To enrich community life by connecting the public with contemporary art and artists through exhibitions, educational programs, and artist residencies.


To be a leading center for contemporary art in the Mid-Atlantic region, and a champion of the power of art to enhance public life.

About the Museum of Contemporary Art Arlington

The Museum of Contemporary Art Arlington, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit contemporary visual arts center, was established in 1974 and has been housed since 1976 in a historic school building. Our facility includes nine exhibition galleries, working studios for twelve artists, and three classrooms. At 17,000 square feet, the museum is one of the largest non-federal venues for contemporary art in the Washington metropolitan area.

About the Building

The Clarendon Elementary School was built in 1910 to serve the growing Clarendon neighborhood. The two-story symmetrical building was designed by noted school architect Charles M. Robinson, with a central hall and four classrooms on each floor.

The school closed in 1975, and the building became home to the Arlington Arts Center in 1976. After an extensive renovation in 2005, it now boasts original Tiffany Windows. The Clarendon School is a designated Arlington County Landmark and is listed in the National Register of Historic Places.

The Museum of Contemporary Art Arlington is an independent non-profit organization, not a county agency. The museum holds a long-term lease with Arlington County to operate within the Clarendon School building. This valued partnership with the County provides the museum with exceptional space in which to fulfill its mission.


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