Art All Night returns on Saturday

Photo Credit: Jeffrey Morris

In 2011, Shaw Main Streets first set out to bring to Paris’ Nuit Blanche free overnight arts festival to the nation’s capital by bringing arts programming into businesses, public buildings, vacant lots and retail spaces, and galleries. With this year’s sixth Art All Night festival returning from 7 p.m. to 3 a.m. this Saturday, Sept. 22, Shaw is expanding to more venues than ever. It is also adding the #LoveShaw campaign launched earlier this year, with its signature pink lips, to everything from t-shirts, papier mache masks and parades to animated projections, glowing signage and giant soft sculptures.

As federal funding for the arts is threatened by the current presidential administration, Shaw once again celebrates on the role the arts play in enhancing our city’s quality of life and vibrant creative economy. With conversations and art addressing national politics and race, and a wide variety of media and participatory arts experiences, Art All Night Shaw will engage visitors and challenge them to be advocates for the arts every day.

“It’s more important than ever to support the artists and creatives in our neighborhoods and city,” argues Alexander M. Padro, Executive Director of Shaw Main Streets. “And it’s important to remember that as powerful an impact as the festival has had on our artists, businesses and neighborhoods, this could be the last year for Art All Night in DC. Hopefully not, but if it is, we’re going out with a bang!”

As a trailblazer in bringing this festival to the District, for which Shaw Main Streets has won national honors, Shaw will activate more spaces in the neighborhood than ever before. This year’s excitement includes two parades, outdoor art fairs, concerts, live painting, new murals, street performers, dance parties, fire performances, fashion shows, and more filling, the neighborhood for eight hours. With glowing #LoveShaw lips and totems helping to guide festival goers to participating locations, here are a few of the festival’s highlights:

DC Alley Museum Alley Oop Murals and Music Festival: Blagden Alley (between M, N, 9th & 10th Streets, NW)

The DC Alley Museum’s Alley-Oop Festival celebrates the addition of new murals in Blagden Alley by Bill Warrell, Lisa Marie Thalhammer, Billy Colbert, Rose Jaffe, Jim Duckworth, Stephen E Lewis and Captain.Izabella.Sparrow to this outdoor public art collection, including a two-story-tall tribute to legendary Georgetown Hoyas basketball coach John Thompson. The fun begins on Saturday, September 23rd, during Shaw Main Streets’ ART ALL NIGHT 2017, with live music, projections and street entertainers, and continues the following afternoon. The DC Alley Museum’s murals will be illuminated at night for the very first time, as live music, video projections by Robin Bell, and dragon dancers bring the alley alive.

#LoveShaw Parade: Along 7th Street, NW, between N and T Streets

Join dancers wearing three-foot-long lip masks, costumed Samba dancers, Mardi Gras revelers and an array of musicians for two three-block strolls along 7th Street NW. FREE pink and red glow in the dark bracelets, pink Mardi Gras beads and lip wands for all marchers! Start time: 8:45 PM. Brass Connection Contingent starts at Kennedy Recreation Center, 1401 7th Street, NW (3 blocks to ArtRave Art All Night Art Market at Parcel 42, 1701 7th Street, NW). Batala Washington contingent starts at The Cornerstone, 625 T Street NW (3 blocks to Watha T. Daniel/Shaw Library, 1630 7th Street NW)

#SHAWSOME ArtRave at Parcel 42: 1701 7th Street, NW

See and buy the works of 24 artists in an open-air art market presented by Art Rave, featuring Constantino Bastidas’ “Constantino’s Dancing Creatures”, large animated metal sculptures and Shaw’s traditional Art All Night fire-laced dance performances by Moksha and Peculiarity Productions. Above, projections of Robin Bell’s provocative “Swap Monsters” political videos, a #LoveShaw animation by CreativeJunkFood (Candice Taylor & Nabeeh Bilal), and photographic “Highlights from The Movement: 20th Year Anniversary” will stream.

Attendees can pick up printed program booklets at the Watha T. Daniel/Shaw Library, where they will find Instagram worthy, giant #LoveShaw lips, as well as indulge in adult face painting and arts and crafts; jam out at outdoor concerts at The CornerStone and Old City Farm and Guild; challenge conventional thought and institutional norms with Intellectualcool ‘s immersive presentation of art and conversation at the DC Housing Finance Agency building; get a free, professional photoshoot at Beyond Studios; hang out with a line-up of awesome DJs at the Wonder Bread Factory, sing Karaoke at Shaw’s Tavern, taste the #LoveShaw cocktail at Service Bar DC; and enjoy live music and dance performances, dance parties, art presentations, fashion shows, and all things artistic at over 40 participating businesses and art activations.

Detailed information on Shaw’s Art All Night activations can be found at and on the ArtAllNightDCShaw mobile app on the night of the event.

Troy Petenbrink

Troy, also known as The Gay Traveler, is a well known travel and food writer. His has been a regular contributor to a variety of outlets including National Geographic, Travel Channel, DCRefined, CBS Local, and Metro Weekly. He also appears on local Washington news outlets as a travel expert.

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