There might be no culinary tradition as richly and authentically American as pit barbecue. Like the blues, it is so irrevocably bound to Southern culture and Americana that it defies attempts at assimilation or fusion with the modern. Predating the Civil War, a pig roast, or “pig-pickin’,” was a celebration in itself, bringing together poor Southern towns to partake in a communal feast. The community is alive today in Georgetown, shepherded by two men with opposite backgrounds, separate philosophies, divergent stories. Where they unite is in a love for the high art of the low and slow, the transformation of the raw to the refined. In the world of Richard Brooks and John Snedden, anyone who appreciates such heritage is welcome to the table. That it courses through the most historic neighborhood in Washington is no accident. It is instead a quiet reminder of what this city once was and who we once were. More than a style of cooking, barbecue is a culture, and if you live below the Mason-Dixon Line, odds are you are a part of it. Washington, D.C. is an oft-forgotten wealth of Southern tradition, and while its barbecue scene may not have the clarion call of Memphis ribs or Carolina slaw, the craft is thriving. The Beer, Bourbon and BBQ festival at the National Harbor is this weekend. Safeway’s National Capital Barbecue Battle, now in its 17th year, holds court the weekend of June 26. It’s time to sharpen your palette. Richard Brooks of Old Glory Outside Old Glory BBQ, the scent of smoked meats permeates the corner of Wisconsin and M Streets like the Carolina State Fair. On a given evening, it is almost impossible to walk through Georgetown without catching a whiff of sweet pork and baked beans. Executive Chef Richard Brooks has been crafting a melting pot of regional barbecue fare since he came aboard in 1995. Raised in Farmville, VA, Brooks grew up smoking and curing his family’s farm-raised pigs with his father and grandfather. “I never went to culinary school,” he admits. “I learned from my parents.” Though raised in the Carolina tradition — sweet pulled pork with a vinegar-based sauce — he has become a national representative for all styles of American barbecue. If they do it in Texas or Tennessee, odds are Brooks does it in his kitchen. Old Glory’s position as a true and authentic barbecue restaurant comes as a result of the combined inspirations from each corner of the country. And while all cuts of meat have their cooking variations, Brooks explains that the greater distinctions in barbecue styles come from the sauces. The rubs, marinades and sauces Brooks devises are pulled from the six major barbecue regions; Savannah, Lexington, East Carolina, Southwest Texas, Memphis and Kansas City are all represented on each table in rows of labeled bottles. Brooks, who talks about diverse flavors like common hearsay, is acutely aware of the variables. He mixes each sauce in house on a regular basis, perpetually tweaking the recipes. “Just did Kansas City not too long ago,” he says. “Changed it up a little bit.” The Southwest Texas sauce, for instance, uses three different kinds of chili peppers, and the Savannah sauce (highly recommended) is defined by a healthy dose of mustard. The key to a good sauce, according to Brooks, is the perfect mixture of the base ingredients — a balance between sweet, spicy and sour. But there is no true guideline for barbecuing, as Brooks knows, and a lot of the process relies on intuition and an intimacy with the process. As a result, no man’s barbecue will ever be quite like his neighbor’s, and the variations, however subtle, are indeed endless. “My kitchen staff knows most of my recipes,” says Brooks. “But it don’t taste the same when they make it ... And I always tell them — I say, ‘Hey, you gotta make love to the food, man! You gotta do it right!’” His process is simple: low and slow and plenty of love. The meat, be it pork, beef or chicken, first marinates for 24 hours, which, according to Brooks, “helps draw the salt out … so it will be real moist when it cooks.” The cuts then get put in the smoker. The smoke from slow burning hickory wood is ventilated through the smoker into the accompanying “pit,” a moisture-containing box, for the meat to cook at a temperature of around 225 degrees for 12 hours. Then the meat comes out, gets slathered in sauce and plated. Brooks has confidence in the quality and popularity of the D.C. barbecue scene. With the growing popularity of the National Capital Barbecue Battle and the Beer, Bourbon and BBQ Festival, it is clear that many District residents are Southern at heart. Still, he is aware of the growing health conscience of guests, and knows that his down-home offerings might not be too good for the waste line. Consequently, he is beginning to tweak the menu to better accommodate healthier crowds, fielding vegetarian options and some leaner meats. Still, there is more than a little irony to his voice when he says, “we’re putting some healthy stuff on there.” But never worry. The slow cooked divinity of Old Glory will remain as fatty and delicious as any barbecue around. The brisket and accompanying brisket sauce will have you stuffing yourself well past the time your stomach fills up. The sticky chicken, Brooks’ personal favorite, is generously glazed with a pineapple bourbon sauce. The chopped beef with Memphis onions, sweet and juicy, is perhaps the most barbecue rich item on the menu. The ribs are a two-part harmony of smoky and sweet. And the pulled pork is no joke. It might as well be out of Lexington, NC. However, the crowning essence of Brooks’ barbecue is not in any singular dish, but in its combination of all the national flavors. Brooks’ menu is something of a culinary democracy, representing a diverse array of barbecue from across the country. John Snedden: Rocklands’ Barbecue Whiz As a college student, John B. Snedden just liked to grill. It’s not hard to imagine why, given that his alma mater, Washington and Lee University, used to sponsor campuswide pig roasts stocked with jungle juice and endless slabs of fresh pork shoulders — a tradition gone the way of the buffalo when oversized collegiate partying started making national headlines. At the time, Snedden, who grew up feeding on sausage and slow cooked pork in a family of six boys, wasted no time in joining the university’s official pig roast committee. But what would fade to nostalgic — perhaps hazy — episodes of more intemperate days for his peers would become an obsession for the tall, winsome Philadelphia native. Snedden would go on to perfect his barbecue technique and establish Rocklands, the Wisconsin Avenue barbecue phenom that for two decades has sparked cult-like fanfare among locals and visitors alike, and has since expanded to three additional locations around metropolitan Washington. At the time, he may not have realized where his hobby