A few weeks ago I took a class at Workhouse Arts Center in Lorton, VA. My friend Joyce was signed up for a machine felting class, and I looked forward to spending the morning with her. This was my first trip to Workhouse and I found it to be a wonderful space to create. The center has an interesting history. The buildings and grounds formerly housed the Lorton Prison. When the prison closed in 2001, the facility was re-purposed in a number of ways. The historic buildings were transformed into artist studios, galleries and public spaces. The center is now home to more than 100 professional artists and offers over 150 classes and workshops each quarter in a wide range of artistic disciplines.
The class consisted of three students and one teacher. We had the opportunity to use the various materials provided to create felted pieces using our own felting machines. The class was very unstructured, and we were encouraged to play and create as we wished. The classroom where I worked shared space with a number of fiber artist studios, and the artists came and went during the time I was there, often stopping in to see what we were working on.
I really enjoyed the space at this center. It was very easy to get to, parking was directly outside the studio, and the grounds are beautiful. The classrooms are full of natural light and the inspiring architecture of an older building. This would be a great place to hold a workshop or special event. This fall I plan to take advantage of some of the other available courses.