Friday, February 29, 2008

Artist Spotlight - Courtney "Tucy" Stevens

Pairing this creative artist up with sponsor BB&T was a no-brainer for obvious reasons! Painted black and covered with hundreds of "Honest Abes," "Pennies from Heaven" by Courtney "Tucy" Stevens is sure to make the miserly squirmish!

Trucy's plane is right in front of the viewing window so stop by during regular business hours to take a look!

About the Artist
I graduated with a BFA from the University of Colorado, with a concentration in metalsmithing. An interest in mixed media lead me to myriad means of expression, including mosaics, murals, papier mache, collage, found-object sculptures, encaustic painting, Sailor’s Valentines, fiber art, assemblage, decoupage, stone and wood carving.

My pieces have been sold through several gallery and museum shops, including The Whitney Museum “Store Next Door”, the Museum of American Folk Art, the League of New Hampshire Craftsmen, and the Baltimore Visionary Art Museum’s Sideshow.

During my career I taught classes in mosaics and other media. On the commercial side, I designed, fabricated and installed window displays for a number of retail establishments as well as created theme pieces for private events.

I was awarded the second place prize for my mixed media/sculpture submission to a juried exhibit developed for Art in City Hall in Alexandria, Virginia, in 2006.

I have been striving to continue my artistic growth and breadth of media through ongoing sculpture, drawing, fiber art, and encaustic painting classes at the Art League at the Torpedo Factory in Alexandria, Virginia.

The passion of my art is drawn from a love and connection to nature. Throughout my designs, repetition is used to create visual continuity and emphasis. I truly enjoy exploring new outlets for fresh ideas.

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Studio Status - One Month

Crystal Flight already has an entire month under its belt. Many of the planes are on their way to completion, however, there is a great deal of work still to be completed! Have a look at the progress so far!

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Artist Spotlight - Amy Marshall

To follow-up on yesterday's press release, today's Artist Spotlight is on Amy Marshall, the artist working on the Archstone sponsored plane "Soar Above the Rim."

As you will see from the slideshow, most of Amy's work in the Artist Studio has been completed. The plane is scheduled to be transported downtown early next week by Crystal Flight partner, JK Moving & Storage where Washington Wizards players will add their mark.

About the Artist
As a visual artist, I am inspired by the emotional expression of the face and the human form. I use powerful hues and surprising color schemes in acrylic paint to concentrate and distill the light and shadow of an image. Despite the overall starkness of my paintings, they are able to convey deep complexity. The bold use of line and shape characteristic of my uncomplicated style brings life to my canvases. A selection of my work has hung twice in solo shows at the Clarendon Grill in Arlington, VA.

I am also a muralist whose work appears in bedrooms, playrooms and schools across the greater Washington area. Two of my murals are on the walls at National Presbyterian School in NW, DC and several appeared in a home on the Potomac Country House Tour in Potomac, MD. I have been commissioned by individuals to create portraits of loved ones, pets and treasured images.

As an art teacher for fourteen years, I have taught at several schools throughout Maryland and Washington, DC. My students’ projects have been used to create permanent displays at St. Francis Episcopal Day School in Potomac, MD, National Presbyterian School in Washington, DC, and St. Mary Catholic School in Hagerstown, MD. In 2007 I was the director of Beyond Borders, an art show featuring my elementary students who were the youngest artists ever to exhibit at the Katzen Art Center at American University. As an educator, I am honored to have the opportunity to inspire children to discover more about themselves through artistic self-expression.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Press Release - High Flying Athletes Jump Aboard Crystal Flight

Crystal Flight sponsor Archstone will be bringing high flying Washington Wizards players into the flight plan of Crystal City’s six-month Celebration of Flight.

Archstone, an owner and manager of apartment buildings in Crystal City and the metropolitan area, joined the program by sponsoring artist Amy Marshall. After coordinating participation from the Washington Wizards, Archstone worked closely with the artist to develop an artistic treatment to highlight the high-flying action of the team.

