In the Galleries: December 2018

This column is designed to provide you with art news and information about interesting shows at local art galleries and museums. If you are aware of an event, news or an exhibit, large or small, that you think would be of interest, please email Judith Levine.

If going to a gallery you have not previously visited, we suggest researching directions and transportation first; many of the galleries in DC are accessible via Metro, and parking can be a problem. Unless otherwise noted, admission is free.


The Phillips Collection

1600 21st St., NW, Washington, DC. 202-387-2151.

Nordic Impressions
Through January 13, 2019

Intersections: Intersections is back. This is a series of projects that explores links between old and new traditions, modern and contemporary art practices, and the spaces within the museum and its display of new artistic interventions. The first show is in conjunction with the University of Maryland.

Richard Tuttle–It Seems Like It’s Going To Be
Through December 30, 2018


The National Gallery of Art

4th and Constitution Avenue NW, Washington, DC. 202-737-4215.

In the Library: (East Wing; 10 AM to 5 PM Monday through Friday; Not open on weekends)

Rachel Whiteread’s Ghost (East Wing)
Through January 13, 2019

The Chiaroscuro Woodcut in Renaissance Italy (West Wing)
Through January 20, 2019

Gordon Parks: The New Tide, Early Work 1940–1950 (West Wing)
Through February 18, 2019
The self-taught photographic genius that
was Gordon Parks (1912–2006) is showcased in this exhibit. The sensitive, observant, highly intelligent way Parks made his pictures takes you fully into the people and world he captured. Close relationships with Roy Stryker, Langston Hughes, Richard Wright, and Ralph Ellison, and his work at the Farm Security Administration, Office of War Information, and Standard Oil (now Exxon) also shaped the way he saw his world.

Dawoud Bey: The Birmingham Project (West Wing)
Through March 17, 2019
I admit I did a double take, but the child in the diptych is not Michelle Obama. The woman and child are Mary Parker and Caela Cowan, and Bey took these photos in 2012.

Corot: Women (West Wing)
Through December 31, 2018

Sense of Humor
Through January 5, 2019
Who said humor doesn’t belong in a painting?

Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden

Independence Avenue at Seventh Street SW, Washington, DC; 202-633-1000 or 202-633-5285 (TTY). This gallery focuses on contemporary artists.

Sean Scully: Landline Series
Through February 3, 2019

Mark Bradford: Pickett’s Charge
Through December 30, 2021
This innovative work has created so much interest that it’s been extended. “Politically and socially, we are at the edge of another precipice. I’m standing in the middle of a question about where we are as a nation,” Bradford has said. His mastery of mixed media (the works in this show are collages) will be evident to viewers.

What Absence Is Made Of
Through Summer 2019
“What does absence look like? How can loss—of objects, of memory, of yourself—become a tool for artistic expression? In the face of today’s increasingly noisy consumer culture, What Absence Is Made Of answers these questions and more as it mines the Hirshhorn’s extensive collection in search of the mind-bending ways that artists surmount the limits of the material world.” (Hirshorn catalog)

The Sackler Gallery/The Freer Gallery

1050 Independence Avenue SW, Washington, DC; 202-633-1000
The joint galleries house one of the world’s great collections of Asian arts. The Freer houses mostly permanent collections (it may not sell or lend any of its collection), and the Sackler has permanent and short term exhibits.

Empresses of China’s Forbidden City, 1644–1912 (Sackler)
Through June 23, 2019

Subodh Gupta: Terminal (Sackler)
Through February 3, 2019

A Glimpse of Ancient Yemen (Sackler)
Through August 18, 2019

Encountering the Buddha: Art and Practice Across Asia (Freer)
Through November 29, 2020

National Museum of the American Indian

Fourth Street & Independence Avenue SW, Washington, DC 20560; 202-633-1000

Through January 2022
Native American symbols and pictures have been used to represent a wide variety of products in the past. In some cases, such as the Indian Motorcycle, they were considered the epitome of the field. Others were demeaning, picturing Native Americans as picturesque savages. The visitor to this exhibit will experience the range and leave understanding how the people felt about these objects.

Our Universes: Traditional Knowledge Shapes Our World
Through September 2020

National Museum of African Art

950 Independence Avenue SW, Washington, DC; 202-633-1000 (voice/tape)

World on the Horizon: Swahili Arts Across the Indian Ocean
“Swahili” comes from the Arabic word meaning “edge” or “coast”. This area of the coast of eastern Africa has been a crossroads for Asian, European, and African travelers for over a thousand years. This show showcases both individual cultures and the mixing that occurred during this time.

Good As Gold: Fashioning Senegalese Women

National Museum of African American History &  Culture

Constitution Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20004; 202-633-4751

Visual Art and the American Experience
The initial exhibit is also a permanent exhibit.

Represent: Hip-Hop Photography
Through May 3, 2019

Cultural Expressions
A circular, experiential, introductory space to African American and African diaspora culture.

