The District of Columbia Arts Center (DCAC) is located at 2438 18th Street in Adams Morgan, one of Washington's most culturally diverse neighborhoods. Facing eroding support for artists from local arts organizations, several arts leaders decided in 1989 to establish an alternative center that would serve local artists. The space for DCAC, donated rent-free by local arts supporter Herb White, originally consisted of two railroad-type upstairs apartments and a former garage that had to be entered from the alley. The new Center would focus on local artists in a space that would be more than just a gallery for new work. Renovations completed in 1993 included gutting the apartments to create the gallery and offices, and providing access to the garage through the gallery, thus creating the theater. Since its inception, DCAC has received local, national and international reviews for visual and performing arts. Over 100 visual arts exhibitions and 500 performance events have illustrated the need for DCAC. Poets, painters, actors, storytellers, sculptors, performance artists have been drawn to the Center from as close as around the corner and as far as from around the world. Ten years of building its reputation as a dynamic and eclectic arts center has given DCAC a firm foundation to continue and expand its support of new and emerging artists.
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city was built from scratch, Washington's
regular town plan is easy to grasp. Centered
on Capitol Hill and its governmental
monoliths, the District is divided into four
quadrants - northeast, northwest, southeast
and southwest. Dozens of broad avenues , all
named after states, run diagonally across a
standard grid of streets , meeting up at
monumental traffic circles like Dupont
Circle. North-south streets are numbered,
east-west ones are lettered. There's no J
Street, an intentional slight to early
Supreme Court Justice John Jay, or X, Y or Z
Street. I Street is often written Eye
Street. Be sure to note the relevant
two-letter code in any address (NW, NE, SW,
SE), which shows its quadrant; 1600
Pennsylvania Ave NW is a long way from 1600
Pennsylvania Ave SE.
Once in the
city, stop at the
DC Chamber of Commerce Visitor Center ,
Ronald Reagan Building, 1300 Pennsylvania
Ave NW (Mon-Sat 8am-6pm, Sun noon-5pm; tel
202/328-4748), which can help with maps,
tours, bookings and citywide information.
Look for visitor information desks at the
airports and Union Station.
The White House Visitor Information Center
, 1450 Pennsylvania Ave NW (daily
7.30am-4pm; tel 202/208-1631), supplies free
maps and handy guides to museums and
attractions; the most useful is the free
Washington DC Visitors Guide .