Now On Display

Select exhibitions at DC area museums


AMERICAN VISIONARY ART MUSEUM

800 Key Highway
Baltimore
410-244-1900
avam.org

All Things Round: Galaxies, Eyeballs & Karma – This 17th annual, thematic mega-exhibition features over 70 artists focused on the circular nature of life (through 9/2)

ARTHUR M. SACKLER GALLERY

1050 Independence Ave. SW
202-633-4800
asia.si.edu

Perspectives: Ai Weiwei – In conjunction with a forthcoming Hirshhorn survey on the famous Chinese artist, the Sackler presents the artist’s 2005 monumental installation ”Fragments,” offering a wry commentary on the bewildering state of a rapidly changing society (through 4/7/13)
Worlds Within Worlds: Imperial Paintings from India and Iran – Folios and paintings from the Freer Gallery of Art and Sackler Gallery collections, comprising one of the world’s most important repositories of Mughal and Persian paintings (through 9/17)
Shadow Sites: Recent Work by Jananne al-Ani – a new body of video works examining enduring representations of the Middle Eastern landscape (8/18-1/27/13)

THE BALTIMORE MUSEUM OF ART

10 Art Museum Drive
Baltimore
443-573-1700
artbma.org

A Grand Legacy: Five Centuries of European Art – Featuring masterpieces by Frans Hals, Rembrandt van Rijn and Jean Baptiste Siméon, among others (ongoing)

CORCORAN GALLERY OF ART

500 17th St. NW
202-639-1700
corcoran.org

Richard Diebenkorn: The Ocean Park Series – The first major museum exhibition to focus on this innovator of modern painting, who advances the lexicon of abstraction (through 9/23)
Charlotte Dumas: Anime – Noted globe-trotting animal photographer presents a newly commissioned series of portraits centered on the majestic burial horses of Arlington National Cemetery (through 10/28)

FOLGER SHAKESPEARE LIBRARY

201 East Capitol St. SE
202-544-7077
folger.edu

Open City: London, 1500-1700 – As London went from being simply the capital of England to the heart of a world empire, the shift altered residents’ sense of community, particularly as it relates to church, theater and market (through 9/30)

HILLWOOD MUSEUM

4155 Linnean Ave. NW
202-686-5807
HillwoodMuseum.org

Prêt-à-Papier: The Exquisite Art of – The exhibit focuses on the works Belgian artist Isabelle de Borchgrave makes from ordinary paper. By crumpling, pleating and painting the medium, the artist reconstructs dresses from key periods in fashion history over the centuries — creating the illusion of haute couture (through Dec. 30)

HIRSHHORN MUSEUM & SCULPTURE GARDEN

Independence Ave. and 7th St. SW
202-633-1000
hirshhorn.si.edu

Dark Matters – Various works, including painting, sculpture and video, from the Hirshhorn’s collection are brought together to tease out the associations and differences in the concepts of darkness, from mortality to infinity, loss to renewal (through 1/13)
Ai Weiwei: Circle of Animals/Zodiac Signs – In advance of a major survey in October of the work of China’s most famous international artist, the Hirshhorn features Weiwei’s monumental outdoor installation ”Circle of Animals/Zodiac Heads,” showcasing the 12 signs of the Chinese zodiac. (through 2/24/13)

LIBRARY OF CONGRESS

10 First St. SE
202-707-8000
loc.gov/exhibits/

Books That Shaped America – Intended to spark a national conversation on books and their importance in advance of the National Book Festival; from Benjamin Franklin and Thomas Paine, to Frederick Douglass and Harriet Beecher Stowe, to Alfred Kinsey and Ayn Rand, to Betty Friedan and Randy Shilts (through 9/29)
Sakura: Cherry Blossoms as Living Symbols of Friendship – Exhibition celebrates the 100th anniversary of Tokyo’s gift to Washington of 3,000 flowering cherry trees with documents illuminating the story and significance of the trees (through 9/15)
Herblock Gallery – Every six months the Library presents a selection of 10 cartoons demonstrating the value of the late Washington Post editorial cartoonist’s pointed commentaries on the state of affairs (ongoing)

NATIONAL AIR AND SPACE MUSEUM

Independence Ave. and 6th St. SW
202-633-2214
airandspace.si.edu

Fly Marines! The Centennial of Marine Corps Aviation: 1912-2012 – A broad selection of artworks documenting the history of Marine aviation (ongoing)
The Wright Brothers & The Invention of the Aerial Age – The 1903 Wright Flyer, the world’s first successful airplane, serves as the centerpiece of this exhibition (ongoing)