Renwick Gallery

1661 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Washington, DC; 202-633-7970. The Renwick’s main focus is on the decorative arts.

No Spectators: The Art of Burning Man
Through January, 21, 2019
The art of Burning Man has never before been seen outside of its Black Rock Desert home. It is some of the most innovative work many visitors have ever seen. And you get a chance to experience virtual reality as a part of it.

Disrupting Craft: Renwick Invitational 2018
Through May 5, 2019
Tanya Aguiñiga, Sharif Bey, Dustin Farnsworth, and Stephanie Syjuco are the four artists selected for this year’s Invitational. Aguiñiga is a Mexican artist whose work reflects her heritage even as it lives in the twenty-first century.  Bey uses ceramics to make objects that are both sumptuous and usable. Dustin Farnsworth pieces are often large and move from “what in the world?’ to “Ahhhh.” Stephanie Syjuco, a Philippine-born American, makes installations using “collected cultural objects, cumulative archives, and temporary vending installations, often with an active public component that invites viewers to directly participate as producers or distributors” (Artist Statement, Stephanie Syjuco website). The Renwick Invitational is always an exciting introduction to crafters you may not know when you go but won’t forget by the time you leave.

Connections: Contemporary Craft at the Renwick Gallery

National Portrait Gallery/Smithsonian American Art Museum

8th Street at F Street NW, Washington, DC; 202-633-1000. The National Portrait Gallery (NPG) and the Smithsonian American Art Museum (SAAM) both contain many permanent exhibits that easily allow for many visits. These connected galleries, part of the Smithsonian, form a national treasure of American paintings and sculpture. The buildings include exquisite restored stained glass windows in ceilings and walls, and beautiful floor and wall tiling.

Recent Acquisitions (NPG)
Through November 3, 2019

Eye to I: Self-Portraits from 1900 to Today (NPG)
Through August 18, 2019

Celebrate: Leonard Bernstein’s 100th Birthday (NPG)
Through September 23, 2019

Daguerreotypes: Five Decades of Collecting (NPG)
Through June 2, 2019

Between Worlds: The Art of Bill Traylor (SAAM)
Through March 17, 2019
Outsider art is a category of work made by artists who are self-taught. Bill Traylor (ca. 1853–1949) was born a slave and didn’t begin to paint until he was in his 80s in Montgomery, Alabama. He is considered the preeminent outsider painter in the US.

One Year: 1968, An American Odyssey (NPG)
Through May 19, 2019

Portraits of the World: Switzerland (NPG)
Through November 12, 2018

Black Out: Silhouettes Then and Now (NPG)
Through March 10, 2019
The silhouette is seeing a resurgence. This art form was highly popular during the 18th and 19th centuries. One moving moment: a life-size silhouette of a nineteen-year-old enslaved girl which includes her bill of sale from 1796. The contemporary silhouettes contrast in both subject and materials.


UnSeen: Our Past in a New Light, Ken Gonzales-Day and Titus Kaphar (NGA)
Through January 23, 2019

Diane Arbus—A Box of Ten Photographs (SAAM)
Through January 21, 2019
“They are the proof that something was there and no longer is. Like a stain. And the stillness of them is boggling. You can turn away but when you come back they’ll still be there looking at you.” —Diane Arbus, 1971 (SAAM catalog)

Trevor Paglen: Sites Unseen (SAAM)
Through January 6, 2019

National Museum of Women in the Arts

1250 New York Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20005-3970; 202-783-5000, 1-800-222-7270

New York Avenue Sculpture Project: Betsabeé Romero
Through September 20, 2020

Through February 10, 2019


Walters Art Museum

600 North Charles Street, Baltimore MD; 410-547-9000; Wednesday–Sunday, 10 AM–5 PM

Chinese snuff bottles from the Qing Dynasty (1644–1911)
Through December 9, 2018

Transformation: Art of the Americas

Arts of Asia
Through October 1, 2020

Maplewood Park Place Gallery

9707 Old Georgetown Rd., Bethesda, MD.

Goldman Art Gallery, Jewish Community Center of Greater Washington

6125 Montrose Road, Rockville, MD 20852; 301-881-0100; Sunday 1–5 PM, Monday, Wednesday, and Thursday: 4–7:30 PM

To Bear Witness: The Art of Testimony
December 23, 2018-February 24, 2019. Reception: January 23, 2019, 4:30-6:30 pm.

A Hero’s Heart: Infantry Art by U. S. Veterans
Through December 16, 2018.

Blackrock Center for the Arts

12901 Town Commons Drive, Germantown, Maryland 20874;, 301-528-2260

ArtWatch collective’s One House Project (Kay Gallery) and (Terrace Gallery)
Though December 15, 2018
This show honors ancestors and immigrants. It includes the first Americans, Native Americans, as well as those who came much later. Each participant was given a 12″ square on which to tell the story.

