The International Spy Museum reopened in its permanent new home at L’Enfant Plaza in Southwest DCon May 12. The 140,000-square-feet landmark building has double the floor space of the museum's previous home at 800 F Street NW. There are new resources for educational programming, a lecture hall/theater, and multifunction event space with sweeping views of DC.
The George Washington University Museum|Textile Museum
The George Washington University Museum|Textile Museum is exhibiting Best Laid Plans: Designs for a Capital City, thru December 22. Every landmark in Washington, D.C., has a story. Some never made it past the drawing board. This exhibition examines unrealized designs for the Washington Monument, Memorial Bridge, and other structures around the city through historical prints and paintings from the museum’s Albert H. Small Washingtoniana Collection. The exhibition was organized in cooperation with the Albert H. Small Center for National Capital Area Studies.
The George Washington University Museum is exhibiting Songs of the Civil War thru December 22. During the American Civil War, music had the power to inspire patriotism and service, and to capture loss on the battlefield.
This exhibition showcases historical sheet music that provided the soundtrack to a nation divided by war. The exhibition was organized in cooperation with the Albert H. Small Center for National Capital Area Studies.
The Washington Revels Heritage Voices will perform a concert of Civil War-era music in conjunction with the George Washington University Museum’s recently-opened exhibition titled Songs of the Civil War, on July 27.The performance will feature three pieces specifically recorded by Heritage Voices for the exhibit: “Wanted!—A Substitute,” “Down with the Traitors’ Serpent Flag,” and “The Drummer of Antietam.” There will be opportunities to sing along, to speak with members of Heritage Voices, and to tour the exhibit.
The George Washington University Museum|Textile Museum is exhibiting the Beaded Prayers Project thru July 15. In cultures around the globe, people create amulets and other personal expressions of prayer.
Initiated by artist Sonya Clark, this interactive exhibition invites visitors to contribute their own beaded “prayer packets” to a community-driven art installation that celebrates diversity and unity. Image below: Artist Sonya Clark (left) with the Beaded Prayers Project. Photo courtesy of Sonya Clark. Visithttps://museum.gwu.edu/
The National Building Museum
The National Building Museum Great Hall - Photo by Kevin Allen
The National Building Museum is exhibiting Animals, Collected, thru Spring 2020.The museum is home to 320,000 objects related to the built environment. Many of these artifacts in the permanent collection have never been displayed. The exhibition explores some of the Museum’s most unusual treasures– through the lens of the animal kingdom.The exhibition showcases a selection of architectural objects depicting animals—both real and mythological—as decorative elements.The exhibition presents two- and three-dimensional materials "that encourage closer inspection of the buildings we see every day."
"Organized by animal habitat, surprising object groupings zoom in on different phases of, and approaches to the process of design and construction."
The National Building Museum will present The Lawn- their 2019 Summer Block Party installation, July 4-September 2. The Museum is partnering with the LAB at Rockwell Group to present the installation, which will be an immersive installation taking up the entirety of the Museum’s Great Hall, and will offer interactive experiences for all ages. The installation will be complemented by programs and events, and ticket purchasers will be able to visit all of the Museum’s exhibitions.
The National Building Museum is displaying HOOPS, a new exhibition of photographer Bill Bamberger’s work capturing private and community basketball courts around the country and abroad, thru January 5, 2020. The photos are devoid of people, but are nonetheless neighborhood and community portraits, “reflecting basketball’s universal appeal and ability to dissolve demographic, ethnic, and regional barriers.”
The exhibition opened just in time for the 2019 NCAA Division I Men’s and Women’s Basketball Tournaments.
The National Building Museum is exhibiting Flickering Treasures: Rediscovering Baltimore's Forgotten Movie Theaters, thru October 14, 2019.Flickering Treasures invites visitors to travel in time through a survey of Baltimore’s movie-going past from 1896 to the present, using photography, oral histories, architectural fragments, and theater ephemera to illuminate themes of memory, loss, and preservation. Photojournalist Amy Davis’s color photographs reflect a nuanced and humanistic approach. She is an award-winning Baltimore Sun staff photographer. Her book Flickering Treasures: Rediscovering Baltimore’s Forgotten Movie Theaters was published in 2017.
The National Geographic is exhibiting Queens of Egypt, thru September 2. The multisensory exhibition takes observers back in time some 3,500 years, to the 18th and 19th dynasties of ancient Egypt.
