Thanks, Obama

Today is the 58th Presidential Inauguration and we say goodbye to the Obama family after 8 years. Here are some of our favorite art works from the past 8 years to commemorate his presidency.

Artist Rob Pruitt painted a painting every day of Obama’s presidency (nearly 3,000 works of art!).

We couldn’t leave out the influential artwork that was used as campaign posters for Obama, reminding us to believe in hope and change in the world.

This painting is by Maria Arango and reminds us that we all need to band together no matter the color of our skin.

This painting was created with used motor oil and recycled into art by David Macaluso.

This painting by Elizabeth Peyton reminds us that we are not only thanking Barack, but also his entire family.

The Aaron Gallery would like to say one final time: Thanks, Obama.

What to Do in D.C. (winter edition)

Washington Monument

Visit again at the DC’s most popular attractions, including the Lincoln, Jefferson, World War II and Vietnam Veterans memorials. The snow will give them a totally different look.


National Gallery of Art Ice Rink

The 2016–2017 ice-skating season begins November 18 and continues through March 12, weather permitting. Experience skating in the Sculpture Garden while surrounded by large-scale sculptures by contemporary artists including Louise Bourgeois, Sol LeWitt, Roy Lichtenstein, Roxy Paine, Tony Smith, and others.

The White House

The White House pulls out all the stops with twinkling trees and historically significant decorations. Self-guided holiday tours are available to the public during December. Visitors must submit a request no later than 21 days in advance through their member of Congress. The White House Visitor Center across the street also offers an insider’s glimpse into The White House.

Chinatown & the Downtown Holiday Market

Head to Chinatown for some shopping at the Downtown Holiday Market. With more than 150 exhibitors and artisans displaying everything from fine arts to fair trade, you can find great gifts for everyone on your list.

Union Station

The historic building decks the halls in December with a 30-foot tree donated from the Embassy of Norway as well as a Norwegian Holiday Market. Plus, Union Station’s holiday model train display delights as the locomotive winds its way through the snowy mountains and fjords of Norway.

Union Station Waiting Hall decorated for Christmas 2012.

From 5 Days of Winter Activities in Washington, DC

Why Art Matters in the Office

The average hours worked for employees, each week at the office is 47 hours. That is 47 hours that are spent under fluorescent lighting and focusing only on the project in front of you and the people you work with. Introducing art into the work place sets a well established tone that not only reflects visually, but also leads to positive productivity for the employees, making their busy weeks more enjoyable.

Running a private art gallery, Aaron Gallery, has given us the chance to incorporate beautiful artwork around the office. Everyday people comment on how positive it is to be surrounded by art in a work environment. We have been told that, “having art in the work place is like having a window, it gives you something to look at when you need more inspiration to continue working.”

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Javier Cabada’s “Abstract Shadows”, Acrylic on Canvas, 84 x 60 in

We have asked the opinions of the employees as well as people who have visited the gallery to see how they feel about the art and how it has effected the place in which they work:

“You walk into Aaron Gallery and are surrounded by beauty, expression, and the most wonderful bouquet of colors. Javier Cabada‘s work is energizing, in a class by itself. The only thing better than enjoying the art in the Gallery is enjoying the art in your own home!”
– Shelia G

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Duane Cregger’s “Suncycle I”, Acrylic on Canvas, 48 x 60 in

“Annette and her team are as wonderful as the art curated by Aaron Gallery. Not only are the pieces beautiful, timeless, and expertly crafted, but Annette continues to carry on her family’s legacy providing personalized service to each of her clients. A mainstay of the DC Art scene with 40 years of experience, it is a pleasure to work with Annette and her staff in Suite 800 at 2101 L Street NW. If you’re looking for brilliant pieces to add to your collection Aaron Gallery is the place to visit!”

– Jennifer

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Javier Cabada’s “Changing Prisms” Acrylic on Canvas 48 x 60 in.

“Every day at work I’m greeted by the bold, bright paintings placed by Aaron Gallery in my office space. The high quality art is seen throughout the hallways, providing a burst of energy whenever I move through the public spaces. Visitors never spend time here without commenting on how much character and sophistication this art brings to the office.”