Voyage : Tinam Valk
December 1, 2018 – December 21, 2018; reception/artist talk: December 1, 4:30-6:30 pm

The Mansion at Strathmore

10701 Rockville Pike, North Bethesda, MD 20852; information 301-581-5100; Tuesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday 10 AM–4 PM; Wednesday 10 AM–9 PM; Sunday 12 PM–4 PM; Closed Monday; Closed Sunday, December 31; Free

Montgomery County Plein Air Artists
Through January 6, 2019

85th Annual Exhibition of Fine Art in Miniature
Through January 6, 2019

Oil + Light: Nick Eisele
Through January 6, 2019

Artists and Makers 1

11810 Parklawn Drive, Suite 209, Rockville, MD 20852

Places to Wander: Paintings by Ken Bachman and Tom Semmes
Inspired by Frida
December 5, 2018- January 1, 2019; Reception-December 7, 2018, 6:00 PM-9:00 PM

Artists and Makers 2

12276-80, Wilkins Avenue, Rockville, MD 20852

Chimerical” with Liz Lescault
Robert Yi: Selected Works

Gallery 209 (Tuesdays -Sundays, 12:00 PM-4:00 PM )

Holiday Arts and Crafts

December 5, 2018- January 1, 2019; Reception-December 7, 2018, 6:00 PM-9:00 PM, Jaime Downs-“Influences of American Modernism on my Work”

Adah Rose Gallery

3766 Howard Avenue, Kensington, Maryland 20895; 301-922-0162;; Tuesday 1–6 PM, Thursday–Sunday Noon–6 PM, and by appointment

Brian Dupontz: Made right Until Made Right
Through December 31, 2018

TAG of Frederick

216 North Market Street, Frederick, MD 21701; 301-696-8187;; Friday and Saturday Noon–8 PM, Sunday Noon–5 PM, or by appointment

Cathy Wilkin and Richard John Jenkins
Through December 30, 2018; Reception, December 1, 2018, 5:00 PM- 9:00 PM

VisArts at Rockville

155 Gibbs Street, Rockville, MD 20850; 301-315-8200
Vis Arts has been providing artwork to the community for 30 years, and at no cost. They remain committed to introducing the community to new work and new artists as well as those who have made their reputations.

Daniel Reismeyer, A Gift from an Unknown Sender

Still Happenings: Contemporary Still Life Painting Exhibition ((Kaplan Gallery)
December 7, 2018-January 13, 2019 Reception: December 7 2018, 7:00 PM- 9:00 PM; Artists’ Panel Discussion: Sunday, January 13, 2 PM

These 12 artists have cast new eyes on the still life genre.  No quiet bowls of fruit, no arrangements of flowers, no groups of glassware or foods for this group. They choose to make work that doesn’t sit quietly on the wall and show off the furniture.

Gallery Underground

2001 Jefferson Davis Highway, Arlington, VA 22202; 571-483-0652;; Monday–Friday 10 AM–6 PM, Saturday 10 AM–2 PM; Metro accessible. Parking is available in metered spots on nearby streets and in public garages, which are free all day Saturdays and after 4 PM on weekdays.

Kentlands Mansion Gallery

320 Kent Square Road, Gaithersburg, MD; Monday–Friday by appointment only. (Due to event scheduling, please call the Mansion at 301-258-6425 prior to your visit to confirm availability of the gallery.)

Olney Art Association
Through January 6, 2019

Arts Barn Gallery

311 Kent Square Road, Gaithersburg, MD; Monday–Friday 10 AM–5 PM, Saturday 1:30 PM–5:30 PM

Interior Spaces
December 1, 2018- February 3, 2019; reception December 15, 2018, 4-6 PM.

Bohrer Park Gallery

506 South Frederick Avenue, Gaithersburg, MD; Monday–Saturday 8 AM–8 PM, Sunday 8 AM–5 PM

Fantasy, Sci-Fi and Humor
Through January 15, 2019

Brookside Visitors Center Gallery

1800 Glenallan Avenue, Silver Spring, MD 20902; Open daily 9 AM–5 PM; Closed selected holidays

Charles Bowers( Hand Pulled Photos, Prints and Monotypes), Haskel’s Palette – Oil Paintings, Hyung Moon – Acrylic Paintings and Photography

December 10th, 2018 – January 14th, 2019

Washington Metropolitan Art Society
Through December 10, 2018
MAA members Sandy Cepatis and Debra Halprin are in this show.  Cepatis is a gentle and talented landscape and still life artist.  Halprin is equally talented and this will showcase her botanical expertise.

Philz Coffee

1827 Adams Mill RD, NW, Washington, DC 20009, (202) 601-7710. Sun-Thus 6:00 AM-6:00 PM. Fri-Sat- 6:30 AM-7:00 PM

 Earth as Art

MAA member Pamela Gordimer has been invited to show in this opening event. Come and see her magnificent new work and have a first-rate coffee.

Oasis Gallery

Montgomery Mall at the rear of Macy’s Home Store ,second level, 7125 Democracy Blvd., Bethesda,  10:00 AM-4:00PM, Monday through Friday, 301-469-6800, press 1 and x211.

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