Washington has become a place where so many events of cosmic significance seem to occur almost constantly, that Tuesday might have seemed relatively routine, and not the stuff of history.
Yet, within a few hours and a few miles of each other so much occurred Tuesday that while perhaps not obviously historic, nevertheless seemed difficult to ignore.
Two Mardi Gras parades stepped off. Fireworks burst over the Southwest Washington Waterfront. An attention -getting work of art , that featured a firearm, was projected onto the wall of a museum where it had been seen 30 years ago.
And an important infrastructure project had its ceremonial start.
The parades were the traditional one through the Clarendon neighborhood of Arlington, and a new one, held in Southwest Washington, and hosted by the new Wharf DCdevelopment. The fireworks were also part of the celebration.
Meanwhile, on the Mall, the Hirshhorn museum and sculpture garden on the Mall, restaged the 68-foot outdoor art work by Krzysztof Wodiczko. The display was projected on the outer wall of the cylinder-shaped museum.
Three stories tall, the projection is shaped to conform to the shape of the museum wall, where it was seen 30 years ago.
It is to coincide with the opening there of a new exhibit, “Brand New: Art and Commodity in the 1980s.’ the museum said. According to the museum, the projection, may be seen each night,through Thursday from 6:30 p.m. through 9 p.m.
Far from being removed from the concerns of daily life, the installation, according to the museum, is meant to convey and prompt social and political messages, and it includes a striking image of a hand holding a revolver, with its barrel pointing at viewers.
On a chilly February night, many perhaps preferred to do their celebrating amid the comforts of home. One who saw the projection, however, was Allison Turner.
“I did watch” she said, and reported that she enjoyed it.
Yet even all of those goings-on, with their celebratory and soul-stirring aspects, did not exhaust the events of the day. DC Mayor Muriel Bowser (D) and other officials turned earth to mark a ground breaking for the construction of the new Frederick Douglass bridge across the Anacostia River.
“For DC,” said Eleanor Holmes Norton, the city’s delegate to Congress, “ there is no better way to celebrate the 200th birthday of Frederick Douglass than to begin construction of this bridge, named in honor, that will connect our city.”
The new bridge is to replace the current Frederick Douglass bridge and officials said it is to provide a variety of benefits for communities on each side of the river, as well as to improve transportation.