would take him. In fact, after he graduated with degrees in chemistry, physics and biology, he very nearly traded in his grill tongs and tinderbox for a Petri dish and forceps. “Part of the impetus,” says Snedden on his pursuit of barbecue, “was I was in [medical] school and just really not happy with what I was doing.” Halfway through med school, he was invited by chance to a barbecue competition in downtown D.C., organized by the Reagan administration. That day, he won first place for his ribs, and immediately began taking requests as a caterer. “I went home and told my parents that I had gotten this opportunity. I was very unhappy in school, and was going to take a change in path.” It might be every parent’s worst nightmare about their child, up there with going to war or joining the circus: Mom, Dad, I’m going to swap out the M.D. for B.B.Q. To their credit, the elder Sneddens took it in stride, if a bit nervously. “Uh, they were not real happy to hear that initially,” their son recalls. “[But] I had a decent relationship with my parents, so I think that they recognized that I was not real happy… I think they recognized you gotta do what you’re excited about.” Fulfillment and prestige, it seems, don’t always go hand in hand, at least at first. The fledgling barbecue operation started small in 1990, mostly catering out of a basement suite in Glover Park. In the beginning, the company would often make what was asked of them, even entertaining exotic requests for ethnic dishes far removed from the down-home American scope. But barbecue was always the watchword, and Snedden was on a mission to solidify its creation into a singular, artful method. “I think barbecue has been a bit bastardized in the industry,” he says, “because you can go somewhere and open up a can of tuna fish, put barbecue sauce on it, and they’ll call it tuna barbecue. It’s not, really, because they haven’t used the barbecue process … a process of cooking.” Snedden is understandably mum about the nitty-gritty of his process, but calls it the “grease smoke method,” which he perfected on a grill of his own design. The concept is unorthodox: instead of funneling smoke from a side firebox into a cooking chamber, one slowly roasts the meat directly over a fire — fueled only by hickory and red oak wood — for up to 12 hours, being careful to keep the meat out of flame’s reach. He makes an eloquent case for the science behind it, rattling off the endothermic reactions and chemical formulas involved and somehow arranging it cogently for the layman. Yet you sense there is something more to it, some unquantifiable element distilled from years of practice or perhaps just plain luck. Whatever it is, the proof is in the product, a smoky, dark-pink kaleidoscope of flavors that’s as tasty by itself as it is smothered in sauce, which, according to the Rocklands philosophy, is more of a distractive accessory of otherwise expertly cooked meat. Still, the house barbecue sauce, a slightly vinegary take on the Memphis tradition astew with onions and peppercorns, is awfully damn good. Armchair sauce connoisseurs will also enjoy the restaurant’s “Wall of Fire,” a sort of library of sauce bottles encouraging experimentation, mixture and fresh experience. Twenty years after firing up the grill, Snedden’s creation remains consistent. Other than a few offbeat recipes — the Pearl and Dog Salad are perennial favorites with regulars — the Rocklands menu offers just the essentials: pulled pork and chicken, spare ribs, brisket, homemade slaw, baked beans. The company still holds a huge stake in catering (constituting 45 percent of its revenue), still donates food and time to school performances, charity fundraisers and community events, stills mans its four restaurants from a tiny freestanding bungalow in Glover Park, right next door to the original basement. Snedden brushes aside his accolades, instead crediting his staff and family, with whom he consults regularly, for his success. He hands off a good deal of autonomy to the managers at his satellite restaurants. When we tour the kitchen, he introduces the cooks by name. Inside, around noon, the smell of dry rub infects the air, smoke curls up to the ceiling, the customer line stretches out the door. In the science world, you’d call that kind of experiment a breakthrough. [gallery ids="99144,102784,102800,102796,102789,102793" nav="thumbs"]
Addison/Ripley Fine Art Addison/Ripley will present “The 2nd Element: Stratus Series”, new works by Nancy Sansom Reynolds from September 10 to October 23. In her third exhibition at the gallery, Reynolds brings a large body of new sculpture in a broad range of new materials, creating sinuous, striated, elegant shapes, often suspended on walls. Much of the artist’s inspiration for this show comes from her three recent years in the Southwest desert. Reynolds has suggested that her forms reflect the “big sky” of the American Southwest. Artisphere Arlington County plans to open the Artisphere, an expansive cultural center, on October 10. Formerly the Newseum, the center is located on Wilson Boulevard in Rosslyn and will include three art galleries, two theaters and a 4,000-square-foot ballroom. Norma Kaplan, chief of the county’s cultural affairs division, promises something new in the use of the space and in the clientele the Artisphere hopes to attract. “We have a large younger demographic in the region,” Kaplan said. “They want to be participants, not be passive, and they want a place to go. We’ll be open 12 hours a day, seven days a week. People can come and hang out without much planning.” A 4,000-square-foot Terrace Gallery will have room for exhibitions, seating with drinks and snacks, as well as an overlook into the ballroom. According to Kaplan, built into all Artisphere programming will be opportunities for interaction with the artists. “We are trying to attract audiences that normally don’t come into a cultural center,” she said. One idea is to have late-night dances with regional bands on the weekends. In Artisphere’s first exhibit, opening with the center on October 10, is the group show “Skateboarding Side Effects,” where artists capture the form, shape, line and gestural movements of skateboarding through photography, drawing, painting, film and sculpture. Cross/Mackenzie Gallery Cross/Mackenzie Gallery, Georgetown’s premier gallery for contemporary ceramic and applied arts, has an array of upcoming shows for art collectors and enthusiasts with an eye for the dimensional and functional. From September 17 to October 20, the gallery will feature Kathy Erteman’s work in the show “Architectural Ceramics – Tiles & Vessels.” Opening October 22, Sarah Lindley’s “Poppenhuizen” will feature the artist’s full-sized ceramic cabinet houses, inspired by the extravagant and exquisite 17th century Dutch fine art furniture. The gallery will then close their fall