Currently being prepared at the Artist Studio in Crystal City, the airplane dubbed “Soar Above the Rim” will be transported to the Washington Wizards facility in downtown DC by Crystal Flight partner JK Moving and Storage, Inc early next week. Washington Wizards players will then autograph the statue decorated with basketballs and player silhouettes.

The BID continues to celebrate other exciting flight-related activities in Crystal City, such as the recent opening of the Boeing retail store and the expanded partnership with the U.S. Air Force and Arlington Sports in hosting the 2nd annual Crystal Ride U.S. Air Force Cycling Classic on May 4, 2008.

Keep up with the excitement around Crystal City and Crystal Flight by visiting the Crystal Flight Blog available at It will regularly capture the activity from the artists, sponsors, and the community impact.

Official Press Release

Monday, February 25, 2008

The Plane Makers!

Many have been inquiring as to who and how the Crystal Flight Airplane statues were made. The answer is TivoliToo! This Minnesota-based firm got their start by making small charm bracelet jewelry and transformed into a creative manufacturer of all things 3D! Chances are, you have already seen or heard of some of their other contributions. They are responsible for creating the 3D characters in the Rainforest Cafe Restaurants, they manufactured the street statues for DC's "Party Animals" and "Pandamania" projects, and created a series of Peanuts-related characters for St. Paul Minnesota to celebrate Chuck Schultz.

For Crystal Flight, TivoliToo's in-house designers helped the Crystal City BID envision the look and size of the two airplane statue types: the fighter jet and the vintage plane. They then use a proprietary cast-and-mold process to create the statues. The airplanes arrived in Crystal City via three separate 18-wheelers.

When the airplanes arrived at the BID's storage location at the Century Center (provided by Lowe Enterprises), the approximately 50-pound airplanes were attached to wooden palettes. Project partner JK Moving and Storage provided staff to remove the wooden palettes and attach the statues to the concrete bases. TivoliToo specially designed a plan for the concrete base to facilitate easy installation and provide a perfectly balanced statue. The concrete bases were made to the exact specifications by partner Miller and Long. Weighing in at about 481 pounds, the bases ensure the airplanes will stay put once placed on the streets of Crystal City.

Check out TivoliToo’s website for a good summary of their firm! To go straight to their street statue products go here.

Saturday, February 23, 2008

Artist Spotlight - Christie Otvos

Today's Crystal Flight Artist Spotlight is on Christie Otvos! Christie is working diligently to complete two separate mosaic designs for two sponsors. "Can You See Yourself Flying," which will consist of small cut pieces of mirror and red glass tiles adhered onto the surface of the plane has been sponsored by the Crystal City Shops. Several hundred halves of rubber bouncy balls will make up "Bounce Off" for the Crystal City Sports Pub.

About the Artist
"My art has always been about exploring my surroundings. I tend to find myself in antiques shops, scrap yards, or anyplace I can find anything old."

"While traveling to Ithaca, New York in 1997, I was introduced to the construction of stained glass. Stained glass windows have always struck me as magical and over the years that magical process has had its way with me, leading me from hobby to art. I have explored many techniques including mosaic, foil technique, sandblasting, fusing, dry plaster casting, scraffito, welding and silversmithing. I find enjoyment combining many of these techniques with my love of vintage objects and giving them new life. "

"I've always been intrigued by sense of community and how art could bring a community together. So I participated in a public mosaic art project called Art on the Block. The Marvin Gaye Park in Washington DC covered their building, address signs and sidewalks in recyclable objects. The community was involved in almost every step of the way to make this happen. To honor them, over two hundred of their names were displayed in mosaic."

"Currently I'm working with three dimensional stained glass sculpture. I love trying to take something that is normally one dimensional and adding a twist to it. I'm also exploring a new medium, plate glass. I was introduced to this medium at the Washington Glass School where I'm a teaching assistant. Please take a look at my artwork at"

Friday, February 22, 2008

Artist Spotlight - Veronica Nehemias & Gail Padgett

If you are keeping up with the Crystal Flight Blog, you might already have heard of these self-proclaimed “wild women” busy painting one of the Airplanes. Gail Padgett and Veronica (Roni) Nehemias were recently featured in an article in The Connection.

