vintage clothing & curios

Maketto Is Super Rad

June 24, 2015

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Maketto is the shop / restaurant / coffee place / everything cool that DC never knew it needed. It’s a combination cool-dude men’s shop, Cambodian/Taiwanese food (at least to start) restaurant with coffee upstairs and ample places to park it and hang.

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A collaboration between Toki Underground’s Erik Bruner-Yang and Durkl’s Will Sharp, this beautiful, airy space is perfect for basically any need — whether you need a chill spot to grab a tasty coffee and work remotely at the end of H Street or are in search of a place to meet with old pals for lunch or family-style dinner (or, you know, buy streetwear.)

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The food, as expected, is aces. Lunch is a small menu but surprisingly customizable. Vegetarians don’t be afraid! They’ll take that pork of your sandwich… and the leek buns are blissfully meat-free (and super tasty.) Dinner is family style and we’re eagerly anticipating checking that out, too.

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& Outside: a vending machine for lucky cat figurines, condoms, you name it.

 

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Seriously: run, don’t walk to Maketto — you will not be disappointed.

Touring Brookside AKA Heaven in Montgomery County

June 7, 2015

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We’re convinced that Brookside is one of Maryland’s coolest little spots — and potentially a best-kept secret. We had never heard of or been to this heavenly little spot in Montgomery County but this weekend we decided to explore, and well… we sure liked what we found.

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A visit to Brookside is a two-parter: there’s a Nature Center, chock-full of pet turtles and exhibits aimed at the under-12 set; there’s also a bunch of insanely beautiful woodsy walking paths. So beautiful, in fact, that even if you’re merely there in fashion sandals, you’ll be compelled to hike.

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Part two of Brookside is the beautiful manicured gardens. Located just down the road from the Nature Center and trailheads, Brookside Gardens has paved paths for meandering, thoughtfully placed gazebos for lounging and even a stunning rose garden. Best part? While the visitor center and conservatories have limited hours (only open ’til 5), the gardens are open until sunset and are 100% FREE.

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Check out a few snaps from the gardens:

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Thanks for being you, Brookside. We encourage you to patronize this stunning place ASAP — right now seemingly everything is in bloom, esp. that gorgeous rose garden!

Chatting with The Cartoon Picayune’s Josh Kramer

May 25, 2015

We here at Treasury are huge supporters of the printed word — especially when it’s made by a cool local. So you can guess why we’re super into The Cartoon Picayune. Made by super-cool local Josh Kramer, it’s kind of like a comic newspaper. All the stories are fact-based, all the quotes are legit and all the characters are drawn. It’s … amazing. The latest issue, #7, is called Chance and might be our favorite yet, with stories about both weed and the history of camouflage.

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We sent Josh a bunch of questions in an email about his publication, what he likes about DC and much more:

Tell us about yourself.
I’m from near Philadelphia. I’ve worked in a bunch of different food jobs including three different cheese shops. I have a nicely balanced life right now where I can work three days a week in a bar/restaurant I love (Boundary Road) and then the rest of the time I can do other things like teach, draw, write, and do yoga. I live with my lovely girlfriend Alli and our two cats just off H Street NE.

How did you get into comics?
I definitely read a lot of superhero comics when I was younger, and really loved Green Lantern. In college I was turning to a lot of the more accessible alternative graphic novels as things like Maus and Fun Home were becoming nationally known. My friend turned me on to Joe Sacco and his unique mix on war reporting and cartooning. After that, I wondered if there was a way to blend comics with the kind of personal, narrative-driven journalism that I loved from places like This American Life.

What is the Cartoon Picayune?
The Cartoon Picayune is my self-published, printed nonfiction comics anthology. Let me unpack that.

Self-published: I edit it and lay it out on the computer and pay for a commercial printer to print about 400 copies. I sell them online at in person, for $4 each.
Printed: It’s important to me that I can just hand it to someone and have them understand it immediately. It lives out in the real world mostly, and online secondly.
Nonfiction: Everything’s true. All the characters are real people and every speech bubble is a quote. Not everything is strict journalism, but it has to be real.
Comics anthology: I don’t draw everything, and sometimes my work is barely in it. Artists from all over contribute. I’ve published everyone from experimenting students to New Yorker cartoonists.

When/why/how did you start it?
I started it as part of my thesis at the Center for Cartoon Studies in 2011. It’s an MFA program for comics in White River Junction, VT (yes, such a school does exist). It was an incredible two years and gave me the space and support I needed to start the CP. Small towns are the perfect places to try out the kind of low-stakes reporting I needed to start with. My first stories were about ice-fishing, hard cider and high school ski jumping. They were a lot of fun to do.

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How would you describe the zine/comix scene in DC? What’s good about it and what does it need to be better?

I would probably use the term “slow burn.” Because on one hand, there are just not a lot of cartoonists here, or not enough to feel like a real scene or community. However, the people I have met have been very nice and they are definitely trying things, like newsprint anthologies and gatherings. Also, Zinefest is a great event and the Small Press Expo is arguably the best indie comics show in the country and it’s here every year!


Who are some other DC makers that really inspire you?

I’m not as clued in as a I should be, but just to pick out some folks that I like a lot: I’m super impressed by all the work coming out of Typecase Industries. Those ladies have really built something awesome with their custom letterpress setup. Also, the painter Trevor Young floors me. Oil paints are so outside of my skill set and they never stop amazing me. One more is Alexis Frederick-Frost, who was one of my teachers in Vermont and now lives in the area. He’s an incredibly talented illustrator/cartoonist.