season with a group exhibition, “Serve if Forth,” a platter and plate show featuring the area’s premiere wheel throwers and ceramic artists, opening November 19. Foundry Gallery In paintings inspired by the natural beauty of the earth, artist Ron Riley portrays images that evoke a sense of internal peace, tranquility, serenity and power, uniting us with the majestic forces we find within ourselves and in our natural environment. In his recent works, Riley’s tactile palette ranges from the soft and pastel to deep and intense, the varying hues engendering visions of some of nature’s more ominous forces. Riley is a member of the Foundry Gallery as well as Mid City Artists. The show, “Land, Air and Sea,” will be on view at the Foundry Gallery from September 29 through October 31. The opening reception is Friday, October 1, 6-8pm. Four Seasons Hotel Washington, DC The Four Seasons hotel in Georgetown has unveiled a completely new art collection selected exclusively for the hotel. The collection has more than 1,650 pieces and is heavily representative of American artists, of which 400 are premier, blue chip and commissioned pieces for the public spaces and corridors. Among the more prominent pieces, on display in conspicuous public areas, are works by Helen Frankenthaler, Andy Warhol, Robert Mangold, Ron Richmond, Andrea Rosenberg and Andrei Petrov. These were purchased from private collections and exclusive galleries throughout the United States. Guests walking into the Hotel’s recently redesigned lobby will immediately encounter the largest installation along the lobby gallery wall. A commissioned series by Roni Stretch, an English artist residing in Los Angeles, evokes the essential composition of America featuring five ethnic faces, each with a unique appearance: Julia the American Indian, Sara the all-American, Gary the English/Irish, Tiffany the French/Russian, and Fabiana the Mexican. This compilation was selected specifically for Four Seasons Hotel Washington due to its international clientele. These human faces were painted in black and white and then layered with selective colors to create the subtly realistic, yet abstract work. If you have any guests coming into town, yearning for the vibrant DC art scene, you now know where to put them up. Fraser Gallery Acclaimed DC-based photographer Maxwell MacKenzie has long sought to capture the wild or pastoral terrain around the country, in exploration of his family’s history. A new series of MacKenzie’s aerial photographs of Vermont, Virginia and Minnesota will open to the public on September 10, from 6-9pm at the Fraser Gallery. MacKenzie captured all of his images from his self-piloted powered parachute, an ultra-light aircraft where the bird’s eye expanses of trees and wilderness get broken up into a vibrant, organic geometry of color and texture. The show opening will be held in conjunction with the Bethesda Art Walk, which features downtown Bethesda galleries. The studios open their doors to the public from 6-9pm on the second Friday of every month. This is a wonderful opportunity to take in all the Bethesda art scene has to offer. Irvine Contemporary Irvine Contemporary will be running two shows simultaneously, from September 11 through October 30. Phil Nesmith’s exhibition “Flow,” a series of wet collodion photographs on black glass plate, was documented on the Gulf coast in Louisiana and Mississippi throughout June 2010. Using his box cameras and a portable darkroom, Nesmith created striking images of the environment and local communities encountering the worst oil disaster in US history. He was able to gain access to areas largely unseen by the public – such as taking a helicopter to a relief well rig at the BP Deepwater Horizon site. Looking damaged and washed out, much like the Gulf coast, Nesmith’s images have a devastating beauty about them, finding peace among the chaos and destruction. In conjunction with Nesmith’s show, Irvine Contemporary will be presenting a new exhibition of work by Brooklyn-based artist Bruno Perillo, in his second show with the gallery. With a new series of oil paintings, the artist will present his continuing reinterpretations of historical and contemporary realist styles. Bruno Perillo appropriates the realist styles of painters from many eras – from Caravaggio to Degas – for composing masterful images that are at once classical, post-modern, and contemporary. The show, titled “Uniform,” will present male and female characters in narrative scenes with culturally encoded clothing styles and genre cues. Parish Gallery Long since established in the Georgetown community, the Parish Gallery is well known for featuring primarily, but not exclusively, artists from Africa and of the African Diaspora. From October 15 through November 16, the gallery will feature the works of husband and wife, Gwendolyn and Bernard Brooks, in an exhibition entitled, “A Marriage of Colors”. The show will open with a reception from 6:00 – 8:00 pm that Friday. A native Washingtonian, Gwendolyn has been in the art world for over thirty years as a painter, contemporary quilt-maker and doll designer. Her mixed media works can best be described as Afro-Caribbean, having traveled to Africa, Trinidad, Brazil, and Tobago to research and find influences. Bernard is a second-generation artist, his uncle being the first black instructor at the Maryland Institute College of Art. Bernard retired as Howard University’s chief medical illustrator, relinquishing his post after 26 years. This exhibition will be showing his watercolors, many of which are fleeting scenes of an American countryside that we long for even as we observe it. The Ralls Collection This fall, the Ralls Collection will premier "Trojan War Years," the first of three series of paintings by local artist David Richardson, from October 6 through December 31. There will be a private reception with the artist on Wednesday, October 6, from 6 – 8 pm at the gallery. The paintings featured in "Trojan War Years" will display Richardson’s ability to convey a strong narrative of Homer’s epic tale in conjunction with his unique flair for color and exceptional conviction for abstract forms. In the last decade, Richardson has painted three important series of works. The first, Trojan War Years, not only precedes the others, but it also continues to manifest. The impetus for the series came while Richardson lived in Japan. Wandering around Tokyo, Richardson noticed the Kanji inscriptions that the Japanese used to mark temples, civic buildings, and businesses. Fueled by his interest in the way Kanji weaved into the architecture of Tokyo in addition to his passion for Homer’s recollection of the Trojan War, Richardson began incorporating the symbols into his own art, eventually securing the foundation for Trojan War Years series. Studio Gallery September 29 through October 23 will find