Great Artwork + Good Cause = Washington Project for the Arts Select 2015. You’re Invited.

I was thrilled to have been chosen by the National Gallery’s Associate Curator of Photography Sarah Kennel to participate in the Washington Project for the Arts exhibition and auction (click the link to browse the works available online).

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I’m in great company with good friends Hector Emmanuel and Lydia Panas (Kutztown PA’s own version of John Singer Sargent), and local favorites Terri Weifenbach, Frank Day, and Adam Davies, among other talented folks, many of whom are not even photographers. (I know, the horror, right?)

The actual auction for those of you who are not just art rubber-neckers but want to stock up on some good works or just be part of “the scene” is Saturday March 7 and tickets are available here.

The opening party is next Thursday January 29, and is gratis. Please come and browse.  Ridiculously good deals on artwork benefit the greater Washington artistic community by supporting the WPA, which received a DC Arts and Humanities award this year for just being a great contribution to arts in DC. I would have to concur.  Here’s more details:

SELECT 2015 consists of a 3-week public exhibition and a ticketed auction party to support contemporary art and the local artist community. The artists invited to participate in this exhibition were selected by a group of notable curators from some of the most important institutions in our region, emerging curators, and WPA’s Board of Directors.

Thursday, January 29 through Friday, March 6, 2015
Wednesdays through Fridays: 4–11pm
Saturdays: 12 – 11pm
Sundays: 12 – 5pm
Mondays and Tuesdays: CLOSED

The exhibition is open to the public free of charge.


1101 Wilson Blvd
Arlington, VA 22201


Thursday, January 29, 2015, 6–9pm


Kristi-Anne Caisse, Assistant Director, American University Museum at the Katzen Arts Center, Washington, DC

Asantewa Boakyewa, Associate Curator, Reginald F. Lewis Museum of Maryland African American History & Culture, Baltimore, MD

Jennifer Farrell, Curator of Exhibitions and Contemporary Art, The Fralin Museum of Art at the University of Virginia, Charlottesville, VA

Sarah Hanley, Independent Print Curator and Critic, New York, NY

Ryan Holladay, New Media Curator, Artisphere, Arlington, VA

Sarah Kennel, Associate Curator, National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC

Phyllis Rosenzweig, Independent Curator / Curator Emerita, Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Washington, DC

Brian Young, Curator, Arts Program, University of Maryland University College, Adelphi, MD


© Tim Davis (no relation to Jen Davis)

These turbulent economic times bring to light so many themes: greed, and economic leveraging as ponzi scheme built on real-estate over-valuations (bubble); our ambiguous financial future as a nation funding two wars and the fall-out this house of cards hath wrought; the privatization of capital gains and the socialization of subsequent losses; the conflicting methods needed to achieve the greater good for the general public versus the greater good for one’s own self.

A lot of us having been working on themes of consumption for a long time, but this current sitch is beyond simple plastic consumer culture.  It’s a large web connecting us all for things that we saw happening and I think this is a most interesting aspect.  If Rome falls, now we all fall. Two degrees of separation, etc.

© Mary Ellen Mark

This is all a round-about way of saying that I am an abstemious consumer, and I have lately thought about collecting photography.  I have browsed charity auctions for a while, but have never been tempted at my price-point, yet.   Yesterday, the Center for Photography at Woodstock’s catalog came in the mail and I spent near an hour perusing it’s varied and interesting contents.  It looks to me like they’ve tried very smartly to sequence and include a bit of the photographic gamut – and I’ve got three pieces I’ve got my eye on.

© Michael Paris Mazzeo

These are all pieces available at CPW’s auction.  My end point is this – I like to use my discretionary spending to support the arts – and artists. It’s a win-win situation and puts all this good karma into the world.   Use your discretionary spending to support what you want to put out into the world.   I know this is a bad economic time for people, but we can still save up for yearly contributions to whatever it is you wish to support.  And for me, art auctions are no sacrifice as you get something for your contribution.

© Jen Davis (no relation to Tim Davis)

And if those prices are too dear for you, I’ve got a little offer of my own in the next post for a very reasonable $15. Stay tuned.