Getting in Touch with Community: CAG 2013 Art Show

On Thursday, February 7th, I ventured out to a gallery. I was having one of those weeks that seems endless, where workdays are long, and the laundry list of to-do’s is miles long. However, by the time I arrived at House of Sweden located on K Street, the crowd of humble and welcoming local Georgetown artists uplifted my week. Within moments of stepping into the gallery space I forgot about my exhaustion; the talent that surrounded me was so beautiful and inspiring.

            The Citizens Association of Georgetown (CAG) put on this event. The goal is to get local artists known, one artist pointed out the significance for the Georgetown community to have a show just for artists from the neighborhood. Different medias fused together creating representations not only of individual art, but the collective efforts it takes to form a sense of community. There were over thirty artists, with works blended together amongst fellow neighbors.

            The first artists I bumped into were two women, Denise Paolella and Cherry Baumbusch. They were standing together discussing the show while sipping wine with watercolor paintings creating a backdrop behind them. Denise Paolella showed me to her favorite piece, it was a self-portrait using expressionist techniques. She said, “I don’t need it to be an exact replica of an image, but I want the viewer to feel the emotion.” As I gazed into her oil painted face framed in the corner the shades of blue and pink create allowed an insight into her mind. 

            Cherry Baumbusch focused on landscapes and had particular scenes of our nation’s capitol. Baumbusch had a way with colors creating a place in which the viewer may wish to travel. She formed shadows and highlights in a manor of only a well-practiced artist might. After gazing at her three pieces placed upon the wall, she introduced me to Guy Fairlamb whose works were placed next to hers. They both played with color and scenery mainly using oil paints. The two had a clear bond and friendship, discussing all the shows they had previously had with one another, each complimented the other having a true knowledge and appreciation of the other’s style.

            Further wandering throw the room crowded with art and art-lovers I crossed paths with artist Clare Scrimgeour. Conversing with her was such a pleasure, she spoke, with her delightful South African accent, of the art with such joy and ease, it seemed as if we had known each other much longer than the ten short minutes we spent discussing the art before us. She had recently shown at another studio and had pieces from that show placed into this one. Her paintings were abstract, she used oil and acrylics, using what she explained as “controlled drips.” Clare had says that she paints to create a social statement. One particular chaotic blend of texture and color was entitled “Political Agenda.” Although she said it is important to create a statement “the pieces need to be painting in their own right.”

            The Final artist I was fortunate enough to talk to was chair of the CAG committee Laura-Anne Tuscornia. She told me of what an amazing way this was for her to stay in touch with the art community. Although she did not get to work in the art world full-time, Laura-Anne started volunteering and landed the chair position within a year. She is a young a talented artist, enthusiastic about the local art scene.

            After an hour of wandering through art and meeting wonderful artist, the show began to close, artist made their way home and I followed them, left with a final thought from Laura-Anne Tuscornia “It is really great to see that people are continually learning. This show proves that you can be a life long artist.”

Bringing the Art in DC to You,