In the church where Miles Davis plays

Oil paintings

by Nora Maccoby

New Community Church and ArtSpace

614 S St NW, Wash DC 20001

Opening party

01.11.20 from 4-8 pm

Artist Statement

Against the rise of authoritarianism and dark shadows of political chaos and disharmony, I searched through history and art to find solutions. In the writings of Hesiod’s catalogue of women, I discovered the ancient archetypes, the 7 guardians of the Pleiades, the galactic force of heroines who travel through portals like the music of Miles Davis, birth each other, and when they unite, establish order against chaos in the lines between heaven and earth.

My mother was convinced that if women supported each other, we could make miracles and peace on earth. My father taught me about the ancient symbols that foretold a future (after the matriarchy and the patriarchy) that were the keys to enlightenment – the heterarchy, the balance and integration of male and female principles.

As my mother’s health dramatically declined, I moved into her painting studio and began to work out these keys to pathworking of the soul through the Earth experience. I wrote the beginning principles of the Guardians and their mode of travel through the Miles Davis double album “Bitches Brew” – music that is alive in an eternal present. I opened myself up to the journey as the ancient symbols my father had introduced me to, began opening doors to the architectural matrix of the invisible realms between the veils. I painted what I “saw” like reportage, both to assuage my mother’s fears of death and my own curiosity.

Two days before my mother’s passing, by the grace of guardian principles of simple kinship moving mountains, the paintings found their way to New Community Church. The fact that Miles Davis used to play in the space, made it seem like the first of many magical coincidences on the road to a world of miracles.

-Nora Maccoby


Nora Maccoby is a conceptual and multimedia artist working at the nexus of science, technology, and political philosophy. Her drawings and oil paintings are the architectural groundwork for her collaboration in 3D interactive video art with the NOIRFLUX collective. She is also a screenwriter, Bongwater (1998), Buffalo Soldiers (2003), and the author of The Energy Conversation; the first 3 years (CNA, 2009).  Her novel, The Intelligence, was published in 2018. She is currently working on the second book of the series, The 7 Guardians.

New Community Church has a rich history as a boarding house and nightclub for black entertainers who performed at the local theaters during the days of segregated Washington.  After the riots in the 1960’s this property and others in the neighborhood had become notorious for drug activity, crime and poverty until the 1980s when it became a small ecumenical church and community center. Local lore has it that when Miles Davis was in DC he stayed at the Jean Clore’s Guest House.  Davis’ music has returned by way of Nora Maccoby’s paintings through the exhibit, The Church Where Miles Davis Plays.   Join us in celebrating this homecoming!

Since 1999, New Community Art Space has served as a central space for curiosity, healing and connection.  Through the ongoing support from New Community Church, ArtSpace has been committed to providing an affordable avenue for artists of all ages, backgrounds and skill levels to express themselves.  For more information contact Rachel Dickerson, ArtSpace Director at

All events will take place at New Community Church sanctuary – 614 S Street NW; WDC 20001