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What are some of your favorite DC haunts?
I love Lincoln Park, and if you haven’t seen it and like architecture, it’s worth checking out Philadelphia Row just south of the park. The re-done Northeast Neighborhood Library is a lovely place to pretend to get work done. Union Market is finally full of vendors and has enough stuff near it that it’s starting to remind me of the awesome markets it’s based on in. Maybe in 20 years we’ll be calling that neighborhood Union Market like we do for Eastern Market.

What else do we need to know?

On my birthday in late June I’m starting a year-long project where every day I’ll draw something I have eaten or drank. It’s mainly an exercise to draw more, but it’s also a chance to take a closer look at what I’m eating. I’ll also be keeping track of everything, and making notes about my diet/purchasing/dining habits. After a year of this, I think it’ll be illuminating to see what a year of food actually looks like. You can see what’s new at JoshKramerComics.com. Thanks!

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Thanks Josh! Pick up Issue #7 (as well as back issues or a subscription) over on The Cartoon Picayune website.

Dumbarton Oaks, Take 2

May 18, 2015

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Last week we took you inside the Dumbarton Oaks Museum. This week, it’s the gardens.

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We’re sure it’s the immaculate, perfect, completely serene gardens that people are thinking about when you mutter “Dumbarton Oaks” — that’s for good reason. Tucked away in a quiet section of Georgetown is the absolute haven of all things botanical.

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There are zillions of plants, a forsythia dell [actually my favorite place in all of the city, maybe the world], an ampitheater, a rose garden, sweeping views of the adjacent park and even a POOL.

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Visiting is a straightforward affair — it’s 10 bucks to get in and during the regular season (Mar. 15 – Oct. 31), they’re only open from 2-6 [in winter, admission is free but the gardens are only open 2-5.]

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While going during a fetching display of spring color is ideal, visit anytime. It’s heaven if you have even a passing interest in manicured lawns and pristine rose gardens. Right now you should be planning your IRL trip, but in the meantime, enjoy this virtual tour:

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Dumbarton Oaks, Take 1

May 10, 2015

Dumbarton Oaks is basically a national treasure.

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You likely know it as a world-class garden, but this beautiful, tucked-away slice of heaven in Georgetown is more than beautiful plants. It’s also a rad, free museum. Today, we’re taking a quick tour of the collections. Next week, the plant matter!

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Dumbarton Oaks is basically the brainchild of Mildred and Robert Woods Bliss — lovers of scholarship and the arts and super into collecting. The building itself is the former home of these two cool cats; the things there now represent the interests of the couple — Byzantine art, Pre-Columbian artifacts, Flemish pieces.

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The Music Room, which now houses tapestries and sculpture among other artifacts, was where these two entertained other smart cookies with music programs, lectures and other intellectual discourse.

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There are also rotating special collections — like the current one on drinking vessels (which gloriously includes the notorious red cup behind museum glass.)

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The museum opens — very conveniently — a few hours before the gardens, so we at Treasury highly recommend you take in this stunning gratis place before checking out all the killer plants [and check back next week for when we do a deep dive into Dumbarton Oaks… the GARDENS.]

A Tour of the New Textile Museum

May 3, 2015

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I was a bit sad to hear that the Textile Museum was closing. Originally located in a mansion on a quiet street in Kalorama (near the elusive Spanish Steps of DC), the fabric-dedicated museum is now tucked away on the campus of GW — and the previous location is currently for-sale for a cool $22M.

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Small and quiet, the new Textile Museum is kind of a must-see for fashion freaks – you have both intricate rugs and plain white tees on display.

 

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Admission is suggested, so you can scoot in and out of here for free if you wish.

 

 

 

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The current / opening exhibition takes a look at personal/political/social identity through both new and old textiles.

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It’s a quick, pleasant visit and a great diversion when getting off the Foggy Bottom metro.

Perfect Pizza: Etto

April 26, 2015

Introducing a new regular feature here on the Treasury blog: Perfect Pizza. It’s in this feature that we’ll cover the best pizza that D.C. and its surrounding areas has to offer.

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Etto is where you head when you’re on 14th St. NW (like, say, after a mini spree at TREASURY!) and want something that feels like a modern take on an authentic Italian experience. Etto has a killer selection of thin crust pizzas, which is the main reason you’re going there. But don’t sleep on the wine lists or the appetizers — a personal fave is anything from the ‘curd’ section. Fresh, oil-slathered cheese served with bread for dipping (which, tbh, if you’re a cheese freak, is tasty but feels downright superfluous.)

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One tasty pizza option is the roasted cauliflower. Toasted breadcrumbs and pine nuts are the perfect little toppers, who would have known?

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Two paws way up!

A Stroll Around Tudor Place

April 19, 2015

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I consider myself very well-versed in DC’s public parks and gardens, be they large and official or small and quirky. Yet somehow I had never heard of Tudor Place.

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Tucked up and away on a quiet Georgetown street, Tudor Place is basically super cool historical grounds. The main house was finished in 1816 and built by a granddaughter of Martha Washington (!) Also on the grounds are structures from the manor’s history — places to cure meats and the like. The gardens comprise about five acres of manicured, serene plant life.

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A self-guided tour of the gardens is just $3 and well worth it (a guided tour of the house is a bit more, do it if you have the time.) On a gorgeous spring day, when everything is starting to bloom and is in varying shades of pastel, it’s basically the best place to be. There’s a sense that it’s kind of a secret — probably doesn’t help that it’s about a block away from the great Dumbarton Oaks (which we’ll talk about in a future post, natch.)

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It’s a serene place steps away (but also like, a world away?) from the hustle/bustle of Georgetown and the perfect way to celebrate the arrival of springtime in D.C.

