Events and Exhibits at the Arthur M. Sackler and Freer Galleries of Art in Washington DC
The Glazed Elephant: Ceramic Traditions in Cambodia
Opens April 15, 2017
Sackler sublevel 3
Water-pouring elephants; lime pots shaped like birds, rabbits, and lions; bottles with human faces and hands folded in reverence: these vessels feature in the ceramic traditions of the Angkor kingdom (802–1431). The Glazed Elephant explores these unconventional forms, their supposed functions, and the people who made and used them during this famous period in Cambodia’s history.
Through June 4, 2017
The craze for Chinese blue-and-white ceramics dubbed “Chinamania” swept London in the nineteenth century and still endures in the West. Inspired by his travels to a major center for Chinese ceramics, contemporary artist Walter McConnell interrogates this phenomenon through an installation of Kangxi porcelains and his own monumental works.
Inventing Utamaro: A Japanese Masterpiece Rediscovered
April 8-July 9, 2017
Sackler sublevel 2
For the first time in nearly 140 years, three large-scale works by the legendary Japanese artist Kitagawa Utamaro are reunited at the Freer| Sackler beginning Saturday, April 8th. The exhibition showcases Moon at Shinagawa from the Freer|Sackler along with Snow at Fukagawa from the Okada Museum of Art and Cherry Blossoms at Yoshiwara from the Wadsworth Atheneum Museum of Art. Depicting the themes of snow, moon, and flowers, the triptych was last shown in Japan in 1879. The Freer|Sackler is the only location at which all three original pieces are on view.
Perspectives: Michael Joo
Through July 9, 2017
S. Dillon Ripley Center, International Gallery
Inspired by the migration patterns of Korean red-crowned cranes, Brooklyn-based artist Michael Joo (b. 1966, Ithaca, NY) has created a monumental installation for the Freer|Sackler. The birds’ movements are visualized as lines in space in this multimedia work. On view in the light-flooded Sackler pavilion, the installation will seem to shift with the seasons, complementing Joo’s interest in the nature of change.
Programs and Events
Kung Fu Wildstyle
April 1-30, 2017
Sackler sublevel 3
To celebrate the new National Museum of African American History and Culture, we present a month-long exhibition and program series highlighting connections between African American and East Asian art, music, and film. The exhibition, Kung Fu Wildstyle, explores pop culture through contemporary street art, featuring works by legendary street artist and hip-hop impresario Fab 5 Freddy and Hong Kong graffiti and hip-hop pioneer MC Yan. They examine how Bruce Lee and kung fu affected New York City’s street culture and emerging hip-hop scene in the 1970s. Fab and MC Yan also show how this influence came full circle when hip-hop inspired a generation of Hong Kong street kids in the 1990s. Their paintings, which have previously popped up in New York, Shanghai, and Hong Kong, are enhanced by concerts, talks, and film screenings throughout April.
Open Studio: Japanese Woodblock Printing
Saturday, May 6, 2017
12 – 4 pm
Join us for free family activities 12-4pm with Smithsonian Gardens on Saturday, May 6! In this open studio, learn about orchids and witness firsthand the beauty of Japanese woodblock prints in Inventing Utamaro. Take a family-friendly tour (12:30 and 2:30 pm) of the exhibition at the Freer|Sackler, and then explore traditional tools and papers to create orchid prints in the Enid A. Haupt Garden. A teaching artist demonstrates basic printing techniques, carving, and transferring designs to a block. Come prepared to get your hands inky. All ages welcome with adult companions.
For more information about this museum, visit our Arthur M. Sackler and Freer Galleries of Art page.