Sponsored by Transwestern, a national commercial real estate firm with a number of properties and buildings in Crystal City, Gail and Roni are working on what they call “Wild Ride,” hence the “wild women” quote in the article. The plane features various meticulously painted patterns of wild animal skins, coats, feathers, and shells. The artists are quick to note that viewers need not read too deeply into their concept.

“Our work is intended for fun and to bring smiles to the viewers,” they explained. “There are no deep hidden meanings or symbols of angst or protest.”

To the other Crystal Flight Artists, do not miss meeting these interesting ladies! If you have the chance, say hello!

About the Artists
Gail and Roni met about 35 years ago as elementary school art teachers. As teachers they worked on Youth Art Month, Art Curriculum, and traveled nationally and internationally to view artwork and to absorb culture. After retirement the two self-professed “Artners” (such a clever term, Partners in Art!), have collaborated on a number of efforts under the name “Sweetfoot Studios” – this name deriving from not only their “sweet smelling feet, but also because they are Straight Women From Out Of Town… SWeetFOOT!” Their collaborations include the 25th Anniversary Art Show at the Delaplaine Art Center (Frederick, Maryland), Sculptured Food (Frederick, Maryland), “Boxes for Light Street Gallery and the Artists Gallery in Frederick, Maryland as well as a number of other “street statue” programs throughout the metropolitan area.

Gail is a retired and award-winning Frederick County, Maryland elementary school art teacher. Originally from North Carolina, she received undergraduate and graduate degrees from East Carolina University. Along with teaching children and adults, Gail is a former gallery owner, art co-op exhibitor and arts council member. Her work has been mostly in textiles ranging from batik to felting. Free time is spent traveling and entertaining Dickens, her Soft Coated Wheaten Terrier.

Also a retired and award-winning Frederick County, Maryland elementary school art teacher, Roni received her undergraduate degree from Frostburg and a graduate degree from the University of Maryland. She is an active member of several Art organizations and practicing artist, specializing in flat work using water color and colored pencil as well as amusing sculptures of plants and food. Roni lives with her husband Frank on a small, wooded farm in northern Frederick County amongst many “wild things.”

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Artist Spotlight - Chuck Baxter

If you are lucky enough to catch Chuck Baxter working on his Airplane Statue, "Flotsam and Jetsam," when passing the Artist Studio, you will see some truly intense concentration. Chuck is using his signature artistic technique of mounting colorful found objects onto his airplane to create a colorful mosaic. You may find Chuck stretched out on the floor studying several pieces for a particular location on the plane, trying to find just the right fit! Each piece winds up being placed perfectly in his intricately-planned work. Next to his airplane, you will find several piles of his found objects organized by color and size for easy selection.

Chuck Baxter creates found object art from materials tossed in DC’ s gutters and alleys. For the past decade Chuck has built a reputation, in his own mind, as the D.C. area’s foremost collector of gutter gifts. He’s a U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs bureaucrat, a DC artist, and minimal director of his own life. Few of Chuck’s pieces hang in DC business and government offices, and in the homes of art collectors and friends around the world. “I have always felt the pull of throw-aways, and sought to invoke the world of junk as the natural medium for the urban artist.” His fascination with the flotsam of city life and the details of trash, such as broken glass, smashed plastic, crumpled paper, and lost toys, is the starting point for most of his pieces. The underlying compositional theme of his work draws from the common shapes and forms found in the gutter. Chuck currently resides in the Shaw where he simmers in his own private studio.

Learn more about Chuck by visiting his personal artist page at

About the Sponsor
"Flotsam and Jetsam" is being sponsored by one of Crystal City's most colorful restaurants and bars, Freddie's Beach Bar & Restaurant. Located along 23rd Street's Restaurant Row, Freddies has been a signature establishment in the area for several years offering unrivaled karaoke nights, a weekly drag show, and one of the area's most delicious Sunday Brunches. Freddie's also boasts a great outdoor patio, perfect for a lunch stop after a tour of the airplanes once they "land" on the streets of Crystal City in early April.

