The longest-serving visual arts center in the region, MPA provides a comprehensive array of art programs, most of which are free and open to the public, to 20,000 residents each year. While the McLean Community Center – the permanent home of MPA’s three galleries and teaching studio – undergoes renovation, visitors continue to enjoy professional, museum-quality exhibitions from local contemporary artists at a temporary location in downtown McLean. To bring the visual arts to new audiences, MPA eliminates financial barriers, offering free gallery admission, talks, and school tours; free bus transportation for schools that need it; and free offsite professional arts education for seniors and students with disabilities. In partnership with Fairfax County Public Schools, its signature ArtReach program serves 2,000 students each year, many from Title I schools. 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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About the Catalogue for Philanthropy

Each year 120 expert reviewers evaluate applicants for distinction, merit, and impact. Each featured charity has been successfully site visited and its financials given the thumbs up. The Catalogue for Philanthropy charges no fees and raises funds separately to support its work. Since 2003, it has raised over $40 million for charities across the Greater Washington region.

The Catalogue for Philanthropy looks to friends like you to keep our services independent and entirely free of charge. Consider a small contribution to the Catalogue to cap off your gift and help the causes you care about get the full support they deserve!

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