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For more info check out the Tudor Place website.

*Instant Update*: Starchild Studios Is a Go (and It’s Amazing)

April 15, 2015

Last time we were checking in with Ayana Zaire, we were marveling at her new zine, Distrikt. Just a few short weeks later, Zaire has launched a full-fledged cultural center, Starchild Studios. Clearly, she is not one to rest on her laurels.

The future of Starchild Studios.

The future of Starchild Studios — this is inspo for the future space and perhaps a hint of what’s to come.

Starchild is seriously going to be a force in the city, we can already tell. Zaire’s got not only creative-minded gatherings on the docket (SS has already held one with Trez bff Morgan Hungerford West, aka Pandahead) but will also provide micro-grants for creative projects in the city, funded through communal suppers (mmm.) Oh, and there’s going to be an agency connecting freelancers with those who need some creative project help [plus a physical co-working space.] Basically, an all-around *very cool thing* that will only help bolster DC’s creative class.

Be sure to keep your eye on Ms. Zaire! We sure will be.

A Few Fancy Snaps from the Kennedy Center

March 29, 2015

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If you want to do something unabashedly fancy — like, real dress-up nice — you go to The Kennedy Center. Whether you’re there to see a touring ballet company, an opera or a free concert on the Millennium Stage, it’s hard not to feel like a million bucks surrounded by such splendor (and taking in such high art.) In case you’re still on the fence, here are a few snaps to convince you that your next outing should be to this D.C. institution:

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And if you need help getting all dolled up for your own Kennedy Center adventure, stop on by the shop and we’ll make sure you’re looking 100% on-point.

Hidden D.C.: Franciscan Monastery

March 22, 2015

The Franciscan Monastery is one of my favorite places in D.C. Located on a hill and in a quiet residential area in Northeast, the monastery is truly the “oasis of peace” advertised on the website.

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Open to all for a visit, the Monastery boasts not only a gorgeously gilded place of worship (available for a peek through guided tours which even includes cool/slightly spooky underground portion) but also beautiful grounds. There are well-worn paths, manicured hedges and plenty of cool little points of architectural interest along the way.

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Now that the weather’s warming up, the monastery is the perfect place to wile away a quiet Sunday afternoon. Though tucked away in a nicely secluded area, it’s super close to the up-and-coming Monroe Street Market — which sounds like a nice way to wind down a weekend, no?

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A Quickie Tour of Takoma Park

March 15, 2015

Takoma Park is adjacent to DC proper, but feels like a world away. With its small-town vibe, Takoma Park is surprisingly jam-packed with super-cool things —  and its convenient location along the red line Metro means there’s no excuse to pop over and see all that TP has to offer, including:

MARK’S KITCHEN

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Mark’s is the Korean/American restaurant that you wish was in DC itself. It’s a place where you can order both a grilled cheese and egg-topped bi bim bap without feeling nuts (and it is so good.) It’s actually everything a neighborhood diner should be, only with better, more exciting food.

POLLY SUE’S VINTAGE

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A great spot for vintage when you can’t make it out to Treasury ( ;) ) There’s a resident parrot and plenty of flirty mid-century dresses to go around.

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A relatively new addition to the neighborhood, this coffee shop quickly established itself as a must-visit when in TP. They make a killer london fog tea latte (drooling RN) and their hand pies are the stuff of dreams — and a surefire way to regularly fit in a serving of pie to your diet, which we all desperately need.

TROHV

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A DC-ish outpost of the Baltimore mainstay, Trohv is the ultimate lifestyle shop. It’s here you can pick up on-trend periodicals, driftwood, crystal lamps, kitchen goods, stationery and even jewelry. If you come in here and don’t suddenly feel the need to spend $1,000 on large pieces of wood / candles, then you are a better person than we.

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Republic is another newer kid on the block — and part of the Black Restaurant group, which has plenty of other DC spots in its portfolio. Republic serves everything from oysters to fried cauliflower and everything in between. It’s a great place to drink, too, with plenty of signature cocktails.

PIZZA MOVERS

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So-so pizza, but how amazing is this little building? It’s kind of the best.

SUNDAY FARMER’S MARKET

Every Sunday, from 10am to 2pm, the main thoroughfare of Takoma Park is shut down for a perfect, homey-feeling farmers market. Small but mighty, you’ll find one of everything you’ll need here, from wine to bread to vegetables of all kinds.

Must-See at the Museum: Mingering Mike

March 8, 2015

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Mingering Mike is the pseudonym of a highly secretive outsider artist. Born ‘n’ bred in Washington, DC, Mike spent large swaths of late 60s and 70s creating the persona of a highly successful and prolific soul musician — entirely though fictional album covers and fake records rather than real recordings. It was a meticulous pipe dream. Mike even crafted cardboard records (with appropriate grooves and all) to fit inside these record sleeves. Each album is fully realized, with beautifully expressive artwork and realistic song titles. Mike’s self-created music career was as full as he could dream up.

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A brand new exhibit at the Smithsonian American Art Museum brings together over 150(!) pieces of Mingering Mike’s artwork. It’s such a beautiful, inspiring, heartbreaking collection. It’s an absolute must-see for everyone, really, but people who love music and/or outsider art will be particularly enthralled. The effect of all the pieces brought together is definitely overwhelming (in the best way possible.)

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Mingering Mike’s Supersonic Greatest Hits runs until August 2 at the Smithsonian American Art Museum.

Perfect Pizza: Comet Ping Pong

February 28, 2015

Introducing a new regular feature here on the Treasury blog: Perfect Pizza. It’s in this feature that we’ll cover the best pizza that D.C. and its surrounding areas has to offer.