Legendary queens such as Nefertari, Nefertiti, Hatshepsut, and Cleopatra VII ruled Egypt. Visitors can see more than 300 prestigious objects, including monumental statues, sparkling jewelry, and impressive sarcophagi from the period. There is also be a 3-D tour of one of the most well-preserved tombs in the Valley of the Queens.
Image at top: The poster for Queens of Egypt
Image below: Mural painting of the queen offering before Osiris and Atum - Tomb of Nefertari - Annex to antechamber - DeA Picture Library/ Art Resource Queens of Egypt - National Geographic
The Freedom Forum — the creator and primary funder of the Newseum — announced on January 25 that the building in which the Newseum is located has been sold to Johns Hopkins University for $372.5 million. The mission of the Newseum has been to increase public understanding of the importance of a free press and the First Amendment. The University will use the building as a new consolidated center for its DC-based graduate programs. Jan Neuharth, chair and CEO of the Freedom Forum, commented that the Forum “can begin to explore all options to find a new home in the Washington, DC area.” The Forum plans “to continue much of the Newseum’s important work for decades to come — through digital outreach, traveling exhibits, and web-based programs in schools around the world, as well as hopefully in a new physical home in the area.” “All of the artifacts on display in the museum will remain on exhibit for our visitors to learn from while the details of the agreement are settled.”
The Newseum will exhibit Seriously Funny: From the Desk of ‘The Daily Show with Jon Stewart’, June 21-December 31.The exhibit will explore the impact the Comedy Centralshow had on American politics and the press through four presidential campaigns, two wars and the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001. More than 50 artifacts will be on display, from The Daily Show and the satirical news shows it inspired, plus print publications that reported on the show’s influence. The exhibit will also feature an original Newseum-produced film that goes behind the scenes at The Daily Show with Trevor Noah. The centerpiece of the exhibit will be Stewart’s desk from The Daily Show, donated to the Newseum after Stewart’s final appearance on the late-night series after 16 years hosting the popular program.
Image below: Jon Stewart at his desk on the set of "The Daily Show with Jon Stewart." (Courtesy Comedy Central/"The Daily Show with Jon Stewart")
The Newseum is exhibiting Rise Up: Stonewall and the LGBTQ Rights Movement, thru January 5, 2020.The exhibit explores the modern gay rights movement in the U.S. and marks the 50th anniversary of a June 1969 police raid of the Stonewall Inn in New York’s Greenwich Village. The protests that followed the raid inspired the modern gay liberation movement and the ongoing fight for LGBTQ civil rights. The exhibit includes a yearlong program series featuring journalists, authors, politicians and other newsmakers who have led the fight for equality. Artifacts, images and historic print publications are displayed in an exploration of key moments of gay rights history.
Image below: The poster for Rise Up: Stonewall and the LGBTQ Rights Movement
The National Law Enforcement Museum opened in October at the Motorola Solutions Foundation Building at Judiciary Square in D.C. The Museum’s core mission is to introduce visitors to the proud history and many facets of American law enforcement in a unique experience. A “walk in the shoes” experience lets visitors learn what it’s like to be a law enforcement officer through innovative and engaging exhibits, artifacts and programs. The museum also seeks to strengthen the relationship between law enforcement and the communities they serve with thought-provoking programs that promote dialogue on topics of current interest. Artifacts from a collection of more than 20,000 objects tell the story of American law enforcement – past, present, and future – and engage visitors of all ages in memorable, immersive and experiential exhibits. Visitors are invited to begin the tour by watching a signature film.
NOTE:Entry to the Museum requires a timed-entry ticket.
The National Children’s Museum (NCM), a cultural and educational institution that serves children and their families, will open in a new space in Woodrow Wilson Plaza at the intersection of 13th St. and Pennsylvania Ave. in downtown D.C. in the Fall of 2019. The museum was founded as the Capital Children’s Museum in 1974 and served kids and families in the Washington region for thirty years in Northeast DC.For several years, the Museum operated as a museum without walls by serving the region through traveling exhibitions, partnerships with other nonprofits, as well as community and school outreach programs. In 2012, NCM occupied a small space on the National Harbor, but closed in 2015 to prepare for its move back to the District. The new location will offer a playful learning experience dedicated to teaching science, technology, engineering, arts, and math for local residents and tourists alike.