From the Washington Post Weekend section, “On Exhibit” page:

The following exhibitions open next week: On May 29, the latest edition of the open-to-all-comers art show known as Artomatic kicks off at 55 M St. SE, featuring art and performance by hundreds of area artists in an unoccupied building in the Capitol Riverfront neighborhood. . . . “Farmers, Warriors, Builders: The Hidden Life of Ants,” opening May 30 at the National Museum of Natural History, looks at the surprising world of ants. 202-633-1000 (TDD: 202-633-5285). . . .

Ants! And, of course, that Artomatic thing all the kids are talking about.

Next week is Craft Week DC. Today’s WaPo Weekend section features two of my favorite artists, which is great because I can link to it even though I’m too tired to blog extensively about Craft Week or the upcoming Smithsonian Craft Show right now.

Michael O’Sullivan’s articleis a guided tour of the week’s events as curated by Washington Glass School co-founder Tim Tate (the guy who made the monkey reliquaries) and a profile of “Ceramics That Go Beyond Cups and Bowls” of Laurel Lukaszewski.

My favorite line of the whole article: “We’d call him the Craft Whisperer, except that Tate never whispers.”

We don’t have any of Laurel’s work (yet) but she’s one of the many groovy artists who live in my groovy neighborhood and I covet her work madly so I’m always excited to see her getting the positive press she deserves.

There’s also a profile of Gayle Friedman a local jewelry artist who shares studio space with my guru, Michele Banks. (Not to be confused with my spiritual advisor, Roger). I only recently started to get acquainted with Gayle’s work – I’ve really liked what I’ve seen so far.

So there you have it. It’s sort of a Friday Five, even. I kind of want to babble more about art and craft, but somewhere around mile 4 of the run I just took my brain solved the thorny problem of my Artomatic installation. Namely, how to do it at all. Before I headed out, I’d reconciled with the fact that I was almost certainly going to have to drop out, but I believe that all is well now. I need to take a shower and get to work, though, if I’m going to make this happen.

I happened to glance at the sponsored links gmail was serving up to me just now:

Artomatic 2009 DC
DC’s art explosion! Opens May 29.
Art, music, film, poetry and fun.

Comcast – Official Site
More Choices And More Control
With On Demand, DVR And HDTV

This is especially funny because I could have sworn that one of the new “comcast dream big” ads contained the word “artomatic.” This was the first time I’d seen any of these ads (see also: time-shifted Tivo lifestyle) and I had no idea annoying these ads are or how many of them there are. After rewatching it several times I can only conclude the actual word being used is “automatic” and I need a vacation.

What would be really great would be for comcast to fix the internet issues in my neighborhood so I could actually make the reservations for said vacation.

It’s been a tumultuous few days, what with someone parking a truck in our internet tubes during a critical juncture in our headcheese and scrapple research. Plus, we’ve had loads of new music to blog about, not to mention more political musings to share than you can shake a pundit at.

Husband and I are resilient folk so we’ve been hanging on. By our fingernails, but we’ve been hanging on. After I wasted 6 hours today waiting for Comcast – I salvaged this beautiful early spring day by going for a run with my pals (who I think of as the AlternaMoms).

We were both horrified and amused when we overhead one of their tweenagers remark to her pack, “My mom and the other geriatric riot grrls RULE this neighborhood.”

I’m sure we were little jackasses when we were their age, too. Also, someday they’ll be old, too. If they’re lucky. Also, we can run circles around them. Also, I bet they don’t know…

[here my blogging mojo broke down and I yelled at Husband, “Give me the name of a popular song that’s a cover of a really cool song.” To which he replied, “No.”]

Moving right along…I’m reminded me of this deeply (hilariously) traumatic post I read at The Contrarian this morning in the 8 minutes I had working internet access today. “If there’s a rock-n-roll heaven” was spawned by Casey’s accidental viewing of Mike Huckabee’s demented show on FoxNews.

Now, we’re all aware of Huckabee’s bass prowess (mothereffer can walk the fuck out of a I-IV-V progression), but did you know he also has his own house band that regularly mangles classic rock numbers? Then there’s the special guests: the segment I caught featured not one, but two ex-Miss Americas struggling through “Leaving on a Jet Plane” alongside Huck and the band (which includes a smattering of FOX News dweebezoids). I’d love to show it to you, but I can’t find it anywhere on the webernets. What the Huck?

I risked a relapse in my Huckaphobia to watch the youtube clips that Casey posted, and they’re pretty hilarious. As a bonus, Liz Claman makes me feel like I’m a really great singer.

I’m now filled with this insane desire to perform “I Love Rock-n-Roll” on the Mike Huckabee show. Go read the post and watch the videos.

(Geriatric) sisterhood is powerful. Rock on.

Wednesday’s Reliable Source contained two of my favorite artsy things – Artomatic and Thomas Edwards and his diabolically amusing electronic art pieces.

Seems Lenny Campello was watching TV recently and caught a McDonald’s ad featuring a wall-mounted fish singing to a man trying to eat a fish sandwich. Campello noted the similarities to a piece Thomas did 5 years ago.