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Comet Ping Pong is maybe the best place on earth. While it is located rather far away from many D.C. activities — and not super close to a Metro stop — once you make your way out there, it’s so worth it. In the early evening, this warehouse-like restaurant is a haven for cool, young parents and their hip kids (who come for the pizza, stay for the ping-pong tables(!)) Once it gets a bit later, CPP is home to just about everyone else in-the-know, with live music happening many nights.

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Comet trades in the best kind of pies — the modern personal pan. Just large enough to sate you, but not put you over the edge. The toppings are killer (broccoli rabe with an EGG? yeah ok!) and it always tastes amazing. This is the perfect spot for folks who like their crust thick and doughy.

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Pro tip: save room for the truly delicious tin roof sundae. It’s topped with peanuts.

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While CPP is most definitely a family-friendly venue, we’re kinda stumped about its bathroom. The vibe is very much dive-bar-at-2am-Sunday, and with some interesting mural/graffiti action:

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Another great thing about CPP is while its location is kinda far, once you’re there you get to pop in D.C. establishment Politics and Prose, a wonderful bookstore. It’s also just a hop/skip/jump to The Avalon, one of our fave indie movie theaters.

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Exploring Hillwood, D.C.’s Best-Kept Museum Secret

February 21, 2015

D.C. lacks nothing when it comes to huge, amazing museums — the Smithsonian Institution does not slack, and the National Mall is (duh!) an amazing place that tourists from all over the world travel to the city in which to see. That said, there are also a ton of great spots that are slightly off the beaten path. Today we focus on one such place: Hillwood.

Located off the southwest boundary of Rock Creek Park, Hillwood was purchased by Marjorie Merriweather Post (early 20th century socialite and founder of General Foods) in 1955. Needless to say, homegirl had some pretty substantial assets; she filled her Hillwood estate with the art she loved the most: Russian and French decorative goodies [read: Fabergé eggs galore.] She also loved gardens — Hillwood boasts an impressive spread of both manicured outdoor gardens and orchid-filled greenhouses.

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A visit to Hillwood is a quiet, meditative affair. You can stroll through the gardens and greenhouses — be sure to include a stop at the cafe, which has a Sunday afternoon champagne tea worth writing home about (and for just $20) — and then engage in a self-guided tour through Marjorie’s mansion. It’s an incredibly well-preserved look at how the other half lives, and an insane trove of vintage-inspired home decor inspo. The upstairs bathroom alone, with its powder-pink bathtub and matching bathmats, is total Pinterest fodder, no? No amazing detail is overlooked — and we would expect nothing less. Take a look at some of the mansion’s highlights below:

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Hillwood is open Tuesday – Saturday until March 1, when it is then open Tuesday – Sunday. Do check it out!

Talking to Distrikt’s Ayana Zaire

February 14, 2015

It’s rare for something to perfectly inhabit the center space of a Venn diagram of our interests — or at least, we thought, until we stumbled upon Distrikt. Distrikt is the web and print(!)  project spearheaded by local cool-girl Ayana Zaire. A current student at University of Maryland, Zaire took it largely upon herself to examine DC’s creative class problem — namely the mass migration of cool, talented people away from the city.

Distrikt, Zaire’s zine can be considered her thesis — and exception to the rule. Through her beautifully designed and photographed (and interviewed and …) zine, Zaire and her team of collaborators and contributors both highlight the issues that DC has long struggled with in supporting creative talent — and also put a well-deserved spotlight on DC’s coolest who don’t get more mainstream media coverage.

We took the opportunity to chat with Zaire about her take on DC’s creative class, what she found most difficult about putting together a zine and what her ideal day in the city looks like.

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What is Distrikt?
Distrikt is a quarterly zine showcasing the style, art, and culture of the young creative community in the DC metro area.

When did you start it?
I came up with the idea is September and I started making plans with a couple friends to push the zine out by October.

How long did it take you to put the zine together?
It actually ended up taking us 3 months from start to finish.  Our first issue launched in December.  To my surprise, gathering content wasn’t even the longest part.  The editing, designing, and the whole printing process was the most time consuming. Initially, I wanted it to be a monthly thing, but once I realized how much time and money went into the issue we decided to make it quarterly.

I also have to shout out my amazing friends Ari Melenciano and Samson Binutu! Sam is our head photographer and Ari is our head videographer.  I am SO GRATEFUL these two talented artists instantly connected with my vision and saw the need from the jump.  I’m honored to have the opportunity to work with them.  They’re cooking up some dope stuff with their personal projects, as well.  Ari is doing some amazing things with her brand, Bgoti (@2bgoti). Sam is making some noise with his platform Project 3:30 (@project330_), as well.

 

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What made you want to start Distrikt?
This past summer I spent a lot of time with an old friend. As a method of “catching up” I told him my plans after graduation, which was the interaction that pretty much inspired the idea.  I told him I wanted to move to nyc after school and he pretty much dismissed it as foolish. His response went something like, “Why would I want to be a small fish in someone else’s pond when I’m already a big fish in mine?”. And it made sense.  I realized most of my creative friends were up and leaving DC as soon as they got a chance. It made me start to wonder why.  I’ve come to the conclusion that the two main issues are: there aren’t enough showcasing platforms and the community isn’t centralized enough.  The hope is Distrikt will address the showcasing issue, and we have something in the works that will be addressing the issue of a more connected creative community.  We can and will make DC a creative capital…we have the talent and political responsibility to do so.

