Monday, May 21, 2012

Artomatic 2012

Artomatic is a "month-long art festival in the DC area that is "by artists, for everyone." It is absolutely free to the public" ( It is organized by unpaid volunteers, and is the largest (I don't know of any larger) independent, unjuried art show in the country, if not the world.  (If anyone knows of a bigger one, let me know.)

I've been volunteering for Artomatic for the last 2.5 years, getting to know the wonderful community of people who work so hard to pull off this monumental event.  Just to give you an idea of how BIG this art show is, here are some stats: In the last event, in 2009, over 76,000 visitors attended, over 1,000 artists exhibited, over 600 performances were enjoyed, and a 9 story building was full of every variety of art you can think of.

Artomatic 2012 opened last Friday night, with attendance over 3,000 people!  I was there for about 6 hours, taking in art on only 2 floors out of 10!  I'll be back for many more visits over the next 6 weeks, and try to see everything in the building. (over 1,000 artists exhibiting, probably over 10,000 pieces of art).

This is my first time participating as an artist in the event, and I'm very satisfied with how my exhibit space turned out.  Each artist was allowed to chose a space in the emptied DOD (Department of Defense) building.  The building is 11 stories, 2 of which are closed to the artists, and one is reserved for other activities.  I chose a 17 foot space on the 8th floor.  Here is the evolution of my installation:
Here's a map of where you can find my space on the 8th floor, space #377.

The space, raw and office-like.

Ripped off all of the phone wire encasements.



Bob doing my advertising.  How nice of him!

Now for hanging!

Finished space, complete with track lighting, an awesome sign that you can't really see, QR code and business cards.  Near Bob's head is a short artist bio, and the grey patch in the middle of the wall is painted to look like sheets of paper with the lyrics of "Case of You" written on them.
I have a few improvements still to make, which I'll do on some afternoon when no one else is around (I need to add a guest book, etc).  Other than that, I think the space looks pretty great.

During my first 6 hours at the event, I took a lot of pictures of images, techniques, and ideas that were inspiring to me.  I plan to do this on each visit, and will post them as an update to this post as I get them.

If you're in the DC area, visit to get directions, hours, and a calendar of events.  There is NO REASON to not experience this most-amazing of art shows.  I can't really express how incredible and mind-blowing it is.  It is very RICH, very REAL.  You must see it to understand.

Also, I'll be playing a solo/acoustic set as part of the Songwriter's Association of Washington's showcase on Wednesday, June 6th at 7pm!

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