Get Out and Explore DC: In Peak Bloom

Published: Apr 10, 2019

Akousmaflore et Lux by Scenocosme
Akousmaflore et Lux by Scenocosme (Akousmaflore et Lux by Scenocosme)

Editorial intern Briana Franco ‘19 explores a unique art installation just a metro ride away from campus. Pictured above, Hana Fubuki by artist Akiko Yamashita.

Finally making an appearance, Washington D.C.’ s Sakura cherry blossoms recently reached their full bloom on April 1st. With boldness and vulnerability wrapped up into one much-anticipated flower, their arrival was an unforgettable sight.

Alas, their delicate petals will be gone before most have had the chance to witness them, but along with the cherry blossoms comes the warm, breezy weather of spring and the opportunity to easily and comfortably venture off of the UMBC campus to experience Artechouse’s current art exhibition: In Peak Bloom.

In Peak Bloom explores the life of the Sakura tree and our connection to its short life and fragile beauty. If you are unable to visit DC in time to witness the city painted in shades of rosy pink, the blossoms of Artechouse, showing until May 27th, could just be the next best thing.

Located a short walk from the Smithsonian metro station, and open since 2017, Artechouse offers visitors “experiential and technology-driven work” created by celebrated artists who push the boundaries of immersive art. A modern, edgy space, with clean lines, crisp white interior and purple fluorescents illuminating its corridors, the building works as a blank canvas, preparing the audience for complete absorption into the installation experience.

This season’s exhibit of In Peak Bloom highlights women in the arts as they pay artistic tribute to the “ephemeral” quality of the blossoms. Boasting five unique spaces, the venue invites its guests to soak up the entrancing work at their own pace and in a way which suits them.

Hang out in the interactive gallery where your body creates Hana Fubuki or a “cherry blossom blizzard,” by artist Akiko Yamashita. Step into the Enchanted Garden where augmented reality (AR) brings Japanese folklore to life. And if you happen to be over 21, check out Artechouse After Hours, where their bar serves up delicious cocktails in an innovative AR setting.

If you’re an art or technology buff or if you’re simply looking for something different to do in our nation’s capital, and possibly get some social media worthy pics, Artechouse will not disappoint.

To get to Artechouse, jump on the UMBC bus to BWI Marc train station and take it into Union Station where you can transfer to the Smithsonian stop. It’s just a few minutes walk from there. Click here to check out the website for ticket information.

Photographs by Briana Franco ’19 for UMBC Magazine.

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