– Holly C

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Duane Cregger’s “Borealis”, Acrylic on Canvas, 48 x 72 in

The Personal Recipes of Pablo Picasso

Food, much like painting, is a form of art. There is time, dedication, and pride that go into the making of an exquisite meal that is not lost on famous artists. Pablo Picasso has released some of his personal recipes in an interview with Vouge. He is one of many artists that have a knack for cooking, among Jackson Pollock, Salvador Dali, Marcel Duchamp, etc. While Dali and Pollock have released their own cookbooks, Picasso’s recipes went into the Modern Art Cookbook which features recipes of the famous artists of the 2oth century.

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The Modern Cookbook by Mary Ann Caws

Once, Picasso had lunch with Alice B. Toklas who decided to serve a dish that included her dressing up a bass with cream, herbs, and a red mayonnaise sauce. She decorated the serving platter with her boiled eggs, a tomato paste, and truffles in a way that she believed would impress Picasso. Upon seeing the platter, Picasso remarked in the beauty of the dish. This was not the only time that the look of the dish presented to him was complimented. Another time his wife, Jaqueline, made him an eel stew and impressed by its beauty Picasso decided to paint it rather than eat it.

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Pichet et Coupe de Fruits, Pablo Picasso, 1931

Picasso sees beauty in everything, even the seemingly random. He manipulates what he is looking at so that he is proud of his work and it fits into his personal style. By believing that you should have a sense of pride in all that you do, Pablo Picasso mastered a few of his own recipes in that he enjoyed serving to others as well as eating himself. Feeling confident about his art was carried over into his work in the kitchen and to his palate when savoring a meal. He would never serve something that he wasn’t satisfied with.

Some of Picasso’s famous recipes include:

Picasso’s Omelette Tortilla Niçoise

6 tablespoons olive oil
1 large onion
4 peppers, red and green
3 tomatoes
2 tablespoons wine vinegar
8 eggs
Salt and pepper

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Polychrome Bird, Pablo Picasso,1947

Picasso’s Eel Stew

6 tablespoons olive oil
6 tablespoons butter
12 small white onions
1 teaspoon sugar
2 yellow onions, chopped
12 mushrooms
⅓ pound salt pork, cubed
2 shallots, minced
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 eels of about 1 pound each, cut into four- to five-inch sections
1 bottle of good red wine
1 tablespoon flour
Salt, pepper, cayenne pepper
Bouquet garni: thyme, bay leaf, parsley, fennel, and a small branch of celery

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Poisson de Chine, Pablo Picasso, 1952

Picasso’s Herb Soup

2 bunches radishes
2 handfuls chervil
1 bunch sorrel
2 cloves garlic
2 soupspoons olive oil
1 egg yolk
6 slices toast (optional)
Salt and freshly ground pepper

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Visage dans un carré, Pablo Picasso, 1956

 

 

3 Minute Art History Lesson: Salvador Dalí

Salvador Dalí is considered one of the most recognized artists to have ever lived and the most famous Surrealist artist. Along with his artistic career, his home and married life are very different than what was expected in the 1900s. He was born in 1904, 9 months after his older brothers death and was given the same name as him. When he was 5 his parents told him that he was the reincarnation of his brother. Dalí’s mother died of breast cancer when he was 16 and he was greatly affected by it because she was the biggest supporter of his art and encouraged his eccentric behavior.

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Apparition of Face and Fruit Dish on the Beach, 1938, Oil on Canvas, 45 x 57 in.

His original artistic influence were the Renaissance masters but he believed that once an artist masters the fundamentals they are able to break the rules, which he did. Upon becoming a Surrealist artist his influences became Pablo Picasso, Joan Miró, Diego Velázquez, and Sigmund Freud. Dalí met his wife Gala in 1929 and she became his biggest muse and inspiration during his career. Gala was a Russian immigrant and 10 years his senior and for many years Dalí’s father greatly disapproved of their relationship and marriage. She managed many business aspects of Dalí’s art making them business partners as well as husband and wife.

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Galatea of the Spheres, 1952, Oil on Canvas, 26 x 21 in.

For years Dalí and Gala moved all across the country while Dalí worked on numerous projects and presented his art all around the world. They moved back to Spain in 1948 where they remained until their death. Intrigued by math, science, and optical illusions, Dalí’s work often included these subjects along with symbolism. He used animals to represent things like desire, death, fear, sexuality, and reality. His use of an egg represents hope and love while his clocks were modeled after melting Camembert cheese and symbolize the relativity of time.

