The National Building Museum Great Hall - Photo by Kevin Allen
The National Building Museum
The National Building Museum will present Fun House, designed by Snarkitecture, July 4-September 3.It will be the latest in the Museum’s Summer Block Party series of temporary structures erected inside its historic Great Hall. Curated by Italy-based Maria Cristina Didero, the heart of the exhibition will be “a Snarkitecture-designed house—a freestanding structure that recalls and re-imagines the idea of the traditional home. "Fun House will include a sequence of interactive rooms featuring well-known Snarkitecture environments and objects………..as well as new concepts developed for the Museum. "Snarkitecture is a New York-based collaborative practice. As visitors walk through the house, the rooms convey the ten-year story of Snarkitecture while underlining the studio’s peculiar, yet accessible way of reinterpreting the built environment.”
The National Building Museum is exhibiting The Architecture and Planning of the Manhattan Project, thru March 3, 2019.Construction of military reservations - “Secret Cities” - by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers began in the fall of 1942, less than a year after the U.S. was drawn into World War II. By the end of the war, a total of more than 125,000 people lived in the three cities that had been built from scratch on these sites. Yet these cities appeared on no maps, and the federal government did not acknowledge their existence.
Image below: An aerial view of the reactor at Hanford.
The National Building Museum is exhibiting Making Room: Housing for a Changing America, thru September 16, 2018.The focus is on “developers, architects, and interior designers - allied with housing advocates, policy makers, and activists - who are proposing exciting, flexible answers for our country’s evolving lifestyle needs. These innovations are at the center of the exhibition.” The spotlight is on “cutting-edge and efficient approaches such as micro apartments in Washington, D.C., and New York City, accessory “alley flats” in Austin, and shared housing in San Diego. Models, plans, and images showcase some of these alternative options and their effects on the housing market in those communities.” The exhibition’s centerpiece is a full-scale, flexible dwelling that further illustrates how a small space can be adapted to meet many needs.”
The National Building Museum opened an exhibition titled The Pilot District Project (PDP), 1968-1972 in March, 2018. The PDP was a local experiment in community policing in Washington, D.C. that began after the widespread neighborhood destruction that followed the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King in the spring of 1968. The PDP centered on several African American residential and business neighborhoods hardest hit by fires, looting, and other civil disturbances. The exhibition displays for the first time a newly-discovered collection of posters, maps, and other materials from this innovative community policing plan. The exhibition is a collaboration between the National Building Museum and the Historical Society of Washington, D.C.
The National Building Museum is displaying an exhibition titled Evictedthru May 19.The exhibition is “an immersive experience bringing visitors into the world of low-income renter eviction. With unique design elements and striking graphics, Evicted challenges adults and youth to face the enormity of a difficult subject while providing context and a call to action.
The National Archives opened a new installation titled Remembering Vietnamin the Lawrence F. O’Brien Gallery in November, 2017. The installation is a media-rich exploration of the Vietnam War, featuring interviews with American and Vietnamese veterans and civilians with first-hand experience of the war’s events. The installation provides multiple perspectives on the conflict from its Cold War origins to the Fall of Saigon. A collection of newly-discovered and original documents is featured, along with images, film footage, and artifacts. They illuminate 12 critical episodes in the war that divided the populations of both the U.S. and Vietnam.
The National Geographic will exhibit Titanic: The Untold Story, May 30-December 31.The exhibition will focus on "the surprising link between the 1985 discovery of the Titanic by oceanographer and National Geographic Explorer-at-Large Robert Ballard and a top secret Cold War mission." The exhibition willbe displayed in partnership with the National Archives and the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library.The exhibition “will showcase the untold history of this incredible discovery and the evolution of deep sea exploration.”
Image below: From "Titanic: The Untold Story," this deck chair from the Carpathia is the only known chair left in existence. Laying on the chair is a White Star Line wool blanket which was used by a survivor from one of the Titanic lifeboats. Photo courtesy of The National Geographic & The Ronald Reagan Presidential Foundation and Institute.
