Rap­pa­han­nock’s fall col­ors, en­hanced by the an­nual Artists Tour

Rappahannock News - - COUNTRYSIDE - By Heather Wicke Special to the Rap­pa­han­nock News

The first week­end in Novem­ber will once again bring vis­i­tors from near and far to Rap­pa­han­nock County to en­joy the works of our di­verse and ac­com­plished artists and the beau­ti­ful Blue Ridge coun­try­side.

This year’s 13th an­nual Artists of Rap­pa­han­nock Stu­dio & Gallery Tour on Nov. 4-5 prom­ises to be the largest yet, with more artists in open stu­dios, in­ter­ac­tive op­por­tu­ni­ties and a greater va­ri­ety of fine art than ever be­fore. More than 100 lo­cal artists will be dis­play­ing their works in 30 stu­dios and eight gal­leries.

The large and grow­ing num­bers of ex­cep­tional artists choos­ing to make their home here and join the an­nual tour is not by chance. They are drawn to and in­spired by the nat­u­ral beauty and the strong sense of com­mu­nity nur­tured by the non­profit Rap­pa­han­nock As­so­ci­a­tion for Arts and Com­mu­nity (RAAC), spon­sors of the an­nual event (and many other year-long pro­grams). In 2004, RAAC mem­bers want­ing to sup­port the lo­cal arts com­mu­nity came up with the idea of a stu­dio and gallery tour to draw a larger au­di­ence from the re­gional and D.C. metro ar­eas.

Each year, the event has added new lo­cal artists want­ing to open their stu­dios and par­tic­i­pate along with re­turn­ing artists. In­for­ma­tion about these ex­cep­tional artists and pho­tos of their art­work may be viewed on RAAC’s web­site at raac.org, where there are

links to tour in­for­ma­tion and in­di­vid­ual artists’ sites. In ad­di­tion, the tour’s Face­book page is at face­book.com/stu­dioandgallery­tour.

This event would not be pos­si­ble with­out the gen­er­ous con­tri­bu­tions of

spon­sors, mem­bers and vol­un­teers through­out the county. This com­mu­nity sup­port en­ables RAAC to cre­ate and pro­mote an event wor­thy of Rap­pa­han­nock’s fine artists. All tour prof­its re­turn to the com­mu­nity in the form of an­nual Clau­dia Mitchell Arts Fund grants sup­port­ing artis­tic en­deav­ors through­out the year.

The self-guided tour be­gins at Wash­ing­ton School, 567 Mt. Salem Ave., with a im­pres­sive cen­tral gallery dis­play­ing rep­re­sen­ta­tive art­works. For a $10 ad­mis­sion fee, vis­i­tors tour guide and map with de­tailed di­rec­tions. Guests also re­ceive in­for­ma­tion on artists’ demon­stra­tions, food and drink op­tions and other

lo­cal ser­vices. If the crowd of vis­i­tors ap­proaches last year’s count of more than 1,400, there will be lots of en­thu­si­as­tic tour-go­ers here to en­joy some of the most re­mark­able of­fer­ings of the county.

➤ For more on the Nov. 4-5 event, visit raac.org/raacwp/2017-art-tour

BY KATHER­INE LIPPERT GIB­SON

Art meets barn dur­ing last year’s artists tour.

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