Edwards’s work, a hit at the local 2004 Artomatic show, portrayed a school of flapping, mechanical fish, each turning to the viewer to gasp, “They’re eating my eggs!” or “I can’t breathe air!” or “Please let me die.” Coincidence? “Mickey D’s needs to get in touch with him soon,” Campello wrote on his DCArtNews blog.

“There are definitely similar themes,” Edwards agreed. But he added: “I am not the first person to hack a Big Mouth Billy Bass.” Though “I’m probably the first person to hack seven at a time in one coherent artwork.”

You can see “School of Fish Pain” in action here and read all about it’s creation.

Here’s the McDonald’s ad. Frankly, if I was ever going to eat a filet-o-fish, this might dissuade me. Kinda creepy.

Maybe not as weird as the official McDonald’s line dance they tried to role out in 1996, but still pretty awkward and unpleasant.

Lots of other arty things were happening during this, the first weekend of Spring – although Artomatic registration is not open yet.

I’m a bit cantankerous because I want to start recording the soundtrack for a potential installation and a major construction project sprang up 200 yards from our recording space. Pile-driving and sound recording are not the very best of friends. We have a little time, but this kind of installation requires a lot of planning and construction that can’t be done at the last minute.

Did I mention that Artomatic registration is not open yet? It’s not.

David Fogel’s 88 hosted the 4 day Forward Festival at various locations. Artery 717 opened “Private Arts” a new show of work by 40 local designers showing off the art they create after their design clients go home. Anna U Davis closed out her show at Long View Gallery. Artomatic registration did not open, although Sean Welker opened a new show at R. Coury Fine Art Gallery in Savage, Maryland. Transformer Gallery opened Fabrication of Blindness/Fabricating Rain, an intriguing looking show. There is/was a whole bunch of music stuff going on this weekend that I’m too tired to blog about, but luckily dcist has a roundup.

We were going to go to many of these things – instead we stopped at Artery 717 and said hello and then drove by BeBar for X in DC, but by then I was too tired to get out of the car – let alone go inside – so we went home. It is indeed a life glamorous and exotic.

In far more important news, the pattern for the cables on the cute little ballerina sweater from Glampyre Stefanie Japel’s Fitted Knits are totally fucked up. The sweater looked wrong because it was wrong. If I’d just looked up the errata to the pattern to begin with I would have figured out why much sooner. It’s an eyecatching cable and the mistake is centered right at breast level – you’d think someone would have caught that before the book went to print. I’m just grumbling because I don’t feel well and I hope this would be a quick and easy project, not one I had to rip out and redo repeatedly. It’s a beautiful sweater and I love her designs.

And, of course, yesterday was National Corndog Day, as you may have read in the accidentally epic meatblog post, “Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Corndogs.” You can go read that while you wait for Artomatic registration to start – if you’re on the mailing list you’ll be the first to know when it opens.

“Breaking the Valentines Mold”

Artomatic and the Pink Line Project head into Day 2 of their Luck of the Draw weekend of art and music events at venues around the Navy Yard Metro in Southeast. We count on both of these groups to put on the best art parties around (yes, fine, we {heart} them). And this show seems to have it all: a photography exhibit curated by Ten Miles Square; another exhibition, “RED: St. Valentine bled for us” (with work by Tim Tate, Pat Goslee, Scott Brooks and others); and DJs and music performances every day.

Free. Tonight 6-10 p.m.; tomorrow 2-6 p.m. Half Street, between K and L streets SE. Navy Yard Metro station. For a schedule and details, visit the Pink Line Project or Artomatic.

I’m going back to bed for the day – will recap my Inauguration thoughts tomorrow. In the meantime, here’s what the Washington Post’s Going Out Gurus had to say about the Art of Change last night:

Playing with Fire at the Warehouse
Maybe it’s a residual high from the day’s festivities, but the mood at the Art of Change party, hosted by Artomatic and Playa del Fuego at the Warehouse, is especially jovial. Attendees are striking up conversations with any stranger standing nearby.

Like the Manifest Hope party last night, art is the main attraction here, though the “creative attire” certainly competes with the paintings on the walls. There is no shortage of sequins, purple tulle or even bunny ears. One attendee, artist Lola Lombard, even made her own Obama-inspired ball gown.

“About 48 hours ago, I decided I should make something,” she says, and the result is a painted dress featuring all kinds of Americana from the Statue of Liberty to the Capitol to the faces of Lincoln and our newly sworn-in president.

Meanwhile, down the street in a heated tent, the party continues as people groove to Prince (in skin-tight leopard print, no less). And outside the tent’s opaque plastic windows, things are heating up. Fire performers fling flaming sticks and turn in circles while blazing hula hoops orbit their necks.

In the venue next door, a stage of rotating performances finds Victoria Vixen performing her burlesque show to “Whatever Lola Wants.” She finishes her routine — stripped down to red fishnets and a matching corset — and the crowd still screams for more. Instead, they get a couple of party attendees on stage answering one simple question: what would you want to tell President Obama if you could?

“That he should go over to the tent and see the fire people,” one woman insists. Her friend has another message in mind, one that seems to fit with the especially friendly atmosphere here:

“Sir, you are a hottie.”

I took some pictures and I’m sure lots more will be popping up on flickr. Thanks to the whole Art of Change crew for all the hard work, the party was a crazy success!