Features

Yards SE Waterfront Park is a Feast for the Eyes

Grand Opening of the Yards Park Featuring Art Whino “Beautiful Minds”
The Yards Park on East City Art
Time portal or a new bridge connecting the east and west portions of the Yards Park ? (Photo © East City Art)
I stopped by the grand opening of the Yards new waterfront park in the emerging Capitol Riverfront neighborhood just to the south of the Capitol Hill Historic District on the other side of the SE/SE Freeway.
View of the new bridge with the “Lumber Shed Pavilion” in the background (Photo © East City Art)
The initial renderings of the five acre public waterfront park presented to the public in past forums did not do justice to the final result.  The planners paid great attention to detail, as the Yards waterfront park offers stunning architectural features such as a terraced grassy amphitheater, fountains, waterfalls, public sculptures and a bridge that resembles a time portal from an episode of Dr. Who.  The overall layout of the park with its varied heights, rugged and finished spaces, enhance the visitor’s experience of the river.
New sculpture “Light Tower” by Jamie Carpenter and docks on the Anacostia river  (Photo © East City Art)
Art Whino set up “Beautiful Minds” in the shell of a building named the “Lumber Shed Pavilion” which will one day house retail operations.  Last weekend however, gallery revelers found a dizzying array of local street art set up in the concrete skeleton of the pavilion.  Some the artists at “Beautiful Minds” had shown their work at Art Whino’s “G 40 Summit” show earlier this year in Crystal City, VA.  Of note was the work of Tim Conlon whose reproduction of rail car panels and hand painted graffiti trains garnered much attention as the evening progressed.
“Beautiful Minds” at theLumber Shed Pavilion (Photo © East City Art)
As the sun set behind the beautifully lit Frederick Douglas Memorial Bridge, whose bright blue and pink lights reflected in the Ancostia river, more visitors wandered through the Lumber Shed Pavilion gazing at art and enjoying the wide variety of food and beverages available.  While Art Whino’s “Beautiful Minds” has created lasting memories for those who attended last week’s opening, the Yards waterfront park is sure to become one of the area’s most treasured public spaces offering future memories to coming visitors.
An artist’s “Beautiful Mind” hard at work (we didn’t want to disturb him) (Photo © East City Art)
Phil Hutinet
Authored by: Phil Hutinet

Phil Hutinet, a third generation Capitol Hill resident, is the publisher of East City Art which he began in 2010 to document and promote the growing contemporary art movement in the eastern communities of Washington, DC. In 2012-2013, his consultancy work east of the river yielded the Anacostia Playhouse, Craig Kraft Studios, the Anacostia Arts Center and the 2012-2013 LUMEN8ANACOSTIA festivals. He currently produces EMULSION, East City Art's annual regional juried show. In 2015, he coordinated the Gateway Open Studio Tour and continues to consult on numerous regional art projects. Hutinet has been interviewed by or has made appearances on the BBC, Capital Community News, Washingtonian, Washington City Paper, The Washington Post, WOL Radio, WJLA ABC News Channel 7/Channel 8, WTOP and other local and national media.