Studio Gallery featuring two very different artists, brought together by an uncontainable energy and strong personal voice. Chris Chernow, whose figural paintings consist of numerous layers of oils applied over many months, find edges where the figure and ground can be merged in order to create a sense of submission and solitude. The layers add to the richness of the paint and a reduction in detail, achieving an elegant, haunting simplicity. The figures become shadows before our eyes. The other featured artist, Carolee Jakes, works primarily in screen-printing, etching and oil painting, and has recently been experimenting with combining these media to focus her works’ prevailing and intertwining themes of identity and music. Her most recent work focuses on the interconnectedness of musicians and their instruments. “There is a level of interaction that gives the instrument a life of its own,” says Jakes. “I see each instrument as a piece of art, and I refer to structural characteristics of the instruments in abstract drawings that are incorporated into the prints.” A reception for the artists will be held on October 16, from 6 to 8pm. Susan Calloway Fine Arts Opening September 24 and running through the end of October, Susan Calloway Fine Arts will host an exhibition of artist David Ivan Clark. Born and raised on the plains of Western Canada, Clark returns to them as the inspiration for his work. In his landscape series, Clark blurs the line between abstraction and representation with a haunting minimalism, allowing viewers to find sanctuary from the frenetic rigors of the mechanized world. The results of his unique painting techniques – fine layers of oil on stainless steel with a glossy, reflective finishing coat – is seductive, serene and luminous, recalling the vast expanses of nature within an unyieldingly industrial framework. “My work braids reference to nature with reference to industry,” Clark says. “Screws may frame a vast sky. Paint may be pitted and scoured as if the depicted terrain has issued from dire industrial processes. Suggesting both Arcadian idyll and post-apocalyptic barren, these paintings dwell, as I am forced to myself, in limbo, yearning for one yet unable to deny the other.” The exhibition, titled “Presence/Absence,” will have an opening reception Friday, September 24, from 6-8pm. This is sure to be one of the highlights of the gallery scene this season, and it should not be missed. Washington Printmakers Gallery The Washington Printmakers Gallery will host “New Faces – New Prints II,” an exhibition introducing the five artists that have joined WPG in the past year. These diverse printmakers come from all over the country and are presenting a variety of new work and techniques. New artists include Trisha Gupta, who commemorates natural disasters, such as flooding in India, through personal relations. Trisha says her work “brings me in dialogue with events that have affected me personally, and allows me to give personal experiences the commemoration I know they deserve.” Zenith Gallery From September 15 through November 28, the Zenith gallery will be hosting an expansive group exhibition at the Chevy Chase Pavilion, featuring a wide array of Zenith’s art community. A “Meet the Artists” reception will be held September 15 from 6-8 pm, in Zenith’s space on the second level of the Pavilion. Among the longstanding Zenith artists will be sculptor Carol Newmyer, who creates interactive, figurative bronze sculptures inspired by dance, yoga, balance and meditation. Along with her sculptures, she has a line of dramatic and unique sterling silver and high polished bronze wearable art sold in limited editions. New artists include the vivacious Joyce Wellman. Wellman uses vibrant colors, cryptic marks, and symbols referencing mathematics, anthropomorphic forms, and her personal experiences growing up in a household where “numbers” were played. --- MUSEUMS National Gallery of Art “Arcimboldo, 1526–1593: Nature and Fantasy” will run from September 19, 2010 - January 9, 2011. Sixteen examples of the fantastic composite heads painted by Giuseppe Arcimboldo will be featured in this exhibition, their first appearance in the United States. Bizarre yet scientifically accurate, the unusual heads are composed of plants, animals, and objects. Additional works, including drawings by Leonardo da Vinci and Albrecht Dürer, small bronzes, illustrated books and manuscripts, and ceramics will provide a context for Arcimboldo’s inventions, revealing his debt to established traditions of physiognomic and nature studies. Opening October 31 is “The Pre-Raphaelite Lens: British Photography and Painting, 1848–1875.” In the first survey of British art photography, focusing on the 1850s and 1860s, some 100 photographs and 20 paintings and watercolors chronicle the roles photography and Pre-Raphaelite art played in changing concepts of vision and truth in representation. The exhibition illuminates the mutual struggle of photographers and painters of the era, wrestling with the question of how to observe and represent the natural world and the human face and figure. This rich dialogue between photography and painting is examined in the exhibition’s thematic sections on landscape, portraiture, literary and historical narratives, and modern-life subjects. Corcoran Gallery of Art “NOW at the Corcoran,” running from September 11 until January 23, 2011, is a series of one- and two-artist exhibitions that presents new work addressing issues central to the local, national, and global communities of Washington, D.C. and that responds to the collection, history, and architecture of the Corcoran. The first feature will be “Spencer Finch: My Business, with the Cloud,” an exhibition of new work by the Brooklyn-based artist that includes a site-specific sculpture installed in the Corcoran’s Rotunda. Finch’s sculptural installations, photographs, and drawings seek to capture the elusive space between perception and the outside world, probing the intersections of science, nature, and memory. Drawing from the history and environment of Washington, D.C., his project explores the poetic, physical, and meteorological aspects of these natural phenomena. The Phillips Collection “Side by Side: Oberlin’s Masterworks at the Phillips,” opens September 11, 2010, and runs through January 16, 2011. Illustrating its unconventional approach to displaying art, The Phillips Collection will present loosely themed groupings of some of its own masterworks with 25 masterpieces from Oberlin College’s Allen Memorial Art Museum. Half of the 24 paintings and one sculpture on loan from the Allen are old masters, dating from the 16th to the 18th centuries. They include rare works by painters of the British, Dutch, Flemish, French, German, Italian, and Spanish schools. The other Allen pieces are important modern works of the 19th and 20th