Can you tell me more about yourself? What do you do outside the zine (school/work/etc.)? Where in the area are you from?
Okay. So.  I’m a current senior at the University of Maryland – College Park majoring in Innovation, Design, and Society (a self created major), with a double minor in Technology Entrepreneurship and Philosophy.  So I basically have three main concentrations for which I take business/entrepreneurship courses, art studio courses, and courses pertaining to sociology and “awareness”. Work? I TA for a class called “Entrepreneurial Decision Making in the 21st Century”. But what’s been most vital to my growth are the on-campus orgs I’ve been fortunate enough to be apart of such as the Start-up Shell, Fearless Founders (Smith School), Hinman CEOs (Mtech), and the Academy of Innovation and Entrepreneurship.  Being around like minded students and faculty has been so motivating and it’s instilled an unwavering level of confidence as an entrepreneur. Seeing my peers go after their passion and finding success while in college made me go, oh shit…I can do that too.

Oh yeah, and I’m from Prince Georges County, Maryland (WHOOP! WHOOP!)…currently residing in the Bowie area. I fell in love with DC at a very young age though.  I first was introduced to the city via the amazing restaurants my dad would take me and my family to every weekend.

 

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Ayana Zaire


How do you feel about the creative scene in DC?
I’ve only REALLY been in the game for about 4 months (although me and my high school friends would do impromptu photo shoots in the city a while back…we had our own creative clique), so it’s hard to speak on it with true conviction. But I can say, from what I’ve seen, it’s extremely divided…as far as class, culture, race, and lifestyle.  It’s like you have your Washingtonian-featured, semi-yuppie, creatives…then you have your young, street kids who live and breathe art and creativity but can barely afford to take the Metro. So now I’m really into bridging that gap. I feel like I’m in a good position to make that change, because I’ve seen both sides. There are sometimes I piggy back behind someone going into the Metro because my SmartTrip is in the negative (almost always), but I also recognize my privilege as a college student.

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What do you think DC needs to become a creative powerhouse city? Why?
WE NEED TO CONNECT THE ARTISTS WITH THE MONEY and create one central cultural/creative hub. This goes back to what I was saying with regards to centralizing the community and bridging the gap.  I am currently working on opening a communal art space in the DC metro area, with the hopes that it will help further connect the community.  Accompanying the space will be a new, more “open” approach to a creative agency, which will help with connecting artists to the money.  We know there’s money, thus opportunity, in DC. We know there’s artists in DC. I want to create a playground for those two entities to interact.

Why? With access to resources and opportunities comes creative confidence. I want to make being an artist feasible in DC and I believe we have the political responsibility to do so.  Before we know it everyone’s job is going to be replaced by technology and soon creativity and human ingenuity is going to become ever more valuable. Let’s start the creative revolution in our nation’s capital. Where else? It makes the most sense. Am I making sense? [Ed. note: totally!]

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What would an ideal day in DC look like for you (i.e. food/hang-outs/events/bars,etc.)?
Last semester I interned with Morgan (of Pandahead Blog), she kinda put me on to Big Bear Cafe…now I take all my meetings there. So it would start with a couple morning meetings at Big Bear. Then I’d feed my soul at some art exhibition, depending on what’s new in the city.  Then I’d grab lunch (whatever is close, under $10, and won’t make my stomach hurt) with a friend and we’d talk about our goals, life plans, and our fears. Then we’d go to Joint Custody because I need more Parliament Funkadelic stuffs in my life, and they usually have it. After I’d go home and change, then convince my family we should go to Little Serow again, because I miss their staff and food. Later, I’d take a quick nap and get all my girls together. We’d pick up some decent tequila, park the car somewhere near U St., pre-game in my best friends Jetta, and end the night at Velvet with Ayescold or Mista Selecta spinning till close.

What else should we know?
It’s about to get real.

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Distrikt is available online, as well as at our sister shop Meeps. It’s also carried at Joint Custody, SMASH!, Art Under Pressure.

All photos by Samson Binutu, courtesy of Distrikt.

Let’s All Go to the Movies

February 6, 2015

Winter weekends are perfect for going to the movies, and we’re lucky that D.C. is filthy rich with great film options. While it might be notoriously difficult to actually film something within city limits, it’s rather easy to see something rad. It’s tough, but we’re playing favorites with five amazing theaters (plus some honorable mentions) — along with picks for what you should watch at each of them.

Angelika Pop-Up at Union Market

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This warehouse-sized venue will help you to rethink what size a pop-up has to be. Located just behind food emporium Union Market, the Angelika is no-nonsense, with good indie-leaning films and cheap concessions. Movie pick: A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night

 

E Street Cinema

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E Street is the DC go-to for new indie films — and the midnight movies are also a draw. They have a full bar (so. much. booze) and decidedly classy concessions, like a cheese plate (!) Pro tip: ask for shots of alcohol in your slushy. Movie pick: A Most Violent Year

AFI Silver

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AFI Silver is basically the best place on earth. A historic, art deco Theatre 1 (and two more modern screening rooms) combine to offer both new indie films and a really great repertory program (spanning the decades and the globe.) Movie pick: Inherent Vice / Edward Scissorhands

 

The Uptown

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It’s surprising that The Uptown doesn’t have more notoriety in the city. Sure, it may not have multiple theaters or world-class concessions, but it makes up for all that in aesthetics and history — it was the site of several movie premieres, including 2001: A Space Odyssey (!) and Jurassic Park. Movie Pick: American Sniper

 

The Avalon

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Another historic theater, The Avalon is just kind of an aesthetic knock-out. This joint also shows indie-leaning films, along with some great world cinema picks (currently focusing on French, Czech and Israeli films.) They have really good popcorn, though you should definitely just eat at Comet Ping Pong beforehand, since you’ll be all the way out there already. Movie Pick: Selma

 

& Don’t Forget:::

National Gallery of Art Film Program: rare film, beautiful setting, free entry — wtf else could you ask for?

