On the wall in the small art gallery was a simple photo of two rain boots among leaves. Upon first seeing the photo, the boots looked like they were part of the leaves. Tamika McColl, the photographer who captured this said for her, photography can be about capturing moments that other people may not see or appreciate.
“eARTh Day: Art Night” was held at The Ritz-Carlton Georgetown in honor of Earth Day and featured contemporary artists from around the area who were willing to share and sell their artwork. There were about seven artists present, each standing by to showcase their work. All of them created something with a similar theme: nature.
The small room was filled with purple light as attendees, dressed in cocktail attire, sipped drinks from the small, makeshift bar.
One artist took photographs of litter around the area. Each photo consisted of one piece of trash—a bottle or a coffee cup, for instance. It was clear these photos were meant to illustrate the damage done by litter. However, it made the litter almost appear strangely appealing.
Another artist, Nicole Schroeder, painted water but used varying colors instead of just shades of blue.
”Photographs really didn’t do it justice, so I decided to paint based on the photographs and turn it to an abstract painting,” Schroeder said.
Her pieces hung around a painted sign that read “water” on it. They were mostly blue but also contained sideways splashes of orange, white, red and purple.
There was one clear theme throughout the event: the use of art as a way to construe nature in new ways rather than directly reflect it, except for one piece that featured photos of sea creatures up close.
Though it was an interesting subject and there were people buzzing about, excitedly speaking with the artists, it could have been more compelling. The music was too loud to hold conversation without shouting and the concept was not the most unique.
However, it was clear each artist cared about their work and brought up an important conversation about nature. Unfortunately, there is an irony to hosting an Earth Day event at a venue such as this, as waste is juxtaposed against an appreciation of nature.
Upon leaving and walking down a black staircase back out into the street, visitors could hear a flute and the low murmur of conversation behind them. Depending on what the visitors had come for, some seemed satisfied and others underwhelmed.
Featured Photo Credit: Alana Kessler, who majors in Religious Studies and Special Education at American University, looks through one of the art pieces at the eARTh day art show at The Ritz Carlton in Washington, D.C. (Josh Loock/Bloc Reporter)
Raye Weigel is a sophomore multiplatform journalism and English major and may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.