Ready For Takoff! - "Rock Solid"

Local artist Pamela Marcon officially completed her work today. Rock Solid conveys a meticulously detailed work of art that conveys the airplane constructed of stone blocks and realistic looking granite.

"I saw the image of the sidewalk starting as the base," Pamela says describing her work, "...combining its texture with the four different faux rock finishes. Representing…… the solid rock quality of Crystal City!"

Explore some of her work at her website by visiting

A Word from the Artist
"Occasionally I happened to be alone working in the studio. The sight of all the planes and the sound of nearby construction made it feel like a real plane hanger. I am glad I was there to experience it.

My very best wishes to the Crystal City BID Folks, the Artists, and to the people of the building. We especially enjoyed the window of smiles… Thank you for making it a truly memorable project."

About the Artist
Sometimes when a door closes, a window opens. And that is how Pamela Marcon—who aspired to be a dancer as a young woman—found art in 1972 after a stage accident shattered her knee and her dream. Pamela is one of our area’s homegrown artists, having been born in Takoma Park, Maryland. Pam’s been painting since 1972, and an Arlington resident since 1976. Her propensity to paint anything—canvas, furniture, walls, pans, saws, cement floors—with a mural or faux finish earned her recognition in the region, and ultimately, a number of commissions. Her art is living, unpredictable, whimsical, and often, three dimensional. She prefers acrylics, but is willing to try any new medium or venue in the name of engaging art.

Pamela’s approach to art and growth of her talent has been eclectic. Throughout the years, she has pursued her education through formal and informal channels slowly, steadily, and with the passion of a soul born to create. But it’s her unique skill that has kept her progressing and in the public eye for years. And since an untimely, two-week long computer crash frustrated her in 1997, even her own little bungalow speaks to her vocation; tired of fighting with her computer, she started to paint the house’s entire exterior....... not with a big paint house-painting brush, but with her little picture-painting brush. The murals "glow" happily at passing traffic. Among her largest commissions was a series of 121 paintings that Raytheon selected for an installation in Massachusetts.

A member of the Delray Artisans in Alexandria, Virginia, Pam is busy. In the future, her paintings will adorn select buildings in New Orleans for Katrina survivors. She’s participated in area art shows, and is currently working on numerous projects from a T-shirt design for the Arlington Historic Society, to a series of Cartoons. She hopes to coordinate a multi-artist show in the Lyon Park area of Arlington this spring.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Crystal Flight Squadron Shows Color!

Stop by the Artist Studio located at the Century Center (enter at 2461 S. Clark Street) and you will notice that a large percentage of the Crystal Flight Airplanes have been started! Many of the designs are still in their extremely early stages of color treatment. View this slide show to get an idea of the progress that has been made so far in the project!

Friday, February 8, 2008

Ready For Takeoff! - "It Is Written in the Stars"

Linda Doyle has officially become the first artist to complete her statue! It looks wonderful and I am sure Linda has made her sponsor (and our Crystal Flight partner, Lowe Enterprises) very happy.

Thursday, February 7, 2008

Now Arriving, Crystal Flight

The Arlington Connection did a featured story this week about Crystal Flight.

Check out the article: Now Arriving, Crystal City

First Week of Flight

With a week of painting under our belts, the Crystal Flight artist’s studio at the Century Center is looking a whole lot more colorful! Approximately 12 of the 50 statues are already underway.

Partly out of necessity, Linda Doyle has made the most progress on her piece, “It Is Written in the Stars.” Harking from Mundelein, Illinois, Linda has shacked up at the Oakwood Corporate Residences in Crystal City and has been painting since the opening of the studio missing Illinois snowstorms, a Presidential Primary, and her family! Check out at the Oakwood is scheduled for Thursday morning so hopefully she will be done soon!

Linda’s plane, which is sponsored by Crystal Flight partner Lowe Enterprises, incorporates scenes of the cosmos onto the Jet statue with a two-foot diameter, 3-D representation of the globe below. The word “peace” is spelled out throughout the work and greeting visitors from around the world by offering variations in over 50 different languages.

