Home The Washington Diplomat January 2017 Events – January 2017

Events – January 2017









Through January

Resilience: Reclaiming History and the Dominican Diaspora

Resilience is defined as the human ability to cope with difficult times and bounce back from personal trauma. The Inter-American Development Bank, with support from the Smithsonian Latino Center and the Embassy of the Dominican Republic, examine how artists create a space for society’s healing and growth. Today, the Dominican Republic is one of the most dynamic economies in the Caribbean. Nevertheless, the advances in reducing poverty and inequality have not kept pace with GDP growth. Looking toward the future, the country needs to improve the quality of education, health care infrastructure and services, diversify exports and boost productivity, while also adapting to climate change and promoting innovation.

IDB Cultural Center

Through Jan. 2

Drawings for Paintings in the Age of Rembrandt

Dutch landscapes, still lifes, and scenes of daily life possess a remarkable immediacy and authenticity, giving the impression that Dutch artists painted them from life. However, artists actually executed these works — as well as biblical and mythological subjects—in studios, often using drawings as points of departure. Over 90 drawings and 25 paintings by renowned Golden Age masters reveals the many ways Dutch artists used preliminary drawings in the painting process.

National Gallery of Art

Through Jan. 2

Intersections: Photographs and Videos from the National Gallery of Art and Corcoran Gallery of Art

Nearly 700 photographs from Eadweard Muybridge’s groundbreaking publication “Animal Locomotion,” acquired by the Corcoran Gallery of Art in 1887, became the foundation for the institution’s early interest in photography. The Key Set of more than 1,600 works by Alfred Stieglitz, donated by Georgia O’Keeffe and the Alfred Stieglitz Estate, launched the photography collection at the National Gallery of Art in 1949. Inspired by these two seminal artists, Muybridge and Stieglitz, the exhibition brings together highlights of the recently merged collections of the Corcoran and the National Gallery of Art by a range of artists from the 1840s to today.

National Gallery of Art

Through Jan. 2

Recent Acquisitions of Dutch and Flemish Drawings

“Recent Acquisitions of Dutch and Flemish Drawings” encompasses landscapes, seascapes, portraits, still lifes and history subjects that demonstrate the originality of Dutch and Flemish draftsmanship and its stylistic evolution.

National Gallery of Art

Through Jan. 2

Senses of Time: Video and Film-Based Works of Africa

This exhibition features six internationally recognized African artists and examines how time is experienced and produced by the body. Bodies stand, climb, dance and dissolve in seven works of video and film art by Sammy Baloji, Theo Eshetu, Moataz Nasr, Berni Searle, Yinka Shonibare and Sue Williamson, all of whom repeat, resist and reverse the expectation that time must move relentlessly forward.

National Museum of African Art

Through Jan. 5

North Is Freedom

This photographic essay celebrates the descendants of freedom-seekers who escaped slavery in the United States by fleeing to Canada. In the years before the American Civil War, approximately 30,000 fugitive slaves followed the “North Star” to freedom, using a network of clandestine routes that became known as the “Underground Railroad.” Some 150 years later, Canadian photographer Yuri Dojc explores the northern end of the “Underground Railroad” and presents a series of 24 portraits of descendants. This exhibit honors the contributions of once-enslaved African Americans and their descendants to Canada and celebrates the opening of the newest Smithsonian museum, the National Museum of African American History and Culture.

Embassy of Canada Art Gallery

Jan. 6 to June 2

From the Desk of Simone de Beauvoir

Consider the influence and intellect of feminist philosopher Simone de Beauvoir in an interpretation of her Paris studio alcove. This installation invites visitors to reflect on Beauvoir’s impact, not only in her time and not only as a feminist, but in our own time and in the areas of literature, philosophy and popular culture.