Angelika Film Center & Café at Mosaic: the larger outpost of the pop-up, the full theater at Mosaic has a great selection (and food); while you’re out there, check out Anthom and Dolcezza

West End Cinema: head to West End when you want that intimate, friends-basement vibe with your hard-to-find films

Regal Gallery Place: for when a huge, mainstream cinemaplex is needed, this is the place to go; definitely be sure to sneak in a milkshake from the adjacent Häagen-Dazs (just bring a tote bag or something)

AMC Loews Georgetown: a theater that blends multiplex vibe with a surprisingly decent selection (and along the waterfront, too)

A Photo Tour of Honeycomb, The Best New Lil Grocery Store in DC

January 23, 2015

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Grocery stores are a place of true zen for me. I tend to lose track of time under the fluorescent lights, lingering over every product, every label, every imperfect piece of produce. So you can probably imagine that I kind of lost it when I heard about the opening of Honeycomb, a small Asian-focused grocery opened by Erik Bruner-Yang at Union Market. Bruner-Yang is the mastermind behind Toki Underground, one of D.C.’s most beloved ramen shops (and also of the forthcoming Maketto.)

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Clearly a lot of thought (and love) went into Honeycomb — the all-wood interior is so inviting, and what’s on offer has a really nice hand-picked feel. This is a curated grocery at its finest. Big bonus: the staff are super chill about answering questions you may have about unfamiliar ingredients, so don’t be shy!

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You can take your pick from homemade sauces (the mala oil is so addictive — try drizzling it on a bowl of piping hot made-at-home packaged ramen!) and fermented vegetables to cool novelty drinks and fun Asian snacks (like shrimp crackers, duh.)

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It’s ~literally~ impossible to walk away from this shop empty-handed.

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What could be a better pairing for Asian condiments than a hat by local brand Durkl?

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Honeycomb also sells a selection of reading material.

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Eager to make spring rolls @ home yet?

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Pocky is an actual must (PRO TIP: grab a box here then sneak it into the Angelika Pop-Up movie theater, which is behind Union Market and shows really rad films.)

 

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“Flower’s Kiss Candy” — what could possibly be better?

Be sure to check out Honeycomb on Facebook and Instagram!

Local Music Video Playlist: January

January 16, 2015

“Local music” can conjure up some less-than-flattering imagery — open mic nights, sensitive white dudes jamming on an out-of-tune acoustic guitar. Thankfully, D.C.’s music is… actually super rad. We have a long history of incredible bands (from Bad Brains to Black Tambourine and everything in between) and newer artists are for sure keeping up with that tradition. Today, we celebrate a handful of artists who make great jams… as well as great music videos.

Here are four clips that are high on style (whether your preference is dreamy or food-filled or all-pink-everything) from some current local faves:


Ex Hex — “Hot and Cold”


GEMS — “Sinking Stone”


Kali Uchis — “Know What I Want”


Protect-U — “U-Uno”

Ode to a Chinese Resturant

January 9, 2015

D.C.’s Chinatown gets a bad rap — deservedly — but that’s not to say that nothing good can come of it. While there may be a dearth of affordable housing, of Asian grocery stores and of actual Chinese restaurants, the fact remains that the small sliver of a neighborhood boasts one amazing institution: Chinatown Express.

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Perhaps the most apt description of Chinatown Express, a seemingly nondescript two-level restaurant on 6th St. NW came from my pal Maryam: “the inside feels like the setting for a Law & Order cold opening.” It’s such a spot-on description and requires nothing else, really. Which is to say, you should just go. CE’s huge street-facing window shows employees expertly hand-filling dumplings next to a row of roast ducks. Once inside, it’s a whole new world, where plates piled high with fried noodles or huge vats of steaming-hot soup go whizzing by with amazing speed. It’s its own entire universe, with bare-bones décor, overstuffed fish tanks, a secret upper level (where you may sit and dine with strangers, who knows) and a general I-never-want-to-leave vibe.

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Everything they serve is good (or, if you have super-high standards, at least passable) but I personally come for the dumplings.

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In the past two years or so, I’ve eaten at least 250 (they come eight to an order, so you do the math.) Pile ‘em up with the ubiquitous tangy green sauce then pop ‘em in your mouth — there’s nothing better. Follow that up with fried rice / noodles — you’re here to carbo-load, duh — and whatever else you fancy, leave with a completely full stomach. D.C. has a thriving, ever-growing food scene — and yet I can’t help but remain faithful to this humble little spot.

A Happy Holidays Mix from Us

December 24, 2014

Happy Holidays dear readers!

We hope you are enjoying celebrating whatever winter holiday(s) you celebrate.

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We made a playlist for you. Listen to it while crafting some festive baked goods or cleaning up some post-presents wrapping paper debris:

Great Big Iceberg Is Super Rad

December 19, 2014
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Birdwatcher Falls illustration by Alan Brown.

It’s always a good day when something new and cool and art-centered pops up in D.C. — today we’re proud to introduce you to Great Big Iceberg. It’s a project from artist Marissa Long in collaboration with designer Victor Aguilar. Marissa is a super-rad local artist who also founded Make/Believe Creative Programs for Kids. Treasury grilled Melissa on all things GBI — read on for all the deets!

