About this weird project.

 
Pop up dance party featuring Jeus.

Pop up dance party featuring Jeus.

Adams Morgan PorchFest. Photo: Philip Graulty

Every purchase helps DC artists.

The project is starting now with a simple, limited-edition sticker. Display it proudly to help spread the word that weirdness is on the rise in DC. Proceeds are set aside to commission new works from DC artists.

The 50% pledge. 

The math is simple. At least half of every dollar you spend here is set aside for DC artists. These funds will be used to commission bigger and weirder things. In turn, proceeds from the sale of commissioned objects, happenings, designs, ephemerals, artifacts, and events will keep the fund growing. DC artists helping DC artists. The other half? It covers things like printing, mailing, website costs, and our own labor as District culture makers. If there's any surplus, we'll do our best to be as weird as weird as possible with it.   

Which artists? How will this work? This is an experiment and these are good questions. The answers will depend on the amount of funds raised. We will seek out DC artists from diverse backgrounds who are engaged on issues of equity and constructive dialogue about the city we have and the city we want.

 
 

What does it mean to MAKE DC WEIRD?

MAKE DC WEIRD is partially inspired the ideals of "keep it weird" campaigns in communities all over the world. These include: protecting and celebrating diverse cultures, supporting local artists and authentic local businesses, participating in neighborhood traditions, and treasuring the natural environment. Weird is about those things that make DC proudly unique. It's not about making DC as normal as any other "weird" city.

Pop-up dance party.

Pop-up dance party.

Keeping weird isn't enough.

Of course, DC has an ample supply of weird already. So, why not call this project "Keep DC Weird?"

DC's weirdness often flies under the radar. In the popular imagination, too many people think DC is nothing more than a gravely serious home to government, stone monuments, and disinvested transients who cheer for out-of-town teams. It isn't enough to just keep our weird, we've got to fight for it, make more of it, and raise it up.

Sarah Olmsted Thomas and Alex Vernon of Happenstance Theater introduce Milo the Magnificent to a crowded house at Little Salon. Photo credit: Chris Maier

Let's celebrate what we know and love about DC. And do more of it. Let's make DC synonymous with weird by celebrating our culture, and by making more weirdness every day.

Open mural painting day behind Rhode Island Ave shopping center

Supporting a weird agenda.

Sculpture by Elisa Berry Fonseca at Anacostia Arts Center

To live up to the ideals that MAKE DC WEIRD represents, the project must be both a call to BE weird, and a call for POLICY that supports weirdness. This means doing weird things like:

  • Dancing in the streets
  • Putting DC artists' works up in your home
  • Making weird things: food, art, music, proclamations 
  • Shopping at authentically unique DC businesses

...but it also means supporting policies necessary for weirdness to thrive:

  • Increased funding for the arts
  • Affordable housing 
  • A high quality of life for DC workers 
  • Policies that let unique DC businesses start up and thrive 
  • Protecting and cleaning up DC's environment 
  • Doing all of the above in an equitable, transparent, inclusive, and honest fashion with respect to gender, race, beliefs, orientation, ability, and identity. 

Are you in? What's your definition of weird?

#makeDCweird