National Museum of Women in the Arts

Through Jan. 7

The Overflow of Productivity Logic

“The Overflow of Productivity Logic,” with works by artists Cristina Lucas, Irving Penn, Abraham Cruzvillegas and more, features a selection of pieces that, through gestures, evocations or representations, displace the conceptual pillars of the prevailing economic model. Through three thematic axes, the exhibit calls into question production processes and economic exchange, reflects on the role that the economy plays in the constitution of an individual and challenges the logic of “productivity” within the capitalistic economic model.

Mexican Cultural Institute

Through Jan. 8

NO MAN’S LAND: Women Artists from the Rubell Family Collection

Born in 16 countries across five continents, 37 contemporary artists use their aesthetically diverse work to address varied political and intellectual themes. This exhibition centers on the process of making as well as on images of the female body — both topics that extend from the feminist art movement of the 1970s.

National Museum of Women in the Arts

Through Jan. 8

People on the Move: Beauty and Struggle in Jacob Lawrence’s Migration Series

The Phillips Collection reunites all 60 panels of “The Migration Series,” Jacob Lawrence’s seminal masterwork depicting the mass movement of African Americans from the rural South to the urban North between the World Wars. Shaped by an interdisciplinary team of scholars, this exhibition explores the historical, literary, socio-cultural, aesthetic and contemporary manifestations of migration that underlie Lawrence’s powerful visual narrative. The presentation is complemented by a new interactive website, featuring the artist’s first-hand accounts as well as contemporary responses to migration.

The Phillips Collection

Through Jan. 8

Ragnar Kjartansson

“Ragnar Kjartansson” is the first major survey of the work of the internationally acclaimed Icelandic artist and his prodigious output since his debut in Reykjavík in 2000. It features the artist’s most celebrated works, including many never before seen in the U.S., and encompasses the entirety of his practice — live endurance performance, large-scale video installations, drawings, photography and painting.

Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden

Through Jan. 8

Whitfield Lovell: The Kin Series & Related Works

The work of internationally recognized Bronx-born artist Whitfield Lovell powerfully examines “the markings that the past has made — and continues to make—on who we are.” In his exquisitely crafted Kin series and related tableaux, Lovell combines freely drawn Conté crayon figures of anonymous African Americans with time worn objects from everyday life, such as a brooch, clock or flag.

The Phillips Collection

Through Jan. 10

Surreal Dialogue: Works by Ji Yoon Hwang and Soyoung Kim

Diverse yet complementary painting and fabric installation works by two young Korean artists explore the language of emotional discomfort in modern society through subtly unsettling images and tactile sensations. Each artist strives to communicate this message of emotional dissonance, inviting viewers to consider the human stories and voices in modern society and to explore our own imagination through surrealistic visions of the everyday.

Korean Cultural Center

Through Jan. 13

Light from the Other Side: Shadowgraphs by Tim Otto Roth

Shadows underscore the beauty of nature and escape the captivity of their surfaces in the shadowgraphs created by German conceptual artist Tim Otto Roth. Usually referred to as photograms, these highly differentiated shadow records on light-sensitive surfaces are created in a process similar to an X-ray, with Roth dedicating 15 years of research and development into this medium.


Through Jan. 27

Sertão Cerrado by José Diniz

Sertão refers to backland region located inside Brazil, far from the coast, while Cerrado occupies much of the interior. In addition to providing water that feeds aquifers and basins to major cities, the region is home to a cycle of fire and water, after periods of drought and fire, that gives birth to lush flowers rising from the ashes — an elemental process of earth, water, fire and air documented by Brazilian photographer José Diniz.

Art Museum of the Americas

Through Jan. 28


This exhibit chronicles a 2,400 mile-long, site-specific installation that traces the border between Mexico and the United States as it existed in 1821. In marking the short-lived historic boundary with a series of monuments that mimic those installed along the contemporary border, artists Marchos Ramírez Erre and David Taylor question the permanence of borders while recognizing the shared history and common interests between the two neighboring countries.

