a teatray in the sky

2010 Smithsonian Craft Festival

Posted in 5D Mark II, Architecture, Penn Quarter, Photography, Washington, DC by firthefirst on May 13, 2010

tina had the wonderful idea of going down to the national building museum to check out the 2010 smithsonian craft show.  it’s long over by now, but if you’re in town and around for it in the future, it’s worth checking out.  apparently craft shows aren’t just open to any hippie with a bad whittling habit who wants to set up a stand.  these things are deeply competitive and the intensity of the artists is palpable.  even better, the quality of work on display really does reflect that. (more…)

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we mortals are but shadows and dust

Posted in 5D Mark II, Architecture, Penn Quarter, Photography, Washington, DC by firthefirst on May 12, 2010

there is a quiet little plaza across the street from the National Building Museum that few people walk through and few people think about.  it suffers from a disease pervasive in DC known as memorialitis:  when everyone and everything has a statue, plaque, or monument in its name, nothing really stands out.  the irony of america is it demands that everyone be deemed special, without realizing that when everything is special, nothing is really special anymore. (more…)

too many names

Posted in 30D, Penn Quarter, Photography by firthefirst on March 18, 2010

the fam took a trip to see the National Portrait Gallery the other week and I made them wait in the car for a bit while I took a couple of shots around the MLK Jr. Memorial Library.  there was an exhibit titled “Lists: To-dos, Illustrated Inventories, Collected Thoughts and Other Artists’ Enumerations” that I really wanted to go see, and despite the fact that it’s a wee bairn of an exhibit, it did turn out to be quite a bit of fun.  despite the public image of grand artistes as free-wheeling cads, in reality I think a large portion of truly creative types are also truly obsessive and truly neurotic.  combine that with their capacity for wit, art, and ingenuity, and you get some really really cool lists.  and we all know how I feel about lists (does this mean I’m creative?) (more…)