The D.C. Docent

Make It Rain for Local Artists: Shop Art This Weekend

Just like the fat man in the jolly red suit, you can make a list and check it twice with the art stuff you gotta do this weekend. Shopping, check. Viewing, check. Rejoicing/lamenting you are not in Miami, check. But really, back to shopping. This weekend is the weekend to do it up with some local art purchases:

Gift Buying at Corcoran’s Off the Walls - Corcoran may not have it together on some things, but they sure got organized with this snazzy online Holiday Gift Guide. But shopping in-person is always more fun, so head over to the Corc where they’ll have student, alumni and faculty work for sale. Saturday, December 7th & Sunday, December 8th from 10am-3pm, 500 17th St., NW.

GRUMP at Artisphere - Grump? Who you calling Grump, Grump? This one will be less arts, more crafts, but selling homemade stuff nonetheless.There is also a DJ and a bar (please spike my eggnog if you see me). The only hitch? You have to drive to Arlington. KIDDING! Not really. Saturday, December 7, 11am-5pm, 1101 Wilson Blvd., Rosslyn, VA.

Holiday Open Studios & Gift Sale at DC Arts Studios - I don’t even know how I got invited to this one, but there are over 40 artist studios you can tour and buy from. I am already exhausted, but I have a feeling there could be some interesting finds.  Also, free dance performances while you’re lurking around, possible munchies and non-alcoholic beverages. Saturday, December 7, 12pm-5pm, 6925 Willow St., NW.

Holiday Fractal Sale at The Lamont Street Collective - Ha! If only I could get a fractal named after me. Artist Micaela Barrett is doing something with fractals, and animals. I’m pretty sure it results in something fuzzy. There will be jazz, you provide the hands. Saturday, December 7, 2-5pm.

Rock & Shop at The Black Cat - The tradition carries on! Buy art, used shtuff, records, clothing, music, whatever it is your local starving musician is trying to get rid of. This things has been going on for at least 10 years, go find something for the rocker in your life already. Sunday, December 8, 8pm - ???, Black Cat 1811 14th St., NW.


Exposed DC has a Holiday Gift Guide for Photographers (cause you know how picky those types are)!

Dreamscapes: American Emigres in Mexico

Surrealism in Mexican art is more than its title. In fact, it’s more than surreal. It’s by turns, isolating, sexual, dark, powerful, illusory, tumultuous, truthful and dreamlike. As the photographic evidence of last year’s Frida Kahlo show at Artisphere demonstrated, it was also built on a rotating cast of European and American characters who found a new freedom in Mexico in the first half of the 20th century.

Tomorrow night, critic and art historian Edward J. Sullivan lectures on emigres such as Leonora Carrington, Wolfgand Paalen, Remedios Varo, and other artists who found inspiration in Mexico. He also discusses Mexico City as an important and worthy rival to Paris as the center of Surrealism. Viva Mexico!

Thursday, February 7, 2013 at 6:30pm at the Mexican Cultural Institute, 2829 16th St., NW.

Opening Today: Beyond the Parking Lot at Artisphere

This new exhibit which explores land use and urban architecture includes two of my favorite local artists: Frank Hallam Day and Trevor Young. Through photography, Day often captures the alternate realities and meaning of place. Young’s paintings exalt everyday spaces in a way that questions their meaning. If the installation photos for this show are any indicator, the other seven artists in this show will have you thinking about the world around you in a more deliberate way.

BEYOND THE PARKING LOT: THE CHANGE AND RE-ASSESSMENT OF OUR MODERN LANDSCAPE, Curated by Cynthia Connolly, opening reception Thursday, September 6, 2012 from 7-10pm. Exhibit runs August 24 - November 4.

An afternoon with Frida is probably a good idea if you’ve been overdoing it. Her photography and that of her circle portrays an incredibly layered life, full of strange entrances and exits, political forays, ideological breakaways, all of the best stuff of life.

Frida Kahlo: Her Photos, at Artisphere in Rosslyn, closes next weekend March 25th.