Mexican Cultural Institute

Through Jan. 29

Los Angeles to New York: Dwan Gallery, 1959-1971

The remarkable career of gallerist and patron Virginia Dwan will be featured front and center for the first time in an exhibition of some 100 works, featuring highlights from Dwan’s promised gift of her extraordinary personal collection to the National Gallery of Art.

National Gallery of Art

Through Jan. 29

Turquoise Mountain: Artists Transforming Afghanistan

Decades of civil unrest nearly destroyed Afghanistan’s vital artistic heritage. Over the past decade, Turquoise Mountain, an organization founded in 2006 at the request of the prince of Wales and the president of Afghanistan, has transformed the Murad Khani district of Old Kabul from slum conditions into a vibrant cultural and economic center.

Arthur M. Sackler Gallery

Through Jan. 30

Bingata! Only in Okinawa

The first major American exhibition of Okinawa’s textile treasures — brightly colored fabrics known as bingata — introduces U.S. audiences to the history and culture of Japan’s southernmost administrative district through dozens of bingata textiles, ranging from 18th- and 19th-century court robes to contemporary works by Okinawan artists and fashion designers.

The George Washington University Museum / Textile Museum

Through Feb. 7

No Boundaries: Aboriginal Australian Contemporary Abstract Painting

“No Boundaries” showcases the work of nine Aboriginal artists from remote northwest Australia, revered as community leaders and the custodians of ceremonial knowledge. They took up painting late in their lives, but quickly established themselves at the forefront of Australian contemporary art. The paintings of these nine men cannot be understood outside of the rich cultural traditions that inform them. At the same time, these artists are innovators of the highest order.

Embassy of Australia Art Gallery

Through Feb. 12

Notes from the Desert: Photographs by Gauri Gill

Since the late 1990s, Gauri Gill (born 1970) has been photographing marginalized communities in western Rajasthan, India. Featuring 57 of her prints, this exhibition showcases Gill’s work in the remote desert region and draws on her extensive archive.

Arthur M. Sackler Gallery

Through Feb. 20

The Art of the Qur’an: Treasures from the Museum of Turkish and Islamic Arts

In recognition of one of the world’s extraordinary collections of Qur’ans, the Freer|Sackler is hosting a landmark exhibition, the first of its kind in the United States, featuring some 50 of the most sumptuous manuscripts from Herat to Istanbul. Celebrated for their superb calligraphy and lavish illumination, these manuscripts — which range in date from the early 8th to the 17th century — are critical to the history of the arts of the book. They were once the prized possessions of Ottoman sultans and the ruling elite, who donated their Qur’ans to various institutions to express their personal piety and secure political power.

Arthur M. Sackler Gallery

Through Feb. 26

Evolving Elections; Comparing the 1916 and 2016 Presidential Campaigns

“Evolving Elections” attempts to make sense of presidential politics then and now, exploring the political campaign season of 100 years ago vs. the current election. The modern day complaints about primary fights, the importance of party unity, a bitterly divided party, the grueling length of campaigns and outsiders seeking nomination would have been familiar to the voter during the contentious election of 1916. More contentious than 2016? You decide.

Woodrow Wilson House

Through March 5

Photography Reinvented: The Collection of Robert E. Meyerhoff and Rheda Becker

The collection of Robert E. Meyerhoff and Rheda Becker brings together works of critically important artists who have changed the course of photography through their experimentation and conceptual scope. Especially rich in holdings of work by photographers of the famed Düsseldorf School, among them Struth, Candida Höfer, Andreas Gursky and Thomas Ruff, the collection also includes examples by photographers exploring the nature of the medium itself, such as Demand, Cindy Sherman and Vik Muniz.

National Gallery of Art

Through March 5

Stuart Davis: In Full Swing

As one of the most important American modernists, Stuart Davis (1892–1964) blurred distinctions between text and image, high and low art, and abstraction and figuration, crafting a distinct style that continues to influence art being made today.

