13 October 2011

Safeway Bethesda Opens In Grand Style


Safeway Bethesda located at Bradley Boulevard and Arlington Road on Wednesday night.

The Safeway Bethesda supermarket - that features Safeway's first public art project - celebrated its grand opening with a lavish gala that featured bands, celebrity chefs, public officials, television celebrities, and most importantly, artwork.


Safeway Bethesda Bradley Avenue fa├žade. Comments on the building artwork include one that "Safeway's kundalini has risen"

The process the Washington Glass Studio employed for the creation of the bas-relief artwork walls made from glass salvaged from the original supermarket building (1956- 2010) has been documented in a number of previous
postings, including the installation of the artwork (and time-lapse imagery of the building construction).


Special lighting emphasizes the dry stack stonework.

The opening was a great vernissage - in a supermarket. (By the way, walking thru the freezer section of a supermarket, while listening to a live jazz combo performing one aisle over & gourmet appetizers made by guest celebrity chefs, and being offered fine champagne by waiters is a surreal experience - all cool, but very unusual.)


Champagne?... why yes, thanks...


Why is that an ICE sculpture?... It should be glass.

Jazz performed amongst the seasonal goods.


One of the cool event accouterments was the carved pumpkin displays. The artist based the pumpkin carvings on the building's cast glass panels - a nice switch on the traditional glass pumpkins.
The night also featured artwork displays; the work by sculptor Judy Sutton Moore was exhibited on the staircase, and work by the Washington Glass School was featured in the rotunda.



Featured artists: Washington Glass School


WUSA - channel 9 news anchor Andrea Roane was the master of ceremonies.

Andrea received a gift of one of the WGS cast glass tile squares, and showed the artwork the next morning during her broadcast.

Project data:
Client: Safeway Inc.
Architect: Rounds Vanduzer
Builder: Roche Constructors
Completion: Oct 2011
Artwork team: Erwin Timmers, Michael Janis, Tim Tate, M L Duffy, Chris Duffy, Robert Kincheloe, Evan Morgan, Susan Lomuto, George Anderton.

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