“Hirshhorn in the City” Debuts 1980s-Inspired Posters by Washington Artists on Streets of DC
The Smithsonian’s Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden will partner with the Southwest Business Improvement District to present “Brand New SW,” a new public art project celebrating Washington, D.C.’s innovative and collaborative art scene. The museum invited Washington-based artists No Kings Collective, NoMüNoMü and SUPERWAXX to create graphic posters, inspired by “Brand New: Art and Commodity in the 1980s,” the Hirshhorn’s current exhibition exploring the connection between art and marketing in the 1980s. These limited-edition posters will be wheatpasted around select public spaces in Southwest Washington beginning the first week of April, an homage to the underground art practices of the ’80s.
“Brand New SW” is the newest project from “Hirshhorn in the City,” the museum’s initiative to bring new contemporary art beyond the museum walls and into the Washington’s public spaces, connecting artists and curators with the city’s creative communities.
On Thursday, April 19, 7–11 p.m., the Hirshhorn and No Kings Collective will partner to host ’80s-inspired launch party featuring iconic music from the decade, free limited-edition swag, DIY art-making, one-night only installations and interactive pop-ups from each the “Brand New SW” artists.
“Brand New SW” highlights the connection between the art world today and the ’80s art scene that radiated from New York City’s East Village, where a pioneering generation of artists used elements of advertising to blur the line between art and commerce. No Kings Collective, NoMüNoMü, and SUPERWAXX represent a new generation of artists that push the limits of art, brand and community engagement. Saturating designs with their signature styles, pop culture references, logos and text—including powerful personal messages—they create new platforms for creativity in the streets and galleries of the city.
“It’s thrilling to see the ideas and aesthetics of the exhibition ‘Brand New’ resonate decades later in the vision and practice of these exceptional DC artists,” said Hirshhorn Director Melissa Chiu. “More and more, contemporary art is a vital part of the everyday life of Washington, a creative force that is driving city-wide conversations about the importance of culture in the 21st century.”
“Hirshhorn in the City” allows the museum to foster partnerships around the city, and to create more ways for Washington residents to discover contemporary art, sparking inspiration in the everyday. Other current projects include Yoko Ono’s public mural on the side of Union Market in Northeast Washington.
“The recent provocative and powerful installations at the Hirshhorn challenge business districts like us to rethink how we manage complex places that include neighborhoods, public parks and commercial spaces,” said Steve Moore, executive director of the Southwest Business Improvement District. “The ideas coming from the Hirshhorn and their ‘Hirshhorn in the City’ program are so stimulating that we view them as a source of inspiration… and fun.”
This project is made possible by the Southwest Business Improvement District and by the generosity of Max and Monique Burger, Burger Collection Hong Kong.
About the Artists
No Kings Collective is a design-build studio, creative agency and events production company, all rolled into one. Founded in 2009 by Brandon Hill and Peter Chang, they have worked with a family of hand-picked artists, designers and brands that share their vision. They help their collaborators deliver a get-it-done, DIY, art-centric, design-savvy, multi-disciplinary, cross-cultural, adaptable, niche, custom, force-multiplying, over-the-top authentic experience.
NoMüNoMü is an intersectional artist collective and curatorial platform in Washington, D.C., working toward liberation from the perpetual systems of oppression and class domination that permeate throughout the art world. NoMüNoMü was cofounded by Joseph Orzal, a Filipino Mexican American artist, curator and serial collaborator from Washington. He received his Bachelor of Fine Art from the Corcoran College of the Art in 2010 and has been actively exhibiting since then. Orzal is currently an Master of Fine Art candidate for curatorial practice at the Maryland Institute College of Art. His works combine physical and emotional observations of the human state and mine the palpable yet unspoken intricacies of racial, sexual and class distinctions in Western societies.
SUPERWAXX first developed an interest and talent in art as a child. Her work is heavily influenced by animated cartoons, comic books, popular culture and street art. Often using vibrant colors and fine-line painting techniques, Superwaxx is better known for her collective works that display her signature style while incorporating a cartoon-like aesthetic to narrate various subjects and topics often pertaining to historical or personal events. Since the sprouting of her professional career in as an artist, she has exhibited artwork in Boston, New York City, Miami and Cuba. She has also worked in collaboration with acclaimed internationally renowned artists and art institutions such as the Smithsonian. Superwaxx is a native of Richmond, Virginia, currently creating and residing in Washington, D.C.
About the Hirshhorn
The Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden is the national museum of modern and contemporary art and a leading voice for 21st-century art and culture. Part of the Smithsonian, the Hirshhorn is located prominently on the National Mall in Washington, D.C. Its holdings encompass one of the most important collections of postwar American and European art in the world. The Hirshhorn presents diverse exhibitions and offers an array of public programs on the art of our time—free to all, 364 days a year. For more information, visit hirshhorn.si.edu.
About the SWBID
The Southwest Business Improvement District is a 501(c)(6) corporation that works to enhance the Southwest quadrant of Washington, D.C. The SWBID was legislatively established by D.C. Act 20-366 in June 2014, with public-facing operations beginning in 2015. The SWBID spans 483 acres in Southwest Washington and works to enhance its connectivity, improve the state of infrastructure and strengthen the area’s identity as a lab for arts, culture and transformative urban technologies within the nation’s capital.
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