National Gallery of Art

Through March 26

The Great Swindle: Works by Santiago Montoya

Colombian artist Santiago Montoya uses paper currency as the base for his work, re-contextualizing one of our most basic and intimate relationships: the relationship with money. Comprised of works that Montoya has made over the last 10 years, “The Great Swindle” represents a sustained examination of the complicated, fluid relationships we have with financial systems, as well as a journey through the artist’s forays into the materiality of paper bills — raising questions and taking positions on our place within the financial system.

OAS Art Museum of the Americas

Through Aug. 6, 2017

José Gómez-Sicre’s Eye

A half-century ago, Cuban-born curator José Gómez-Sicre took the reins of the OAS’s art program, thrusting himself into the rapidly expanding Latin American art world and bringing young, emerging talent to the OAS’s budding exhibition space. Impassioned by the arts, Gómez-Sicre planted the seeds of what is today considered among world’s finest collections of modern and contemporary Latin American and Caribbean art. The OAS will be celebrating the centennial of Gómez-Sicre’s birth throughout 2016, honoring his contribution to the legacy of the hemisphere’s art.

OAS Art Museum of the Americas



Jan. 17 to 22

Shen Yun Performing Arts 2017: Experience a Divine Culture Presented by Falun Dafa Association of D.C.

Shen Yun Performing Arts, the world’s premier classical Chinese dance and music company originating from America, invites you to experience a grand performance of Chinese arts and culture from the Middle Kingdom. Tickets are $70 to $250.

Kennedy Center Opera House

Sat., Jan. 28, 8 p.m.,
Sun., Jan. 29, 2 p.m.


Experience the mind-bending world of Pilobolus with the D.C. premiere of “Shadowland,” an evening-length piece following the dreamlike world of a young girl. Equal parts dramatic and comedic, “Shadowland” incorporates moving screens, projected images and front-of-screen choreography all set to a rhythmic original score by American film composer David Poe (co-presented with CityDance).

GW Lisner Auditorium



Tue., Jan. 17, 7 p.m.

Why Did the Holocaust Happen? A Leading Scholar on Eight Key Questions

In his new book “Why?” historian Peter Hayes explores what scholars know about the Holocaust, answering questions including: Why were Jews the primary victims? Why were Germans the instigators? Why did murder become the “Final Solution”? And why didn’t the international community do more to help?

U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum



Tue., Jan. 24, 7:30 p.m.

Antonio Lizana

Saxophonist and “cantaor” flamenco Antonio Lizan presents his latest album, “Quimeras del Mar,” in which he travels through jazz, guided by his love of flamenco music and strong Cádiz roots. Tickets are $15.

Former Spanish Residence

Sat., Jan. 28, 8 p.m.

Direct from Dublin: The Five Irish Tenors

Five premier tenors from Ireland fuse Irish wit and boisterous charm with lyricism, dramatic flair and extraordinary musicianship in this singular concert experience. Tickets are $33 to $55.

George Mason University Center for the Arts



Through Jan. 1

The Second City’s Black Side of the Moon

The Second City renews its long-running, hugely-successful partnership with Woolly Mammoth by shining the light of satire on a nation eclipsed by its own divisiveness. In “Black Side of the Moon,” a cast of Chicago’s funniest and most audacious African American sketch and stand-up artists deconstructs and reconstructs blackness through comedy, illuminating the challenges of the past and promises of the future. Tickets start at $20.

Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company

Jan. 5 to Feb. 5

Someone is Going to Come

Scena Theatre continues its 30th anniversary season with Norwegian playwright Jon Fosse’s emotionally powerful drama about a strange couple who moves into an isolated, run-down house to be alone, far from the prying eyes of others. Yet, they both grow increasingly anxious that “someone is going to come” in this poetic play about passion, paranoia and jealousy. Tickets are $30 to $35.

Atlas Performing Arts Center

Jan. 6 to 13

Irving Berlin: A Simple Melody

“There’s No Business Like Show Business” and no songs like the songs of Irving Berlin. For most of the 20th century, from stage, screen and music halls, Berlin’s songs painted life and love in America with wit, wisdom and unabashed patriotic fervor. The In Series presents this cabaret-revue evening of hit songs by Berlin, the man who told America’s story in song for nearly a century. Tickets are $42.

