A Collage painting with the portrait drawing of a girl by Darius Frank, winner of seventh Bombay Sapphire Artisan Series, was part of the exhibition Things I Loved in Washington DC
ART REVIEW: Darius Frank’s Things I Love/d, a multi-media exhibit at the Dock 5 Union Market in Washington DC gave DC residents the opportunity to discuss their rapidly changing city.
WASHINGTON DC- Darius Frank, Winner of the 7th Annual Bombay Sapphire Artisan Series, unveiled his multi-media installation to a crowd of art aficionados at Dock 5 Union Market last week. The unveiling was in collaboration with New York’s public art nonprofit Creative Time.
Titled Things I Love/d, Frank’s exhibit explores how the authenticity of local communities in today’s world have been diluted with mainstream affluence. This is Frank’s first art project of this nature.
In creating this project, Frank, who lives in Washington DC, spoke with DC residents-old and young- on their perception of the city through the years. The core of his quest was to find out what Washington DC residents love and loved about their city. Frank’s conversations delved deep into the history, culture, and communities of Washington DC over the past 35 years, probing rapid changes that have occurred over time. The result of his interactions is a multi-channel video installation on display at the Dock 5 Union Market. The installation brings to the fore a complex and intimate narrative of evolution in urban centers, emphasizing shared memories that transcended Washington DC.
The result of his interactions is a multi-channel video installation on display at the Dock 5 Union Market. The installation brings to the fore a complex and intimate narrative of evolution in urban centers, emphasizing shared memories that transcended Washington DC.
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Frank’s exploration of individual storytelling and testimonials not only give credence to this powerful video installation but also allows a window into the soul of former and current residents who ruminated on things lost and loved. More importantly, the warm conversational approach gave respondents the opportunity to compare their city with cities across the United States that have become urbanized and changed over the years.
Although this is Frank’s first project of this magnitude, it was a good outing for this emerging young artist. Many of those at the unveiling were evidently proud that the project was created in Washington DC and by a DC resident. There was excitement and laughter as participants saw themselves on the screen. Others bubbled with joy as they identified places they know. Without a doubt, Frank is now a hometown hero.
Things I Love/d is Frank’s prize for winning the 7th Annual Bombay Sapphire Artisan Series. He beat out 15 other artists from across North America with his winning acrylic painting during Miami Art Basel this past December. The prize granted him the chance to debut his first-ever solo gallery exhibit in his hometown.
The opening was attended by art aficionados from Washington DC, New York, and across the country. It was a fun filled ceremony. Guests at the VIP opening enjoyed carefully crafted Bombay Sapphire cocktails while viewing the up-and-coming artist’s work. Launched in 2010, the Artisan Series is an annual art competition committed to discovering the best emerging visual artists. Darius Frank joins the list of emerging artists discovered through the annual art competition.
Born in 1987 in Bethesda, Maryland, Darius Frank love for art started at a very young age. “My dad taught me how to draw,” he noted. Frank received a BFA in Graphic Design from the Art Institute of Washington in 2009. The artist is devoted to enhancing the representation of black Americans in contemporary spaces. Primarily focused on figurative painting and illustration, Frank’s works have been exhibited at Art Basel, Miami; Artloft, Washington DC; Big Chief, Washington DC; and Artomatic, Arlington.