Devan Shimoyama

Open Conversation

August 24, 2019, 2-3 pm

University of Maryland Center for Art and Knowledge at The Phillips Collection

Join artist Devan Shimoyama for a discussion of The Barbershop Project.

As the centerpiece of CulturalDC’s 20th Anniversary Season, The Barbershop Project is a multidisciplinary arts activation inspired by the art of hair, performance of styling, and the cultural institution that is the barbershop. Running May 4-August 24, 2019, the Project is hosted by Building Bridges Across the River, the Ward 8 nonprofit that manages THEARC (Town Hall Education Arts Recreation Campus). The Barbershop Project is centered around Mighty Mighty, a collaboration between artist Devan Shimoyama, Barber of Hell’s Bottom owner Kelly Gorsuch. and designer/furniture maker Caleb Woodard. They have transformed CulturalDC’s Mobile Art Gallery into an immersive art installation and fully functioning barbershop which provides free haircuts to the community.

“Queer identifying people of color feel the need to perform gender in specific ways in certain settings. For example, gay Black men feel the need to limit their interactions with other Black men in the barbershop. After some conversations with other individuals who share these sentiments, I realized many of us find ways to mask our queerness in this setting regardless to how out and proud we are in our personal lives,” says Shimoyama. The Barbershop Project challenges these feelings of exclusion and invites dialogue about identity, beauty, and culture. 

We recommend visiting Shimoyama’s work at THEARC before this event as the gallery closes on August 24.
Mobile Art Gallery Hours at THEARC:
Tuesdays–Fridays, 11 am–7 pm 
Saturdays, 10 am–8 pm

*Enjoy two $3 rides to or from CulturalDC’s Mobile Art Gallery at THEARC (within 2 block radius) when you enter the promo code BARBERSHOP in the Via App.