Source Theater

Through Jan. 8

Into the Woods

Venture into the woods with the acclaimed Fiasco Theater’s production that became New York’s surprise hit of the season. This witty and wildly theatrical re-invention of Sondheim’s Tony Award-winning musical classic is staged like you’ve never seen it before. Tickets are $45 to $175.

Kennedy Center Eisenhower Theater

Through Jan. 8

The Secret Garden

When 10-year-old Mary Lennox loses her parents to a cholera epidemic in the British Raj of India, she travels to England to stay with her remote and morose uncle, still grieving the death of his wife 10 years ago. Terrified of every nook and cranny of the haunted Craven Manor on the Yorkshire Moors, Mary seeks refuge in her late aunt’s mysterious walled garden, where she discovers amazing secrets. Please call for ticket information.

Shakespeare Theatre Company
Harman Hall

Through Jan. 8

Sleeping Beauty

Synetic’s award-winning ensemble takes on the classic tale of a princess, an evil sorceress and a centuries-long sleeping curse in this darkly elegant, wordless adaptation of one of the Grimm Brothers’ most beloved stories. Tickets start at $35.

Synetic Theater

Through Jan. 8


Back by popular demand: From its first electrifying note to the final breathtaking moment, “Wicked” — the untold true story of the Witches of Oz — transfixes audiences with its wildly inventive story that USA Today cheers is “a complete triumph!” Tickets are $99 to $359.

Kennedy Center Opera House

Jan. 11 to Feb. 19

The Hard Problem

Master dramatist Tom Stoppard’s newest play follows Hilary, a young psychology researcher at the prestigious Krohl Institute for Brain Science. As she and her colleagues grapple with the “hard problem” of defining consciousness, a thorny decision from Hilary’s past fuels her controversial stances — and a few suspect choices. Tickets start at $52.

Studio Theatre

Jan. 12 to Feb. 19


The lawyer: a young, brilliant, courageous woman arguing Roe v. Wade before the Supreme Court. The plaintiff: a complex, single woman seeking to end an unwanted pregnancy. The landmark 1973 case legalized abortion, but also began their separate journeys that would come to mirror the polarization in American culture. Tickets are $40 to $90.

Arena Stage

Jan. 13 to 15

American Opera Initiative

The Washington National Opera (WNO) presents the fifth season of its acclaimed American Opera Initiative, a comprehensive commissioning program that brings contemporary American stories to the stage while fostering the talents of rising American composers and librettists. The festival begins with the world premiere of a new hour-long work by composer Mohammed Fairouz and librettist Mohammed Hanif, “The Dictator’s Wife,” on Jan. 13 and 15. Three new pairings of opera composers and librettists offer new one-act operas during the festival, each based on a contemporary American story and inspired by the ideals often ascribed to President Kennedy as part of “JFKC: A Centennial Celebration of President Kennedy.” Two semi-staged concert performances of each 20-minute opera are presented on Jan. 14. Tickets are $20 to $35.

Kennedy Center Family Theater

Jan. 24 to March 5

As You Like It

Rosalind is banished from court and flees to the Forest of Arden, where she discovers Orlando and a world of passion and possibility in one of Shakespeare’s most cherished romantic comedies. When she disguises herself as a man, enchantment abounds and blossoms into an exploration of the beauty and complexities of young love. Tickets are $35 to $75.

Folger Theatre

Jan. 28 to Feb. 11


“Hamlette” takes the classic Shakespeare play, throws it in a blender and shakes it up into a side-splitting comedy told in under an hour with only five actors as part of the Keegan Theatre’s “Play Rah Ka” series on inspiring young people (recommended for ages 11 and up). For information, visit http://keegantheatre.com/playrahka/.

The Keegan Theatre