Local Washington, D.C. artists Trap Bob and Jamea Richmond-Edwards join national tour collaborators for groundbreaking festival of culture, cause and creativity.
WASHINGTON, D.C. – SEPTEMBER 26, 2019 Refinery29, the leading digital media and entertainment company for young women, is debuting its annual immersive festival 29Rooms: Expand Your Reality in Washington, D.C. when it takes over DC Armory from October 18 – 27. A whole new audience will have the chance to experience this iconic event, which has welcomed over 100,000 visitors at marquee events in New York and Los Angeles since the event series first launched in 2015.
Expand Your Reality tour, 29Rooms’ debut event in Washington, D.C. will bring together a diverse group of both local and national, emerging and established creatives and collaborators spanning the spectrum of art, entertainment, politics and style.
Starting this year, 29Rooms is adding The Art Park, a new artist collective initiative, which invited one local artist in each city to transform a geometric playground into a canvas for creativity. Representing Washington, D.C. will be visual artist, illustrator, and animator Trap Bob, known for her use of bold colors and gestures to convey both the humor and struggles of everyday life.
Also new in 2019 is The Traveling Billboard – a full-scale billboard mural by locally-based artists, welcoming guests to 29Rooms and highlighting the talent community from each tour stop. The mural exclusive to Washington, D.C. will be created by local artist and Howard University Master of Fine Arts graduate, Jamea Richmond-Edwards, whose artwork has been exhibited around the world, including in the Rubell Family Collection, California African American Museum, Charles Wright Museum in Detroit, MI and Kravets Wehby Gallery.
Alongside Trap Bob and Richmond-Edwards, the dynamic event will bring together new collaborators Yvette Mayorga, Dan Lam, NNEKKAA, and hanski, plus popular returning collaborations from Kali Uchis, Carlota Guerrero, Uzumaki Cepeda, The Hoodwitch and the ACLU. Additionally, 29Rooms will welcome innovative brand collaborators including Prudential Financial, SheaMoisture, Transitions Optical and Bitten Dressing (a full list of rooms and collaborators can be found in the appendix below).
The Washington, D.C. tour stop will be housed at the historic D.C. Armory along the Anacostia River in the Capitol Hill East neighborhood. Full of history, the Armory was originally constructed 78 years ago in 1941, and was the headquarters, armory, and training facility for the District of Columbia National Guard. Now, the Armory’s Drill Field is used to host major entertainment events and will bring 29Rooms experience to life for D.C. guests.
Tickets for 29Rooms Washington, D.C. are available now at 29Rooms.com starting at $29.
DATES: October 18 – 27
TIME: 1:30pm – 10:30pm (Tues – Thurs) and 10:30am – 10:30pm (Fri – Sun)
General admission ticket guarantees access for one 2.5-hour session.
LOCATION: DC Armory – 2001 E Capitol St SE, Washington, DC 20003
DC Armory is easily accessible by Metrorail, Metrobus, and two major highways surrounding the city. Ample on-site parking in secured lots is available.
Please visit www.29rooms.com or @29Rooms on social media for more information and updates.
For 2019, IMG is overseeing operations and production logistics for the 29Rooms tour including Chicago, Dallas, Atlanta, Toronto (Canada) and Washington, D.C., as well as the 29Rooms events in New York and Los Angeles. Refinery29 appointed IMG as its global licensing agency in 2018 and is represented by WME, part of the Endeavor network alongside IMG.
Since its inception in 2005, Refinery29 has curated experiences for its audience across multiple platforms including online, mobile, video, and live events. The 29Rooms franchise has grown into the company’s most expansive offline activation. Instituting a ticketing program for the first time to minimize wait time and optimize the user experience, Refinery29’s 29Rooms sold out nearly 100,000 tickets to date.