NATIONAL BUILDING MUSEUM

401 F St. NW
202-272-2448
nbm.org

House & Home — A long-term exhibition surveys houses both familiar and surprising, through past and present – including a same-sex couple – challenging ideas about what it means to live at home in America (ongoing)
Kevin Roche: Architecture as Environment – An exhibition of third-generation modernist whose architecture captures the spirit of the post-industrial age (through 12/2)

NATIONAL GALLERY OF ART

3rd St. and Constitution Ave. NW
202-737-4215
nga.gov

Citizens of the Republic: Portraits from the Dutch Golden Age – A selection of 17th- and 18th-Century engravings, including portrait prints by old masters Rembrandt van Rijn, Bartholomeus van der Helst and Caspar Netscher (Opens 8/4-2/3/13)|
George Bellows – The National Gallery offers the first comprehensive exhibition in more than three decades of this artist, hailed as one of the greatest artists America had yet produced when he died in 1925 (through 10/8)
Elegance and Refinement: The Still-Life Paintings of Willem van Aelst – Few artists were more skilled at depicting luscious fruits and spoils of the hunt than 17th Century Dutch painter, the most technically brilliant still-life painter of his time (through 10/14)

NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC MUSEUM

1145 17th St. NW
202-857-7700
nationalgeographic.com

Titanic: 100 Year Obsession – An exhibit based on National Geographic’s Explorer-in-Residence Robert Ballard, the first to unveil images of the wreck in 1985 (through 9/9)
Wicked Weather: Photographs from National Geographic – Stunning images from around the world documenting drought, lightning storms, hurricanes and tsunamis (through 10/23)

NATIONAL MUSEUM OF AMERICAN HISTORY

1400 Constitution Ave. NW
202-633-1000
americanhistory.si.edu

Slavery at Jefferson’s Monticello: Paradox of Liberty – The man who drafted the Declaration of Independence and called slavery an ”abominable crime” was also a lifelong slaveholder, as documented by the slave families who lived at Jefferson’s gorgeous hillside home (through 10/14)
American Stories – The American History museum’s newest signature exhibition features an engaging mix of artifacts telling the various stories of the country’s history, from the Pilgrims’ arrival to the historic 2008 election (ongoing)

NATIONAL MUSEUM OF NATURAL HISTORY

10th St. and Constitution Ave. NW
202-633-1000
mnh.si.edu

Against All Odds: Rescue at the Chilean Mine – More than two months after Chile’s San José mine collapsed in the fall of 2010, the world watched agape as rescued miners emerged one by one looking healthy and joyous; this exhibition pays tribute to the work of those who rescued them (through 9/30)
2011 Nature’s Best Photography Awards – Exhibition celebrates the work of nature photographers, specifically recipients of the Windland Smith Rice International Awards (through 1/6/13)

NATIONAL MUSEUM OF THE AMERICAN INDIAN

Independence Ave. and 4th St. SW
202-633-1000
nmai.si.edu

Best in the World: Native Athletes in the Olympics – Exhibit focuses in particular on four Native American Olympians who competed 100 years ago this year in Sweden: Jim ”World’s Greatest Athlete” Thorpe, Duke Kahanamoku, Andrew Sockalexis and Lewis Tewanima. More recent Native Olympians include twin cross-country skiers Sharon and Shirley Firth in the ’70s and ’80s and curler Carolyn Darbyshire-McRorie two years ago (through 9/3)
A Song for the Horse Nation — Presenting the epic story of the horse’s influence on American Indian tribes beginning with the return of horses to the Western Hemisphere by Christopher Columbus to the present day (through 1/7/13)

NATIONAL PORTRAIT GALLERY

F and 8th Streets NW
202-633-1000
npg.si.edu

In Vibrant Color: Vintage Celebrity Portraits from the Harry Warnecke Studio – Artist’s brilliant, eye-popping color portraits of celebrities including Lucille Ball, Louis Armstrong and Ethel Waters as originally published in the Sunday magazine of the New York Daily News (through 9/9)
One Life: Amelia Earhart – portraits of the aviator in all artistic media, with a focus on her role in breaking barriers for women (through 5/27/13)
A Will of Their Own: Judith Sargent Murray and Women of Achievement in the Early Republic – Portraits of eight prominent American women of the late 18th century (through 9/2/13)

