In 1962, when a group of local artists founded the McLean Project for the Arts, there was no gallery space for professional exhibitions of contemporary art in Northern Virginia and little arts education in the schools. More than 50 years later, MPA is the longest-serving visual arts center in the region, reaching 20,000 residents a year with exhibitions and providing educational offerings to the public and to public school students who would otherwise have limited exposure to the arts. The McLean Community Center is home to MPA’s three galleries and teaching studio, where visitors enjoy the work of both established and emerging Mid-Atlantic artists. An official partner with Fairfax County Public Schools, MPA's signature ArtReach program serves kids at 39 different schools, including 19 Title I schools. By providing free admission to its gallery, as well as talks, school tours, and off-site arts education programs, MPA reaches at-risk students in area schools, students with developmental disabilities, and low-income seniors. Everyone should have access to arts education: you can make it happen.

Headquarters: VA-Fairfax County

Where They Operate: DC-Citywide; VA-Arlington County; VA-Fairfax County; VA-City of Alexandria; VA-City of Fairfax; VA-City of Falls Church

Age Groups Served: Pre-K (3-4); Youth (5-11); Pre-teen/teen (12-17); Young adult (18-24); Adult (25-49); Seniors (50+)

Ethnic Groups Served: African American; Asian American; Caucasian; Latino/Hispanic; Other

Population(s) Served: All

Schools They Work In: Annandale Terrace Elementary School, Annandale; Bailey's Elementary School for the Arts & Sciences, Falls Church; Belvedere Elementary School, Falls Church; Braddock Elementary School, Annandale; Bucknell Elementary School, Alexandria; Camelot Elementary School, Annandale; Dogwood Elementary School, Reston; Garfield Elementary School, Springfield; Glen Forest Elementary School, Falls Church; Graham Road Elementary School, Falls Church; Groveton Elementary School, Alexandria; Halley Elementary School, Fairfax Station; Hutchison Elementary School, Herndon; Hybla Valley Elementary School, Alexandria; London Towne Elementary School, Centreville; Mount Vernon Woods Elementary School, Alexandria; Pine Spring Elementary School, Falls Church; Terraset Elementary School, Reston; Timber Lane Elementary School, Falls Church; Westlawn Elementary School, Falls Church; Weyanoke Elementary School, Alexandria; Woodlawn Elementary School, Alexandria; Woodley Hills Elementary School, Alexandria; Chesterbrook Elementary School; Churchill Road Elementary School; Franklin Sherman Elementary School; Freedom Hill Elementary School; Haycock Elementary School; Kent Gardens Elementary School; Lemon Road Elementary School; Spring Hill Elementary School; Westgate Elementary School; Cooper Middle School; Longfellow Middle School; Langley High School; McLean High School; The Langley School; The Madeira School; Louise Archer Elementary School, Vienna, VA; Olde Creek Elementary School, Fairfax, VA; Kingsbury School High School, Washington, DC; School without Walls High School, Washington, DC

Awards & Recognition

• In August 2014, MPA was selected by Virginians for the Arts and the Dominion Foundation as a 2014 Dominion ArtStars Awards winner in the Regional Shining Star - Northern VA category.
• In May of 2014, MPA received the Fairfax County Public Schools Blue Ribbon Community Partner award (its highest award for nonprofit partners).
• The depth and breadth of our arts education programs was recognized by the Arts Council of Fairfax County with their 2012 award to MPA of the first ever Arts Education Award
• MPA Exhibitions receive critical review in the Washington Post from time to time. Our most recent was October 19, 2014


  • In the galleries: Four artists' views of nature, at McLean Project for the Arts
    Sun Oct 19 2014, Washington Post  
    Clark, a Washington Post graphics editor, depicts foliage and tools, usually evoking bygone eras, in a palette that emphasizes earth tones..

Budget (FY2013)

  • $3 million or higher
  • $1 million to $3 million
  • The current budget for McLean Project for the Arts is: $500k to $1 million
  • Less than $500k

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