Saturday, June 20, 2009

Go to Artomatic

If you haven't heard, this month until July 5th, Artomatic is taking place at the office building directly above the Navy Yard Metro stop. If you're not familiar, Artomatic is a free-for-all unjuried art festival. Any artist can pay the admission price and sign up for 15 volunteer hours and they get a partition of space to exhibit their stuff in a temporarily unoccupied office building. But beyond the art there's music, performances, demonstrations, happenings etc. If I sound like a cheerleader, it's because I participated the past couple of years (although I'm taking a year off) and it appeals to my utopian side.

The thing to keep in mind about an unjuried show like this that stretches across an entire office building is that quality varies, markedly. You will see more bad art then you've probably ever seen in your life. But you'll see a lot of good art, and in my opinion a lot of great ideas. Every time I go I see various creative ways of making, framing, presenting and grouping art. Some people have created out-and-out wonderful piece, and other have used mediums in ways I would have never expected. There are folks who aren't artists but they had a great idea and executed it in their space. All in all, it's a fantastic way to spend an afternoon or evening.


ali d said...

I am so unbelievably convinced! I've been hearing about Artomatic for the last month, but I figured I should already know what it is, so I never asked out of shame. And I guess I'm too lazy to google. But now it's near the top of my list of things to do!

Scotty said...

Went today.

You could nix about five of those floors if you deleted the Obama shrines, grotesque nudes, photos of urban decay, tattoo art you might see at a Social Distortion concert, and anything using old circuit boards as a medium. "A lot" of good art is a bit generous.

But on each floor there were two or three displays that genuinely gave me pause, and the comment books were priceless. If not good art, at least there's entertainment to be had.

As for genuinely good art, this guy rules:

One of the comments in his book said "I just stared at your painting for 20 minutes." Brilliant.

Jeremyarn said...

just ran into this because i was searching for myself. Haha. Thanks so much Scotty.