Stories & Testimonials

Being introduced to the organization a few years ago, I have been fortunate enough to experience many of the great attributes it provides. Public Art Reston is a unique and rare organization, embedded into the life of the community it serves. At a time when art is less and less of a focus in school curriculums, Public Art Reston works to help keep art in the community forefront, through; assisting the commissioning of new art works and the artist behind them, rejuvenating existing public art, or saving works from certain destruction. Beyond the public art works throughout the community, Public Art Reston is busy hosting artist talks or public chalk festivals, allowing families create their own masterpieces to be enjoyed by thousands. Among many other additional involvements of the organization, Public Art Reston can also be found assisting a local high school STEAM team with bringing their team’s vision to life, while building essential skills for the students.

Active among a wide-ranging demographic of students, teachers, professional artist, residents, corporations and public officials. Public Art Reston puts building the community at its forefront and is an organization the entire community can be proud of.

David Youst

Board Director

Public Art Reston is an essential element of Reston’s arts community! Reston is known for its eclectic style and appreciation for the arts. The presence of art can be found through the community, especially when walking along the many trails where you can find sculptures and murals. This is not an accident. One of Robert Simon Jr’s primary goals for Reston when founded in 1964 was to provide leisure and cultural activities for community members. Simon helped put in place an essential organization – Public Art Reston – to ensure his vision would be fulfilled as the community grew. Its mission to “inspire an ongoing commitment to public art and create a new generation of artworks in Reston” is overseen by a strong board and dedicate executive director.

Cate Fulkerson

Public art enriches all of our lives, and indeed, my life has been enriched by the art projects that have been displayed at the Lake Thoreau spillway over the last few years. I live nearby and frequently walk along that path by the lake. I was especially pleased to learn that students at South Lakes High School have been the creators of these imaginative displays. This is a project that should definitely be continued to benefit the students who participate and to benefit the public that enjoys the fruits of their efforts.

Anonymous Reston Resident

I grew up in Reston and I remember playing on the sculptures in Lake Anne and these are memories I look on fondly that have shaped my career in architecture. I have been inspired by much of Reston’s public art and the way it is incorporated so seamlessly into public spaces and its architecture. It marks place, engages the senses, and conveys the spirit of the community. It is a treasure and makes such an impact on the quality of life for those who live here

Anonymous Reston Resident

Having been raised in Reston(1968) I had the privilege as a child to learn and be inspired by the tradition of integrating the arts and community first put forth by Robert Simon. As an adult I have transformed those experiences into a profession career as an artist. The icing on the cake is that several of my works are on display to the public in Reston. IPAR has embraced the original vision and taken it to the next level. Continuing to bring art to the community, education to our children and inspiration to us all! Thank you, Public Art Reston, Bob(Simon) would be proud.

Zachary Oxman


Public Art Reston has been a wonderful asset to the Reston community! Their commitment to the arts has encouraged a fantastic dialogue among the neighbors, and they continue to inspire the community to think outside the box when it comes to public art.

Anonymous volunteer

Public Art Reston provides a terrific service to Reston, its businesses and its residents. The organization works to document, catalogue and promote existing public art installations throughout our community. Additionally, it works to add to that inventory by supporting property developers, community organizations, schools and others to deliver new elements using best practices. We are fortunate to have this organization in our community.

Anonymous Board Member

Public Art Reston

Public art is such a visible expression of an area’s commitment to promoting arts, cultivating community and creating everyday wonder for everyone to enjoy. Public Art Reston is an organization that reflects the community’s passion for art and community. They have a strong web of partners and the group is deeply ingrained in the community. Because of these deep community roots, the organization is able to do a whole lot with very limited resources. Public Art Reston is one of the key organizations in Reston that helps make the area so community-centric and inviting.

Gerald Zavala

Board Director and Committee Chair, Public Art Reston

I loved working with STEAM, as someone who likes design and does art. For a while I thought I couldn’t pursue art as a career, but being able to make something that contributes to the community makes me feel that there is a real need for art in our world.

Victoria Slaski

STEAM (December 2016), South Lakes High School

Public Art Reston—such a great cause and this organization is filled of wonderful/passionate folks. I’m new to the area and joined a few months back. They have welcomed me in open armed, encouraged my ideas, and sparked my own creativity. There’s lots going on, but new approaches and ideas are strongly supported. Volunteer for a fundraiser, join a committee, attend an event, or simply enjoy & support public art!

Nikki Reynolds

Committee member, Public Art Reston

I have been working as an artist with public art programs since 1975. The programs have included state, local, institutional and in some cases specific state and local government agencies such as education and transportation departments. [Public Art Reston] is entirely professional, incredibly effective in enabling the highest quality art to be created, and exceeds all others in the quality of its public engagement.

From the selection process at the beginning and throughout the entire process of the commission, I was very impressed with the way that the executive director of [Public Art Reston] facilitated the public private partnership that was formed in support of my specific project. I believe that the guidance and support of [Public Art Reston] throughout enabled me to create one of the most successful works of public art of my career and the most enthusiastically welcomed of all.

In addition to logistical support, [Public Art Reston] was amazing in connecting me to the Reston community at all stages. I was truly inspired through the understanding that I gained of Reston’s history and culture and the sculpture reflects that inspiration. My relationship with the Reston community has continued in quite wonderful ways. I had a great conversation with students from South Lake High School in the midst of their process of creating their sculpture “Nothing Twice” recently unveiled at the Lake Thoreau Spillway. Also, [Public Art Reston] facilitated my participation when the Reston Community Center commissioned two dance companies to choreograph and perform dances inspired by my sculpture, “Reston Rondo” as part of the Northern Virginia Fine Arts Festival. I conceived of the sculpture to be interactive; the dancers’ performances were magical and embodied a wonderful intersection of the arts as forms of human expression.

Beyond my association as an artist with [Public Art Reston], I have some depth of experience with arts non-profits as a former member of the Maryland State Arts Council, a trustee of Maryland Citizens for the Arts (MCA), the founder and a trustee of Arts Education in Maryland Schools (AEMS) Alliance and Co-Chair of the Governor’s Task Force on Arts Education in Maryland Schools which engaged many non-profit arts institutions in its work. Based on this experience as well, I strongly recommend IPAR as an exemplary non-profit organization.

Mary Ann Mears


I am a [Public Art Reston] board member. I am also a resident of Reston and grew up there. [Public Art Reston] is an incredibly well managed organization that is doing a remarkable job of continuing and reimagining the role of public art in our community. The sprit of our community grows with each new public art project that [Public Art Reston] implements. From engaging our school students in art projects to bringing world renowned artists to our community, [Public Art Reston] captivates Restonian’s imaginations, brings us together as a community and inspires us to pursue artistic endeavors in our own lives. I have watched my 3 year old daughter experience such joy as she plays in or views [Public Art Reston] projects. I’m so glad to know she has had these special experiences and that so many other Restonians have had them as well.

Rebekah Wingert-Jabi

Board Member, Public Art Reston