Treasury: What is Great Big Iceberg?
Marissa Long: Great Big Iceberg is an online publication that features individual artists a few times per year. We call each artist feature an “album” and think of them as detailed, eclectic scrapbooks of a sort. They share lots of info about the artist’s life and work, including things like stories, childhood memories, inspirations, personal artifacts, interests, process — anything that funnels into or hides out somewhere behind the artist’s work. Also: lots of the artist’s work itself. It’s a multi-media publication, so in addition to text, it’s peppered with photos, videos, and audio clips. The first two albums will feature visual artists, but I’m hoping to feature musicians and writers in the future, too.

Artist Alan Brown, featured in GBI album 001.

Artist Alan Brown, featured in GBI album 001.

Treasury: What made you want to start?
ML: I’ve always been really fascinated by the conscious and unconscious motivations behind what people do, especially when it comes to art. I love artist critiques in part for that reason, especially when you get a chance to look at an artist’s work over the course of many years. There’s almost always a moment when you see those things next to each other and it’s like, Oh! There it is — there’s this thread or series of threads running through all these different bodies of work, even if they look very different, and even if the artist isn’t fully aware of it. That’s exciting to me.

I also have a real love of eclectic groupings and juxtapositioning of various bits of information. Seeing an artist’s work featured alongside their stories, influences, and a personal take on — I don’t know — a book they read about the life cycle of bats or something or other they’re psyched about – I like seeing all of those things talking to each other and marinating in this weird, unique soup. People soup! In general, a project like this has been on my mind for years, and I just decided to go for it, since the interest was there in a big way for me.

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Alan Brown and his partner, artist Kati Driscoll.

Treasury: How long did it take you to get off the ground? Is it a lot of work?
ML: From the initial point of decision to the publication of the first album — that was a fairly long time. Definitely over a year since I started talking out loud about it, but that’s probably not an accurate picture of how long each subsequent album will take (I hope not!). There was just a lot to figure out with the designer (my talented friend Victor Aguilar, who can also be found at Wilderness Bureau) and with Alan Brown, the featured artist. I think it will have been about 4 months or so by the time the second album comes out, which is not to say that I’m working all day every day in that time, but yeah — it is a lot of work! It’s fun though, and very inspiring.

Family photos from Album 001 with Alan Brown.

Family photos from Album 001 with Alan Brown.

Treasury: Tell us about the name!
ML: It’s so hard to name and title things — such a huge commitment! A lot of what’s in the name is probably self-evident: it’s nodding to the idea that we’re trying to get at not just what’s on the surface (which is maybe the artist’s work?) but also what’s beneath and beyond that, which is so much and so interesting. Although since doing this interview, I’m wondering if I should have called it “People Soup.” Right? No, that’s bad.

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Treasury: What do you hope to accomplish with the project?
ML: I mostly hope to make these little publications that will be interesting, engaging and inspiring to people who look at them, and that they’ll be gratifying capsules for the artists who work on them with me, too.

"Artifacts" from Alan Brown's comic Ovoyyamar.

“Artifacts” from Alan Brown’s comic Ovoyyamar.

Treasury: You’re an artist yourself. Can you tell us a little about what you do?
ML: I make photographs of scenes or constructions I put together, although I’m starting to want to make more straight up, 3D objects. For a while, I was really interested in images that had little visual tricks in them, so that you would look at the picture and think, Oh okay, I know what that is. Cool, done. But then some detail would cue the realization that the image was somehow different than that, and your perception would shift a little. I’m still interested in that, but lately I’ve been making weird amalgam assemblages or altering kitschy objects and then photographing them — things I think of as revealing some human intention that’s missing its mark. Like something that’s maybe kind of pathetic but that’s being altered and/or presented in a way that is trying to elevate it — simultaneously absurd but also really sincere and human. Also making/photographing things I think of as artifacts. I think that interest is evident in the GBI albums so far. There are “artifacts” in the first album from the artist’s incredible comic, and there will be a collection artifacts in a major way in the second album.

Toys made by Album 001 artist Alan Brown.

Toys made by Album 001 artist Alan Brown.

Treasury: What new things are coming for GBI in the coming months? What kind of new things or artists?
ML: The most exciting thing forthcoming is that Album 002 with NY-based artist Sophia Flood will be published – we’re shooting for early 2015. I’m really psyched about this, I think it’s going to be beautiful. There are parts of it that will be a bit like mini art projects in themselves, and Sophia is so talented, cool, interesting and genuine. She makes really intriguing, intuitive paintings, sculptures, and installations. I didn’t know anything about her aside from what her work looked like before we met, so it was very neat to find out we have a lot of common interests and affinities. Those things are probably a large part of the reason I’m drawn to her work, even though they weren’t necessarily evident before talking with her. And that in itself is kind of what I’m getting at with GBI.

Upcoming Album 002 artist Sophia Flood in her studio.

Upcoming Album 002 artist Sophia Flood in her studio.

Head on over to the Great Big Iceberg website to sign up for album updates. You should also follow GBI on Instagram and Tumblr.

Meet Your Holiday Hang Out Vendors!

December 10, 2014

Holiday Hang Out is this weekend. We hope to see you at our opening party or on Saturday or Sunday. To get you primed and ready to buy gifts for everyone on your list, here’s a preview of who will be selling:

 

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ODA stands for Oddball Design Aesthetic, but proprietor Sylvia Schieber’s goods are anything but odd. Schieber uses rock motifs to make completely unique (and, uh, gorgeous) accessories.

Treasury: How did you get started?
Sylvia Schieber: My dad is a world renowned shale rock geologist. I use the pictures of the shale/mudrock he collects and print them onto fabrics to make into unique accessories.

