To spark creativity and inspiration in people’s everyday lives.
Ix Art Park seeks to empower its community through curating welcoming spaces that allow everyone in the community a safe space to exist creatively. The Foundation believes that everyone is an artist and every artist deserves space to exercise their creativity.
The Foundation manages a 24-hour free mural and sculpture art park, Virginia’s first permanent immersive art experience, as well as several community-driven series including weekly markets supporting women and minority entrepreneurs, arts education programs for underserved youth, and creative empowerment programs for the whole community.
Why IX [ɪks̠]?
Founded in 1919, Frank Ix & Sons was originally based in Union City, New Jersey. In 1928, Frank Ix, Jr. moved to Charlottesville, Virginia to build the third and eventually largest of six mills. He’d only planned to stay a year but liked it so much, he stayed a lifetime.
Known around town as the silk mill, Ix & Sons produced “greige goods”, unfinished fabrics. During World War II, Ix & Sons shifted the emphasis of their output from bolts of fabric to nylon parachutes. Four times, the Undersecretary of War awarded Ix & Sons the Army-Navy Production Award, both for their industry and their contribution to the development of new fabrics such as rip-stop nylon, a true lifesaver for American paratroopers. For decades, Ix & Sons was Charlottesville’s largest employer, known for its fairness and warm family atmosphere. Most employees stayed with the mill at least twenty-five years. Many never worked anywhere else.
But in 1999, the grand old mill bowed to an enemy it could not see; a depressed domestic textile market. Their high of 1,400 employees shrank to only 150. After years of struggling, Ix & Sons finally succumbed to the pressure of foreign competition and closed its doors in 1999.
Ix is a place of
We welcome every member of our community to visit, explore, make and relax in the Art Park.
We believe in the power of place and know a safe space can empower bold ideas.
We believe everyone is creative and celebrate that creativity.
We embrace creative partnerships based on mutual respect.