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Elephants Reflecting Swans, 1937, Oil on Canvas, 20 x 30 in

Dalí had many fears of abandonment and they got worse as Gala’s health, followed by his, declined. At 76 Gala gave Dalí a dangerous amount of unprescribed medicine leaving him with Parkinson like symptoms, damaging his nervous system, and making it so he was eventually no longer able to create art. In 1982 Gala, Dalí’s one and only muse, died causing Dalí to lose his will to live and had multiple incidents that were possible suicide attempts. In 1989 Dalí died of heart failure at 84 years old.

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Lincoln in Dalivison (Gala Contemplating the Mediterranean Sea), 1976, Oil on Canvas, 99 1/4 x 75 1/2 in.

Dalí left a great impact on the art world with his Surrealist creations. Not only was he extremely eccentric, but he had incredible talent. He contributed to the arts in sculpture, theater, fashion, film, painting, and photography. Even today he is still a huge inspiration to many artists and has several museum and exhibits presenting his work all around the world.

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The Persistence of Memory, 1931, Oil on Canvas, 9 x 13 in.

11 Ways to Experience Summer Arts in DC

Summer in DC is a wonderful experience where many activities are available to the residents and tourists alike. The weather is warmer and there are many adventures to be had both indoors and while enjoying the sun outside.

Here are a few activities, that you can do with friends and family, that you do not want to miss out on!
Jazz in the Garden 

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Starting late May and running through early September you can spend your Friday nights from 5:00- 8:30 enjoying nice jazz music while appreciating the sculptures at the National Gallery of Art Sculpture Garden. Enjoy the warm air, live music, and great art with your friends and family or go by yourself and still have an awesome experience.

Smithsonian Folklife Festival mission_festival_largeStill want to experience live music but jazz isn’t your style? Go to the Smithsonian Folklife Festival! Not only is there live music but there is the chance to learn about new cultures, try their food, and even learn phrases from their language. You are able to immerse yourself in a new culture without having to leave the comfort of your district. The festival is held on the National Mall from June 29th- July 4th and July 7th- July 10th. While already down by all the Smithsonian Museums it gives you an excuse to stop in to see some exhibits and cool down.

A Capitol Fourth

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Experience the 4th of July on the west lawn of the U.S. Capitol. Celebrate America’s independence in the most patriotic city in the country! There will be a concert and fireworks so grab your friends and enjoy the show. Watching the artists preform might even inspire you to go view more art during your DC summer.

Visit Art Museums

Renwick Gallery

Renwick Gallery

Cool down for a bit and go inside museums for a chance to appreciate some extravagant art. Some great art museums include Renwick Gallery, National Gallery of Art, Smithsonian American Art Museum, Hirshhorn Museum, and The National Portrait Gallery. The experiences you have at these museums will leave you inspired and craving more art.

The Phillips Collection

 

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By visiting the Phillips Collection you are able to cool off and enjoy the art! The Phillips Collection is the first modern art museum in America! They have multiple new exhibits to celebrate the new summer season, displaying artwork like you have never experienced it before. It is located in Dupont so while you’re down there you are also able to enjoy some shopping and trying out some trendy restaurants.

Busboys and Poets

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Busboys and Poets  is a a place to experience food, art, books, poetry, and culture. The name is in reference to American poet Langston Hughes and the restaurant works to inspire creativity in each person who comes to visit. The arts are vastly represented through paintings and poetry. In the summer it is a great place to cool off and get some food while still being around art.

Woodrow Wilson Plaza Concerts 

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Experience all different types of music genres at the Woodrow Wilson Plaza around lunch time Monday- Friday. The outdoor plaza space is perfect for nice summer weather. Grab friends and go appreciate the sounds and different cultures that will leave you feeling inspired and thankful for the arts.

Explore the National MallUnknown-3Whether you are a tourist or a resident of the DC area there is no denying that the National Mall contains the most important buildings in the country. Many historical moments have taken place on the National Mall and it is important to be grateful for it. At least once during the summer you should be able to pay the National Mall a visit to enjoy the architecture and history of the beautiful city.

National Museum of Women in the Arts

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Celebrate the women artists behind some of your favorite creations by visiting the National Museum of Women in the Arts this summer! Explore the summer exhibitions before it’s too late and while you’re there catch a Gallery Talk. Book a tour or wander through the museum by yourself, either way you don’t want to miss the wonderful art done by the female artists.