centuries. Oberlin extended the opportunity to display some of its treasures to the Metropolitan Museum of Art and to the Phillips while the Allen is closed for renovations. Highlights include unique pairings in works ranging from Francisco Goya to El Greco, Rubens to Turner, Cézanne to Ernst Ludwig Kirchner. Hirshhorn Museum “Guillermo Kuitca: Everything—Paintings and Works on Paper, 1980–2008” will run from October 21, 2010 to January 16, 2011. Since his first exhibition at the age of thirteen, Guillermo Kuitca has forged a distinctive path as an artist, creating visually compelling works that reflect his intense and often ambivalent relationship to his primary medium: painting. “Guillermo Kuitca: Everything” is the first comprehensive survey of the artist’s work in the United States in more than ten years, examining the artist’s continuing development between 1980 and 2008. The show presents the spectrum of Kuitca’s thirty-five year career, from early pieces inspired by his experience in theater, with titles often drawn from music, to recent complex abstractions that evoke the history of modern painting. Since the early 1980s, the artist’s work has been characterized by recurring imagery, most notably spatial and mapping motifs. Central among these are images of theater sets and seating charts, architectural plans, road maps, beds, numerical sequences, and baggage-claim carousels, through which Kuitca explores universal themes of migration and disappearance, the intersection of private and public space, and the importance of memory. National Portrait Gallery Newspaper publisher Katharine Graham (1917–2001) led an extraordinary life in extraordinary times. Born into privilege, she was catapulted onto the international stage as publisher of The Washington Post during the Watergate scandal. “One Life: Katharine Graham,” running from October 1 through May 30, 2011, includes several photographs to narrate key moments in her life, including a portrait by Richard Avedon, drawings, original newspapers from the time of the Watergate scandal, the Pulitzer Prize for her memoir, “Personal History” and video of a “Living Self-Portrait” interview of Graham by former Portrait Gallery director Marc Pachter. National Museum of the American Indian “Vantage Point: The Contemporary Native Art Collection” runs from September 25 until August 7, 2011. The show highlights the National Museum of the American Indian’s young but vital collection of contemporary art, with significant works by 25 artists in media ranging from paintings, drawings, and photography to video projection and mixed-media installation. These complex and richly layered works speak to the concerns and experiences of Native people today, addressing memory, history, the significance of place for Native communities, and the continuing relevance of cultural traditions. Smithsonian Craft2Wear Show and Sale The Smithsonian “Craft2Wear” show and sale will be held the weekend of October 23 and 24 at the National Building Museum, featuring 36 premier exhibitors of wearable art, jewelry and clothing. All exhibitors have been previously juried into the Smithsonian Craft Show, so you can be sure that the show is filled with items of lasting artistic value as well as fashionable appeal. [gallery ids="99194,103349,103344,103339,103358,103362,103334,103366,103370,103329,103354" nav="thumbs"]
From the beginning, the relationship between Norman Parish and his wife Gwen centered around a deep appreciation for talent and beauty, values that come to life in the Norman Parish Gallery’s 20th Anniversary exhibition, “Living Embodiments: Artistic Expressions of Being” which will run until July 12. Norman met his wife, Gwen, 23 years ago after moving to D.C. from Chicago. They spent their weekends driving through the mountains of northwestern Maryland. They would park on the side of the highway where she would sunbathe and read while he painted landscapes, and together, they mused about the idea of opening an art gallery. One day, walking home after enjoying an oyster meal at Manhattan’s, the couple noticed an ad for the sale of a gallery. Twenty years later, they celebrate not only the anniversary of their gallery’s opening, but also the talent and development of the family of artists who, Norman says, contributed work of consistent quality. “My reference to quality is that the subject matter may not be to one’s liking, but the art works can truly be called fine art. The diversity of the artists shown over the years has one thing in common . . . quality,” said Norman in a press release. The Parishes entertained a full house at the gallery’s opening reception for the exhibition on June 17. While exhibitions usually feature the work of one artist, in honor of the anniversary, Norman selected the work of a range of artists with whom he worked over the years and whose work he feels is “meaningful and impactful.” The works of master painters Herbert Gentry and Robert Mayhew were given recognition as well as upcoming artists Mason Archie and Morris Howard, pencil drawings by Kenneth Pasley, photos by 11 photographers and a piece by Sam Gilliam. Some are personal friends of Norman’s including Richard Hunt, a former classmate from the Art Institute of Chicago, and Evangeline J. Montgomery, who advised him while he was opening the gallery. Collectively, the Parish Gallery features mostly, but not exclusively, artists from Africa and the African Diaspora whose art covers a broad spectrum of styles in contemporary fine art. In the past two decades, the gallery hosted artists from over 25 different countries. Reflecting back on the life of the gallery, the Parishes remember a few exhibitions that were particularly notable. For both Norman and Gwen, Willard Wigan’s microscopic sculptures in his exhibition “Art in the Eye of a Needle” stood out, particularly for the notoriety and intriguing concept. During the two-month exhibition, 3,500 people visited the gallery to peer into microscopes to view the miniscule sculptures set in the eyes of needles. Norman noted the development of Yvette Watson, an artist who he introduced to the gallery business. In her first show at the Parish Gallery, she sold 14 of the 16 pieces on display – one of the only sellout shows. An oil painting by Parish himself also hangs among the work of his friends and colleagues, a brilliantly colored landscape that’s what he calls “expressionism in the form of stylized realism.” Despite his talent, Parish considers himself more of a businessman. “I spent my life pursuing an art career and I was in my late forties when I realized it wasn’t happening. Someone said, ‘Why don’t you open a gallery?’ So I became a businessman,” he said. Parish opened the gallery because few galleries consistently allowed diverse art in terms of style. “My primary concern is that these artists have a place to be seen,” he said.
