Throughout the summer of 2019, Fairfax County's first permanent “LOVEwork” sign has been on tour and traveled around to some of our most popular attractions that represent the eclectic visitor experiences found here. We're now on the final tour stop, the Workhouse Arts Center in Lorton. Here, the letter will be creatively “bedazzled” by several of the artists-in-residence at the Workhouse, making the new Fairfax County “LOVEwork” sign a unique piece of art that visitors will enjoy for years to come.
Once a former prison, today the Workhouse is a regionally - and nationally - recognized innovative collaboration of visual and performing arts, education, community engagement, historical perspective, and personal enrichment. The Workhouse consists of six artist studio buildings, the main galleries, and the W-3 Theatre and supports more than 100 professional and emerging artists by providing them affordable studios and galleries to exhibit their work. The Workhouse also offers over 800 arts education classes and workshops in a broad spectrum of art disciplines.
And make sure that if you do visit and snap a sweet pic of the LOVE letters, upload them here or post them to social media using the hashtags #FXVA, #SHAREWHATYOULOVE, and #LOVEVA.
LOVEwork Sign Arrives on Campus: Monday afternoon, August 5
Workhouse Arts Center Operating Hours: Open Wednesday through Saturday from 11a – 6p and Sunday from 12p – 5p. It is closed to the public on Mondays, Tuesdays, and select holidays. The Workhouse Prison Museum docents are available to provide insight into the history of the Workhouse Arts Center, its role in the region, and its role in the Women's Suffrage Movement. Docents are on-site in the Prison Museum (located in building W-9) Wednesday through Friday from 12p – 3p, and on Saturdays and Sundays from 12p – 4p. The Prison Museum is closed to the public on Mondays, Tuesdays, and select holidays.
Location: The LOVEwork sign can be found on the Workhouse campus between buildings W-16 and W-12 located at 9518 Workhouse Way, Lorton, VA 22079.
Cost: Access to the Workhouse campus is FREE; classes, programs, performances, festivals, and art cost varies. Check website for details.
Things To Know About The Workhouse Arts Center
- It Has Direct Ties To The 19th Amendment - From July until November of 1917, 72 members of the National Women’s Party were incarcerated at the Workhouse for protests advocating for women’s right to vote. One of the movement’s founders, Lucy Burns, was incarcerated at the Workhouse during this time. The Workhouse is gearing up to celebrate the 100 year anniversary of the passage of the 19th Amendment and will be opening up the Lucy Burns Museum this fall/winter to showcase the roles suffragists played in making voting equality for women a reality.
- You're Welcome To Come Take A Class - The Workhouse Arts Center believes that an Arts Education is basic to an individual’s perception and understanding of the world in which we live. The Workhouse Arts Center provides art instruction that helps develop basic art skills, encourages visual awareness and is fundamental to intellectual growth and creative self-expression.
- Every Month, The Second Saturday Is Extra Special - Some days it is fireworks. Other days, hula dancers and glass blowing demonstrations. You might even find craft beer tastings, live music, fire dancers, or plein air painting. You never know exactly what you’ll experience during a Second Saturday Art Walk at the Workhouse Arts Center, but it will definitely delight your senses and inspire your creativity.
- Art Abounds All Around You - Before you go, know where to go. Art can be found everywhere on campus, so if you're looking to scope out a specific discipline you can check out their online map and figure out where you should head to once you get there.
- They Love Beer - On September 14, the Workhouse hosts one of the region's most epic beer festivals. The Workhouse Brewfest spotlights craft brews, artisan spirits, and fine wine from Northern Virginia, throughout the Commonwealth, and from the Mid-Atlantic region, including DC, Maryland, and West Virginia. Tickets are on sale now so get yours before they're gone.
Where the LOVEwork Sign Goes From Here
This will be the final stop of the LOVEwork tour, and eventually, the artists at the Workhouse will decorate it and make it their own as it goes on permanent display. Stay tuned for updates on this unveiling.
August 6 and beyond: Workhouse Arts Center
Fairfax County is great because of you, visitors and residents alike. Your support of our local community makes this all possible. Help us showcase our greatness: We'll post our favorite images of you and your Instaworthy "LOVEwork" snaps on our official LOVE page.
If you see our LOVEwork sign during its journey across the county, don't be shy, take a picture with it and upload your images here.