Exhibits and Programs at the National Gallery of Art in Washington DC
Degas at the Opéra
March 1–July 5
West Building, Ground Floor
Edgar Degas’s renowned images of the Paris Opéra are among the most sophisticated and visually compelling works he ever created. Celebrating the 350th anniversary of the Opéra’s founding, Degas at the Opéra showcases 100 of the artist’s best-known and beloved works in a range of media, including paintings, pastels, drawings, prints, and sculpture. On March 8 at 2:00 p.m., exhibition curator and curator of 19th-century French paintings Kimberly A. Jones gives an introductory lecture.
March 22, 2020–January 24, 2021
East Building, Mezzanine
This installation reveals Lynda Benglis’s innovative practice in a spectrum of materials and mediums. Sculptures, paintings, drawings, and videos explore bold physical gestures that demonstrate why Benglis continues to profoundly influence subsequent generations. On March 22 at 2:00 p.m., exhibition curator and curator of contemporary art Molly Donovan gives an introductory lecture.
Now on View
True to Nature: Open-Air Painting in Europe, 1780–1870
Now through May 3, 2020
West Building, Ground Floor
An integral part of art education in the late 18th and early 19th centuries, painting en plein air was a core practice for European artists as they developed skills in capturing the effects of light and atmosphere outdoors. Building on new scholarship and featuring recently discovered works, this exhibition includes some 100 oil sketches made outdoors. Explore what these works reveal about the artists’ styles, techniques, and development. Mary Morton, exhibition curator and the Gallery’s head of French paintings, will give an introductory lecture on February 2 at 2:00 p.m.
Raphael and His Circle
Now through June 14, 2020
West Building, Ground Floor
To celebrate the 500th anniversary of Raphael’s death, the Gallery presents 25 prints and drawings that illustrate how his art and influence shaped the standard of aesthetic excellence for later artists, connoisseurs, and scholars. Four of the Gallery’s paintings by Raphael will be displayed on the main floor of the West Building to complement this exhibition.
Conservation Revealed: The French Sculpture Project
Wednesdays through Fridays, 10:00 a.m.–noon and 2:00–5:00 p.m.
West Building, Main Floor, East Sculpture Hall
As a 2019 Bank of America Art Conservation Project grant recipient, the Gallery is undergoing in situ conservation treatment of six 17th- and 18th-century French marble sculptures installed in the West Building’s East Sculpture Hall. For the first time, treatment will be conducted during public hours, allowing visitors to observe and learn about the work. Throughout the 15-month treatment, a live video feed next to the sculpture will provide a close-up view of conservation work. Talks from curators, educators, and conservators bring the work to life, including discussions with conservator Robert Price at 1:30 p.m. each workday.
In Honor of Women’s History Month
Three programs celebrate women, exploring their roles and contributions. Visit nga.gov/talks for a full list of the Gallery’s offerings.
NGA Nights: GRL PWR
March 12, 6:00–9:00 p.m.
This beloved evening program returns with a celebration of women artists: Les The DJ spins a set featuring iconic female musicians, the all-women Afro-Brazilian drum group Batalá Washington delivers a trio of pulse pounding performances, and pop-up talks showcase the talents of women-identifying artists. Enjoy art-making, a trivia wheel, and specialty food and beverages throughout the East Building.
ARNOLD NEWMAN LECTURE SERIES ON PHOTOGRAPHY
Teju Cole and Fazal Sheikh
March 18, 6:30 p.m.
West Building Lecture Hall
Teju Cole—artist, curator, novelist, former photography critic for New York Times Magazine, and Gore Vidal Professor of the Practice of Creative Writing at Harvard University—examines race, gender, migration, culture, and privilege in his work. Fazal Sheikh—artist-in-residence at the Princeton Environmental Institute, Princeton University—documents the lives of individuals in displaced and marginalized communities. In conjunction with Richard Mosse: Incoming, the two discuss how their work intersected in the book Human Archipelago with an evening conversation and book signing.
Shaping Wikipedia: Art+Feminism Edit-a-thon
March 21, 10:30 a.m.–3:00 p.m.
National Gallery of Art Library, East Building Study Center
In celebration of Lynda Benglis and part of Wikipedia’s Art+Feminism DC 2020 initiative, the Gallery library is sharing its resources during a public edit-a-thon aimed at improving Wikipedia entries on women sculptors. The program includes a pre-opening tour of Lynda Benglis. No Wikipedia editing experience is necessary, as training is provided; participants are asked to bring laptops.
SIXTY-NINTH A.W. MELLON LECTURES IN THE FINE ARTS
Transparence and Ambiguity: The Modern Space of Axonometry
March 22, 29, 2:00 p.m.
East Building Auditorium
In a six-part lecture series beginning March 22, noted scholar Yve-Alain Bois will explore axonometry, a spatial representation in which receding parallels remain parallel and do not converge in a vanishing point. Although axonometry has a long history in the East, the lectures focus on its Western avatars, especially on its appeal since the late 18th century, in fields as diverse as architecture, crystallography, optical physiology, geometry, mechanical drawing, painting, and philosophy.
It Will Be Chaos
March 22, 4:00 p.m.
East Building Auditorium
Lorena Luciano and Filippo Piscopo introduce their Emmy Award–winning documentary, which tracks the stories of an Eritrean shipwreck survivor and a Syrian husband and father who seeks to bring his family to safety in Germany. In conjunction with Richard Mosse: Incoming.
Miyabi Koto Shamisen Ensemble
March 29, 3:30 p.m.
West Building, West Garden Court
This New York–based group of musicians is from one of the most prominent schools for contemporary koto and shamisen music. Miyabi’s repertoire ranges from classical to contemporary selections, with an emphasis on Tadao Sawai’s compositions.
THE SYDNEY J. FREEDBERG LECTURE ON ITALIAN ART:
Andrea Mantegna’s Stones, Caves, and Clouds
Gabriele Finaldi, director of the National Gallery, London, explores how the realms of nature, art, and antiquity are fused into the unique vision of Andrea Mantegna’s Renaissance world. The artist’s particular universe was constructed in stone: carved, cut, polished, and sometimes invented.
Degas at the Opéra Exhibition Catalog
Copublished by the Musée d’Orsay and the Musée de l’Orangerie / Réunion des musées nationaux, this beautifully illustrated volume presents a comprehensive exploration of Degas’s fascination with the Paris Opéra. Through scholarly essays and breathtaking illustrations, Degas experts—Henri Loyrette, general curator of the exhibition, along with Kimberly A. Jones, curator of 19th-century French paintings, National Gallery of Art, and others—consider the Opéra as a whole, examining not only Degas’s passionate relationship with it and his musical tastes, but also the infinite resources it provided him.
SCULPTURE GARDEN ICE RINK
Monday–Thursday, 10:00 a.m.–9:00 p.m.
Friday and Saturday, 10:00 a.m.–11:00 p.m.
Sunday, 11:00 a.m.–9:00 p.m.
Due to warm weather, the Sculpture Garden ice rink will close for the season after Saturday, March 7.
Join us for a skate in the heart of the National Mall and surrounded by monumental modern sculptures. In addition to extended Sculpture Garden hours during the season, visitors can enjoy $5 food and beverage specials during the week and Pavilion Café favorites until 9:00 p.m. on the weekends.
For more information on this museum, visit our National Gallery of Art page.
Program and Exhibit information provided by the National Gallery of Art.