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Manifest Hope:DC Opening Last Night

Last night was the special preview/press party for the Manifest Hope:DC art show. When they said it was "private" and only open to collectors and press, I really thought that would mean a small crowd, an intimate gathering. Wow, was I wrong! There were hundreds, probably at least a thousand, people who crammed into the huge two floor gallery space that was chock-full of Obama art. It was amazing. And frankly, overwhelming.

I just uploaded a small amount of pics to my Flickr page, cuz I'm catching wifi wherever I can (right now I'm at Whole Foods grabbing some free wifi, but it's damn slow!), but hopefully I'll be able to upload more sometime soon. I took pics of all the artwork on the walls and some of the artists.

A jazz band and a theatrical group from the Duke Ellington performing arts school performed for the event, and I learned that 10% of art sales would be donated to the school, which is awesome. Shepard Fairey spoke for a brief moment on stage, downplaying his role, modest as always. His new wall-sized canvas looks awesome. (That's the pic above.)

No, I did not get to meet him. In fact, other than when he was on stage, I didn't even see him at the event. Perhaps there was some VIP area that I was unaware of. I did meet Yosi Sergant, briefly, when I first got to the gallery a few hours before the opening. Things were very hectic in there all the way up until the moment they let folks in. I pitched in helping Lauren from the Irvine Gallery placing labels on all the artwork for about two hours, which was actually kinda fun, getting an up-close-and-personal preview of all the amazing work on the walls. I was happy to help out and wished I had gotten there earlier in the day to have been more helpful.

So the opening itself was mostly just chaotic and crowded and I didn't really know anyone until Pooh - who I am staying with - arrived after getting off work. I did meet and hang with artist Shannon Moore, who was one of the winners in the green category of the art contest, who I've mentioned here previously. And I got to give Ken from The Obama Art Report a big hug. But it was sort of hard to figure out who the artists were, since I didn't know what anyone looked like. I'm going to drop by the gallery today in hopes of catching some of the folks in a more relaxed, less crowded atmosphere.

OK, that's it for now. More thoughtful blogging later when I have more time. Must get moving now.

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