staiger was director of the gallery at the time. She recalled that Catanese came by the gallery looking for artwork to fill out the movie’s sets, and the pieces were secured with releases from the artists and rental fees.

She and the artists were invited to visit a set on Eisenhower Avenue in July, where they watched filming and got a tour. When the movie came out the following summer, everyone scoured the film for glimpses of the artwork.

Regardless of the screen time, being featured in a summer blockbuster was thrilling for those involved. Jill Newburger told the Gazette, “It was my first show at The Art League and this happens.”

For more exciting chapters from Art League history, stay tuned as we sift through the archives!

"Lady Jane Doe," a watercolor by Jan Burley, appeared on set in the living room of Robin Lerner (played by Vanessa Redgrave).


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