It is a brisk Sunday afternoon in Dupont Circle, as the wind whistles below the chatter of three-teenaged girls. The three girls cut through an alley on 19th Street NW, when one girl notices something that intrigues her.
The taller of the three, points to a painting that covers a brick wall. Circles that are shaded in dark and light hues of blue, follow a painted stream of water. Occasionally the stream dips and circles around itself, creating movement down the alley.
The girls take a picture of the artwork against an otherwise vacant alleyway.
This display of public art, as well as others around Ward 2, were made possible by the Golden Triangle Business Improvement Development, or the Golden Triangle BID.
The non-profit corporation founded in 1997, sought to make part of DC’s central business district “a better place,” said Leona Agouridas, executive director of Golden BID.
“Our biggest goal is to revitalize Connecticut Ave., while making the downtown area an even more amazing experience,” expressed Agouridas.
By providing the 43-block area with captivating artwork and a clean environment where DC natives and visitors alike can enjoy their surroundings, Golden BID works to restore DC’s culture in the business district.
“Luigi’s Alley” is painted above the artwork, which is a reference to the popular “Famous Luigi’s” pizzeria. Later into the afternoon, the alley becomes a meeting spot for artwork enthusiasts and DCers who cannot resist the aroma of freshly baked pizza pies coming from 19th St. NW.
Two streets down from “Luigi’s Alley”, another work of art is showcased adjacent to Club Quarters, a hotel designed with the business traveler in mind. Both sets of alley art were designed and painted by art director Rachel Horlick.
DC native Melissa Archer, who expressed her appreciation of the artwork, was unaware that a corporation was behind it.
“I was just telling my friend that I liked this piece and I noticed a few artsy things around this area,” said Archer.
As she points to the Golden Triangle banner that hangs across a light pole, Archer continues, “And I do come across the Golden Triangle signs but never put two and two together.
However, near alley art is not the only place where you will find Golden Triangle BID’s trademark blue banner with two yellow interloping triangles.
The corporation has transformed fire call boxes into unique works of art and has placed artsy bike racks near Metro stations within the Golden Triangle neighborhood.