It can be enchanting wandering around Georgetown, roughly following the C&O Canal, almost any time of the year, but certainly during Spring. This year, that’s even more true, by virtue of the five light art installations now on view as part of the seventh annual Georgetown GLOW.
Traditionally presented at the end of the year as a way to “re-imagine the season of light,” event organizers at the Georgetown BID decided to push this year’s GLOW to the spring in light of the pandemic.
Guided by founding GLOW curator Deirdre Ehlen MacWilliams, they also decided to spread things out — and not just literally so, to foster greater social distancing.
The 2021 installations are staying up for three months rather than five weeks, and will span two seasons, presented in two distinct shows, with a Summer GLOW featuring three activations in the neighborhood’s public alleys planned for July through September.
Now on view are the five installations of the Spring GLOW, which will remain up throughout Pride month. In that context, the true highlight of Spring GLOW is in the Georgetown Park Plaza alleyway: “The Weight of a Rainbow” by Stephanie Mercedes, which features suspended rainbow lights programmed to move in sync with the recorded voices of an eight-member LGBTQ a cappella choir.
“Madness Method,” by Chris Combs and David Greenfieldboyce, is a display of 200 lanterns, installed in the canal’s Lock 4, that appear as a flickering mess except when viewed from just the right spot, producing “a little bit of magic” in a way reminiscent of digital technology today.
Edwin Baruch’s “Light Pavilion” is a sculpture set up in the Georgetown Waterfront Park appearing as a hologram of a former structure, intended to highlight the relationship between the historic and the contemporary, particularly in such an architecturally rich neighborhood and city.
“The Beginning of Everything” by Nara Park, an enlarged replica sculpture of the meteor that fell to earth in Arizona 50,000 years ago, and “The Wishes Within” by Curated Creative, an interactive installation on the grounds of the Georgetown Lutheran Church round out the presentation.
“We’re thrilled to bring a new season of light to Georgetown, [and] one that shines a spotlight on several local artists,” says Nancy Miyahira of the Georgetown BID in a press release. “The last year has taught us to rediscover and appreciate the people, places, and experiences in our own backyard. GLOW celebrates each of those.”
Georgetown GLOW: Spring 2021 is viewable every day and night through June 27. Visit www.GeorgetownGlowDC.com.
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