A Word From the Artist
“I have thoroughly enjoyed my stay at Crystal City, the people have been so very helpful and kind. I want to thank Oakwood Residences for allowing me the privilege of staying in their suites while I was working on the Plane. I felt like a princess. Many thanks to Mr. Kevin Boisjolie and Jennifer Lee, Angie Fox, Maurisa Potts, Rob Mandle and all of the men at the Lowe Enterprises at Century Center I & II, Pam, Diana, Roger, Courtney, Brenda, Christy, Chuck, Ann and Martha, hope I'm not forgetting anyone...sounds like an acceptance speech at the Oscars!!!!! Well I had a blast and will miss you all lots but the snow and my family miss me so I must return to Chicago, I hope to see you in the spring when the planes hits the streets of Crystal City. Bye for now!” -Linda

About the Artist
Linda Doyle is an idealist. She lives in Chicago, loves tea, meditation and detests injustice of any kind.

Her goal is to identify the uniqueness and similarities in each of us and examine how this can strengthen and complement our current way of life.

She attended Edinboro State University of Pennsylvania and received a Bachelor of Fine Arts Degree. Learning everything about painting, drawing and sculpture she set out to change the world one project at a time.

This was only the beginning though, she began seeking out public art venues to express her creativity and mission. As an environmental activist she participated in Cool Globes- Chicago. Her globe's theme was Chicago Bike Plan 2015 touting the benefits of riding a bike in the city where she lives. She has been featured n North Shore Magazine, Pioneer Press, the Daily Herald and Chicago Magazine. Her Mini replica globe went to the United Nations Children’s Global Climate Initiative. The “Peace Sundial” is another public art sculpture that she created, located in Winona Lake, Indiana. The sculpture sits among nine other sculptures in a beautiful wooded setting, each displays the virtues that that town has adopted. The Peace Sundial is dedicated to people who lost their lives during September 11, 2001 tragedy at the World Trade Center. Her other projects include A panel for the Mark DiSuvero’s Peace Tower in Chicago. The panels hang from a steel tower erected to show solidarity toward non-violence, peace, and humanitarian efforts. She is currently working on an Arts and Literature Grants for students at Highland Middle School, Libertyville, IL on topics that approach social justice. Linda is thrilled to be a part of the Crystal City Flight Public Art Project.

About Lowe Enterprises
Lowe Enterprises Real Estate Group is a wholly owned subsidiary of Los Angeles-based Lowe Enterprises, Inc., a leading national real estate investment, development and management firm founded in 1972. Over the past 35 years, Lowe Enterprises has developed, acquired or managed more than $8.5 billion of real estate assets. The firm is currently developing 7 million square feet of commercial projects and $2 billion of resort/planned community projects nationwide. Through its hospitality management subsidiary, the firm currently oversees the management of more than 8,400 hotel rooms/units nationwide.

Lowe Enterprises owns and is managing the redevelopment of the Century Center in Crystal City.

At Century Center, the advantages of an urban workstyle are crystal clear. Century Center offers 560,000 square feet of office space and 70,000 square feet of retail space, set within the heart of the “new” Crystal City. More than 200 shops, services, and restaurants are just steps away from this distinctive two-building office/retail complex.

Just as Crystal City has been reinvigorated with bold new concepts in urban planning and design, Century Center has also been transformed into a sleek and sophisticated office environment. A comprehensive renovation of both buildings has included completely refurbished lobbies and public spaces, a new entrance canopy, and extensive enhancements to the building facades. The complex also offers prominent storefront retail opportunities and a vibrant streetscape along Crystal Drive.

The complex is less then a five minute drive from Reagan National airport, within walking distance of the Crystal City Metro station and is easily accessible from the George Washington Parkway, I-395 and Washington, D.C.

Tenants will enjoy spectacular views of the city, as well as all of the benefits of one of the nation’s great 24/7 communities—with public transportation; ample parking; and a host of retail, restaurant, and entertainment options close by. Crystal City’s “Main Street” and pedestrian amenities—including a lively streetscape, parks, and public plazas—are all part of the Century Center experience. Find a new way to work—and a new way of life—at Century Center.

