Shaw, the neighborhood that originated the District’s Art All Night festival, held its 12th celebration on Sept. 30. Art The festivities got off to an early start when the Roosevelt Stay in School Opportunity Academy activated the school’s entrance plaza on Vermont Avenue the night before on Sept. 29. The gathering provided an opportunity for the Roosevelt STAY students to demonstrate their talent for art, performance and poetry.
Banneker Artists Market and Main Stage
On Sept. 30, the Welcome Center for Shaw’s Art All Night activities was at Banneker Academic High School’s west plaza hosted the main performances and art market. Over 20 local artists exhibited. DJs Jahsonic and Trini MCd and spun a tribute to 50 years of Hip-Hop. On the stage, Afi Soul performed, followed by Ace Ono. Then, Jennifer Stephens, a fixture of Shaw’s Art All Night for years, danced with fire and soap bubbles, dazzling the crowd.
Nearby, the Shaw Skate Park featured skateboarding demonstrations hosted by the Crushed Skate Shop. To the east, the Watha T. Daniel/Shaw Library hosted face painting and a community puzzle building effort. In its basement, artist Sidney Buffalow conducted do-it-yourself acrylic and watercolor painting workshops for adults and children.
Mount Vernon Square
Events DC offered a Night Circus on the lawn of the Carnegie Library. Large crowds enjoyed face painting, carnival and arcade games, glow in the dark body painting and a rainbow colored Foamboree. Aerialists and pyrotechnicians provided the carnival vibe.
A space at Intersect at O, the new apartment building next to City Market at O, hosted art exhibits by Jeffrey Morris and Ira Tattlelman. Live entertainment there included Cuban conga music by Rene Ibanez, performance art by Shanna Lim, bubble artist Jennifer Stephens, contemporary ballet from Jakylah Lewis and classical ballet by Sarina Osaba. Down the street, the Immaculate Conception Church was the venue for live classical music, a church tour and a candle lighting tribute to the recently deceased Luz Padro, mother of Shaw Main Streets Executive Director Alexander Padro.
T Street Block Party
The Right Proper Brewing Company held its third Art All Night Shaw Block Party on the 600 block of T Street NW. The party again featured the Black Beer Garden, offering an array of beers from BIPOC craft brewers. The front of the Howard Theater served as a performance venue for local musicians. There were also a number of artists and crafts people along T Street. At the Cornerstone at Florida Avenue NW, the C3W Wrestling team’s professional wrestling matches mesmerized the crowd.
Perhaps the hottest spot of the night was at the DC Housing Finance Agency, where Rayceen Pendarvis and Team Rayceen presented a full LGBTQIA+ program for attendees. Visitors were greeted at the door by members of the DC Cheer pom pom squad and DC Roller Derby. Inside, the program included a screening of the documentary “Black Rainbow Love,” and live musical acts. Visual artists showed and sold their work. The night was capped by the Midnight Mini Ball, a potpourri of entertainment led by MC Boom Boom Balenciaga.
A number of other Shaw businesses participated in Art All Night. Beau Thai restaurant asked its patrons create their own postcard designs, to be mailed to their addressees and immortalized on Instagram. At Electric Cool-Aid, the District Coalition and the Cultural Office of the Embassy of Spain presented a blend of art and musical expression with a Latin accent. Pop Fizz Bar, Minya’s Pizza, Shaw’s Tavern, Wanda’s on 7th, Stop Smack’n and Earth Grocery participated hosted art exhibits and musical performances. Foundry Gallery and Touchstone Gallery also held art exhibits and demonstrations.
Art All Night Shaw 2023 was presented by Shaw Main Streets, with major funding from the DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities, the Department of Small and Local Business Development and DC Main Streets. ArtBox DC, Beyond Collective, Capital Community News, Events DC, the Friends of Watha T. Daniel/Shaw Neighborhood Library, Miller Copying Service, Roadside Development, Sunbelt Rental and U Street Parking served as event sponsors.