Refinery29 is the leading media and entertainment company focused on women with a global audience footprint of 249 million across all platforms. Through a variety of lifestyle stories, original video programming, social, shareable content, and live experiences, Refinery29 provides its audience with the inspiration and tools to discover and pursue a more independent, stylish, and informed life. Please visit www.refinery29.com, www.refinery29.com/en-ca, www.refinery29.uk and www.refinery29.de for more information and to browse content.
IMG is a global leader in sports, fashion, events and media. The company manages some of the world’s greatest athletes and fashion icons; owns and operates hundreds of live events annually; and is a leading independent producer and distributor of sports and entertainment media. IMG also specializes in licensing, sports training and league development. IMG is a subsidiary of Endeavor, a global entertainment, sports and content company.
D.C. Room Description
The Washington, D.C. interactive event will center thematically around ‘Expand Your Reality’ and will invite guests into a realm of abundant thinking and endless possibilities. Collaborations for D.C. include:
29 QUESTIONS: From the beginning of time, humans have gathered around fires and told stories to one another. Yet our increasingly technological world can sometimes keep us from truly connecting. In this room, guests are invited to step outside of their comfort zone, pull up a chair, and connect with a stranger. Try 29Rooms’ social experiment and tap into the joy of shared humanity.
A BLIND DATE WITH DESTINY: It is believed we hold the secrets to our deepest selves right in the palm of our hands, we just have to learn how to unravel them. Taking a page from the ancient art of Palmistry, you’ll embark on a cosmic journey to unpack the mysteries of your fortune by surrendering control and putting your destiny in a stranger’s hands.
A CONVERSATION WITH YOUR INNER CHILD In Collaboration with Carlota Guerrero: In everyone, there lies our inner child. In a time of uncertainty, the world around us can extinguish our inner child’s flame, and it has never been so important to listen to our inner child and look at the world again with new eyes. In this interactive installation, Carlota Guerrero invites guests to write a message to their inner child and reconnect again.
A LONG LINE OF QUEENDOM In Collaboration with Unbothered: When Black assemblies are seen as threats, Black voices heard as noise, and Black culture something to be co-opted, here marks a space of tribute. Powerful and soft, queenly and human, an individual and a community; there are a spectrum of truths that make up Black women’s experience. Brought to life by Refinery29’s dedicated platform for Black millennial women, Unbothered, we invite you to “say her name” or take your place within a long legacy of Black excellence, beauty and achievement.
THE ART PARK In Collaboration with NNEKKAA, Yvette Mayorga, Dan Lam, hanski, Trap Bob: Refinery29 has invited five artists from around the country – one from each tour stop – to transform our geometric playground into a canvas for creativity. The Art Park explores new ways of showcasing art and creating space at 29Rooms through playful composition and discovery.
BETTER DRESSED BY BITTEN: Bitten invites you to experience a new collection of creamy dressings made with real fruit…but make it fashion. Explore our bold selection of headpieces and accessories, curate your look, and step on set for an epic photo that will show the world you’re better dressed with Bitten. Then get a taste of the defiantly delicious new dressing. Be Bold. Be Edgy. Be Bitten.
CRACK THE CODE to Financial Wellness in partnership with Prudential: From investing to retirement to workplace benefits, the world of personal finance can often feel intimidating and opaque. No longer! In this immersive group challenge you’ll take on your financial wellness first hand. With Prudential as your trusted guide, work with your team to solve puzzles, complete challenges and crack codes along this exciting and empowering journey toward financial wellness.
DANCE BREAK: We’re throwing a dance party, and everyone is invited! Behind these doors, you’ll encounter the soundtrack to Washington, D.C. and characters that will inspire you to make room, make moves and release. We just need your energy to kick things off, so get in there and start moving…
DREAM DOORWAYS In Collaboration with Kali Uchis: Throughout history, the interpretation of dreams has been studied far and wide. Ancients believed that dreams were prophetic messages from the Gods. Some believe they are merely a doorway to our true thoughts and unconscious. In this surreal installation, guests are invited to fall down the rabbit hole to an alternate universe where nothing is what it seems.