With the weekend around the corner, it’s the perfect time to start planning your weekend activities! SAVOR: An American Craft Beer & Food Experience June 3rd, 2011 at 07:30 PM $110 General Admission firstname.lastname@example.org Tel: 303-447-0816 x113 Now in its fourth year, SAVOR returns to Washington, D.C. as the benchmark of beer and food events, is a must-attend happening for beer lovers and foodies alike. Attendees will sample craft beers from 72 small and independent craft brewers who team up with expert chefs to pair each craft beer with delicious savory and sweet dishes. Educational salons & private tasting salons will provide additional opportunities to interact with some of America’s most talented craft brewers and chefs. National Building Museum 401 F Street NW Washington, D.C. 20001 Lake Anna National Open House Day June 4th, 2011 at 11:00 AM June 4th, Vicki Johnston will be participating with other local realtors in the 1st annual Lake Anna National Open House Day! Hours are from 11 am to 3 pm and just about every waterfront and water access house for sale at Lake Anna will be open for your viewing pleasure. Complimentary Boat Tours Join Dockside for a complimentary boat tour of Lake Anna following the open house event. Since our Spring Flotilla got washed out a few weeks ago, we are looking forward to firing up the boats and showing guests how beautiful Lake Anna is from the water. For more information visit www.vickijohnston.com Location: Lake Anna, Virginia Live Jazz at Historic Henley Park Hotel June 4th, 2011 at 07:30 PM No Cover Charge, No Minimum Tel: 202-638-5200 Nancy Scimone sings lively jazz and lush ballads by Mercer, Berlin, Jobim, Gershwin and Ellington. She's sung at the Kennedy Center, Twins Jazz, Carlyle Club and sparkles on the intimate stage of Henley's Blue Bar Lounge. Cozy tapestry seats and ambiance for conversation or listening. Classic cocktails, extensive wines, shareable small plates (tuna au poivre, pear bread pudding.) 7:30-11:30 pm Near Metro www.HenleyPark.com 202-638-5200 A prestigious member of Historic Hotels of America. Address The Henley Park Hotel 926 Massachusetts Ave. NW Washington, DC 20001 Find more event on our Calendar
-ANC News On Monday, November 1, ANC2E held its November session. At the meeting, Commissioner Ed Solomon acknowledged a crime spike in Georgetown, which includes nine thefts, two assaults and one assault with a deadly weapon in recent weeks. Furthermore, Solomon stressed caution in granting a liquor license to USA Table Tennis Hall of Famer David Sakai’s planned restaurant/bar, “International House of Pong” (IHOP). Sakai intends for the bar to hold up to 300 people—a cause for concern should the establishment fail to curb noise. The ANC tabled the renewal of Third Edition’s liquor license for similar reasons, citing numerous neighborhood complaints. Amplified music at its open-air Tiki bar has become a continual disruption because of the establishment’s failure to monitor entrance and exit properly. While the ANC assures it is not trying to put Third Edition out of business, it expects bar management to renew its agreement to ensure peace and quiet. Additionally, the ANC expressed support for Georgetown hosting the Lawyers Have a Heart 10k race in June 2011, despite it requiring the closures of K Street, the Whitehurst Freeway, and Canal Road. The 10k raised over $500,000 last year. That being said, events of this nature will face greater scrutiny going forward due to resident complaints surrounding last-minute closings. As for November 2 voting, two new commissioners were elected to Georgetown’s ANC. Jeff Jones and Jake Sticka were the new additions, with GU student Sticka receiving a mere 6 votes (his own included). Sticka plans to promote GU’s Campus Plan and improved student safety measures, mainly in Burleith. Jeff Jones promises a more evenhanded approach, balancing resident and student concerns regarding zoning discrepancies and university expansion. Heart to Hart Tennis Experience The Recreation Wish List Committee, in partnership with the DC Department of Parks and Recreation, has invited several local politicians to participate in its 12th Annual Heart to Hart Tennis Experience. Among the politicians in attendance will be former mayors Marion Barry and Anthony Williams, Mayor-Elect Vincent Gray, Ward 5 Councilman Harry Thomas Jr., and Ward 7 Councilwoman Yvette Alexander. On Saturday, November 6, they will join tennis celebrity Zina Garrison, area youth, and their families for a full day of tennis, community and fundraising. The event will feature a day-long junior-adult doubles tournament, a rematch between defending champion Marion Barry and Anthony Williams, clinics, an awards ceremony, and a silent auction. A portion of the proceeds will be forwarded to a scholarship fund established in memory of Velma Love Nellum, a RWLC founder who recently lost her battle with cancer. Heart to Hart will run from 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., at the Southeast Tennis and Learning Center, at 701 Mississippi Avenue, SE. Adults may register online through Friday, November 5, at a discount ($100) or onsite at 8 a.m. that Saturday ($125). The senior fee is $55 to enter, and general admission is $50. Nightvisions: Portraits in the Night From 8 p.m. to 5:30 a.m., on November 6 and 7, FotoWeek DC will be presenting Nightivisions. The all-night photo creation event challenges amateur and professional photographers alike to recruit a subject and produce a digital portrait. Each photographer may submit up to 10 images, in person, to FotoWeek DC’s Satellite Central at 3333 M Street, NW. Following delivery, a team of renowned photo editors, art directors and gallery curators will select one image from each batch of submissions. This image will be printed and displayed as part of a weeklong slideshow projected on Satellite Central’s walls. Meanwhile, participants can enjoy the snacks and music offered at the all-night photo party for $10. Synetic Theater’s “King Arthur” This weekend offers a final chance to see Synetic Theater’s visually stunning production of “King Arthur”. Presented at Synetic’s new home, Crystal City Theater, the play is the latest installment in the company’s repertoire of wordless movement dramas. Add to this the fact that the troupe is performing on a liquid stage, one covered in a few inches of water, and the choreography will seem as fluid as the floor on which the actors splash. Showings will occur at 8 p.m. Saturday and 2 p.m. Sunday. The $30-$50 ticket cost is a small price to pay to see such a physically-charged spectacle. Ravi and Anoushka Shankar at the Kennedy Center Legendary sitarist Ravi Shankar will return to the Kennedy Center Concert Hall on Sunday, November 7. As India’s best-known living musician, the virtuoso has attained worldwide notoriety. Now, in celebration of his 90th birthday earlier this year, Ravi will perform alongside his daughter, acclaimed sitarist Anoushka Shankar. The concert will take place at 8 p.m. that evening. Tickets range from $25-$77. [gallery ids="99494,104474,104477" nav="thumbs"]
