Gallery Openings and Events

The Art League Presents Kathleen Best Gillmann Vision at Water’s Edge at Torpedo Factory Art Center

​Beach Houses at Lord's Point (Journey Home, 3) acrylic, 36" x 36"​. Courtesy of The Art League.

Beach Houses at Lord’s Point (Journey Home, 3) acrylic, 36″ x 36″​. Courtesy of The Art League.


Opening Reception: Thursday, July 14 from 6:30pm to 8pm


Artist Kathleen Best Gillmann credits her upbringing in southern Maine with the title for her exhibit, Vision at Water’s Edge, on display at The Art League, July 6­–August 7. Gillmann’s realistic style and carefully developed palette presents the artist’s chosen vistas to the viewer clearly, but the intrinsic ambiguity of the natural landscape influenced by moving water inspires paintings that feel timeless yet familiar. Whether she’s rendered ominous skies or bright sunlight, Gillmann’s paintings evoke a sense of peace and tranquility.

A visit to the north shore of Lake Superior several years ago inspired Gillmann with the current focus of her work. Painting pastels and acrylics of the lakeshore reminded her of home, and she segued naturally into her current coastal painting series. To Gillmann, who describes herself as “place-oriented,” each of these scenes has great personal meaning, and she found herself returning to certain places repeatedly. When revisiting these locations, particularly ones in her home state of Maine, she came to realize that in a way, “You can’t go home. You can never be the same person you were when you first visited that place, or see it again through those eyes.”

Vision at Water’s Edge includes both acrylic and oil paintings of coastal regions and freshwater shorelines throughout the country. Gillmann attributes her initial choice of working in acrylic to the media’s practical qualities, and embraced the medium because of its translucency. More recently, she’s transitioned into working with oil, a decidedly traditional media for landscape painting, which dries true-to-color and allows for greater manipulation of physical surface texture. While the works in this exhibit range in size, Gillmann notes that she particularly likes working on a larger canvas, and thinks of the large surface as a metaphor for the landscape.

Virginia-based artist Kathleen Best Gillmann holds a BA in Studio Art from the University of New Hampshire, a BS in Art Education from the University of Southern Maine as well as a Master of Library Science degree. She has worked as a professional librarian and has been an art instructor. In addition to exhibiting at The Art League, Gillmann currently is an Associate Artist at the Workhouse Arts Center in Lorton, VA. She has had works accepted into numerous exhibits and has regularly won awards since she began submitting to juried exhibits in 2006.

Gallery Hours:

  • Daily: 10:00 am–6:00 pm
  • Thursdays until 9:00 pm
  • Sundays: 12:00 noon–6:00 pm

*The Torpedo Factory may close at 5:00 pm for events. Please check Today’s Hours to see if this affects your visit.

The exhibition is located at 105 North Union Street, Studio 21 (located in the Torpedo Factory Art Center), Alexandria, VA. For more information, visit or  call 703-683-1780