Friday, June 13, 2008

Rise Of The Creative Class

DC's future seems to be just how you imagined it, with a precipitous rise in the creative class that now has the Nation's Capital ranking as the "fourth-highest number of artists among the top 50 metropolitan areas in the United States" (L.A., NYC, and the City of the Big Shoulders are 1-3). Nationwide, there are apparently 2 million of us, compared to 1 million lawyers, but I figure that proportion reverts to favoring the Juris Doctors once you get within fifteen miles of Constitution Avenue. That's okay, though. I like some of those lawyers just fine.

My enthusiasm is somewhat tempered by an environment that I still feel looms as something of a space crunch. Losing the Warehouse on 7th Street sort of hurts. It's been such a fitting anchor for the whole 7th Street arts scene, and I feel a little bit of a personal connection to it, having performed in the first show there in the renovated space (I'll use "renovated" loosely) and participated in what I believe will be the penultimate show there as well. Many are the gallons of fake blood I have washed myself of there, and that crazy-ass The Final Crust we did there a few years back ranks as one of the most anarchic good times I've ever had with an audience.

It also seems that we've been down a few gallery spaces lately, and there's still this nagging worry that there's not enough walls and ceilings to house all the ideas floating around out there.

Still, the whole Artomatic thing seems pretty nifty keen, the Harman Center is a world-class joint, Cap Fringe is as pure a distillation of "cool" culture as the city's seen in a while, and fuck, they saved the Source, and their eponymous festival is back from the dead. So, what can I say, there's a whole lot of wins there, and a nice heap of stuff left to fight for, and really, that's probably the way it should be.

And on a personal level, it's nice to get up every morning knowing that I won't have to sell any shit, buy any shit, file any shit, code any shit, process any shit, data enter any shit, assemble any shit, pack any shit, itemize any shit, reconcile any shit, or serve as the underling to any shit. I can just farm body, soul, and mind and go home fulfilled. Beat that with a stick. Thank you, District of Columbia. Let's go see if we can get you all some goddamned representation.

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