Sunday, February 18, 2018

Fluorescent Motherhood. "Rips" by Amy Hughes Braden

"Woundhead" by Amy Hughes Braden
I'm not sure if it was the bright, fluorescent colors of the images that drew me in or if it was the words Amy Hughes Braden used to describe her latest show at Red Dirt Studio that struck a chord, filled with references to the insane expectations on motherhood. Either way, when the announcement for the opening reception of her latest exhibits, Rips, found it way into my Facebook feed, I knew I wanted to check it out.

Braden describes her latest exhibit this way: "Shitty diapers and mountains of laundry take up space not only in my home but also on my canvases. I’ve hacked paintings apart, sutured pieces back together, and assembled cloth and resin forms as a way to break free of limiting gender roles, and address my internalized disdain for the expectations around motherhood. My work is loud and messy— I’m looking for space to exist that way in the world."

"Piles" by Amy Hughes Braden
As a working mother with two children who every day/minute wonders whether she's doing this thing right and when she might actually get around to doing those thank-you cards/dinner or even something as seemingly simple as that pile of laundry, it was significant and meaningful to see an exhibit that seemed to recognize some of the i$h that we go through. I mean, take a look at homegirl above: Pumping away through a LEGO flower, looking all nonchalant as she deftly tends to the leakage situation going on with her other breast. Truth be told, there's nothing nonchalant about what she's doing but as with so many of the things mothers do, we grit our teeth and make it look effortless. I should note that I'm totally projecting here, which I get to do as the ladyforce behind this blog. But my point is that I dug and related to this exhibit in a profound way. 

From "The Infinite Histories of Mothers" by Amy Hughes Braden
📷 by Krissi Humbard 

Close up of "The Infinite Histories of Mothers" by Amy Hughes Braden
📷 by Krissi Humbard
I also love / appreciate how Amy sprinkles her Instagram feed with pics of her, getting i$h done, all whilst Junior is chillin' in the corner or right there on her back.

📷 by Amy Hughes Braden
RIPS by Amy Hughes Braden runs until March 10th at Red Dirt Studio in Mt. Rainier (4051 34th St, Mt. Rainier). Gallery hours are by appointment, so reach out to Amy here, check out her work & support our local artists, Route One!

The artist as herself. :) 

Thursday, February 15, 2018

Kids' Weekend Guide: Feb. 16th-19th (Presidents' Day Wknd)

This weekend's rockin' with fun activities like Bibliobop, Leap, Jump & Jam, Kid Koders, African Folktales, Peter and the Wolf Concert, face painting, balloon twisting & more - all in this Kids' Weekend Guide!

Special thanks to our sponsor of this Weekend Guide!

Wednesday, February 14, 2018

Adults' Weekend Guide: Feb. 15th-18th

Linwood Taylor Band, w/ a style a la Muddy Waters, at New Deal Cafe this Friday!
📷 by New Deal Cafe

From Artist Talk about "The Elements that Define Us" to a reception for Rips, an exhibit addressing the artist's "disdain for the expectations around motherhood" (👊) to ParkRun & Zumba to Yoga + Wine to a Welcome to Wakanda Afterparty to Beekeeping 101, we really do have a ton of events to pick from this weekend! 👏

Special thanks to our sponsor of this Weekend Guide!

Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Art Supplies + School Projects + Birthday Gifts = Get Thee to Artist & Craftsman Supply Hyattsville

Stepped inside Artist & Craftsman Supply (A&C) in Hyattsville for the first time back in November of last year; they had set up an ugly sweater photo booth and were offering folks free pics of themselves donning these beaded creations, so you know I had to be there. 😉

I'm so glad I'm attracted to cheap thrills (like my husband 😆) because this little adventure opened my eyes to all that the amazing things this place has to offer - and not just to experienced artsy/craft-sy folks, but to dabblers like me, too. Beginner origami packets, amazing range of decorative, handmade paper to serve as the background for that vision board I never finished, markers and paints in every color you can imagine, paint brushes ranging in sizes from teeny tiny to holy cannoli, poster boards that come in more colors the usual meh, blah and whatever (and costing less than those insipid CVS  versions)! It's perfect for a bajillion things, but as a momma with the school's Literary Extravaganza on my mind, it's an especially great place to get all your school project supplies!

Big brush or just a tiny kid? 
There's a whole section dedicated to kids' toys, puzzles, card games, board games, fortune telling fish (remember those?!?!), mobiles, puppets, etc.

Also a section dedicated to kids' art and craft supplies:

So on top of having an artist's wishlist of supplies, A&C is staffed by top notch staff who are knowledgeable about the products and who, as artists themselves, know of what they speak. In fact, one such employee and artist, Isak Shah, has a show on right now at Studio SoHy in Hyattsville! Speaking of employees, A&C is a 100% employee-owned company. 👏

A & C fab employees Colton, Isak and Ray - and behind them an amazing
wall of beautiful sheets of paper (~$5/sheet)!

James, Paloma, Appollon (gato) & Ellen of A & C Hyattsville!
As you may have noticed in Route One Fun's Weekend Guides, A&C many times offers free or low-cost events to our local communities - like a recent Valentine's origami event and a kids' thank you card event. So go, check 'em out. And then, after you enjoy a coffee at Vigilante, stop nextdoor to check out Isak's show.

Artist & Craftsman Supply
4902 43rd Ave
Hyattsville, MD 20781
(301) 887-1104

Have you been to A & C yet? Drop a comment below! :) 
Don't forget to subscribe to receive Route One Fun emails directly to your Inbox! 

Sunday, February 11, 2018

Glassblowing, perchance? Check out DC GlassWorks and Sculpture Studio in Hyattsville

Studio space of Beth Hess & Leo Lex (w/ dope mural of both in background).

At last year's Hyattsville Arts & Ales Festival, I struck up a conversation with local glassblower Beth Hess at her Wunder Around booth, stocked full of colorful, beautiful pieces of blown glass. I was so curious about the glassblowing process that I kept asking Beth a bunch of questions like; how do these different colors appear and not bleed into each other? How are the shapes are made, etc. What is your sign? (Just to mix it up. 😉) All was going well until I noticed I was holding up the line, so we parted ways with so many questions left unanswered. I've been empty ever since, which is why I was elated when Beth reached out recently to let me know that DC GlassWorks and Sculpture Studio was having an open house. Glassblowing demonstrations and more opps for my questions-a-plenty? SO. THERE. 😊

DC GlassWorks and Sculpture Studio is located in a part of Hyattsville that I love exploring. Just before Franklins, take the Rt. 1 overpass on the left, head to Decatur. So many warehouses and industrial-type buildings whose stories I hear whispers of as I pass by. Or maybe that's my kids, yearning to be fed. Anyway. Tangent. Back to the post.

Here's Leo, demonstrating how it's done! 👊

According to its website, DC GlassWorks and Sculpture Studio was designed to be a "well maintained studio with professional equipment that was open to all persons in the DC Metro area. Over the years, we have expanded the amount of equipment, opened up the metal fabrication area for classes and rental, and added metal casting to the curriculum." 

What I didn't realize is the classes bit. I'd always imagined glassblowing to be way too intimidating for one to just dip their toe into, a la a class. Turns out, I'm wrong. (Never happens. Enjoy this fleeting moment.) They've got a class where you can make your own paperweight, a beginning glassblowing class, a vases class, etc.  Who knew?  Now you do. Take a look at this handy calendar of classes. All this schmitter, schmatter about needing to head into DC for art classes is malarkey. We've got it all along Route 1, folks. You just need to actually set foot inside and explore. Some straight-up hangry talk for y'all. 😎

I got a chance to meet a couple of the artists at the open house, including Leo and Shari Flynn, who had many interesting brain sculptures and showcased this lovely looking glass, perfectly sized for a beer (like everything, really. Amirite?):

Shari Flynn
Beth's rainbow vase, Leo's murrini vase and Shari's brain sculpture (in back)
📷 DC GlassWorks
Andddddddddd: I got a chance to purchase a vase of Beth's that I'd been eyeing for a while now on her Instagram account here. Look at the beautiful colors and shapes of these beauts below.

College Park's Beth Hess of Wunder Around.

I went with the yellow/pink combo! 👏Looks lovely on my windowsill, eh? Happy Valentine's' Day to me! :)

You can check out more of Beth's work (and shop) here. And don't forget to keep you eyes peeled for this spring's Gateway Open Studios tour. Like this open studio tour, it's a great way to get to amazing local artists, see their workspace and buy some fantastic local art. I'll share news about it here as soon as I've got the info.

DC GlassWorks and Sculpture Studio
5346 46th Ave, Hyattsville, MD 20781