The Corcoran is in the midst of a program this month — Pump Me Up: DC Subculture of the 1980s — that features some pretty typically subversive elements of DC culture and history. Like DC hardcore, Go-Go, DJ’s, graffiti and Breakin’.
Not to mention they’ve been marketing it heavily toward families and kids. Maybe it’s a sign of a “new generation” now in charge of curating the art we want to see, and likewise, the values we want our kids to be exposed to.
As part of “Family Day 2013: Families Rock!” on March 2, kids between 18mo and 12yo flooded the Corcoran to participate in workshops by bboys and dj’s. The museum also had poster-making stations for kids to “create posters for a cause” a la social justice activists from the DC punk scene’s days of yore. And finally a face paint station! To show off the rock star in you hehe.
I was in support mode there, helping out Charlie and his friend Tazk who conducted two breakdancing performances followed by some chaotic but totally fun bboy workshops for the kids.
I mostly manned this fun merch desk, where we were selling promotional swag from The Lab DC, a new bboy school started by Tazk in Takoma Park, where Charlie teaches weekly bboy classes. Psst, sign up if you’re intrigued, all ages, all genders! It’s a fun way to get some exercise and learn something new that you can show off next time you and your friends hit the dance floor at a club.
The turnout was really great – the bboy demonstrations were probably the most popular event that day. To appreciate dj’s you need to be above a certain age, but with younger kids like these, they can relate more to something very physical and visual, like people flipping around and spinning on their heads.