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McLean arts nonprofit gets deep with gala to celebrate 60th anniversary

Arlington artist Joseph Cortina will make an augmented reality exhibit for the McLean Project for the Arts’ 60th anniversary gala (courtesy MPA)

McLean Project for the Arts is going to Tysons for its diamond jubilee.

The nonprofit will celebrate six decades of supporting and showcasing the work of artists in the mid-Atlantic region with a 60th anniversary gala at Capital One Hall (7750 Capital One Tower Road) on Sept. 18.

Announced yesterday (Tuesday), the celebration will be highlighted by an augmented reality exhibit crafted especially for the occasion by Arlington painter and digital artist Joseph Cortina, whose work was previously displayed by MPA at its Emerson Gallery in December 2020.

“We are delighted to include this new work by McLean area artist Joseph Cortina as we celebrate sixty years of exhibitions at MPA,” Executive Director Lori Carbonneau said in a press release. “After exhibiting Joe’s work in our MPA galleries and seeing his company’s (Cortina Productions’) installations in museums in Chicago, Boston, and New Orleans, we are thrilled for it to be a highlight of our 60th anniversary year and a centerpiece of our…celebration.”

Titled “Illusion of Depth,” the installation will serve “as a reflection on the meanings of depth, from seeing into and beyond the obvious limits,” building on “fascination with the concept and dimensions of depth and its effects on visual experience,” according to the press release.

In addition to the art exhibit, the gala will feature a cocktail reception with hors d’oeuvres and “light fare,” dancing, and live music by the band Round Midnight.

MPA is currently fundraising for the gala, reporting $239,000 raised toward its goal of $350,000, as of Aug. 18, according to the event page.

MPA has two galleries in the McLean Community Center (1234 Ingleside Avenue), where it regularly puts on contemporary art exhibitions from both emerging and established creators from around the region. It also offers classes, summer camps and the annual MPAartfest at McLean Central Park.