ENJOY THE LIGHT in partnership with Transitions® Lenses: Visionaries in light adaptive eyewear, Transitions Optical is on a mission to ensure you enjoy every moment of life and every moment of light. Step inside this dynamic playscape to experience vision, life and light as never before, and open your eyes to the possibilities of Transitions lenses with the newly unveiled Transitions(R) Signature(R) GEN 8(TM) technology – their fastest lens that darkens outdoors in seconds and returns to clear faster than ever.
THE FULL PICTURE In Collaboration With Shatterbox: Shatterbox, the groundbreaking film series by Refinery29 empowers female storytellers both in front and behind the camera to show us how they see the world. For the upcoming third and fourth seasons of Shatterbox, Refinery29 is partnering with Level Forward, a female-led studio founded by Adrienne Becker and Abigail Disney. At 29Rooms, Shatterbox brings you a reimagined studio where we invite you to get behind the camera and take on a leading role in spreading our message: Dear Hollywood – You can’t win without women.
MAKE YOUR MARK: When is the last time you picked up a paintbrush or put pencil to paper to capture what you see in front of you? Art is not just a final product meant to be seen; the beauty is as much in the process as it is in the product. Here, creativity comes to life as you work live in the space; creating, improvising and unleashing. Enter this studio bravely, ready to express yourself and make your mark.
Guests will be able to get hands on with two interactions within the space – a speed round circuit training of mini art class exercises, and a collaborative sculptural color by number, designed in collaboration with Washington, D.C.-based artist Jamea Richmond-Edwards.
Canvas Art created by Joao Salomao.
NO FILTER: When used in the right way, light can be a paintbrush that transforms any environment. Venture beyond the camera lens to experience two creative lighting methods that manipulate light, color, and shadow to instantly shift your perception and allow you to see yourself—and your surroundings—in a new light.
SAWUBONA in partnership with SheaMoisture: The Zulu greeting “Sawubona” can be translated as “We See You.” The act of seeing one another carries deeper meaning: an affirmation to understand and uplift one another, and an obligation to explore our full potential as a community. “Sawubona” represents the ethos of SheaMoisture’s Community Commerce initiative – an endeavor to recognize and foster the potential of women around the world. Through educational and entrepreneurial support, SheaMoisture invests in empowerment that is widely felt as each woman uplifts those around her. In the spirit of Community Commerce, you’ll be invited to open your heart, honor your growth, and celebrate your power. Collectively, we’ll create a brighter, more beautiful world.
TEENAGE BEDROOM In Collaboration with Uzumaki Cepeda: Remember those formative teenage years and just how sacred your bedroom was? It was that dreamy place you could always count on, where you could remove yourself from the world and get lost in thoughts and reflections. Artist Uzumaki Cepeda invites guests to enter a time warp and revisit their teenage years. From looking through the closet, to playing Nintendo, this is a safe space for everyone.
THE TRAVELING BILLBOARD WASHINGTON, D.C. In Collaboration with Jamea Richmond-Edwards: At each stop along the 2019 29Rooms Expand Your Reality Tour, guests will be welcomed by a massive billboard treated with a mural by a locally-based artist. As an iconic silhouette of the urban landscape, the billboard will act as a spectacular canvas highlighting Washington, D.C. collaborator artist Jamea Richmond-Edwards.
THE VALUES STAND In Collaboration with the ACLU: Are headlines and news notifications getting you down? Well, cheer up, because the ACLU is inviting you to join the fight for civil rights and civil liberties in Congress, in the courts, and in your community. Together, we can shift the story and make a change by taking action.
YOU ARE MAGIC In Collaboration with The Hoodwitch: Our spirit is the essence of who we are. Magic is everywhere and it is available to all of us. Explore this enchanted crystal cave where The Hoodwitch will guide guests to awaken the deepest part of themselves and tap into their own inner magic. Because now more than ever, the universe needs your beacon of light, so have no fear in shining bright.
*Room descriptions and concepts subject to change