Q & A with José A. Ortiz, Executive Director of Artisphere

ARLINGTON, Va. (WJLA) - José A. Ortiz is the Executive Director of Artisphere, a one-stop-shop for art of every kind in Arlington. The center is celebrating its third anniversary, the perfect time to chat with Mr. Ortiz about all that Artisphere has to offer.

WJLA: Do you find that people are surprised by the variety of arts offered at Artisphere?

Mr. Ortiz: Customarily, many art venues present art in one specific discipline - museums present visual arts, theatres present drama, comedy, musical, cinemas present movies - our visitors are pleasantly surprised and love the notion that we present all types of art under one roof.

WJLA: For such a young art center, you've attracted some very recognizable names like Andy Warhol and Frida Kahlo. Are visitors excited to see such big artists displayed in this area?

Mr. Ortiz: This is a town that is not short on big names. What helps distinguish us from other institutions, is that we compliment the presentation of these "big names" with thought-provoking, daring, programming - whether it is dance, new media, film, music or performance, we want that connection to be memorable and different from what they have experienced anyplace else.

WJLA: For someone who has never visited Artisphere, what would you want them to know about the center?

Mr. Ortiz: We are a new breed of art center that is presenting art in established and emerging disciplines - all under one roof. We help our visitors to not only create a connection with artists but to also gain insight into the artistic process.