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Space Was the Place: An Abbreviated History of Washington, DC Arts Venues

Ray Barker, archivist of special collections, DC Public Library, with Andrew White, jazz/R&B multi-instrumentalist, musicologist, and publisher

Washington, DC, is known for its museums, which collectively bring millions of visitors to the city from around the world. Yet Washington also has a rich history of local art spaces that have showcased art made here in the city; several of them also staged concerts to support Washington’s many jazz and punk bands. Unfortunately, most of these local institutions no longer exist, but the DC Public Library is archiving as much as it can of this precious history. On June 30, 2019, at the National Gallery of Art, Ray Barker, archivist of special collections at the DC Public Library, gave a lecture introducing three key examples: d.c. space, the Maya Gallery, and the Museum of Temporary Art. Local music legend Andrew White, who had been featured at d.c. space, joined Barker with a short performance.