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

A Note from the Crystal City BID President/CEO, Angie Fox

Note as delivered at the Kick-Off Party...
"Two weeks ago, for what has to be at least the 1000th time since I moved to Arlington more than 17 years ago, I landed at National Airport. And, as that Boeing MD-88 pulled into the Gate, I thought, as I always do, I love my neighborhood airport!! Within 5 minutes, I was in Crystal City at the office and 5 minutes more, I was home. Where else in the world does that happen?

Crystal City has it all. Location, Access, and, to slightly modify an old phrase, Transportation, Transportation, Transportation. This is about celebrating that transportation connection specifically as it relates to Air. We are thrilled and honored to launch Crystal Flight - A Celebration of Art and Air.

As a recovering electrical engineer, I am all about convenience and efficiency sort of like Crystal City. But, as we have all learned, that is not enough. We need sparkle, fun, and whimsy to make us whole. That is what the BID is about - Crystallizing Crystal City - making it whole. At first glance, that project is about as cumbersome as eating an elephant. But, as this vegetarian has been told, you eat an elephant one bite at a time, and that is what we have begun. We started at the beginning alphabetically speaking.

A - Art. First...Artomatic, which brought more than 32K people into Crystal City over six weekends last April. Second...Arena Stage. We have seen our restaurants up more than 10% and it has only just begun.

Now, its Airplanes. And, to ensure we make a statement, we've bought 50 of them. I remember telling my four-year-old son, Tatton, "well, Mommy bought 50 planes today!" He was like, COOL!! And, he was right!! They are COOL! 25 are vintage props, 25 are fighter jets. We have 50 designs from amazing artists and wonderful area sponsors. Please give a huge hand for our sponsors and our artists who are meeting for the first time here today. The planes are the media, and the art is the message. In April, these 50 airplane sculptures will land on the streets of Crystal City, symbolizing that Crystal City is truly taking off!"

"But, there is much more. This idea is not new. In fact, when we first started kicking this program around, we heard a lot of "It's been done before" comments. Clearly, we disagree. That is because Crystal City is all about the execution and relevance. This isn't cows. It isn't pandas. This is airplanes. From the beginning, people have been fascinated by flight. They love all forms of flight from the Birds and the Bees, to Balloons, Rockets, and Jets. The Smithsonian Air/Space Museum continues to be one of the most visited museum in the world. People want to see and fly. And, we want people to come see and fly. Crystal City is a hub a center of Air. From National Airport, to the USAF Cycling Race, to Boeing, Northrup Grummond, and Lockheed Martin (just to name a few).

Needless to say, this is a huge undertaking for this little team of four, but we have the best sponsors you could ask for. In addition to the actual plane sponsors, we have three major partners who, without which, we would not be here. First, there is Lowe Enterprises Real Estate Group, who generously provided the workshop space in this building to store and decorate the planes. It Is our ARTIST STUDIO and people can actually come and watch the artists in action.

Then, there is
Miller and Long, who graciously donated the 50 451-pound concrete bases to have them installed on the streets does not look good to have planes laying on the ground.

And, finally, there is
JK Moving and Storage, Inc. We were told that three tractor trailer trucks (3 Semis) would deliver these planes, and we had the bases on which to put them, but the concept of putting them together was a little beyond us. In stepped Steve Wilder from Boeing who said, "You need to call JK Moving and Storage.” He was right. They pulled it all together. They provided the critical technical support for the handling of the planes and they will put them on the streets when the time comes. Steve Kuhn and his team from JK Moving & Storage have moved mountains (and lots of planes) to make this work and we are extremely grateful.

Please come by the Artist Studio in the Century Center Buildings and watch the progress. Stop by this blog often as we will provide frequent updates over the course of the next two weeks and beyond. On April 13th, the Crystal City BID will also be sponsoring Crystal Block, an outdoor street festival of music and libations celebrating not only some of the areas best and most original restaurants, but also the "landing" of the completed Crystal Flight statues on the streets of Crystal City.

Thank you and I hope to see you on the streets soon!"