National Geographic is displaying an exhibition titled Tomb of Christ, thru August 15, 2018. Visitors "can learn the history of the Church of the Holy Sepulchre and be transported to Jerusalem for an immersive 3-D experience. The exhibit informs visitors about how National Geographic explorers are using new technologies, including lidar, sonar, laser scanning, and thermal imaging, to study the site. The project will be featured this fall in National Geographic magazine.
The Textile Museum & The George Washington University Museum
The George Washington University Museum & The Textile Museum are displaying two complimentary exhibitions - Breaking News: Alexander Hamilton and Greetings from Washington - thru Summer 2018. Breaking News: Alexander Hamilton features historical newspapers from a private collection that highlight important life events and accomplishments of the founding father. Greetings from Washingtonshowcases vintage postcards of Washington, D.C., including examples from what some consider to be the golden age of postcards at the turn of the 20th century, plus eye-catching contemporary postcards.
Images: At top, a page from the Rural Repository dated February 17, 1849 featuring Mrs. Hamilton on the cover. Below: A postcard featuring President Woodrow Wilson’s inauguration in 1917.
The Textile Museum at George Washington University is exhibiting Binding the Clouds: The Art of Central Asian Ikatthru July 9. In the region that is now Uzbekistan, “oasis towns were once awash with the rainbow colors of ikat fabrics. Through exceptional artworks recently donated to the museum, this exhibition focuses on the sophisticated dyeing technique known in Uzbekistan as abrband (binding the clouds).”
Image below: Hanging or cover, Central Asia, Uzbekistan, Bukhara, ca. 1800-1850 - The Textile Museum. Gift of Guido Goldman in honor of Bruce P. Baganz. Courtesy of the George Washington University Museum and The Textile Museum
The Textile Museum is exhibiting Vanishing Traditions: Textiles and Treasures from Southwest China, thru July 9.The focus is on elaborate textiles, jewelry, and accessories for community celebrations which were worn, for centuries, by minority cultures in southwest China. “Dazzling festival costumes new to the museum’s collections explore traditions now endangered by modernization.”
Image below: A festival jacket - Courtesy of the George Washington University Museum and The Textile Museum
The George Washington University Museum|Textile Museum openedFoundations for a Nation: Architectural Images from the Albert H. Small Washingtoniana Collectionin April, 2017. The exhibition explores “how public competitions, the preferences of individual presidents, and unanticipated historical events shaped Washington’s iconic landmarks.”
The Newseum is displaying Pictures of the Year: 75 Years of the World’s Best Photography, thru January 20, 2019. The groundbreaking photography show features seven decades of award-winning images from the archives of Pictures of the Year International(POYi), which is one of the world’s oldest and most prestigious photojournalism competitions. The images “depict the people and events that have defined our times, capturing war and peace, disaster and triumph, and the social and cultural shifts that have shaped the past 75 years. The pictures were selected from POYi’s archive of more than 40,000 photos, tracing the evolution of photojournalism from World War II to today.”
The Newseum exhibition titled 1967: Civil Rights at 50tells the dramatic story of the growing militancy of the struggle for racial justice in 1967. Photos and images of historic newspapers and magazines “explore how African Americans used their First Amendment rights to fight for change — at times at great cost. The exhibition is part of "a changing exhibit exploring the relationship between the First Amendment and the civil rights movement in the 1960s.”
The Newseum is exhibiting The Marines and Tet: The Battle That Changed the Vietnam War on the 50th anniversary of the event, thru July 8.The exhibition showcases “the work of John Olson, a young photographer with Stars and Stripes who spent three days with the Marines at the 1968 Battle of Huêˊ (pronounced hway), the bloodiest single battle of the Vietnam War.” The innovative exhibit “features 20 large-format photos and 10 tactile versions of those photos with touch-activated sensors that provide audio interviews, allowing blind and low-vision visitors to experience the images through touch and sound. The Newseum is the first museum in the U.S. to host a major tactile exhibit designed to include blind and low-vision visitors.” The exhibit also includes unique artifacts, including Nikon cameras that Olson used in Vietnam.