Lunder Conservation Center

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Not only is experiencing art important, but the process of restoring and conserving the art gives you insight into the lengths people go through in order to preserve the arts. At the Lunder Conservation Center you are able to go behind the scenes and watch the conservators at work in five different studios. By visiting you get a different look into the art world that you have never seen before. This is a must see for experiencing the art world this summer!

Labor Day Capitol Concert

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To celebrate the end of the summer and the season changing into fall go out and enjoy the Labor Day Capital Concert  featuring the National Symphony Orchestra! The concert is held the Sunday before Labor Day and a great last hurrah for appreciating the DC arts in the Summer. There is great talent in the National Symphony Orchestra and you may even leave inspired to experience more art in the new season!

7 Ways to Appreciate Spring Arts in DC

Spring is, without a doubt, the loveliest time in the District. The weather is fair, the blossoms are blooming, and tourists fill up the streets to bring the city back to life.

With the beautiful spring weather comes rejuvenation, suddenly your winter laziness disappears into a liveliness and energy that craves activities. Luckily, in a city that practically worships the spring time, there’s plenty to do.

Cherry Blossom Festival

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Seeing the cherry blossoms in the spring here in DC is a requirement if you are a resident of the metro area. The season is estimated to start on March 20th, with peak blooming time supposedly being March 31st- April 4th. Whether you’re interested in the history of the cherry blossoms or just wish to go to the events surrounding the festival (i.e music, parades, fireworks and more) there’s really something for everyone. It’s a great way to celebrate the coming of spring in DC and the beauty surrounding it is sure to inspire some creativity.

Hillwood Estate Gardens

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This historical estate and museum is also home to some really beautiful garden spaces perfect for springtime walks. There are an array of flowers blooming in the 13 different outdoor areas of the Hillwood estate, enough to get your dose of nature for the season. Definitely check out the Japanese Garden as it is beautiful and calming- a nice way to take in the outdoors while doing some much needed introspection after the winter.

Dumbarton Oaks

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Dumbarton Oaks Garden has some of the most beautiful scenery in Georgetown, with 13 enclosed gardens and 11 informal gardens. It is a huge plot of land dedicated to people getting back into nature and history. The Rose garden is especially delightful if you’re looking for an Alice in Wonderland/Secret Garden type of escape. The Orchard is also quite beautiful for strolling around, but unfortunately you won’t be getting any fruit to eat as the fruit trees were replaced by crabapple trees some years ago-still, it offers plenty of room for kids and adults to explore. Take a quick look around the museum as well while you have the chance!

Botanical Gardens

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The US Botanic Gardens are a great way to enjoy rare and exotic plant life all year round! However, Spring  is a time when we need to be rejuvenated in the ways of the outdoors and a visit to the botanic gardens is absolutely the way to do it. From exotic plants to a butterfly garden, the botanical gardens are quite literally an escape from the daily grind of city life. Not only a great opportunity to appreciate the natural world but the colors and atmosphere are a sure way to get your creative juices flowing. Great for solo walks for contemplation or bringing the whole family for a nice warm stroll; this is not something you want to miss.

NGA sculpture Garden

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The National Gallery of Art’s Sculpture Garden is also open year round but the best time to enjoy the artwork is the Spring. There may be many tourists but the people watching is just as good as the art itself. From a Alexander Calder to Roy Lichtenstein, the Sculpture Garden offers so much wonderful artwork right out in the open. Best for bringing a book and an iced coffee, strolling through the garden, and sitting next to your favorite piece. Not something to miss on a beautiful spring day.

National Arboretum

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The National Arboretum is a monumentally wonderful way to celebrate the Spring time. With beautiful colonnades, a bonsai museum, and friendship garden among some of the things you can visit, it’s a truly wonderful way to enjoy the beautiful weather and inspiring views.

 

Hirshhorn Sculpture Garden

 

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The Sculpture Garden at the Hirsshorn museum has beautiful modern art to look at, free of admission, right off the national mall. The garden has ample room for sitting or strolling and the works of art are absolutely inspiring. This is something that is best seen in warm weather because the nature of the art works on display are cause for contemplation and more than just a quick look. This is a garden that will pique your curiosity and give you lots to think about!