Visit The Georgetowner's Calandar for more event listings! Live Jazz at Historic Henley Park Hotel JUNE 25TH, 2011 AT 07:30 PM Nancy Scimone sings lively jazz and lush ballads by Mercer, Berlin, Jobim, Gershwin and Ellington. She's sung at the Kennedy Center, Twins Jazz, Carlyle Club and sparkles on the intimate stage of Henley's Blue Bar Lounge. Cozy tapestry seats and ambiance for conversation or listening. Classic cocktails, extensive wines, shareable small plates (tuna au poivre, pear bread pudding.) 7:30-11:30 pm Near Metro www.HenleyPark.com 202-638-5200 A prestigious member of Historic Hotels of America. DC Caribbean Carnival JUNE 25, 2011 AT 11:00 AM The DC Caribbean Carnival is annual Caribbean style parade and festival that will help encourage cross-cultural programs within the DC community. The carnival’s colorful parade features 30 participating groups representing the Caribbean, Latin America and the Diaspora, and more than 3,000 masqueraders parade in colorful costumes portraying different themes. The DC Caribbean Carnival also includes a “Tropical Arena” with foods, games, and live performances. 200th Birthday of The Greenhouse at Oatlands JUNE 26TH, 2011 AT 02:00 PM The celebration will commemorate the 200th birthday of the greenhouse, built in 1810 by George Carter. The Loudoun Master Gardeners will be on hand to diagnose plant problems and provide gardening advice. Oatlands will offer half-price tours of the Mansion all day on the 26th. The party is complete with cake and balloons. Rammy's 2011 JUNE 26TH, 2011 AT 05:30 PM RAMMYS is an annual awards gala and fundraiser that recognizes the exceptional talent of the restaurant industry in the metropolitan Washington, DC area. Celebrating the 29th annual event in 2011, a lively awards presentation precedes a bountiful dinner reception and dancing. Fifteen awards are given annually in categories such as: Fine Dining Restaurant of theYear, Rising Culinary Star, New Restaurant, Restaurant Employee, Beverage/Mixology Program. Great Georgetown Water Balloon Battle JUNE 26TH, 2011 AT 12-3:00 PM The Washington Harbour will being hosting Georgetown's first ever water balloon battle from 12 - 3 p.m. All are welcome to toss hundreds of pre-filled water balloons and compete to win prizes. The festivities will occur at Georgetown Waterfront and Super Soakers or any other water toys are permitted.
July 1, 2011 Smithsonian Folklife Festival The Festival is held outdoors on the National Mall in Washington, D.C., between the Smithsonian museums. There is no admission charge. At the annual Smithsonian Folklife Festival, you will find many exemplary practitioners of diverse, authentic, living traditions—both old and new. The goal of the Festival is to strengthen and preserve these traditions by presenting them on the National Mall. Tradition-bearers and the public can connect with and learn from one another and, in a respectful way, begin to understand cultural differences and similarities. Tel: 202.633.1000 http://www.festival.si.edu/ Address National Mall Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum 35th Anniversary Celebration To see more on this event, Click Here July 2, 2011 National Harbor Plaza Stage and Waterfront Kick-off Independence Day Weekend by celebrating on the waterfront at National Harbor for America's best birthday party! Enjoy five bands including The Wailers, Blind Melon and Pat McGee, three DJs, multiple stages & party areas, and a spectacular fireworks show while overlooking the Potomac River! More information and tickets are available now at: www.TheUncleSamJam.com July 4, 2011 Fireworks cruise on the Odyssey 07:30 am | $179.90 per adult | tel: 866.404.8439 Step aboard the Odyssey this Independence Day for front-row seats to one of the country’s most spectacular firework displays. On Monday, July 4, the Odyssey offers guests a romantic evening under an illuminated night sky, with a dinner cruise featuring live entertainment and dancing. Dinner is priced at $179.90 per adult and includes a premium open bar; sailing from 7:30pm – 11:30pm. All passengers must be 21 or older with ID. To book, call 866.404.8439 or reserve online. Address 600 Water Street Washington, DC 20024 Fireworks cruise on the Spirit of Washington July 4th, 2011 at 07:30 am | $149.90 per adult | tel: 866.404.8439 Step aboard the Spirit of Washington this Independence Day for front-row seats to one of the country’s most spectacular firework displays on Monday, July 4. Guests can dance the night away with the Spirit’s playlist of top dance hits, enjoy a premium bar and the Spirit’s renowned Grande Buffet. Dinner is priced at $149.90 per adult; sailing from 7:30pm – 11:30pm. All passengers must be 21 or older with ID. To book, call 866.404.8439 or reserve online. Address Pier 4 Washington, DC Atlantic City Commemorates Independence Day with the largest Continuous Fireworks Celebration July 4th, 2011 at 09:20 pm | free This 4th of July, one of America's largest fireworks displays gets even bigger. This year, the Atlantic City Fireworks Spectacular will be even greater when two different fireworks displays will be set off within moments of each other for the first time in history. The illuminating display, which will be synced to music playing on 95.1 WAYV FM and inside all the casinos, will be visible from Atlantic City's Marina and the Boardwalk districts. Address Atlantic City, NJ Want to see more events? Click on The Georgetowner's calendar
Prints In Pieces: Views of South County Opening JULY 8TH, 2011 AT 10:00 AM After capturing the people and places along Maryland’s Western Shore with her camera, Frances Borchadt puts her photographs into mosaic-like pieces to create an intriguing display of repetitions and patterns. Be sure to catch this exhibit at The League Gallery before it closes August 1. 6th Annual HERA Climb4Life JULY 8TH, 2011 AT 06:00 PM From July 8 to 10, HERA Climb4Life invites climbers and hikers of all abilities and ages to participate in the 6th Annual HERA Climb4LifeSM Metro DC weekend. For the first time ever, this event will be held outdoors among the crags of the Potomac River, namely Carderock, Maryland and Great Falls, Virginia. The registration fee is $50 per person which includes an event t-shirt and goodie bag as well as entrance to various social occasions. Event proceeds go to raise funds for ovarian cancer research. Women by Women JULY 8TH, 2011 AT 06:00 PM Please join Heiner Contemporary for the opening reception of Women by Women, Friday, July 8th, 6-8 pm. Women by Women is a group exhibition of work by women portraying women. The exhibition runs from July 8th - August 20th 2011. Art Deck-O: DC Playing Card Originals JULY 8TH, 2011 AT 06:30 PM Fifty-four of Washington DC's finest artists created unusual designs to form a playing card deck exhibit unique to our area. The deck is composed of a fantastic array of genres and mediums, which are a big hit with artists, magicians, game players and art lovers everywhere. Exhibit runs from June 29 - July 29. Havoc in the Harbor JULY 9TH, 2011 AT 07:30 AM M&T Bank Stadium, home of the Baltimore Ravens, will be invaded by Advance Auto Parts Monster Jam® the world’s premier monster truck series, creating “havoc in the harbor” on Saturday, July 9, 2011 at 7:30 p.m. Doors open at 5:30 p.m. Art & Live Jazz Saturday JULY 9TH, 2011 AT 05:00 PM Join us for an evening of live jazz, wine and the opening of Art-To-Wear Trunk Show by Peggy Russell of iro Design. Live Jazz starts at 5 PM with Ivor Heyman on keyboard, Nathan Garrett on bass and Richard Parrell on tenor sax. Wine tasting by Delaplane Cellars The Quill Cocktail Competition JULY 10TH, 2011 AT 02:00 PM Its inspired mix of classic concoctions and signature drinks has made Quill, the elegant lounge at The Jefferson, Washington, DC, a treasured enclave for those in search of the enlightened cocktail. On July 10, 2011, six of the capital’s finest drink dons will prove their worth with Tequila Ocho Plata Single Estate at the third Quill Cocktail Competition. Tickets are $50 per person, which includes a sample from each competitor’s inspired libation (guests’ votes are tallied with the judges), tastings from Quill’s own signature cocktail menu and an assortment of canapés and cheeses.
