Alexandria, VA

Alexandria’s historic Torpedo Factory Art Center will honor two big anniversaries this weekend as the building turns 100 and the Art Center turns 45.

A celebratory Anniversary Ball will take place this Saturday, November 16 from 7-11 p.m. at the Torpedo Factory (105 N. Union Street). Guests are invited to “dress to impress and celebrate like it’s 1919 or 1974,” per the event website, and tickets are still available for $75.

The night will feature the opening of 45: An Anniversary Exhibitcurated by Marian Van Landingham, artist and founder of the Torpedo Factory. In addition, Alexandria media company Istrico Productions will premiere a documentary about the building’s history.

According to the event website, additional festivities include:

  • A talk from WAMU arts and culture reporter Mikaela Lefrak
  • Live from Virginia band Good Shot Judy
  • Glass harp performance from Jamey Turner
  • Painted humans from artist Rebecca Rose
  • Live roving performers
  • Refreshments and a bar

Per its namesake, the Torpedo Factory Art Center began its life as a weapons factory at the end of World War I. At its peak, the complex was made up of 16 buildings and employed 5,000 workers. In 1950, it was converted to a Federal Records Center, and in 1974, became the Art Center. The three-story building is currently home to more than 165 artists who work, exhibit, and sell their art.

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