What inspired you to start this project?
I was working at a law firm and I was super-bored, so I started looking around for accessible art gatherings and new and emerging forms of art. I also wanted to be around creative people, so I started inviting artists over and having discussions. Then I started seeking out things to do that were off the beaten path. I started blogging them and it just got bigger and that was sort of the basis for everything, the idea of giving people art.
You call yourself "Chief Creative Contrarian" of the project. What is it about the mainstream culture in D.C. that you oppose?
Well, I have two ideas. One is that I am not an artist and I know there are lots of people like me who are not but still want to be around creative people. So my focus is how do I give access to creative people to the people who are like me, people who are working regular jobs -- lawyers, lobbyists -- who want to find a way to access creativity. It's not about becoming an artist, but just surrounding yourself with art.
Is this really a city for artists?
It's definitely hard for artists to be here. It is an expensive city. Art is really overshadowed by our main business here, which is government. ... But I also think if you're an artist here you can make a bigger impact.
There's a lot of hidden treasures in Washington. What's your favorite one?
You know, what I think I really like is just that a lot of artists are taking matters into their own hands. The whole pop-up gallery thing I think is a really important part of the artistic fabric here.
-- Courtney Zott
- Courtney Zott