The Georgetown Waterfront continues to recover from its April 18 soaking, with both Tony and Joe’s and Nick’s outdoor dining reopening and the indoor restaurants continuing with renovations. Visitors to the area are trickling back, drawn in by events such as last weekend’s Dragon Boat Race and next Sunday’s Georgetown Waterfront Summer Celebration. The festival, hosted by the Georgetown BID and Washington Harbor, will feature a steel drum band, food catered by the area’s restaurants, face painting and a water balloon toss at 2 p.m. which is endorsed by the Washington Post’s “Going Out Guide.” Despite all the revelry that is returning to the Georgetown Waterfront, it is difficult to ignore that fact that many windows are still boarded shut and employees who have been out of work since the flood are awaiting the outcome of a $5 million class action lawsuit against MRP Realty. Why weren’t the floodwalls raised? This question appeared in almost all media coverage of the waterfront flooding which filled restaurants and businesses with as much as 12 feet of water. When the National Weather Service issues a flood warning, based on the water levels measured by a gauge at Harper’s Ferry, Washington Harbour and surrounding areas have about a day and a half to raise the floodwalls. This process takes about five hours to complete and costs approximately $15,000. The responsibility of this undertaking rests with the property owners. MRP Realty bought the Washington Harbor from Prudential Real Estate Investors in June 2010 for about $240 million. MRP’s property management unit now oversees the waterfront area, a job previously managed for ten years by John Wilson until 1998, followed by Larry McCulley through Sept. 2010, neither of whom faced flooding problems of this scale. MRP has not provided explanation as to why the floodwalls were only partially raised or in some places, not raised at all. A few days after the flood, Gary Mason of Mason LLP, a D.C. law firm, filed a complaint with the U.S. District Court on behalf of Charles Holcomb of Alexandria, a bartender at Farmers and Fishers. The federal court dismissed the initial complaint, but Mason filed a second complaint in the D.C. Superior Court on behalf of what is now 43 plaintiffs who are “persons and entities who have lost or will lose income as a result of the flooding.” The complaint alleges that MRP had sufficient time to raise the floodwalls and should have been aware of the risk posed to the Washington Harbour businesses, and was negligent in its failure to respond to that risk. There have been no further developments in the case, but Mason hopes to settle with MRP and avoid a trial. A representative from MRP could not comment on the progression of the lawsuit. The reconstruction of the affected establishments continues almost three months after the storm, but the National Flood Insurance generally covers property damage on the Washington Harbour. The claim could become complicated in light of the complaint filed against MRP, according to the Washington Business Journal, not to mention that the insurance does not account for the tens of thousands of dollars in revenue lost by those businesses each day or the loss of income for their employees.
Friday night was the Volta Park fundraiser at Georgetown Visitation Preparatory School. A large number of Georgetowners and other advocates turned out to show their support. Mayor Gray, Councilmember Catania and I all attended and gave our support. Of course, Mimsy Linder was the Mistress of Ceremonies and again made sure the weekend ran smoothly. Linder and John Richardson were the original forces behind the renovation of Volta Park. It was through their efforts, as well as the efforts of so many Georgetown residents, that we have a first rate playground and swimming pool complex. Saturday and Sunday were the doubles tennis tournament. The winner this year was WTOP political commentator and former Georgetown resident Mark Plotkin (the Comeback Kid) and his partner, John McDermit. Mark is a five-time winner of the Volta Park tennis tournament, his last victory in 2000. His four-year reign began at the 1997 inaugural tournament with his partner and Georgetown resident Garrett Rasmussen and extended through 2000. After a twelve-year hiatus, this victory seals his reputation as the premier tennis player in the history of Volta Park. Sunday was Volta Park Day, kicked off by the annual East vs. West softball game in which the East was again victorious, continuing its winning streak. At 3 p.m., the picnic and games began. You could smell the hamburgers and hotdogs on the grill throughout the entire neighborhood. The dunk tank was in full operation and my daughters Katherine and Chris, along with their friend Hannah, ran the snow cone booth while my son John was the popcorn vendor. When they left to go swimming, I took my turn on the snow cone machine and Nancy Taylor ran the popcorn machine. As if on cue, it began to rain as the events came to an end at 6 p.m. bringing another very successful Volta Park weekend to a close. To me, the event signifies the beginning of summer in Georgetown. I look forward to the many fun summer events, including the very popular concerts in the park. Wishing everyone a fun and happy summer!