Artists and volunteers have been busy installing artwork over the past two weeks at 8100 Corporate Drive in Hyattsville, Maryland for the legendary "Artomatic." If you live in the DC metropolitan area, you should definitely check out this nonprofit arts event over the next month! It is a great source of inspiration, no matter which medium you work with.
Artomatic is one of the largest non-juried art events in the United States. It was first held in 1999, inside the old Manhattan Laundry building on Florida Avenue in the Shaw neighborhood of Northwest Washington, DC—hence the original name “Art-O-Matic.” Since then, the event has been held periodically over the years at various locations around the DC-Maryland-Virginia area. When Artomatic is not in session, associated artists and organizers continue networking events on social media.
Artomatic tends to be hosted in transitory spaces—former office buildings that have been vacated by government workers before a demolition, or unfinished luxury high rises that have not yet begun leasing. The largest Artomatic was its most recent, occurring in an office building at 1851 S. Bell Street in Arlington, VA. Over ten floors of office space hosted over 1,000 artists and accommodated tens of thousands of visitors.
The beauty of Artomatic is in its transitory nature and freewheeling approach to exhibition. The non-juried event encourages established, emerging and unknown artists to showcase their work and interact with each other and the public. DIY, experimentation and community are important here, and the unusual and interactive are encouraged. In fact, Frank Warren’s Post Secret project got its start at Artomatic in 2004.
You will see every type of art here—tasteful and tasteless, elaborate and minimalistic—the whimsical and the sinister, side by side. Every possible medium is represented, including performing arts. Artomatic is non-juried that is its finest point—the best way to experience the event is to wander around without aim and enjoy the serendipity of discovering artwork you never could have imagined.
This year’s Artomatic will unfold in an office park at 8100 Corporate Drive in Hyattsville, MD. There is plenty of parking in the office building parking lot and it is a short walk from the New Carrollton Metro station on the Orange Line. Artomatic opens this week, on Friday, October 30, 2015 at 9:00am and runs until December 12. The exhibition will feature more than 700 artists over the course of 6 weeks! Open Wednesday – Thursday 5:00pm to 10:00pm, and Friday – Sunday 11:00am to Midnight. More information about Artomatic can be found here.
Artists and volunteers have been hard at work since the start of October, finishing installation and adding final touches to their displays. Check out some of their efforts below: