CAN Festival 2020

Living Local

NEWPORT NEWS, Va. (WAVY) — It’s the Art Basel of Virginia: The Contemporary Arts Network in Newport News invites the community to take part in CAN Festival 2020.

The art advisory and special projects unit recently opened its headquarters on the Virginia Peninsula, which houses two art galleries, a boutique, a small sound stage, an art studio, and music studio.

“Our model revolves around being a nexus of connectivity and creativity within our community,” said Asa Jackson, founder and president of CAN.

To commemorate the grand opening of their new facility, the organization is hosting a festival for the month of August, with curated events taking place every weekend Thursday through Sunday. Visitors will have the chance to see hear poetry, explore art exhibits, and see up-and-coming musicians perform on stage. The featured artists come from near and far.

“We house an artist’s residency program called ‘First Patron.’ There are five artists in the program: four are Hampton Roads-based, another is coming from Baltimore by way of Nigeria. During the festival, all of their work will be on display in one of our exhibitions,” said Jackson.

While the art-based group wants everyone to be entertained, they’re also doing their part to adhere to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention health and safety guidelines.

“All of these events are ticketed and time-slotted. People have to RSVP ahead of time, so we can keep the numbers very low, ” Jackson added.

The CAN Festival runs through Aug. 30 at 9601 Warwick Boulevard in Newport News. For the full schedule of events, visit the CAN webpage.


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