POE MUSEUM

1914 East Main St.
Richmond
804-648-5523
poemuseum.org

Model of Richmond in Poe’s Time – Miss Edith Ragland was commissioned to design this sculptural model, on display as part of the world’s finest collection of Edgar Allan Poe’s manuscripts, memorabilia and personal belongings, many of them rarely displayed elsewhere. The celebrated 19th centurymystery and macabre writer may be most associated with Baltimore, but this Richmond museum is just down the street from where ”America’s Shakespeare” lived for many years (permanent)

THE PHILLIPS COLLECTION

1600 21st St. NW
202-387-2151
phillipscollection.org

Jasper Johns: Variations on a Theme – Exhibition features approximately 90 iconic examples of innovative artist, who has brought new advances to printmaking (through 9/9)
Intersections: Sandra Cinto Untitled (After the Rain) is composed of intricate ink and acrylic drawings on canvas that cover the café walls (through 12/30/13)

RENWICK GALLERY

1661 Pennsylvania Ave. NW
202-633-7970
americanart.si.edu

40 under 40: Craft Futures — Forty artists born since 1972 are featured in this exhibition of contemporary craft and decorative arts. All of the artworks on display were created after Sept. 11, 2001 (through 2/3/13)
Grand Salon – An assortment of 70 paintings from the American Art Museum including definitive works by Edward Mitchell Bannister, Romaine Brooks, George Inness and Irving R. Wiles (through 9/3)

SMITHSONIAN AMERICAN ART MUSEUM

8th and F Streets NW
202-633-7970
americanart.si.edu

The Art of Video Games — One of the first exhibitions to explore the forty-year evolution of video games as an artistic medium, with a focus on striking visual effects and the creative use of new technologies (through 9/30)
African American Art: Harlem Renaissance, Civil Rights Era and Beyond – A selection of paintings, sculpture, prints and photographs by 43 black artists who explored the African-American experience in the 20th century (through 9/3)

THE TEXTILE MUSEUM

2320 S St. NW
202-667-0441
textilemuseum.org

Woven Treasures of Japan’s Tawaraya Workshop – Japan has a remarkably refined textile tradition, and for centuries the Japanese have admired the silks produced in the Nishijin neighborhood of Kyoto as the epitome of beauty and opulence (through 8/12)
Dragons, Nagas and Creatures of the Deep — Welcoming 2012 as the East Asian calendar’s Year of the Dragon, this exhibition presents a global selection of textiles depicting dragons and related fantastical creatures of legend (through 1/6/13)

VIRGINIA HISTORICAL SOCIETY

428 North Blvd.
Richmond
804-358-4901
vahistorical.org

For the Love of Beauty: The Collections of Lora and Claiborne Robins – Presenting 19th Century Hudson River School landscape paintings and colonial furniture from the late Richmond philanthropist couple (through 12/30)
Heads and Tales – Explore the lives of prominent and obscure historical figures from the society’s portrait collection (through 9/22)

VIRGINIA MUSEUM OF FINE ARTS

200 North Blvd.
Richmond
804-340-1400
vmfa.state.va.us

Maharaja: The Splendors of India’s Great Kings – Purportedly the first exhibition to explore the rich visual culture of India’s last royal families, an era that spanned the early 18th century to the mid-20th century. Organized in conjunction with London’s Victoria & Albert Museum, VMFA is the only East Coast venue for the show that also visited San Francisco, Toronto and Munich (through 8/19)
Bold, Cautious, True: Walt Whitman and American Art of the Civil War Era – A reprise of an exhibit first displayed at Memphis’s Dixon Gallery, featuring the poetry and writings of gay Civil War ”scribe” juxtaposed with various landscape paintings and sculptures by Conrad Wise Chapman, Frederic Church and Winslow Homer, among others (through 8/26)

THE WALTERS ART MUSEUM

600 North Charles St.
Baltimore
410-547-9000
thewalters.org

Paradise Imagined: The Garden in the Islamic and Christian World – Gardens have functioned as spaces of invention, imagination and mythmaking – in addition to places of repose and recreation – for different cultures, with lots of cross-fertilization (through 9/23)


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Doug Rule is a theater critic and contributing editor for Metro Weekly.

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