New Additions to Festival Promises New Perspectives and New Energy

The Tinner Hill Blues Festival is constantly growing.  This year one of the most exciting new elements added to the festival is "Call it the Blues", a juried art show.  The exhibition will open during FIRSTfriday of Falls Church events on Friday, June 1 and remain on exhibit at Art and Frame of Falls Church throughout the blues festival weekend until the end of June.  It is particularly exciting to push the concept of blues culture beyond music  -  expanding beyond the norm of a "Blues Festival".  

The juried art show is being organized by Falls Church resident and artist Irena Chambers (pictured to the left).  Chambers, Special Project Director for Tinner Hill Heritage Foundation, has worked diligently to bring the first years show to the attention to a wide variety of regional artists and arranged for the show to be juried by outstanding Philadelphia, artist Kitty Caparella.  

The show will assemble works from artists in an attempt to focus on the meaning of the "blues" from an artists'  perspective.  The Call to artist was for a very liberal interpretation of "the blues" which could  include works of art that explored the nature of blues music, literature, or history; interpret or reflect the emotions and events inspired or evoked by the "blues"; focus on blues performers; or even explore the "hue of blue".  Artist works were inspired by Blues music,  a musical form and genre originating in African-American communities at the end of the 19th century. Recent scholarly research have indentified cross pollination in the development of blue music  from a variety of influences including Native Americans, indentured Irish people and enslaved African Muslims during the early part of the 19th century.  One thing is for sure,  in addition to the music being influenced by a diverse people and their experiences, the Blues has influenced jazz, rock and roll and other music genres the world over.  

The exhibition opens during FIRSTfriday of Falls Church on Friday, June 1 at Art and Frame of Falls Church.  The opening reception will present an opportunity to meet the shows winning artists, the show's organizer, Irena Chambers and Tom Gittins, owner of Art and Frame of Falls Church.  Tom, believed in the vision of the show and signed on in the dead of winter with enough enthusiasm to commit to the first time event.  

111 Park Avenue is located at the intersection of Rt 29 and Park Avenue in downtown historic Falls Church, 62 steps from the State Theatre.  There is ample parking any time at Kaiser Permanente on the top level and at 113 Park Avenue after 5pm.  The market is surrounded by numerous cafes, restaurants, and other FIRSTfriday participants.  For more information on the FIRSTfriday of Falls Church and ArtALot - A FIRSTfriday of Falls Church Event, visit their website at


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