Virtual Reception: Friday, July 9 from 5pm to 7pm
VisArts, in partnership with Federal Realty Investment Trust (Federal Realty), is proud to present two concurrent installations of ceramic and mixed media works by Megan Van Wagoner and Judit Varga in the 355 Pod Space Gallery on Hungerford Drive. The exhibitions run from April 26 – July 25. A free virtual reception will be held on Friday, July 9, from 5:00-7:00 PM. Guests will view exhibition walkthrough videos and the artists will discuss their work.
VisArts onsite galleries are open to the public by appointment Monday-Friday, Noon-4:00 PM. Sign up online to visit. The 355 Pod Space Gallery is viewable 24/7 from the sidewalk and street – no appointment necessary.
Megan Van Wagoner: Growing Dilemma
Growing Dilemma considers the changing value placed on agricultural land and its products. Van Wagoner explores how we value the inputs and outputs of the land, through the artifacts of its production.
About the Artist
Van Wagoner grew up in Cleveland Heights, Ohio—a community filled with artists, musicians, and lots of Midwest practicality. She spent her weekends on dairy farms and rolling fields of corn. Watching the landscape change in response to evolving agricultural practices inspired Van Wagoner to consider our culture’s expectations for food production and land use. This is reflected in her sculptural objects, which were created in the likeness of known and artificial artifacts.
Van Wagoner first studied engineering. She then pivoted to major in ceramics at the Cleveland Institute of Art, and earned her MFA from the Mount Royal School at the Maryland Institute College of Art. Her focus on mixed media sculpture and installation, along with her background in ceramics, forms the foundation of her current studio practice.
The recipient of a 2009 Maryland Arts Council Individual Artist Award, Van Wagoner teaches art and design at Montgomery College in Takoma Park, Maryland, and creates at her studio is in Brentwood.
Judit Varga: Emergents
Judit Varga describes finding the perfect balance between shape, color, surface, and structure as a challenge and emotional struggle. The mere existence of such powerful energy makes her want to work with clay.
Varga’s work is strongly connected to nature and its organic structures. Her inspiration comes from small artifacts collected on walks or trips with family members. These fragile imprints of nature provide a rich visual vocabulary, endless shapes, and colors. She works alone in her studio, and the peaceful loneliness provides the perfect stage to work with clay. Sometimes in the silence she finds moments of harmony, when she and the clay understand each other perfectly and know exactly what the other wants to do. These are the moments Varga longs for, and this longing draws her back to the studio to open up a new bag of clay and start again.
About the Artist
Judit Varga is a native of Hungary. She studied mathematics and art in college before receiving her MFA in studio ceramics and art education at the Moholy Nagy University of Arts and Design in Budapest. She moved to the U.S. in 1993, raised two girls, and eventually set up her ceramic studio in Maryland. Until 2020, Varga worked as a professorial lecturer of ceramics at George Washington University in Washington, D.C. – a great counterbalance to those lonely times in the studio.
Located in the heart of Rockville, Maryland, VisArts is a hub for the visual arts that engages nearly 30,000 visitors annually through contemporary art exhibitions, a studio artist program, art classes and camps, VisAbility Art Lab, community outreach programs, and events. Founded in 1987, VisArts is committed to our mission of transforming individuals and communities through the visual arts.
VisArts is three blocks from the Rockville Metro station at 155 Gibbs Street, Rockville, Maryland. Galleries are open by appointment Monday-Friday, Noon-4:00 PM. Exhibitions are free and open to the public. For more information, visit www.visartscenter.org or call 301.315.8200.
About the 355 Pod Space Gallery
Since 2017, VisArts has partnered with Federal Realty Investment Trust to provide opportunities for local artists to bring their ideas to life with site-specific art installations at the 355 Pod Space Gallery.
Directions to the 355 Pod Space Gallery from VisArts: Exit VisArts and turn right on Gibbs Street. Turn right on Beall Avenue. Turn right on Hungerford Drive (Route 355). Walk past CVS. The 355 Pod Space Gallery is on your right, just after the entrance to the parking garage.