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Treasury: What are you selling at Holiday Hang Out?
SS: I will be showcasing my unique shale/mud print accessories along with my own handmade jewelry and cute, vintage collectible housewares.

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Treasury: Finish this sentence: “My wares are the perfect gift for ____”
SS: The natural, asymmetrical patterns, colors and shapes featured in my scarves and ties are unique and can be customized to anyone. They are perfect items to give as gifts or to treat yourself.

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Elizabeth Graeber is D.C.’s favorite illustrator — you can tell her sweetly unique style apart from anyone else’s instantly, and you can see her work all over the city in murals, magazines and more.

Treasury: How did you get into making?
Elizabeth Graeber: I like drawing and making fun things! I studied illustration at the Maryland Institute College of Art

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Treasury: What will you be selling at Holiday Hang Out?
EG: Illustrated books, zines, cards, pillows and original drawings.

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Treasury: Finish this sentence: “My wares are the perfect gift for ____”
EG: You, your family, your friends.

 

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Warm Distractions is the brainchild of Mia Lopes, local creative (and Meeps employee!) If it’s quirky-cool knitwear you want, you got it with WD — and basically everything here makes the *perfect* gift for someone who needs to keep warm during winter (which is everyone.)

Treasury: How did you get into making?
Mia Lopes: It was an extension of learning clothing construction, I also wanted to design the textile and enjoy the freedom it creates.

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Treasury: What will you be selling at Holiday Hang Out?
ML: Playful, one-of-a-kind, cold weather accessories (hats, scarves, ear warmers, collars) sweaters & tote bags.

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Treasury: Finish this sentence: “May wares are the perfect gift for ____”
ML: Knit enthusiasts, friends with humor, colorful relatives, your deserving self.

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The Runcible Spoon is D.C.’s own quirkiest little food zine, complete with recipes real and too fantastical to be real, stories and expert collaging. It was started by local Malaka Gharib, who wanted a creative outlet to counter her 9-5 life.

Treasury: How did you get into making?
Malaka Gharib: I’ve made zines and paper products all my life.

Treasury: What are you selling at Holiday Hang Out?
MG: Handmade clay sushi ornaments, holiday gift pack of The Runcible Spoon, mini papercraft set, packs of old zines.

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Treasury: Finish this sentence: “My wares are the perfect gift for ____”
MG: Your foodie friend who doesn’t like when people call them “foodie.”

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Saint Lydia is the alter ego of Alison Baitz, a local writer and zine obsessive. It’s her outlet for paper goods and modern accessories.

Treasury: How did you get into making?
Alison Baitz: I’ve really always been into making things — only recently realized that people might be willing to actually pay for these things.

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Treasury: What are you selling at the market?
AB: Zines, postcards, pens, esoteric accessories.

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Treasury: Finish this sentence: “My wares are the perfect gift for ___”
AB: Every person ever.

DC Art Report: Martine Workman’s First Solo Exhibition

December 3, 2014

Artist (and friend) Martine Workman is kind of a local legend. Us being zine connoisseurs, we can tell you that Martine’s are truly some of the best — they deal with everything from Prince food mentions to her life, in an inventive memoir-style. Her style is this perfect, irresistible mix of instantly evocative, super relatable and often very funny. Or, in a word: genius.

Martine is supremely nice and so down-to-earth, all the while traveling all over to sell her zines or winning major awards and grants. Luckily, the artist (and new mom!) has a show here in D.C. that everyone can take in: In Dusk Woods, at Flashpoint Gallery. It’s her first solo exhibition and boy is it a doozy. It combines her meticulous drawing style with memories of the über-lush Pacific Northwest and so many media are represented (zine, video game, sculpture.) We recommend everyone go and check it out IRL, but in the meantime, we have some imagery (and a statement) from the artist herself.

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Says Martine: “Within the past year, I have spent a lot of time looking at old master drawings (Poussin, Guercino, Rubens and others), particularly of landscapes and landscape backgrounds. Maybe it’s the abstract, expressive and fluid marks, but there is something about this work that looks contemporary and impressive to me. I have also heard the phrase ‘draw every leaf in the forest’ from a friend, who uses this phrase to describe a frantic, obsessive style of drawing I enjoy. Finally, last year I moved to DC after living in Seattle for 7 years and miss the lush landscapes of the Pacific Northwest.”

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The (stunning!) show is up at Flashpoint until Dec. 20th, so get to it!

Images by Brandon Webster Photography

 

A Quiet Afternoon at the National Gallery

November 21, 2014

If we’re going to gush about our favorite D.C. haunts, we’re going to have to call-out the National Gallery of Art.

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D.C. is unique in that the Smithsonian thinks it important to have all these amazing museums clustered about, all free of charge. We agree. The National Gallery is one of the best, renowned not just for its gratis status, but because it actually has some rad stuff: da Vinci icons, Whistler portraits and even a Vermeer for good measure. There are two buildings, connected by one of D.C.’s most-photographed underground landmarks: Multiverse. There are seriously so many nooks of great things it’s hard to even hash it all out here.

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If you’re ever in need of inspiration and low on cash, the National Gallery should be your destination. To us, one of the best things to do is look at the details of the old paintings — preferably the old Italian stuff. It’d be impossible not to get thousands of new ideas for clothes or jewels or just living your life like someone for whom a closetful of Valentino is a normal thing.

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The best time to go is during a weekday to avoid the crowds — but even on the weekends, there’s calm to be had. And if you have even a passing interest in movies — even think that moving pictures “are pretty cool,” then don’t sleep on the NGA’s film program. Everything’s free and usually either rare or foreign — a heady mixture.

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