Down to Earth at Honfleur Gallery & Kenilworth Aquatic Gardens

By Editorial Team on April 4, 2022

Fri, 01 April 2022 - Sat, 30 April 2022

Photo by Dionne McDonald.

Down to Earth shines a light on Kenilworth Aquatic Gardens and Ward 7’s past, present, and future with a sharp focus on the climate emergency and its intersectionality with systemic racism. This exhibit is the culmination of work over the past year with four different artists and includes clothing, maps, oral history, and oil paintings.

  • Winter artist, Rik Freeman From an abundant sunrise breakfast scene on the river, looks of anguish, fear, and determined struggle to the community self-sustaining itself with looming development. Rik Freeman created three large-scale oil paintings depicting how animals and plant life have used and cared for the land in Ward 7 ranging from 12000 BC to the current day.
  • Spring 2021 artist Nikki Hendricks created three fabric designs: African American Rights, Native American Rights and Climate Change for her 12-piece sustainable fashion collection based off of the plant and wildlife of the Kenilworth Aquatic Gardens.
  • Summer artist in residence Siobhan Rigg produced a series of drawings and maps of the tidal Anacostia River (from Bladensburg, MD to its confluence with the Potomac) as a multimedia investigative project to document and represent the networks of political influence, financial speculation, language, and activism flowing through the ecologies and communities along the tidal Anacostia River in coming times of climate change and rising water.
  • Thomas Stanley, Malik Thomas, and Mark Cooley Fall Season Artist Collective project a GPS-aided audio tour that seeks to enhance visitors’ experience of Kenilworth Aquatic Gardens with insights into the social and environmental history of the neighborhoods that surround them can be heard on smartphones while Kenilworth Aquatic Gardens.

“Down to Earth is an effort to focus on humans’ impact on our land and water, and humans’ ability – and inability – to change the course of where we are headed. We’re leaning on storytelling and art creation to change the trajectory of the climate conversation,” said Julianne Brienza, founding director of Capital Fringe.

“This is a pandemic project bringing together art and nature to examine interdisciplinary issues affecting us all. We are especially excited to bring all the artists together for a culmination of this project, in person throughout April,” said Tina O’Connell, executive director of the Friends of Kenilworth Aquatic Gardens.

During the exhibit, along with experiencing the artwork created over the past year, there will be conversations with the artists and a Earth Day Clean up (see schedule below).

Down to Earth Locations

  • Honfleur Gallery
    April 1- 14, 2022
    1241 Good Hope Road SE Washington, DC 20020
    Wednesday-Saturday, 12:00 – 5:00 pm
  • Kenilworth Aquatic Gardens
    March 28 – April 30, 2022
    1550 Anacostia Ave NE Washington, DC 20019
    Park Hours: Monday – Sunday, 8am to 4pm

Exhibit Events at Honfleur Gallery & Kenilworth Aquatic Gardens
Artist Talks and Conversations moderated by Julianne Brienza

March 28 – April 30
8am – 4pm
Down 2 Earth and Up 2 Us Community Voices on Environmental Justice audio tour at the Gardens
Friday, April 1
7pm– 10pm
Exhibit Opening
Saturday, April 2
Community Conversation with Dennis Chestnut, Justin A. Lini, Tina O’Connell and Trey Sherard
Sunday, April 3
Artist Talk with Rik Freeman, Winter season artist
Wednesday, April 6
Artist Talk with Nikki Hendricks, Spring season artist
Sunday, April 10
Artist Talk with Siobhan Riggs, Summer season artist
Wednesday, April 13
Artist Talk with Thomas Stanley, Mark Cooley and Malik Thomas, Fall season artists
Saturday, April 24
9pm – 3pm
Earth Day clean up. Community is invited to participate. Down to Earth partners and artists to attend.