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Introduction

The Tephra ICA Arts Festival is a highly selective fine art and fine craft outdoor exhibition. Each year, three top visual arts leaders, artists, and practitioners are identified as jurors to allow a thoughtful and critically engaged review process. Each application will be digitally reviewed by jurors and they will select the most accomplished artists within ten categories from around the nation to present their works at the Festival. The jurors will attend the Festival and will award the top ten artists to be announced at the Festival Cocktail Hour. Learn more about the 2024 jurors below.

Festival Jurors - Festival Information - Tephra ICA

Jordan Brown

Jordan Brown has worked at the Visual Arts Center of Richmond for over 10 years and has been a part of the organization’s incredible growth over the last decade. She started her time at VisArts as a front-desk associate before working with community programs and later growing to lead the education team and the center’s annual programming.  Before being appointed as interim Executive Director, Brown served as VisArts’ Director of Education + Programs for five years. She was appointed as Executive Director in June of 2023.  Brown has a B.F.A. from Virginia Commonwealth University in Painting and Printmaking with a Music Minor as well as a Masters in Arts Administration from Goucher College. She is currently a board member of Partners in the Arts, a graduate of the Leadership Metro Richmond’s Leadership Quest Program and was named a Richmond Style Weekly “Top 40 Under 40” in 2023.

Festival Jurors - Festival Information - Tephra ICA

Nicola Charles

Nicola Charles, an international curator and the founder of 11:Eleven gallery, was born in London, England in 1980. With a diverse background in Relationship Management at Christie's Auctioneers and Professional Services, Nicola made a successful transition back into the art world. She obtained her Curatorial certification from Sotheby's Institute of Art and has established herself as a highly respected figure across the UK and US art contemporary and urban art markets. Notable achievements include directing, managing, and curating the highly successful exhibition "A Journey Through Brutalism" at one of South London's prominent Urban Art galleries. Nicola also played a major role in organizing and executing London's largest urban art festival in 2018. She has gained valuable experience working at Rebecca Hossack Art Gallery and collaborating with partners and sponsors at the renowned Affordable Art Fair.


As a passionate globetrotter, Nicola's extensive travels have nurtured her profound appreciation for the arts and provided her with a global perspective. This passion led her to Washington, D.C., where she currently resides, and founded the notable 11:Eleven gallery, which opened its doors on November 11, 2019. Nicola is a member of Artfinder's Curatorial Board and has recently joined the Board of Directors at Project Create, a non-profit organization located in Washington, DC.

Festival Jurors - Festival Information - Tephra ICA

Mallory Kimmel

Mallory Kimmel is an artist, curator, educator, and writer who makes conceptual furniture to address exclusionary design practices. Kimmel received her MFA in fine art from California College of the Arts and co-founded the Black X Collective. She served as the Chief of Art Relations, securing the film festival venue at the Phillips Collection and THEARC. She was named 2019 MFA Now, artist to watch in the Bay Area by Root Division and was selected as the Aggregate Space Gallery Curatorial Fellow. Kimmel in 2023 was selected as the Jennie Lea Knight Fellow at the Studio Gallery in D.C. and was awarded studio space at Hamiltonian Artists. She has been selected for artist residencies including the Social Studies Residency and the Outreach Artist Residency in the Arctic Circle funded by the NSF and NOAA. Kimmel is collaborating with The George Washington University Museum and Textile Museum with the Washingtoniana Collection on a project called, America: Land of Civil War. She has been published by e-flux, The George Washington University Museum and Textile Museum’s Evolution DC, and BMoreArt Magazine. Kimmel has founded the local small press, Do Less Press, specializing in artist literature on power, labor, rest and healing. She teaches art theory and studio courses at The Corcoran School of Art and Design at George Washington University, The University of Maryland, George Mason University (GMU), Prince Georges Community College and Community College of Baltimore County (CCBC). Kimmel manages the permanent art collection at CCBC and is currently writing a conceptual furniture course to be taught Fall 2024 at GMU.

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